G6118T-LTV (125th anni) pickup mounting question

Discussion in 'THE Gretsch Discussion Forum' started by ACHIEVEIT, May 28, 2019.

  1. ACHIEVEIT

    ACHIEVEIT Electromatic

    4
    Aug 25, 2010
    Athens, Greece
    Hello everybody,

    Please excuse my ignorance, I am new to the world of Gretsches. I recently acquired my first Gretsch - it's a G6118T-LTV (125th anni) in beautiful Jaguar Tan. The guitar comes with TV Jones Powertrons and I would like to change them for TV Jones Classics or Gretsch HS Filtertrons, as I find them too hot for my taste.

    After browsing several e-shops, i noticed that the Neck Gretsch HS Filtertron comes with "ears" on each side of the pickup base, while the Bridge Gretsch HS Filtertron doesn't have those "ears". At the same time, TV Jones offers both styles, so without lifting the pickups in my guitar, I have no way of knowing what mounting style was used in the factory for this guitar.

    My question is this: can I install a pickup with ears in the neck cavity of my G6118T-LTV or should it be the same as what is in it already? If the second, does any owner of a G6118T-LTV know whether the factory TV Powertron Neck came with ears or not?

    Thanks a lot for your help!
     
    ishtar likes this.
  2. jarrodtaylor

    jarrodtaylor Electromatic

    32
    Mar 14, 2019
    Delray Beach, FL
    I’m pretty sure that guitar should be using the TV Jones universal mount pickups. The ears just slide on and off. You can definitely get the TV Classics that way. HS Filtertrons should also fit but you might need different rings.

    https://tvjones.com/pages/pickup-replacement-support
     
    Henry likes this.
  3. section2

    section2 Country Gent

    Dec 21, 2016
    Toronto
    Welcome to the forum, and congratulations on your beautiful new guitar!

    As @jarrodtaylor says, your TV Jones pickups probably come with their universal mounting system. The pickups should have removable ears that allow them to mount to the pickup rings. TV Jones has used a few different mounting systems over the years, though, so yours might be different. If you post pics of your guitar, we'll be able to tell you which ones you have. (EDIT: I just noticed that your guitar is a 125th Annie. I'm not sure which system TV Jones was using when that guitar was made.)

    HS Filtertrons have a different mounting system: rather than mounting to the rings, they have long screws that go through the pickups directly into the wood at the bottom of the pickup cavity. This is not a particularly user-friendly way to mount a pickup, and if your existing pickups are suspended from the rings, then mounting HS Filtertrons to the body will involve drilling holes into your gorgeous new instrument, so I wouldn't recommend it.

    But! There's an easy way to mount HS Filtertrons without screwing into the wood. You take a piece of plastic, metal, or wood (even popsicle sticks will work), and drill two sets of holes to make something like this:

    DSCN1247.jpg

    This photo isn't mine, but I did the same thing on my HS Filtertron and it works perfectly. Philadelphia Luthier sells professionally made metal versions for those who aren't into DIY.

    To check which style of mount you have in your guitar, you want to look for whether your pickup rings have four or six holes. If they have four, then your pickups are screwed into the body of the guitar. If they have six, then they're suspended from the rings. Or you can unscrew the screws in the corners of the rings and lift the pickups out to check the shape of the rout. It won't hurt your guitar!
     
    Last edited: May 28, 2019
  4. ACHIEVEIT

    ACHIEVEIT Electromatic

    4
    Aug 25, 2010
    Athens, Greece
    Thanks a lot for the detailed replies guys!

    Judging by the fact that my guitar's pickup rings have 4 screws, I am inclined to believe that the pickups are screwed directly to the body. With that said, I guess the only question is whether a Gretsch HS Filtertron with ears would fit into the cavity - that should be easy to find out by lifting the rings I expect (the reason why I am leaning more towards the Gretsch HS Filtertron is because they are far easier to get in Europe and cost about half as much as the TV Jones, without being sonically inferior as far as I could gather from the forum). In case they fit into the cavities, I would expect the stock pickup rings to fit, right?

