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Potting epoxy to re-pot pickup?

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by fu22ba55, Apr 24, 2009.


  1. fu22ba55

    fu22ba55 Supporting Member

    Apr 16, 2009
    I've heard reference made to "potting epoxy" as opposed to wax.

    I have a pair of PUPs I want to re-pot in new plastic covers. Existing wax is cracked all to hell.

    Is there a special kind of epoxy I need to use, or is home depot epoxy going to get me there?

    Or should I really be using wax?
     
  2. walterw

    walterw Supportive Fender Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 20, 2009
    alpha-music.com
    avoid epoxy unless you're a manufacturer. why do you want to "pot" them just for plastic covers? there's no reason, as plastic will not affect the sound at all. what kind of pickups are we talking about here?
     
  3. fu22ba55

    fu22ba55 Supporting Member

    Apr 16, 2009
    Thanks Walter,

    We're talking about DiMarzio Will Power Neck pups. (EB-O replacement)

    The pickup is basically a chunk of wax (poorly) affixed to the back of a very thin metal plate.

    Here are pics:

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    I'm putting these in an RD Artist bass whose original pickups were actually just the size of guitar humbuckers. So I need to reduce the size of the pup to the brass plate. (I won't use the existing black metal cover).

    The brass plate in the 2nd and 3rd pics is the same size as a standard guitar pup cover, so I plan to get a couple of EMG-style plastic covers, discard the black metal EBO plate with screw holes (above), ground to the brass plate, and place everything in the pup cover and fill with epoxy.

    I'm thinking this will give me more control over placement then dealing with wax, etc... and these are really just "a project" at this point, so I'm not too worried about ruining the pups. They're already ruined.

    How would I do it with wax? Tack everything in place with superglue and dip in wax? My biggest concerns are the coils shifting around in the potting process, and the wax being too hot and melting the insulation on the wire.
     
  4. walterw

    walterw Supportive Fender Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 20, 2009
    alpha-music.com
    :eek:
    good lord, that's epoxy, not wax. did someone take a hammer and chisel to that pickup? and after that violence was done to it, does it even still work?

    i suppose you could try some sort of rig-up supergluing the epoxy block back together and gluing the whole mess inside some sort of cover (wax would be pointless at this juncture) but think this might be a lost cause. if you want a good sounding bucker-sized bass pickup, the emg HB will likely be clearer sounding. i would really try to avoid cutting into the rd bass.
     
  5. SGD Lutherie

    SGD Lutherie Banned Commercial User

    Aug 21, 2008
    Bloomfield, NJ
    Owner, SGD Music Products
    I doubt that pickup works now. You could have used a Model One, which is not sealed in epoxy, and got some X2NB pickups, which use the same bobbins as the Will Power and are guitar humbucker size.

    Breaking off the epoxy will break the wires. And as it is now the two coils are too far apart to fit the RD.

    I also wouldn't mess with the RD.

    Also, there are other people that make humbucker sized bass pickups besides EMG.
     
  6. fu22ba55

    fu22ba55 Supporting Member

    Apr 16, 2009
    Sadly, the only violence done to them was by my hands, while in the RD Artist.

    I have a pretty aggressive playing style, (I guess that's an understatement...) and I tend to mash the strings up against the PUP cover.

    The epoxy started cracking when I adjusted the pole pieces. And over the years it just got worse.

    With the pickguard removed, these pups fit in the RD wihout any modification. I don't want to cut up the RD.

    So if these are pretty much a lost cause, a pair of $5 pup covers and some home depot epoxy can't make things worse?

    They don't sound that bad. The biggest problem was losing pole pieces. Once the epoxy cracked, I couldn't adjust the poles, and they would either fall out, or refuse to come out. Good times.

    The coils appear to be encased in plastic, so they're sound...

    I figure coils, pole pieces, and epoxy, and I'm in business?

    Again, this is really just a "project" to see if I can get a working pair of HBs in the RD.
     
  7. fu22ba55

    fu22ba55 Supporting Member

    Apr 16, 2009
    I found Rio Grande Pitbulls... and just checked the EMG HBs, but I want to stay passive...

    Who else other than those? The X2NBs appear to be discontinued.
     
  8. SGD Lutherie

    SGD Lutherie Banned Commercial User

    Aug 21, 2008
    Bloomfield, NJ
    Owner, SGD Music Products
    Well since you asked Neo HB

    There are also the EMG select pickups, Bartolini, and TV Jones Thundertron
     
  9. fu22ba55

    fu22ba55 Supporting Member

    Apr 16, 2009
    Thanks. SGD

    I'll try my luck with fixing these with some epoxy, then when that fails, I'll probably hit you up for a pair of those HBs.

    Thanks.
     
  10. SGD Lutherie

    SGD Lutherie Banned Commercial User

    Aug 21, 2008
    Bloomfield, NJ
    Owner, SGD Music Products
    You should be able to get the poles back in that one bobbin. You just have to make sure they are making contact with the magnet.

    Then you can try and glue it back together with some epoxy.
     

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