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Thread: First atempt at pickup winding. Need Some help!

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    First atempt at pickup winding. Need Some help!

    Hi.
    I'm new to this forum, and new to the art of pickup winding. I'we been playing with the thought of making my own pickups for while, and finaly buildt my first winder.

    I started making a set of single coils, and made the neck pickup first. It's an unstaggered single coil with alnico 5 and PE wire. I winded it to 5.72 Kohm, and it sounds absoloutly wonderfull!

    My second pickup was to be the bridge pickup, and I aimed for something around 6,3 Kohm, using the same wire and magnets as I did on the neck. When winding the pickup, the wire broke, so I had to solder it back together. When i finnished the pickup, I couldn't get a reading with my multimeter. It does however work when I conneck it to my amp, and holds it over the guitar. I also get some readings when I measure resistance from the hot wire to the polepieces. I get this on three of the magnets, and they show 0.0 Kohms, 2.42 kohms ond 0.01 kohms. From the groundwire to the magnets, I get no reading at all.

    I can't tell it it gives out the right output, as the setup I'm trying it on is a rack effect with very heavy compression. Sounds quite good, though.

    From what i can figure I have a break in the winding somewhere, probbably where I soldered the broken wire back together. I still don't understand how the pickup can work, if there isn't a connection between the hot and ground wire? Anyone care to tell me how this is possible?

    I also want some tips on how to solder plain enamel?

    Thanks for any answer I get, and thanks for sharing your knowledge on this wonderfull forum.

    Marius, Norway.

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    ToneOholic! big_teee's Avatar
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    Welcome Marius:
    Sounds like you are having all kinds of fun.
    Here's a picture of a single coil.
    After assembly I spray my bobbins with a spray lacquer.
    I let dry. Then I tape the magnets with one layer of scotch tape.
    I wind the bobbin.
    When I get done I solder the black ground to start lead.
    I solder the white wire to the finish lead.
    I hook up my DVOM (Ohm Meter) to the black wire (Start).
    I should not read continuity from the black to any magnet.
    I should read desired DCR from black to white wire.
    It sounded like you had 2 problems.
    It sounded like you had white wire to start lead and it was shorted to the magnet.
    The other thing you didn't solder the wire together.
    with the dark brown PE wire you have to lightly sand the wire so it will take solder.
    You will probably need to cut the wire off and start over.
    Are you winding Clockwise , or Counter Clockwise?
    Keep us posted.
    Good Luck,
    Terry

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    Terry

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    There are two possibilities here;
    one is your meter isn't very sensitive (or you have it on the wrong scale, try 1 megohms or higher).
    two you are experiencing capacitative coupling. the pickup is open but it behaving like a capacitor and letting AC current through.

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    Pickup Maker David Schwab's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by syndromet View Post
    When winding the pickup, the wire broke, so I had to solder it back together. When i finnished the pickup, I couldn't get a reading with my multimeter.
    How did you solder the wire back together? It's almost impossible to just solder them together.

    It sounds like you have a break in the wire. You can still often get sound as the turns are capacitively coupled. Usually the output will be a lot lower than normal. Also if you get a reading to a magnet you have a short on the magnet. You should wrap some tape around them first.

    I had a prototype humbucking pickup I was testing yesterday that had one dead coil and still worked. And the good coil had a short to the pole piece.

    If you have to do a splice, take a piece of tinned wire, about 28 AWG. It can be solid or stranded. I use regular insulated hookup wire. Wrap both ends of the broken wire around that bare wire a bunch of times, and then solder it. Let it get nice and hot.

    Then with your meter, see if you get a reading from that splice to the start end of the wire. If you do, and it looks like the right reading (generally roughly matches the number of tuns), double a piece of tape over it, and then lay it flat on the coil, put a small piece of tape to hold it in place, and then wind over that.

    This works 100% of the time.

    But don't feel bad, we all went through this on the first few pickups.

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    Noodle of Reality Steve Conner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by syndromet View Post
    I can't tell it it gives out the right output, as the setup I'm trying it on is a rack effect with very heavy compression.
    Then why not turn the compression off!

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