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Routing a pickup on an acoustic archtop

 
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cadence



Joined: 29 Jun 2007
Posts: 285
Location: New Jersey

PostPosted: Sun Aug 10, 2008 6:31 pm    Post subject: Routing a pickup on an acoustic archtop Reply with quote

Every so often I consider this...but I have no idea where to start. I would assume that having a luthier do this would cost a lot, and though I have drilled into guitars before this is something I would need to test out on a cheapo guitar first. I might just buy a cheapo to experiment on.

Does anyone know the basics of what would be done when putting a pickup into the guitar? And would it compromise the integrity or structure of the top? Even if I took it to someone to have it done my fear is that cracks would result (carved top). I've looked around for info on this and can't dig anything up, even how big of a hole would be put into the top to do something like this.
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voodobop



Joined: 13 Oct 2005
Posts: 347
Location: new orleans

PostPosted: Sun Aug 10, 2008 9:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Usually the entire size of the physical pickup is routed except the pickup ring.

That is a really serious affair. Are you thinking about doing that to an Eastman (im looking at your avatar). You might be better off trading it for a routed pickup model.
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cadence



Joined: 29 Jun 2007
Posts: 285
Location: New Jersey

PostPosted: Mon Aug 11, 2008 12:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

True, I guess the doityourselfer in me is keeping me from trying something logical like that. It's not even that I have a reason to - I've swapped out the pickup twice, replaced the volume pot and added a tone pot both on top pf the pickguard - and I'm pretty happy with the tone. Still, somedays it seems like a major operation like installing a routd pickup would be fun...but I really need to know what I'm doing.
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Excel Player



Joined: 01 Dec 2008
Posts: 61
Location: Shelbyville, Kentucky

PostPosted: Tue Dec 09, 2008 7:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

One thing you'll definitely need to know before you cut into an acoustic archtop is what type and where your braces are located. The braces are very important to the strength and the sound of the instrument. You can have either cross bracing which looks like X or parallel bracing which looks like l l . If you cut into the top and the pickup is wide, you can cut right into your braces, mess up the sound and the top strength. It won't vibrate like it's supposed to. Also, a strictly acoustic archtop's top is made a bit thinner than the routed top and the whole thing can be subject to alot more feedback. If you need to put a pickup on an acoustic archtop, use a floating pickup or get one with a routed pickup already in place. Then all the construction is well coordinated and you have a better chance of getting the sound you want. Finally, a well made acoustic archtop is more expensive because of the effort you need in carving and tap tuning a top.
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