Fender ‘Wide Range’ humbucker

I had a 1975 Wide Range’ humbucker in for a rewind the other day and took the chance to take some pictures. I thought I’d explain why these are different from ‘normal’ humbuckers and show you what its innards look like.

The main difference is with the magnets. A tradition ‘Gibson ‘ style humbucker has a single bar magnet underneath the coils with the pole pieces ‘conducting’ this magnetic flux up through the coils towards the strings.

The Wide Range is much more similar to a Fender pickup (like a Strat) with the poles being individual magnets, 12 of them. This produces a more trebly, percussive, clearer tone than a traditional humbucker. To offset this high end Wide Ranges have overwound coils. The more wire you put on a coil the more bass you get so Wide Ranges are wound to around 10.6KOhms where as a traditional humbucker is closer to 8KOhms. This adds bass and balances out the tone from the magnets giving a balanced, full, clear tone. To give space for these extra windings the pickup was made physically bigger.

Interesting eh.

Oh, and the magnets have a different chemical composition, but that’s another story.

“Integrity” humbucker (Blue Sky)

Last weekend I discovered that another pickup maker has a humbucker called a “Blue Sky” and they’d been using the name longer than us.

We were left with a problem – what to do.

There wasn’t really an option, the decent thing to do would be to contact the other maker and explain and change the name of our pickup.

But what to call it?

We asked that question to the NZGuitarist/Bassist Facebook group, wow, what a response! Over 300 suggestions!

In the end the name we chose was “Integrity” and the winner gets a T-shirt. Which reminds me – a merchandise page will be up in the website in the next few weeks.

Fender Strat ‘62 re-issue from 1982

Fender ‘62 re-issue bridge pickup

I’ve been doing a fair few re-winds recently, saving old pickups. This nice old bridge pickup had stopped working. You can see the corrosion around the pole pieces. This corrosion had spread through the pole and caused a break in the windings.

Once I’d stripped the wire off and cleaned the rust away I lacquered the inside of the pickup and then wrapped a very thin tape around the poles to protect the new windings.

It was just a case of winding it with AWG42 plain enamel wire to the original spec, wax potting and testing it.

You can contact me on mrglynspickups@gmail.com

You can just make out the year stamped on the back