Rickenbacker with Jazz pickup on bridge ?

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by fusion4bass, Dec 24, 2018.


  1. *** are you doin

    7 vote(s)
    50.0%
  2. Do it ! Has already been done before and sounds good

    7 vote(s)
    50.0%
  1. fusion4bass

    fusion4bass

    Dec 15, 2010
    Hello Forum,

    I've been reading TalkBass for years never posted before but couldn't find any information about what I'm trying to do.
    I have 70's Fresher (Japanese Rickenbacker copy) but I don't dig the bridge pickup and miss my jazz sound.
    I want to replace bridge pickup with for ex. "DiMarzio Ultra Jazz Bass". What are your thoughts ?
     
  2. GIBrat51

    GIBrat51 Innocent as the day is long Supporting Member

    Mar 5, 2013
    South Bend, Indiana
    Thoughts?
    1. Well, you can do just about anything you want, given enough time and/or money;
    2. Somebody has done just about anything you can think of to a Rickenbacker, at one time or another;
    3. You're going to have to deal with a large hole that won't like a Jazz pickup; how were you planning to do that? And finally:
    4. It's your bass; do whatever you want to with it.
    Personally, I'd just leave it alone. I've never understood people who buy an X, and then knock themselves out trying to make it sound like a Y. If I wanted a bass that sounded like a Jazz Bass, 2 guesses what I'd buy - and the first guess doesn't count...:whistle:
     
  3. 96tbird

    96tbird PLEASE STAND BY

    Vintage or modern jazz pickup location? Or just throw it at the wall to see if it sticks?

    ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
     
  4. fusion4bass

    fusion4bass

    Dec 15, 2010
    I don't know yet what to do with the hole. I will leave it to the luthier :)
    I like switching between pickups depending on part of the song or whether I'm playing solo etc.. And the neck pickup gives me sound I was looking for but for solo parts / effects I would love to have that jazz single coil.
     
  5. Turnaround

    Turnaround Commercial User

    May 6, 2004
    Toronto Canada
    Independent Instrument Technician, and Contractor to Club Bass and Guitar - Toronto
    The pole spacing on a typical Jazz pickup is different than the string spacing on a Rick. Fender Jazz spacing at the bridge needs to be 20mm in order to line up with the poles. On the Rick, the spacing is 17.3mm - too narrow for the Jazz pickup pole pieces.
     
    BLDavis likes this.
  6. fusion4bass

    fusion4bass

    Dec 15, 2010
    You're right I haven't though of pole-spacing. Thanks for all the opinions I'm gonna keep it as is and just keep my old jazz for other projects :)
     
  7. mikewalker

    mikewalker Supporting Member

    Jul 30, 2017
    Canada, Eh!
    You could put a Lace Aluma-J in there, then you won't have to worry about pole-piece spacing :)
     
  8. Domespeed

    Domespeed

    Oct 7, 2010
    Germany
    I have done that - put an Ultra Jazz (and also an EMG J) in the bridge position of my 4001 (in the original location).

    While I liked the sound, it was very different from a Jazz Bass; in fact, still very "rickish".

    My conclusion: Pickup position matters more than pickup type.
     
    isaac42, ctmullins and iiipopes like this.
  9. fusion4bass

    fusion4bass

    Dec 15, 2010
    Thanks for the feedback - I was assuming position would influence the sound a lot. That's a shame because changing the position would require a lot more changes and could potentially be fatal to my poor old rick-copy :/
     
  10. Ace the Bass

    Ace the Bass

    Aug 21, 2016
    California
    i have a RIC bass ( see attachment) and I changed the pickups out to Bartolini's sounds a lot better, louder but still RIC-ish. to me a RIC sounds more like a P-Bass. I was thinking of installing a J Bass pickup, maybe a Lace Aluma-J between the bridge pickup and the bridge. yes, in that little space between the chrome cover bridge pickup and the actual bridge (see black rectangle on attached photo). Then I would have 3 pickups. the front neck pickup (which is mostly there for show, I rarely use it) and the chrome covered bridge pickup and then another pickup in that little space in front of the bridge. Why, to try and get a bit more high end frequency out of the bass. I would like to hear other people opinion on that. I'd hate to ruin my very nice RIC 4003S with a 'Doc Brown' style crazy experiment. Let me know your thoughts.
     

