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strings-pickup alignment on jazz bass

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by Controller, Feb 13, 2005.

  1. Controller


    Feb 13, 2005

    I have a Fender Jazz Bass made in mexico (2001). I am thinking about upgrading it by replacing the pickups and maybe also the bridge. I would like to conserve a vintage sound, kinda upgrading it to an american Standard Jazz Bass.
    I was thinking about getting the Aero Type 1 Std pickups or just some Fender Custom '60s Jazz Bass Pickups (suggestion appreciated).

    The problem I have is that the strings are poorly aligned with the magnets on the pickups (check the picture). This is worst on the neck pickup. I was told that the string spacing center of string to center of adjacent string over the centerline of the pickup) should be 19.80mm C-C bridge (well, that's how the Aero pickup is built). But on my bass, I have a spacing of 19.0mm C-C bridge between the strings.

    What can I do to fix this ? Well, first of all, do I need to fix this ? I've read on this forum that this might not be necessary (http://www.talkbass.com/forum/showthread.php?t=99517&highlight=alignment).

    Should I replace the bridge with ajustable saddle spacing (Gotoh 206) to correct for this weird alignment issue (http://www.talkbass.com/forum/showthread.php?t=51596&highlight=alignment)

    Anyways, thanks in advance for any help (I'm a newbie here!).


    Attached Files:

  2. glnflwrs


    Jan 25, 2005
    Hesperia, CA
    You are well within the pole piece design. The reasons for the dual pole pieces are 1) to allow for exactly what you have in string spacing, and
    2) to attempt to limit induced noise, 60Hz hum.

    Carvin pups have eleven poles on a six string. Hardly any are centered under the string.
  3. hi I have this exact same problem(poorly aligned pole pieces) on my MIM y2k jazz bass do I also need to change them?
    I believe they cause my upstroke to sound louder than the downstroke , is it the pickpups , or just my poor thechnique ?
  4. xyllion

    xyllion Commercial User

    Jan 14, 2003
    San Jose, CA, USA
    Owner, Looperlative Audio Products
    Although not perfect, the alignment is acceptable. If I were you, I would try realigning the neck. To do this loosen the strings, loosen the the neck bolts, nudge the neck in the direction that you want to move (in your case towards the E string), retighten the bolts, and tune up the strings. This should improve your alignment quite a bit.
  5. Controller


    Feb 13, 2005
    Thanks for your suggestion Xyllion. I tryed realigning the neck but it didn't really help (there wasn't any loose). So, should I buy a custom neck pickup that takes into account my string spacing or it's not that important? Or maybe should I just buy a Rickenbacker 4003 like I am dreaming of...
  6. Bassic83


    Jul 26, 2004
    Texas, USSA
    Your string spacing is fine- as long as the string moves within the magnetic field of the pickup, you'll get signal. On my SX 5 string J, the G misses the polepieces entirely (off to the side) and causes no ill effects. I'll eventually replace the pickups, probably with soapbar style Barts, but it's just fine for now.

    The MIM Js are famous for using two bridge pickups to cut costs. Not a big deal, just gotta be aware of that little detail when you replace pickups. Measure to be sure, I heard there were a few with regular US style routings out there, but were very early on in the Mexico factory history. Probably done to get through the stock they brought with them for startup. That's all I can contribute to this conversation for now...
  7. luknfur


    Jan 14, 2004

    Not pretty but they just need to be close. Typically if there's a problem area with bi-poles it's with the E and G strings when they are bent away from the perimeter poles. Otherwise they're bent into overlapping fields.

    Another issue might be to have a look at the nut and see how the strings are spaced there. Slots could be off or the nut shifted. Bridge could be off, or they could have just screwed up the routings. Pic doesn't show when posting so can't look at it now.