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Paint on PUP covers?

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by Stu L., Feb 19, 2005.


  1. Stu L.

    Stu L. Supporting Member

    Nov 27, 2001
    Corsicana, Texas
    Any ideas on how airbrushed paint would effect the performance of a PUP? I would think an active pickup would be less effected than a passive. But, you can remove a passive cover. Anyways, ideas?
     
  2. luknfur

    luknfur

    Jan 14, 2004
    DIXIE
    FWIW:

    there have been posts on painting pups before. Any spray-like paint throws a very thin film on the surface and doesn't penetrate well. There should be no affect on performance at all but you can call the manufacturer to verify that. Not sure how well it would adhere to the surface without appropriate preparation. I'm guessing it would be prone to peeling, flecking, and smudging from string slap, nails/picks, and the combination of sweat, oils, and dirt.

    Somebody that's done it may fill in the blanks. Also somebody in the luthiers forum may be more up on it.
     
  3. Stu L.

    Stu L. Supporting Member

    Nov 27, 2001
    Corsicana, Texas
    Sorry, but as usual I seem to have used the wrong keywords in my search. :meh:

    Prep work is a given, and the guy that does my paint is a pro. I was curious as to what, if any, effects prime and paint may have. Then of course a sealer. I'll leave it here for a day or two before deleting and posting in the luthiers forum.
     
  4. xyllion

    xyllion Commercial User

    Jan 14, 2003
    San Jose, CA, USA
    Owner, Looperlative Audio Products
    Paint will not have an impact on the pups, but you need to very careful with the pups. At no time should steel wool be used in the preparation of the pickups. Sand paper and synthetic pads are fine, but steel wool can leave filings that will likely ruin your pickups.
     
  5. Rav

    Rav

    Dec 29, 2004
    Aurora, IL
    Any paint that has zero metalic content is 100% transparent to inductance.

    -Rav
     
  6. luknfur

    luknfur

    Jan 14, 2004
    DIXIE
    FWIW:

    actually that wasn't an implication of criticism, but a potential lead on more info. Hell, I haven't been able to find my own threads in a search sometimes. I remember makeing the metallic comment myself before - not knowing if the guy was thinking of metalflake maybe. I got the impression some of these guys were going through with it so somebody out there probably has done it. I didn't get the impression it was going to be done by a professional however.

    Sounds like a plan that'd work to me. Throw a pick in here when they're done if you get a chance. I've done some air-brushing myself (and still have a gun in fact). Some guys are really incredible with one.
     
  7. Stu L.

    Stu L. Supporting Member

    Nov 27, 2001
    Corsicana, Texas
    Wow, a fellow Texan with great advice :D Thanks, I never even thought of that.

    Bob- more great advice. Thanks.

    Luk, we're a few weeks, months maybe, away, but be expecting pics as soon as we're ready :)
     
  8. Metal Mitch

    Metal Mitch

    Jul 14, 2003
    NJ
    This is something I've been thinking about doing lately. But you guys make it sound more complicated than I thought it was... I was only thinking of removing the covers and hitting them with some spray can Rustoleum or R/C car paint. Any problems with doing it this way?
     
  9. Rav

    Rav

    Dec 29, 2004
    Aurora, IL
    In general paint won't hurt the pickups.

    However RC car paint from what I remember kind of turns to a powder when it wears and you would be getting dust in and on your bass from it.

    The only probem I see is that your exposing the pickups and maybe even the coils of the pickups depending on the brand to the open air. This won't affect how they work but it offers you, your strings, random objects access to parts you might not want to damage. The idea of pickup covers is to protect them primarily and secondarily to look good. If you don't like how they look ok by me but you should probably consider protecting them with more than just a layer of paint.

    -Rav
     
  10. Metal Mitch

    Metal Mitch

    Jul 14, 2003
    NJ
    Ok, thanks for the reply Rav. Dust is no big deal. If you let a bass sit out it gets dust on it anyway. I've had much worse things on my basses - beer, stage blood, real blood, etc.

    I haven't seen any bass pickups with the coils exposed to open air. Even the cheapies at least have a layer of wrapping tape. All mine are wax potted and wrapped.

    Now I *have* seen guitar pickups without wrap or potting. And lots of them don't even use pickup covers. So I think it'll probably be fine unless we're talking about steel wool dust or something similar near the pups.