Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by OVERDRIVEN66, Nov 21, 2005.

  1. Was thinking of having my friend make some aluminum pickup covers to go over my EMG HZ 35's on his CNC machine. I'm tired of the black pickup look and need to know if the aluminum covers will effect the sound of my pickups. Might look cool polished or chromed if it won't mess up my sound. Any ideas?
  2. aluminum (aluminium in proper English :) ), is non-magnetic. Hence, there shouldn't be a problem with the magnetic field being affected...just make sure that the poles don't phyically touch the metal. (a layer of felt or something)

    as a quick test...just slide some plate of aluminium (even from a flattened Coke can) between the strings and the pickups and give it a play....slide it in and out and see if the sound shouldn't be affected.
  3. From memory thats not quite right. It will still affect the magnetic field but oppositely to magnetic metals. Something like iron would deflect the magnetic field, the aluminium should attract it.

    As to whether it'll mess up your sound? Depends how tightly you define what 'your sound' is. Personally, I doubt it, if its reasonably thin, the effect should be marginal.

    Side benefit: Ground the covers and you'll probly have the most comprehensive pup shield around.

    Josh D
  4. magnetic field would only be effected if the non-ferrous metal had a reasonable electric current running through it...

    and you're right...metal covers would make a very good pup shield...Danelectro lipstick pickups come to mind here.
  5. Half right, Aluminium is paramagnetic. This is what causes it to exhibit a magnetic field with a current running through, the current aligns the magnetic dipoles. The dipoles are also aligned in the presence of a strong magnetic field, the effect of which extends the overall magnetic field, pulls it towards the aluminium.

  6. ohhh...Queenslanders are so clever... :D

    hmmmm...maybe we ought to forget aluminium then...
  7. Well, it is the 'smart state' afterall :p

    I'm not saying aluminium won't work, its just that it won't be magnetically transparent. Like I said earlier, it'll be a function of how much aluminium is actually there and how defined 'his tone' is. There's only one way to really find out, I'd go for it.

    Other options? Is there some kind of chrome-in-a-can type product? I've never looked for any before but I'm thinking like an automotive touch-up type deal...Problem is then you're stuck with chrome pups, which would suck if you didn't like it.
  8. DavidRavenMoon

    DavidRavenMoon Inactive

    Oct 20, 2004
    All metal covers effect the sound somewhat. This is evident with the nickel covers used on Gibson style humbuckers.

    Even though Aluminum and nickel are non ferric metals, remember that combined with cobalt they are used to make Alnico magnets!

    Covers tend to clean up the sound somewhat. The other thing to keep in mind is that the thickness of the cover will move the pickup farther away from the strings.

    If you do use a metal cover, make sure you ground it.