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Thursday, October 15, 2009

Gear: New Musicmaster Pickup

This evening, after the penultimate practice before our gig premiere, we performed a little surgery on Bron's new guitar. It's a 1972 Musicmaster bass, (born in the USA), that we picked up from the Swappy for a reasonable price (by today's standards). These are considered the least desirable of the vintage Fender basses (although are incresing in popularity quite a bit), but are ideal for people with little paws. It has the shortest neck scale of all Fender basses, and a lot of fun to play... in fact, I think I might be on the lookout for a well priced MIA Mustang Bass if it pops up.

Anyway, these things were pieced together from leftover Fender Bronco guitar parts at the time, including the pickup. You can see to the right of the pickguard that originally came with the guitar which has six pole-pieces (for guitar strings) . Sounds alright, but lacks a bit of punch and low-end. We replaced it with one of these Aero pickups which slots right into the original spot (no routing or modification, like you'd have to with a vintage style P-Bass pickup), which has four pole-pieces for the bass strings. Sounds great too. Apparently you are supposed to disconnect one of the two capacitors on the tone pot that inhibits the highs from coming through, but we saved that experiment for when we change the pickguard... which has been lost by Aus Post. Damn you!!

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