    Attached Files:

  11. Gilmourisgod

    Gilmourisgod

    Jun 23, 2014
    Cape Cod MA
    A lot of people have tried alternate pup arrangements in Rics, as long as you aren't removing wood, I'm all for it, but forget about resale value if you go cutting new holes in the top. There is a company called Classic Amplification that will custom wind Ric form factor pups pretty much however you want, and they are a drop-in fit with no mods. Like somebody else said, if you want A Jazz, get a Jazz, but don't go hacking a very valuable bass trying to make it something it just isnt.

    Classic Rick
     
  12. Ace the Bass

    Ace the Bass

    Aug 21, 2016
    California
    yeah, let a jazz be a jazz etc...... I wonder if RIC moved there bridge pickup back more towards the bridge it might get a bit fuller sound. I don't like straight up P basses but PJ basses are great. why? the J bass pickup in the back adds more bite to an otherwise thumpy bass. although a lot of people like that thumpy P bass. as for me and my house I use a Elite P Bass Deluxe (J bass PU makes it a monster)
     

    Attached Files:

  13. fermata

    fermata

    Nov 10, 2015
     
  14. Killed_by_Death

    Killed_by_Death Snaggletooth Inactive

    Install a Vintage push/pull, like RIC does on their current line of 4003:

    http://www.rickenbacker.com/pdfs/19557.pdf

    note this particular part of the schematic:
    upload_2020-4-8_16-16-44.png
    C3 is the Vintage capacitor, which operates as a high-pass filter, giving you that nasal timbre you'd get from a pickup further South of the current bridge pickup.
     
    iiipopes likes this.
  15. iiipopes

    iiipopes Supporting Member

    May 4, 2009
    Indeed. As does the woods used, the manufacturing (neck-through v bolt on) and a whole bunch of other factors. I did the opposite. On my custom fanned-fret P-bass, I narrowed the bridge and used a Rickenbacker humbucker in the P-pickup position. Does it sound like a Rickenbacker? No, it sounds like a P-bass with a little more push.
     
  16. iiipopes

    iiipopes Supporting Member

    May 4, 2009
    You are describing a Rickenbacker 4002. Mine has a different flavor of growl. Because the bridge pickup is closer to the bridge than a 4001/3, there is less string excursion, which means less fundamental. So on the 4002, which I also do on my basses with J-bridge-pickups, Rickenbacker put a .01 capacitor inline rather than the .0047 to let a little more lows through. The reason I add the capacitor inline to my basses that have J-bridge-pickups is that by cutting a little bit of lows, which really aren't there anyway, it eliminates the impedance drop from having both pickups dimed.
     
  17. ctmullins

    ctmullins fueled by beer and coconut Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 18, 2008
    MS Gulf Coast
    I'm highly opinionated and extremely self-assured
    I couldn’t disagree more. Visually they won’t line up, but visuals don’t affect functionality. The magnetic field extends much further than the visual pole pieces would suggest. As long as the string is within that magnetic field, it will work just fine.

    Further, you may find that the narrower string spacing puts the strings more directly over the inner poles, which should only help matters.
     
  18. Turnaround

    Turnaround Commercial User

    May 6, 2004
    Toronto Canada
    Independent Instrument Technician, and Contractor to Club Bass and Guitar - Toronto
    My comment was concerning how they don't line up. Not much to disagree about there - they don't.
     
  19. ctmullins

    ctmullins fueled by beer and coconut Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 18, 2008
    MS Gulf Coast
    I'm highly opinionated and extremely self-assured
    Then I guess I don’t understand what point you’re trying to make.

    Sometimes I don’t drive exactly in the center of my lane. It doesn’t affect how well my car runs, or how effective it is in getting me where I’m going.
     
  20. Turnaround

    Turnaround Commercial User

    May 6, 2004
    Toronto Canada
    Independent Instrument Technician, and Contractor to Club Bass and Guitar - Toronto
    A whole lot of people really don't like it when their strings don't line up with the pole pieces. I'm just pointing out that they won't line up in this case - they'll be off quite a bit. And it does affect performance a bit, but it's subtle. That's why Leo changed from a single pickup pole per string to two - according to Bill Turner, Fender pickup designer, it "improved tone and gain". The advantage diminishes to a degree as you move off centre of the magnetic field.
     
    sunbeast likes this.
  21. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

     
    Jun 13, 2021

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