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Dingwall vs Delano for my self-built fretless

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by BountainMike, Mar 26, 2021.

  1. BountainMike


    Mar 26, 2021
    Hey there,

    I am a long time reader and this is my first post! I am amazed by the knowledge of this community and I profited a lot already just by reading. I really hope I posted this in the right corner.

    I am building my first bass from scratch for myself right now. It' a 6-string fretless bass with a lined ebony fretboard, ovangkol bolt on neck and a solid maple body. So a lot like the Warwick Streamer LX.

    Until yesterday I was sure I'm going for the Delano SBC 6 Pickups. I still think this would be a great choice but now I kinda got hooked by the idea of using the Dingwall FD3Ns. The Bass is supposed to become a rather clear/bright fretless.

    I believe that the Dingwalls are reverse P Coils. I am planning to slightly slant the pickups like in a warwick thumb 6-string (which are also reverse P) and the string spacing will be 16.5 mm and not 18 mm as the FD3N are made for.

    I was hoping to get some advice if the coils would still be able to line up with the strings in a 16.5 spacing. I assume that this should work in theory if I place them accordingly so that the coils split in the right spot.

    Some sort of technical drawing of the pickups and where the coils sit would have been a great help but I wasn't able to find one in the internet.

    My plan until now was the Delano SBC6 which would be safer as these are two full rails. But somehow I cannot let lose of the idea with the FD3N. Do you have an opinion about the differences in sound this would make? Both pickups seem to be rather on the modern clear/bright side.

    And another question that came up ...
    Is the FD3N actually comfortable as a thumb rest as it is rounded?

    Thank you a lot in advance for your time if you have any information or advice on this.

    Have a great day!
  2. ctmullins

    ctmullins fueled by beer and coconut Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 18, 2008
    MS Gulf Coast
    I'm highly opinionated and extremely self-assured
    Two thoughts:
    • It’s not critical to exactly line up the strings above the poles in a pickup. What matters is that the strings are enclosed in the magnetic field, which you can’t see. This is how all of the Fender two-magnets-per-string pickups work, and people love them.
    • For bright/clear, have you considered Q-tuner?
    Passinwind, BlueTalon and claudel like this.
  3. XLunacy


    Nov 28, 2013
    Nordstrand makes pickups that are made in cooperation with Dingwall that supposedly give you that clean but aggressive tone : Dingstrand Nordwall 5

    However, two differences with these VS Dingwall's :
    - These are designed for standard monoscale basses (meaning non fanned-frets) ; nonetheless, I've read that they could still be mounted at an angle (not too extreme I suppose)
    - These are standard split-coil, not reverse, which means that any angle will widen the gap between the two coils, spreading the "dead-zone" area

    Delano makes inline split dual-coils that might work in your case : DELANO JSBC 7 HE

    The 7-string version should be fine, be you'll need to make the adequate measurements (and to know how the coils are arranged underneath the shell to position them accordingly I suppose)
  4. ctmullins

    ctmullins fueled by beer and coconut Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 18, 2008
    MS Gulf Coast
    I'm highly opinionated and extremely self-assured
    Delano also has a quad-coil version of the SBC, which would allow for reverse-P coil split along with the full humbucking four-coil setting.
  5. BlueTalon

    BlueTalon Happy Cynic Supporting Member

    Mar 20, 2011
    Eastern Washington
    Endorsing Artist: Turnstyle Switch
    You could avoid the issue entirely by using pickups with full length blades. Q-Tuners are good for that, others may be as well.
  6. BountainMike


    Mar 26, 2021
    Thanks a lot for the thoughts and the replies. Really appreciate it!

    In the meantime I discovered that the Nordstrand/Dingwall pickups dont even use split blades but giant round magnets. (Very good picture of that is the second picture here:
    Dingstrand Nordwall 5)

    Thats something I'm not absolutely comfortable to experiment with for a string spacing the pickups are not intended for. So I'll rather go for pickups with blades.

    The Q-tuners sound really interesting, thanks for that. But they seem to be hardly obtainable from where I live (Germany). The Delanos are made in Germany so thats a nice plus for me. Even relatively affordable over here.

    I didnt think about the JSBCs before but thats actually a great idea for getting into even cleaner territory. Just not sure if I really want single coil sound. I love the mids a humbucker can provide.

    The Quad coils seem to be the same pickup as the SBC tone wise but with more wiring possibilities. That would be my go-to pickup if I wanted to replicate a passive warwick thumb 6 in the future ( which I do ^_^ )
    ctmullins likes this.
  7. BlueTalon

    BlueTalon Happy Cynic Supporting Member

    Mar 20, 2011
    Eastern Washington
    Endorsing Artist: Turnstyle Switch
    IIRC, the Q-Tuners are made in Europe. Your best bet is to contact them directly.
    Passinwind likes this.
  8. A9X


    Dec 27, 2003
    They're in the Netherlands, so still within the EU.
    In the past they've responded very promptly and were happy to ship all the way to Australia, so Germany should not be an issue.
    Passinwind and BlueTalon like this.
  9. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

    May 16, 2021

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