All reasonable stuff. Telecaster pickguard modification. The Telecaster’s Mounting Screws are dangerously close to the coil wires of the pickup. Once all screws have begun to thread, you can now mount the pickup safely. Carefully drill two holes in the positions you marked. The absolutely ideal time to do this is when you’re changing pickups. And, if nothing else, this will make your repairer/setter-upper significantly less grumpy. However, in order to comply with privacy regulations, I also need you to provide consent to store and process the information you've entered. Follow these instructions here: Avoiding the simple mistake of letting the Bridge Pickup mounting screws get crooked will help save your Bridge from “dying” before you even put the strings on. Turn the pickguard so the back’s facing you and pop your pickup in the cutout. That extra fret means the pickguard can't be removed without taking the neck off first. That requires a fair amount of re-tooling. If you have a black pickup, lay down a little masking tape to make it easier to see the pencil marks. It’ll sit quite snuggly as you use a pencil to mark the hole positions at either end. [email protected]. Mounting a Telecaster neck pickup on the pickguard First you need screw holes in your pickguard. Fralin Pickups will be closed Thursday & Friday (November 26th & 27th) in observance of Thanksgiving. We do not offer custom wiring diagrams or wiring help or troubleshooting. Fortunately, we have a pretty fool-proof way to prevent all of these mistakes, so read on to make sure your next Telecaster install is a breeze, and sweat-free! Zero Frets: How to Treat Them When Levelling Frets, Haze Guitars, 54 Rossberry Avenue, Lucan, Ireland, Neck Resets - Beginning to remove the neck, Free Social Distancing for Musicians Sign, Repairing a damaged acoustic guitar bridge plate, Straightening a bowed neck: Correction and Reassembly, Remove Blue Pencil Lines in Affinity Photo, Straightening a bowed neck: Truss Rod Operation, Straightening a bowed neck (with some complications). Not too much larger and make sure the drill bit’s not wider than the screw head – that’d be pretty bad. Many 22-fret necks have a fingerboard extension which overhangs the pickguard, preventing removal. You might have to press hard to get the screw started. If you’re doing this as you install a new pickup, that’s great. The neck pickup. Put everything back together and bask in the pickup-adjustment ease. The thinner screws, with the pointed end, are wood screws and are designed to mount the pickup into the body. But what if you want to adjust the pickup height? The solution Fender decided on was to leave the overall neck the same and just add an extension to the end of the fingerboard. At Fralin Pickups, we’ve seen it all. Easy. How do I know if there's a problem with my guitar nut? Incidentally, if your pickup came with two sets of screws, you want the ones that look more like ‘machine screws’ They don’t really taper, and will have a larger diameter. You’re after a screw with a 6-32 thread (which should be standard). Using three mounting screws (two insanely close to coil wires) can cause all sorts of headaches to the novice when installing. The Telecaster isn’t the easiest guitar to swap pickups on, we will admit, as you’ve got to de-string and take the bridge off to do it. Tele Neck pickups can get damaged by the pickguard if they mount into a pickguard. Extreme caution needs to be exercised when installing the Bridge Pickup. Telecaster neck pickups: how they mount, how to adjust, and how to modify to make life easier. Offer up the pickup. You have everything disassembled anyway, and your post-swap setup will be much easier after you’ve changed things around. However, armed with this knowledge, you can effortlessly avoid these simple mistakes. You don’t even need to slacken the strings. First you need screw holes in your pickguard. Even worse, if those sweaty palms lead to a slip, you can nick a coil wire and kill your pickup. We will take you through the DIY method to get you twanging your heart away... To avoid confusion we’re going to call the neck pickup the ‘rhythm pickup’ and the bridge pickup the ‘lead pickup’. You can read more in my, Like this? The mounting screws have to cut their own thread into the pickup’s flat bottom plate. For now, though, I just want to talk about one tiny aspect of that. Telecasters. It’ll sit quite snuggly as you use a pencil to mark the hole positions at either end. But wait! Probably nothing. Removing the pickguard to access the Tele pickup height adjustment screws. You just unscrew a few screws and remove the pickguard. I don't have a solution for this one other than impotently shaking your fist at the cosmos. Turn the pickguard so the back’s facing you and pop your pickup in the cutout. See how close they as shown below: The key to a successful installation is to focus on the screw and the rubber tubing supplied with it. Ever hear someone say: "I'll do anything else with my guitar but I won't touch the truss rod."? The last fret sits on a little ‘overhang’ off the end of the neck heel. That’s it. As always, let us know your installation techniques below! For most people it’s not something that bothers them daily. Once the screw grips, the rest is easy. Tyler Delsack is the Manager of Fralin Pickups and spends his time editing and maintaining the website, designing graphics and ads, and making pickups. Consider that Tele neck pickup again. Here’s the tricky bit. Repeat for the other screw. Coil wires are indicated in Red above. Grr. Installing the Bridge pickup alone can give you sweaty palms. You now have a pickup you can adjust without having to completely disassemble. The way Fender guitars were created and formed what’s pretty much the standard electric guitar is something I find fascinating, and something I’ll write more about at some point. Installing Telecaster Pickups can be a tricky business. Then, just pop the pickguard back on. It’s an easy mod. A Telecaster’s neck pickup is also susceptible to damage. If your mounting screws have countersink heads, you can drill a corresponding countersink around the front. Install Your Telecaster Pickups Like a Pro With These Simple Tips! Your email address will not be published. Two of the mounting screws are about 1/8″ from the coil wires – any slip up here can drag the screws across the fiberboard and snap the coil wire. Google’ strat pickup height screws’ or something similar. If you want to actually listen as you adjust the pickup (always a good idea), you’ve got to put the neck back on and tune up to pitch while leaving the guitar sans pickguard. Of course, if it does bother you, there’s an alternative. Poke a screw through the pickguard holes and pop on a length of rubber tubing (or a spring if that’s what you have). Your email address will not be published. You’ll get them easily online. Ok. He's powered by Jazz Guitar, Vietnamese Food, Hiking, and Beer. Required fields are marked *, 2015 W. Laburnum Ave, 2nd Floor It's not that scary. This article written by Gerry Hayes and first published at, Tagged: setup, pickup, tele, telecaster, guitar, pickguard, modify. But, if you do indeed accidentally kill your pickup during installation, we’re always here to help get it back to working condition with our Rewind and Repair Service. Check out these other great articles…. Now, you can’t just remove the pickguard to get access because the pickguard is wedged underneath the overhanging piece of fingerboard. We’ve seen the mangled coil wires from the mounting screws and punctured coil from the Pickguard. It might take a few minutes to come through so, don't worry if it's not there immediately. Check your inbox for an email for me—you'll need to confirm your subscription there. Adjust the pickup and then repeat the whole infuriating process to reinstall the pickguard. Thanks a lot. As a slight aside, there is a similar issue on some twenty-two fret Strats. Well, it’s all reasonable on a vintage-style Tele. However, when you have a neck that’s designed with twenty-one frets, fitting into a body designed to accept a neck with twenty-one frets, it’s a big deal to change your design to incorporate an extra fret at the end. Why twenty-one wouldn’t be enough is anyone’s guess but, Fender listened and added an extra fret. Be careful threading these pickups, and look out for the exposed coil wire, as shown below: That should do it for today – it’s very easy to damage these delicate pickups, especially with an instrument designed like the Telecaster. Author's Note: These blog posts are for educational and information purposes only. The key to a successful installation is to focus on the screw and the rubber tubing supplied with it. Brilliant, right? The overall neck and heel tooling doesn’t require massive alteration and you don’t have to change the neck pocket – or anything on the body – at all.