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Upgrade your Epiphone


Texasbluezman
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I've searched and compiled a list of all parts needed for upgrading your electronics to Gibson 1959 spec. Here is a list of the components with the best price, and where to get them:

 

CTS audio pots: Guitar Nucleus-$4.79 each

Bourns audio pots: Guitar Nucleus-$3.99 each

CTS linear pots: Guitar Electronics-$4.95 each

 

Caps .022mfd

Vitamin Q: Guitar Electronics-$11.25 each

Orange Drop: Guitar Electronics-$5.79 for 2

 

Switchcraft output jack

Guitar Nucleus-$2.19 each

 

Switchcraft toggle switch

Guitar Nucleus-$15.99 each

 

Cloth covered vintage wire from Guitar Electronics:

2.5 ft white and black-$3.99

 

Optional pointer washers: Guitar Nucleus-$2.49

 

Of course there is shipping. Guitar Electronics offer free shipping for orders over $49. Guitar Nucleus is $7.95 for orders $0-$19.99 and $5.95 for orders over $20.

 

Here are the links:

http://www.guitarnucleus.com/gnstore/index.html

http://www.guitarelectronics.com/

 

If anyone knows where to get these quality components cheaper, then I would appreciate your input.

 

If your really picky about your tone, you could get these instead:

http://www.matchedguitarpots.com/Potkits.html

 

Just trying to be a helpful forum member. I plan doing this upgrade myself to my newly aquired Epi LP Custom Silverburst.

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Yes, very noticable. Its a 1994 lp custom from the samick factory in korea. The old pickups had no definition whatsoever, were muddy and farty sounding to the point where i didnt want to play it. Now it has stock electronics from an lp trad plus with coil split push pull volume pots. The neck pup is actually usable and the bridge is crispy and powerful. Those epi hbs werent driving the amp at all. Now i own an epi im not ashamed to play

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Thanks for that!

I've been looking for the cheapest place for a few of these parts for a while now, and I had guitar electronics figured as one of the cheapest, but I'd never heard of these Nucleus dudes before... msp_thumbup.gif

I'll probably order some things from them when I finally get around to upgrading. Some things...

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Thanks for compiling that list TBM. I'm in the process of choosing some components to 'upgrade' my 2006 Epi LP.

 

The info people on this forum have given me has been fantastic so thanks to all!! [thumbup]

 

I've gone for Seymour Duncan SH-1 '59 bridge & neck pickups

and (To be confirmed...) Sprague Orange Drop Capacitors 0.022 for both pickups

4 x Linear 500k medium split shaft pots.

 

I'm not going to change the jack socket, the pup selector or the wiring.

 

I'll be ordering from Axesrus.com in the UK, the pots and caps come to about £20.00. Pretty good value I reckon. [smile]

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I'm not going to change the jack socket, the pup selector or the wiring.

Why not? That's half the battle and the jack and switch are going to fail and will need to be replaced in the future anyway.

 

Good quality wiring will let the pickups shine, same as high-quality guitar cables. Plus, you'll have to resolder to the cheap Asian pots and may damage them, so why take the risk? Pots are relatively cheap and super easy to install in an LP.

 

Myself, I wouldn't bother if not going to upgrade the whole kit. If your soldering skills aren't up to it or you don't have the patience, you can buy pre-wired assemblies from Mojotone among others.

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ahem, how do YOU know that they don't buy their wood from the same supplier? ;)

 

My thoughts exactly. Nobody knows exactly where the wood is bought or distributed to. Unless you believe everything you read.

 

I know my LP won't sound just like a Gibby, because it has an alder top, instead of a maple top!

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In my experience, the jack and pickup selector switch are the components most likely to fail on a stock Epi.

 

Jim

 

I agree. My selector switch failed within a year of normal use on a brand new epi. Bought a switchcraft. Work real good after 3 years. I also installed Gibson 490R/498T pickups. Happy with the mod i did so far.

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Also Epi knobs will not fit CTS pots. Guitar Nucleus has the best prices on those also.

 

Speed and bell knobs-$3.99 a pair

Reflector bell knobs-$4.99 a pair

 

I going with the black knob/silver top ones.

 

And if you're gonna be taking knobs off, you might as well get the knob puller, which Guitar Nucleus has the best price also @ $6.99. You know you're gonna need it for future projects, too.

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Did I miss where you said what PU's you're upgrading to? Better PU's will make more improvement than everything else put together. If you're going 1950's vintage, the best PU's are a set of Duncan Seth's, designed by Seth Lover, the guy that invented HB's back in the mid 1950's.

I have in other posts, but not this one. I really haven't made up mind yet, but I'm leaning towards either a set of '57 classics or burstbuckers (1,2,3, or pros) with nickel covers, so that it retains a stock look. But I am open to other pickups. I will try to listen to a few samples tonight, but my work computer doesn't allow most streaming audio or video.

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I have in other posts, but not this one. I really haven't made up mind yet, but I'm leaning towards either a set of '57 classics or burstbuckers (1,2,3, or pros) with nickel covers, so that it retains a stock look. But I am open to other pickups. I will try to listen to a few samples tonight, but my work computer doesn't allow most streaming audio or video.

