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Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by Techmonkey, Oct 25, 2005.

  1. Techmonkey


    Sep 4, 2004
    Wales, UK
    Well I'm getting pretty tired with the bridge pickup on my Traben Phoenix 4. I love the sound on the neck pickup - Very clanky, reminds me of a Rick, and nice warm slapping sound. however, the bridge pickup is literally unusable. It's very close to the bridge, and because it's a humbucker the output is very high and very trebly. It distorts the preamp too much for me to use. So I want to swap it... Ideally, I'd like a jazz bass kind of growl from it... I'm not a fan of humbuckers so close to the bridge.

    So can it be done? Is there a MM pickup with only one coil in it? I don't want to drill any holes or anything in my bass, and don't particularly need studio sound quality, but I'd love to have that jazz-esque tone.
  2. If you coil tapped the humbucker it would effectively be a Jazz...
  3. Techmonkey


    Sep 4, 2004
    Wales, UK
    Tried that, it doesn't look doable... There are only 2 wires coming from the humbucker
  4. Techmonkey


    Sep 4, 2004
    Wales, UK
    So there's no choice for me but to buy a whole humbucker with separate coils and simply not use the bottom one? :(
  5. mahrous


    Aug 13, 2005
    if u look hard enough, u will find humbuckers that sound like single coils.

    buy a seperate coil humbucker and wire only the single coil closer to the neck.

    or simply buy a 4cable humbucker and add a switch. in this case, u need to do some body work to your bass.
  6. 4Mal

    4Mal Supporting Member

    Jun 2, 2002
    Columbia River Gorge
    2 thoughts.

    1. buy a Jazz pickup and some pickguard material. make a very small pickguard to fit in place of the 'bucker.

    2. Get out the router (or visit a luthier) and have them create enough space for 2 Jazz pickups. Wire them up with a 3 position mini-switch for Single, Paralelle, Seriese like the G& L2000. Jazz pickups are generally delivered in RWRP so the two together are a humbucker, just with a few inches of body between them.

    Berry Oakley, the late - Almand Brothers bassist did that on his 'tractor' bass. Other wise a J Bass, he moved the neck pickup down by the bridge pickup and added a Hagstrom / Guild single coil in the neck position.

    The other thought is adding a Dark Star at the bridge. It is a massive single coil in a non-standard humbucker form factor. Basically a copy of the same pickup Berry used. Phil Lesh and Jack Casady were also behind that pickup. The Dark Star is a thing of beauty. Hammond Engineering
  7. If your preamp is distorting...that's an issue unto itsself...I'd check and see if you can run your pre on 18V and possibly install a second battery in series with the first...

    as far as the MM bucker...that's very strange that there are only two wires on her...I'd get a 4-wire bucker (carvin makes decent MM's) and put in a series/parallel/single (on/on/on DPDT) switch.

    set up the series on the coil closest to the neck (away from the bridge) and you should be in business...