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Larry and the Trons

Larry and the Trons is a short video by Brett Kingman to demonstrate Mr Glyn’s Pickups TheTron pickup set in a Telecaster Cabronita.

I sent him a set of TheTron pickups to make a demo and this is the 4th video he’s made – he must like them.

I designed TheTron pickup set with Gretsch guitars in mind and in particular the lightly overdriven sound of early Malcolm Young. It’s great when a player takes your design and makes you re-think it.

Since Brett fitted his set into a Telecaster Cabronita I’ve changed the spec of these pickups and now offer them in 52mm and 49.2mm spacing to match Fender style bridges. I do try and listen to players whenever I can.

TheTron pickup set is based around the legendary Gretsch pickups Of the 50’s and 60’s. To say TheTron has character is an understatement. TheTron is full and rounded with a well balanced mid range but with that distinctive ‘Clank’ that separates it from other pickups. The neck pickup is clear and fat and the bridge stands out from the mix without ever sounding harsh.

Over the years I’ve repaired a fair few old Gretsch pickups and noticed the best sounding ones are at the upper range for ohms. I’ve taken that design and tweaked it until I got the fullness I was looking for but without loosing clarity or clank.

Most of my pickups are made in collaboration with a professional player, but not TheTron. I started playing guitar at the age of 16 when I first heard Malcolm Young – a Filtertron through an almost clean valve amp. I didn’t feel I needed another set of ears for this one, I knew exactly what I wanted.

I needed this pickup set to be crystal clear with a clean amplifier but to come into its own when pushing an amp to clip. The neck pickup needed to be clear, full and chiming in both a big archtop and in the neck position of a Telecaster. The bridge pickup needed to have no shortage of character, a clean almost jangly tone when played gently but with enough go in it to push the front end of a valve amp to clip when you dig in.

TheTron is the perfect pickup as a Gretsch upgrade, for the modern player wanting something other than Gibson style humbuckers, rockabilly players after that traditional tone, jazz players or, like me, Malcolm Young fans. There’s so much you can to with The Tron.

For the modern player with one foot in the past.

Here’s TheTron’s home page for more info and demos https://mrglynspickups.com/2021/09/22/thetron/

Mr Glyns TheTron pickup set. Larry and the Trons

Larry and the Trons https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ga0qYdh565s

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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.

Pickup Repairs

Pickup re-winds are a big part of what I do.

In the early days back in the 1990’s I re-wound a lot of pickups. It was an invaluable introduction into the inner workings of electric guitar pickups.

Back then there were a lot of 60’s and 70’s quality pickups around to practice on, they weren’t as valuable or sought after as they are now. Because of that I got to see how pickups were put together in the old days, the construction, the potting material…

There wasn’t much information available so experimentation was the only way to learn. I made so many bad pickups back then but made a note of every single one, how I’d wound it and what the result was. By using that method I got closer and closer to what I wanted. I also made a note of all the re-winds I did and the original spec if I could get it. I’m still writing in that note book to this day and it’s becoming a fantastic reference tool when I receive an unusual pickup repair from a customer.

I still really enjoy re-winding pickups, I think I have a strong instinct to fix things. I would much rather repair a faulty old pickup than sell a customer a new one. Sometimes, of course, the customer wants a different sound that the old pickup can’t give them and a new pickup is the way to go.

Please feel free to contact me about any faulty pickup by email (mrglynspickups@gmail.com) or by phone (021 912 678) https://mrglynspickups.com/

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCcDggiRTQyFec5KAVHsC2xA