 

I can't say it will work for you but if you plan on throwing those old pickups in the parts bin and never using them again try this. Get a hair drier and melt the wax out of the pickup, then re wax pot it with less wax. That's what I did with the pickups from my Samick HJ650 and it turned the muddiest humbucker I've ever heard in my life to one of the best sounding neck pickups I've ever heard. It is a bit noisier but to my ears it's well worth it. [biggrin]

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I don't think my stock pickups sound muddy at all. I have had my amp cranked to about 3-4, and every note was still well pronounced. After I get off this night shift, I will get back with my buds and do some jamming. I've bought a new amp, a new overdrive pedal, and a new guitar since we last got together. In the 2nd half of 2010, most of my gear was stolen, so I'm still getting new stuff. After that, I will evaluate if I want to do the upgrade immediately or sometime down the road.

 

When I first hooked up with these guys, all I had was my newly aquired Fender Strat Am. Dlx. and a Peavey Windsor half stack. That was not a good combination. Now I have a Fender Blues Deluxe Reissue with NOS preamp tubes, a Jekyll & Hyde overdrive/distortion (V1 grey box), a Jimi wah (JH-1B), and a Peavey Ultra 410 (60 watts). I not real happy with the Peavey, but I traded to get rid of the half stack that really sounded good with my Schecter, but I decided to play strictly blues, plus I had a mild back strain last year, and did not want to be lugging that big cab up and down stairs.

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I'm leaning towards either a set of '57 classics or burstbuckers (1,2,3, or pros) with nickel covers, so that it retains a stock look. But I am open to other pickups.

 

BB's (not BBP's) are better-sounding than '57's. The neck is clear and not so dark and muffled. The bridge has more cut.

 

Another great set is Duncan's Seth's, the most authentic PAF's out there.

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Check out these folks. I have done business with MOJOTONE, here is another cheaper idea to upgrade your wiring. Check out all their options. This link is for upgrading a Epi DOT.

 

 

http://bcsguitars.com/?page_id=2760

 

I had this site saved in my favorites, but it has been awhile since I looked at it. Also, I've seen these kits for sale on ebay. This might be the way to go. Thanks! I have about 150 sites saved that are about guitar and amp repair, so it can get confusing as to what site has what on it.

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I had this site saved in my favorites, but it has been awhile since I looked at it. Also, I've seen these kits for sale on ebay. This might be the way to go. Thanks! I have about 150 sites saved that are about guitar and amp repair, so it can get confusing as to what site has what on it.

 

 

My pleasure TBM! As soon as my income gets going I'm getting one of the kits to upgrade my Epi DOT Deluxe along with some better pups.

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Well, I've decided to buy each part individually. I make plenty of money for an assembled kit, but I really enjoy building this stuff. Actually, I can afford a Gibby '59RI, but for the sake of argument with my wife, I don't really NEED one, I just WANT one. (That's what she says) But maybe, someday, that day will come. Probably after my son graduates high school. Only 5 more years! Patience is a virtue!

 

I have 2 AllParts Vitamin Q caps (.047uf), 2 Mojo Vitamin T caps (.022uf), and 6 feet of vintage cloth covered wire with braided shielding on the way. Got it all off of ebay.

 

Which ever caps I don't use, I'm gonna try them in my Am. Dlx. Strat.

 

I haven't decided on the pots yet. I would like to get some with the values as close to each other as possible, and for them to be at least 500K. Like the ones from Matched Pots.com, and others that offer matched pots.

 

The rest of the stuff will be ordered from Guitar Nucleus, as stated in my opening post, with the exception of the knob puller. After looking at BCS's site, their instructions show a simple way to take knobs off with an old shirt. Here's the link: http://bcsguitars.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/05/Vintage-LP-Complete-Assembled.pdf, scroll down to figure 5 pics. Now that's cheap!

 

I'm gonna try this setup with my stock Epi pickups first. I haven't decided which pickups to get yet.

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Well, I've decided to buy each part individually. I make plenty of money for an assembled kit, but I really enjoy building this stuff. Actually, I can afford a Gibby '59RI, but for the sake of argument with my wife, I don't really NEED one, I just WANT one. (That's what she says) But maybe, someday, that day will come. Probably after my son graduates high school. Only 5 more years! Patience is a virtue!

 

I have 2 AllParts Vitamin Q caps (.047uf), 2 Mojo Vitamin T caps (.022uf), and 6 feet of vintage cloth covered wire with braided shielding on the way. Got it all off of ebay.

 

Which ever caps I don't use, I'm gonna try them in my Am. Dlx. Strat.

 

I haven't decided on the pots yet. I would like to get some with the values as close to each other as possible, and for them to be at least 500K. Like the ones from Matched Pots.com, and others that offer matched pots.

 

The rest of the stuff will be ordered from Guitar Nucleus, as stated in my opening post, with the exception of the knob puller. After looking at BCS's site, their instructions show a simple way to take knobs off with an old shirt. Here's the link: http://bcsguitars.co...e-Assembled.pdf, scroll down to figure 5 pics. Now that's cheap!

 

I'm gonna try this setup with my stock Epi pickups first. I haven't decided which pickups to get yet.

It's a very good idea to make your own, you'll understand the components and their purpose much better that way. What I do with my pots is buy them in batches of 6 or 12, then you can make up your own matched sets, and when you start on these wiring mods there's just not enough guitars to try and mod or upgrade, it's very addictive, so those other pots won't go to waste, also works out cheaper if you pay shipping too.

 

If your using CTS pots try and get the ones with the brass shaft housing, they're better than the pot metal shaft housing brethren IMO and only cost about a dollar more.

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