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installing MM pups on a p bass?

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by bassman040, Jan 7, 2006.

  1. i got an 80's Squier Bullet Bass with the tele neck and lace-like pickups.

    i was thinking about fixing it up a little, like doing some shielding for the electronics, swapping the bridge with a badass, and setting it up real nice. and I'm actually considering putting in a set of Seymour Duncan Music Man pickups at the bridge position. the reason for doing so would be so that hopefully i'll get the music man sound without having to buy one. any of you ever done something like this to your p-bass before?

    one of my concerns in doing so would actually be the different output levels that would come out of the original pups and MM ones since the MM ones usually come with or require a preamp and active electronics. in which actually blending the pickups would kill off the p-bass sound naturally. what do you guys think?

    also, would installing a set of MM pups involve a lot of woodwork? as well as wood removal?
  2. SoulMaim


    Dec 1, 2005
    I've been considering doing the same thing to a precision bass as well. However I think the music man pickup would really overpower the P pickup. If I were to do that I'd put in a 3 way switch so you could select both or either pickup depending on the sound you want.

    You'd have to rout out the spot for the MM pickup and you might need some extra room for the battery and preamp etc. I'm not sure exactly how you would configure it. If you don't know how to woodwork well, I'd suggest getting it done by a luthier, that's what I'd do.
  3. fookgub


    Jun 5, 2005
    Houston, TX
    I did it... worked fine. You just have to adjust the pickup heights so they balance properly. I wired mine jazz style: two volumes, I would have prefered a 4-way switch (neck/series/parallel/bridge), but my pickups only had a shield and hot lead, so series was out. If you wanted to get fancy, you could add a series/parallel/single coil switch for the MM pickup. That's 10 switching options right there.... think of the possibilities!

    By the way, the MM pickup has to be mounted further back than normal or it would collide with the P. An elegant solution would be to use a reverse P configuration and mount the MM in the normal spot, but I don't know if you would be up for that much surgery. I wasn't. Overall, I like having the MM pickup, and I think it add a lot of options. It won't sound like a Stingray, though... you need a preamp for that.