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MIM Jazz modifications (Andy Daventry?)

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by King David, Aug 17, 2000.

  1. King David

    King David

    Dec 13, 1999
    Andy and I had written back and forth on this subject before, but anyone can feel free to jump in.

    I have a MIM Fender Jazz. The two pickups are the same (bridge type) pickup and thus when turned up to the same volume, they do not cancel any hum (because they are not reverse wound and reverse polarity).

    I found a place on the internet that can rewind pickups. I would like to check it out because it is very reasonable. It would cost around $25 per pickup.

    I would think that they could rewind them so that they are hum canceling when at the same volume.

    I got to thinking that I remembered a post that Andy had about doing a modification to his Jazz that had a switch to change from the standard jazz wiring to wiring the pickups into a series configuration. The result was a Precision Bass sounding bass.

    My question is this. You had it wired with this modification, but would it also to be beneficial to wire it so that it had three positions?
    1. Standard Jazz wiring
    2. Pickups in series
    3. Pickups wired parallel

    Check this out and tell me what you think.

  2. Claude


    Jul 31, 2000
    Our sound man just installed noise gates on the board he runs my bass through. My bridge jazz style p-up is noisy when cranked full. The noise gate, in effect, switches my instrument off when there is no signal. It switches on in .1/sec when I resume playing - I can't sense the delay. What I can sense is the silence between songs, and now I don't have to cut that pickups' volume every time we stop playing, or replace that noisy pickup, as long as I am running through the board. (My noise stops when the volume pot is reduced by 1/4 turn)
  3. King David

    King David

    Dec 13, 1999
    My amp has a noise gate on it too. I don't like it very well though. It tends to cut out and start out very badly. It is like talking on a walkie talkie that has the voice activation. They tend to cut out the first sylable of whatever you start to say. The noise gate on your board is probably better, but I am thinking of at least getting new or rewound pickups to lessen the noise anyway.
  4. Your majesty....

    Just a couple of points...

    About the rewinds...what makes normal jazz bass pickups hum cancelling is not just the reverse winding. The magnet is also reverse polarity. At the very least this would mean disassembling the bobbin.

    And normal jazz bass wiring IS series....

    I wouldn't muck about with rewinds. It's worth having a really good pickup professionally rewound if it goes open circuit or microphonic (I have had guitar pickups rewound by a guy called Wolfe Macleod in Seattle...he did a first rate job...you can get the link off the fenderforum..)

    But a bad pickup is a bad pickup. Rewinding is like chewing used gum IMHO.

    Get a couple of Seymours, DiMarzios Ultra Jazz or Carvins.


  5. Deynn

    Deynn Moderator Emeritus

    Aug 9, 2000
    Does anyone know why Fender would use such noisey pickups on their basses? Seems like a bad choice for a quality company.
  6. Cheap. Corners are cut on the MIM basses to keep the price down.

  7. Mike Dimin

    Mike Dimin Banned

    Dec 11, 1999
    A serious modification to a MIM jazz bass
    A J-Retro preamp, http://www.vintagebass.com
    combine that with a new set of Aero pickups and you'll have a bass that rivals anything on the market at 3 times the price
  8. GaryB


    Aug 30, 2000
    Regarding the J-Retro Pre-amp, can you describe how the various controls work when the pre-amp is set to passive mode?

  9. Mike Dimin

    Mike Dimin Banned

    Dec 11, 1999
    In passive mode you can choose either the bridge pickup or both pick ups. As well you have a master volume. Not too much in the passive mode, but for me, I would only use it if the battery died.

  10. Claude


    Jul 31, 2000
  11. King David

    King David

    Dec 13, 1999
    I sent an E-mail to the pickup rewind place to see if they could rewind the pickups so that they would be Reverse Wound and Reverse Polarity. They said that they could. I am trying to get a price from them. I'll let you know what I find out.

    I think this would be significantly cheaper than buying a new set of pickups. I like the way they sound anyway, so I am not too worried about upgrading anyway.
  12. Rumblin' Man

    Rumblin' Man Banned

    Apr 27, 2000
    Route 66
    Actually, the factory Fender Jazz bass pickup wiring is and always has been parallel...

    I've developed a simple mod to convert one of the MIM J pickups so that the set is humbucking. However, since it involves dismantling the pickup completely and therefore possibly damaging the pickup in the process, you're probably better off buying a new set of the proper pickups. After all is said and done the pickups are still MIM. There are better pickups out there.

    [Edited by Rumblin' Man on 09-11-2000 at 12:12 PM]
  13. King David

    King David

    Dec 13, 1999
    What did you do to make it humbucking. Do you know where any directions are on the web?
  14. Craig Garfinkel

    Craig Garfinkel

    Aug 25, 2000
    Hartford, CT
    Endorsing Artist: Sadowsky Guitars
    Here's what I've done to modify my MIM Jazz:

    1) Installed Custom Shop 60's j-bass pickups. This, of course, gives the bass the originally intended hum-cancelling effect. IMHO take those Mexi stock pickups and throw 'em away...having them rewound won't improve their quality.

    2) Replaced the bridge with a Badass II. Really improves the sustain and tone.

    3) Had the bass professionally set-up and had the frets dressed. This is sooooooo important. The Mexi necks are structurally quite good, but the fret work is sub-standard.

    4) Replaced the stock tuners with new vintage-style reverse 60's tuners. Also improves the sustain, and besides it looks really cool!

    5) Replaced the pickguard with a Warmoth vintage green pickguard. Of course does absolutley nothing sound-wise...but looks awesome with the Lake Placid Blue finish.

    My total investment, with labor, was about $400. I paid $200 for the bass used. Granted, with the poplar body it doesn't exactly match "that sound" that the vintage ones have, but comes pretty damn close for a fraction of the cost, and was cheaper and sounds better than a stock MIA Jazz. I run it through an Aguilar outboard preamp and....fagetaboutit!
  15. Rumblin' Man

    Rumblin' Man Banned

    Apr 27, 2000
    Route 66
    I don't know if the instructions are on the web.

    My point was that, even if you do mod them, you still have MIM pickups.

    IMO, it's much easier and sounds much better if you replace the pickups.
  16. Yeah, I know. I have no idea why I wrote that....

  17. King David

    King David

    Dec 13, 1999
    I heard back from the rewind place. It would cost $70 for both pickups to be rewound with RW & RP. That is almost the cost of a new set of pickups. Oh, well that was a nice thought!
  18. marms


    Aug 4, 2010
    and just like every one ells on here change the sound of your fender, buy usa pups and get a tech to enlarge the bridge hole for you, now you have somthing that sound like a j bass should. Better still ever thought of buying a USA Jazz you like then leaving it alone

    reading these forums is like a script from pimp my bass
  19. Ten years?

    This has got to be the record for a TalkBass Zombie Thread.
  20. dubist


    Aug 23, 2009
    humboldt, Ca
    this is exactly what i want todo to my MIM jazz bass. is there a professional service online that would be worth sending my bass to to get this work done?

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