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Thread: Installing a pickup on a Dobro?

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    Old Timer olddawg's Avatar
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    Installing a pickup on a Dobro?

    Has anyone got any suggestions on how to put a pickup on one of these. From reading it seems the best and least invasive way is to put a quality piezo disc on the resonator. Has anyone here ever done it? Any tips or suggestions. I donít want to mess this one up!Click image for larger version. 

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    ToneOholic! big_teee's Avatar
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    If you do a search for electric dobro, or electric resonator guitar?
    https://www.google.com/search?q=elec...mgIwBQ#imgrc=_
    Looks like the standard place is at the neck.
    I wound and installed a pickup for one once, but the hole was already routed at the neck.
    GL,
    T

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    Old Timer olddawg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by big_teee View Post
    If you do a search for electric dobro, or electric resonator guitar?
    https://www.google.com/search?q=elec...mgIwBQ#imgrc=_
    Looks like the standard place is at the neck.
    I wound and installed a pickup for one once, but the hole was already routed at the neck.
    GL,
    T
    Thanks for your response BT... yes I did a search... several. Yes sandwiching a piezo element in the neck pocket is a common practice. Iíve seen it done on Strats and Teles to try to get an ďacousticĒ sound. I actually have a ďthin bodyĒ electric resonator that has a mini humbucker near the neck, a piezo (I believe) in the neck pocket, and a blend pot. Its... ok... from my reasearch it seem that the preferred method for a metal Dobro like this is to attach a quality piezo disc directly to the reasonator disc and use an end pin jack and preamp. The problem I see is the PLACEMENT of the element on the reasonator surface. These things are a real bitch to disassemble and put back together. I need to get the placement correct the first time. So Iím looking for someone who has done it before.

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    Last edited by olddawg; 07-13-2018 at 01:38 AM.

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    Here's an opinion from a resophonic builder:
    For an awesome electric tone, install a P90; to sound like a resonator guitar, use a mic.
    http://muleresophonic.com/just-use-mic/

    -rb

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    Member Emeritus Forever Steve A.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by olddawg View Post
    Has anyone got any suggestions on how to put a pickup on one of these. From reading it seems the best and least invasive way is to put a quality piezo disc on the resonator. Has anyone here ever done it? Any tips or suggestions. I don’t want to mess this one up!Click image for larger version. 

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    According to the Schatten site putting a piezo disc on the cone can create feedback problems. If the dobro has a spider bridge they have two different kits, one with a condensor mic and preamp.

    http://www.schattendesign.com/resonator.htm

    Steve A.

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    Old Timer olddawg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve A. View Post
    According to the Schatten site putting a piezo disc on the cone can create feedback problems. If the dobro has a spider bridge they have two different kits, one with a condensor mic and preamp.

    http://www.schattendesign.com/resonator.htm

    Steve A.
    Thanks Steve... funny thing 5 minutes ago a luthier I know called me back and recommended this as the best option. I hadn't seen it searching. He said that the advantages this system has is the placement is finite and easy, it's minimally invasive, and it is not prone to feedback. The disadvantage is it has VERY low output even compared to a standard piezo. I think this is the one I am going to use.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve A. View Post
    If the dobro has a spider bridge they have two different kits, one with a condensor mic and preamp.
    Quote Originally Posted by olddawg View Post
    I think this is the one I am going to use.
    But, but but... isn't that guitar a Duolian, with a biscuit bridge?
    Will the Schatten system be compatible?

    -rb

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    Old Timer olddawg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rjb View Post
    But, but but... isn't that guitar a Duolian, with a biscuit bridge?
    Will the Schatten system be compatible?

    -rb
    Yes it is a Duolian... but Shatten says they have a compatible pickup. I'm going to call them just to make sure. This is an early 90s long scale roundneck. I've never had it apart, just changed strings. From what I understand the whole reasonator assembly is mounted on one Central bolt. The Shatten pickup is like a big washer that is sandwiched between 2 nuts on that bolt. The luthier I use said he would install it for $100.

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    Last edited by olddawg; 07-15-2018 at 07:14 PM.

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    For anyone thatís interested... this is a ďbiscuitĒ bridge. Schatten discontinued the pickup I was considering because some players said it muted the resonator a bit because of the mounting scheme. What they have now is something called the NR-2 or the NR-2 Pro. Itís a piezo strip that simply attaches to the bridge with double sided tape. I donít want to drill the body since you canít install an end pin jack for a jack mount. The Pro version has a little box with a jack and a volume control that you also mount with 2 sided 3M tape. I think this is the way Iím going to go...
    http://www.bluestarmusic.com/Schatte...me_p_1072.html

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