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 Post subject: Humbuckers in a Strat?
PostPosted: Fri Jul 15, 2011 11:30 am 
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I've heard that the string/pole spacing on most humbuckers isn't right for a strat - more designed to drop into a les paul or something. Is this true? How far off the poles will the strat strings be if I bought a pair of humbuckers not specially designed for a strat?

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 Post subject: Re: Humbuckers in a Strat?
PostPosted: Fri Jul 15, 2011 11:55 am 
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From the DiMarzio pickup FAQ page:


Quote:
"What is F-spacing?

All of our full-size humbuckers except the X2N® are available in two polepiece spacings. F-spacing refers to the wider of the two spacings. For proper string alignment and balanced output, F-spaced humbuckers should be used in the bridge position on all guitars with string spacing at the bridge of 2.1" (53 mm) or greater. On these guitars, if the nut width is 1-11/16” (43 mm) or greater, F-spaced pickups can be used in the neck position as well.

Why are there two different spacings?

A long time ago (in the 20th century, actually) the electric guitar world was divided between Gibson and Fender designs. One of the differences between the two was string spacing. In general, Gibson chose a narrower string spacing at the bridge than Fender, and therefore the polepieces on Gibson humbuckers were closer together than the magnets on Fender pickups. When guitar shops started installing humbuckers in the bridge position of Strats, it was obvious that the strings didn’t line up with the polepieces, and if the E strings were too far outside, the sound could suffer. Our first humbuckers followed the original Gibson spacing, and we call them standard-spaced. When we released our first humbuckers with wider spacing, Floyd Rose bridges were very popular. Floyd string-spacing is the same as Fender spacing, so we naturally called the new pickups F-spaced.

How do I know which spacing to use?

F-spaced pickups measure 2.01" (51 mm) center-to-center from the first polepiece to the sixth. Standard-spaced pickups measure 1.90" (48 mm). Although some players believe that F-spaced pickups are only for the bridge position of tremolo bridge guitars, many guitars with fixed bridges (including late 1990s Gibson Les Pauls and Epiphone LPs) should have F-spaced pickups in the bridge position. Most tremolo equipped guitars that have a nut width of 1-11/16” (43mm) or more should also use an F-spaced pickup in the neck position. If you’re replacing a bridge-position pickup and you're not sure what your string-spacing is, it's usually better to get an F-spaced model. It is not necessary for the strings to pass exactly over the center of the polepieces for best performance, but it is wise to avoid a situation where the E strings are sitting completely outside of the outer polepieces.

...."


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 Post subject: Re: Humbuckers in a Strat?
PostPosted: Fri Jul 15, 2011 2:29 pm 
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Seymour Duncan humbuckers with the proper f-spacing for a strat are called "trembucker" and the model number starts with a "TB".

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 Post subject: Re: Humbuckers in a Strat?
PostPosted: Fri Jul 15, 2011 4:24 pm 
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As mentioned above, you have to get the "F" spaced humbuckers. I have 3 Strats with humbuckers, no issues or problems.

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 Post subject: Re: Humbuckers in a Strat?
PostPosted: Fri Jul 15, 2011 6:36 pm 
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Not to confuse the issue but SOME Strats such as the standard Mexican models and the American Standards have a narrower string spread than that of traditional Strats. Consequently, regular spaced humbuckers ARE appropriate.

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 Post subject: Re: Humbuckers in a Strat?
PostPosted: Fri Jul 15, 2011 8:30 pm 
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So does the F spacing only refer to the bridge spacing? If I were to look to drop two HBs into a MIM standard strat, let's say the SD pearly gates, would I look for 2 PG pickups with f spacing? Or just the TB one for the bridge and the regular neck pup?

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 Post subject: Re: Humbuckers in a Strat?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 16, 2011 8:12 am 
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I believe all MIM Standard Strats feature narrow (2-1/16") string spacing. In that case, the "F-spaced" humbuckers (ie: trembuckers) would be inappropriate for your guitar.

Arjay

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 Post subject: Re: Humbuckers in a Strat?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 16, 2011 11:28 am 
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I recently changed the pickups in my 2000 MIM HSS standard strat and had to exchange a Seymour Duncan SH humbucker that I ordered for a TB model. The SH spacing was too narrow and the TB was just right.

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 Post subject: Re: Humbuckers in a Strat?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 16, 2011 7:08 pm 
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Martian wrote:
Not to confuse the issue but SOME Strats such as the standard Mexican models and the American Standards have a narrower string spread than that of traditional Strats. Consequently, regular spaced humbuckers ARE appropriate.

Martian is right. I have put a number of chrome or nickel covered humbucker in strats in both neck and bridge positions and the alignment was perfect. These were all USA Strat Plus.

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 Post subject: Re: Humbuckers in a Strat?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 16, 2011 7:20 pm 
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gret to know, I thought all Strats used the F spacing. But I've never dropped a HB in a strat...been thinking about setting up an HH though,

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