    I have uploaded a photo for reference
     

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  5. Merc

    Merc Country Gent

    May 6, 2017
    Florida
    When I lifted the Powertron out the 125th during a string change, I really believe they had no ears and went straight into wood. But it was a while back and mine was made in 2009. You could do the same to be on the safe side in case it changed as they made it for several years. Just measure the pickup height so you get it back to the right spot.
     
  6. audept

    audept Senior Gretsch-Talker

    Age:
    71
    Dec 1, 2010
    Sydney, Australia
    Welcome to the forum, ACHIEVEIT!
    greek welcome mat.jpg
     
    ishtar likes this.
  7. section2

    section2 Country Gent

    Dec 21, 2016
    Toronto
    Yep, it looks like your pups screw directly into the body. I'm fairly certain that the HS Filtertron with the little ears will fit, but it's worth taking your rings off to double-check. Your rings themselves will match HS Filtertron pickups. TVJs are the same size as HS Filtertrons.
     
  8. I really appreciate you asking this question!

    About a year ago I came across a left-handed version of the 125th anniversary model. Until then I’d always had the regular Gretsch filtertrons and always love them.

    I’m OK with powertrons, but truly, I miss the old filtertrons.

    I believe your solution may be my solution!
     
  9. tartanphantom

    tartanphantom Country Gent

    Age:
    56
    Jul 30, 2008
    Murfreesboro, TN
    My 125th Anni is a 2011 model, and it does not have ears on the pickups. The Powertrons grew on me on this model. I have others with standard Filtertrons, so the Powertrons were a nice change in flavor-- and with them, combined with the ML bracing, you can really push this guitar in hard rock circumstances.

    Of course, if you don't play hard rock, then yes, I can understand wanting to replace the Powertrons... they are much more midrange-heavy in tone than standard Filtertrons.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: May 28, 2019
    ishtar, new6659, audept and 1 other person like this.
  10. ACHIEVEIT

    ACHIEVEIT Electromatic

    4
    Aug 25, 2010
    Athens, Greece
    Thanks again for the replies and the warm welcome guys!

    Ok, so we've established so far that the Powertrons that came stock come without ears and that the rings should be interchangeable. So the only question is whether there is enough clearance on the sides of the neck pickup cavity to accommodate a pickup with ears.

    To this end, I will try to take a picture with the rings removed after work. That way, this thread can act as a reference for people with the same question in the future. I am also attaching two images I grabbed off the internet to demonstrate the "ears" for quick reference.

    Gretsch HS Filtertron (neck on the left with "ears", bridge on the right without them)

    [​IMG]

    TV Jones Universal Mount (left side without "clips", right side with them)

    [​IMG]
     

    Attached Files:

    section2 likes this.
  11. tartanphantom

    tartanphantom Country Gent

    Age:
    56
    Jul 30, 2008
    Murfreesboro, TN
    You’re overthinking just a little bit. The ears can easily be clipped off with tin snips, sheet metal shears or a Dremel cut-off wheel... people have been doing that for decades.;)

    In other words, the ears are not an immovable thing, they were put there for a reason for certain guitars, but as you are finding out, they’re not really necessary for other models.
     
    audept likes this.
  12. ACHIEVEIT

    ACHIEVEIT Electromatic

    4
    Aug 25, 2010
    Athens, Greece
    Good to know - i didn't know that! Thought the material would be hard enough to pose a problem.

    Anyway, contrary to predictions, the Powertrons in this guitar actually come with the TV Jones Pro Gretsch Mount, like so

    https://cdn.shopify.com/s/files/1/0013/0026/7065/files/PG3-TechSpec.png?7797060369967929548

    So, in essence there is enough cavity clearance to fit Gretsch HS Filtertrons with the ears anyway.

    Case closed, thanks a lot for all the inputs and may this prove useful to other members in the future. Cheers
     

    Attached Files:

    audept likes this.
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