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Repair: Chris Duarte's 63 Stratocaster Pickup

First I must apologize for the poor quality of the pics, I think my camera is on its way out. This very dirty pickup is the middle pickups form Chris Duarte's 1963 Stratocaster, his main guitar. I got a distressed call from him while on tour that his guitar fell out of it gig bag and landed pickup first on the curb and now his middle pickups was dead. Here is a set of pictures as I repaired the pickup. It should be noted that this is a VERY delicate process, working with wire of this gauge is tough enough, but doing this with a 43 year old pickup that has aged and is this corroded makes the wire very brittle, and much more difficult. He first shipped me just the pickup for repair and continued the tour with a different pickup. When he had a break he sent me the whole pickguard for a good once over, and to install the pickup.

*Note* For those of you that think you need an over wound pickup to get that SRV, or "Texas Blues" tone, this pickup has a DC resistance only 5.09k, and if you have ever heard Chris play...

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As I received it, the 3 left magnets were pushed up and were no longer connected with the base plate which broke the lead wire from the coil.

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I carefully removed the entire coil from the baseplate, you can see the end wire here, I will now search for the lead wire.

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I found the lead wire and VERY carefully unwrapped 1 turn from the inside of the coil to get the length necessary to attach it back to the terminal.

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Here I carefully pressed the 3 left magnets back up to proper height. This is VERY tricky because if you are not careful the rods will snag and break the coil.

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Here it is all put back together.

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Pickguard assembly The middle pickups is one he put in to finish the gig. The tape was to prevent the buz when he touched the pickup.

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bottom of the pickguard.

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Close up of the controls The legendary guitar tech and repairman Rob Hacker of Austin told me he wrapped the controls in plastic to prevent corrosion from his sweat. You can see the remnants of that bag.

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