Noisy Pickups Are the Worst

The pickups in this 1967 Teisco Beatle bass are very noisy and microphonic. Microphonics describes a phenomenon where an electrical device, in this case these pickups, turn mechanical vibrations into an undesired signal (noise or feedback). I can even speak into them and it comes through the amp; just like a microphone! After I've eliminated any other sources for noise I've decided to wax pot these pickups. Wax potting is a procedure of soaking the pickup in hot wax, in order to saturate the components, which will isolate them and eliminate excess vibration of the coils.

I begin by disconnecting the the leads at the switch and the grounds at the pots.

Before I go any further I want to label which pickup goes where.

These pickups have four tabs that hold the cover and backplate on the coil, Ill carefully bend these away from the backplate and removed the coil.

Now that they are taken apart they are ready for hot soak.

I use a glue pot that maintains a constant temp of 150 degrees to melt the wax. I use a mixture of Paraffin and bees wax. The pickups will soak in the paraffin/bees wax for about an hour or until the pickup stop releasing air bubbles.

When they are finished, I set them aside to cool and allow the wax to harden. I then remove any excess wax, reassemble and install the pickups, wire them back in and your done.

Now these pickups sound awesome! I'll clean the pots really well and add some proper grounding and this ol' girl is ready rock!

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