Swapping covers on Filtertron pickups

Discussion in 'The Pickup Place' started by Stefan87, Jun 8, 2021.

  1. Stefan87

    Stefan87 Country Gent

    May 20, 2019
    Brisbane, Australia
    Hey Guys,

    For all the tech savvy people out there how hard is it to swap the pick up covers on TV Jones filtertrons?

    Reason I ask is I will be getting new pick ups for my Annie but am also considering using the ones in my 6120.
    The thing is the TVJ pick ups in my 6120 are nickel covers/screws and the annie has all chrome hardware, so I thought if I buy chrome TVJ pick ups for the 6120 then I can just swap the covers so I don't have miss matched hardware as that would just annoy me to no end.

    Would this be a hard thing to do if I went that way?

    Thanks.
     
  2. G5422T

    G5422T Country Gent

    May 24, 2012
    usa
    A good soldering gun/iron, desoldering wick or bulb, a small hobby vice, and patience.

    Have to be carefull with the heat. It's a nack that one likes or doesn't.

    The end results may sway you to do more, or never again. The right tools are the key

    Best of luck
     
    Outlaw and Stefan87 like this.
  3. Outlaw

    Outlaw Country Gent

    Jul 13, 2011
    UK
    I've done a few filtertron cover swaps and never had any problems. As G5422T said 'The right tools are the key'.
     
    G5422T likes this.
  4. Stefan87

    Stefan87 Country Gent

    May 20, 2019
    Brisbane, Australia
    Ok cool, feeling a confident now, what about the wax potting though, will all that fall out when you take the covers off.
    Please forgive my ignorance as I haven't pulled one apart yet.
     
  5. G5422T

    G5422T Country Gent

    May 24, 2012
    usa
    No, but some may melt out, especially with too much heat. You'll generally have some on the inside cover.

    With not enough heat, the solder is slowly warming up for removal. Well, so is the potting, and it can be worse than the too hot for too long scenario.

    Patience and you'll get the feel of what works right with your iron(s)
     
    Stefan87 likes this.
  6. Ricochet

    Ricochet I Bleed Orange

    Nov 13, 2009
    Monkey Island
    High heat, broad solder tip and braid.

    Resist using a Dremel. Metal particles end up in the coil and will oxidise, meaning death for your pickups.
     
  7. Stefan87

    Stefan87 Country Gent

    May 20, 2019
    Brisbane, Australia
    Ok cool, thanks for the help and tips @G5422T and @Ricochet , will see how we go.
     
  8. sgarnett

    sgarnett Synchromatic

    662
    Apr 14, 2020
    Kentucky
    The counterintuitive part about soldering irons is, it’s easier to overheat the work if you are not using enough heat.

    An iron that is too small will cool off as soon as it touches the cold joint. You will have to hold the iron on the joint long enough to heat the surrounding metal before the solder will melt.

    A bigger iron will hold its temperature more steady, and conduct heat into the solder faster. This allows you wick the solder out and open the joint before the surrounding metal gets TOO hot.

    I also suggest practicing with the wick first, and then cut off the end and start with fresh wick for the actual work.
     
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  9. TV the Wired Turtle

    TV the Wired Turtle Gretschified

    Jul 25, 2009
    Sandy Eggo
    Clip a heat sink to the pick, use a standard weller solder pencil... prime the tip of the soldering pencil w solder and w a razor blade in the other hand, you will rub the tip of the soldering iron back and forth at the solder joint that is co-joining the cover w the base plate. It doesnt take more than a moment AND SHOULDNT TAKE much longer as it will suddenly begin melting and that is when you slide the razor blade between the cover and base plate. this will break and separate the solder joint. Let that cool momentarily and then slide out the razor blade.. do it to the other side just the same.. slide that razor blade out after as well. Then... take a home hair drier to WARM the metal cover and you can begin wiggling while pulling the cover off GENTLY and SLOWLY!!!! (yes I'm yelling).. This is the proper method, use no other method if you love your pickups. Then when you are done fiddling with your covers, they can be returned back and w a quick bead of solder (using heat sink on covers) they will be back to OEM!
    ...your welcome.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2021
  10. Randy99CL

    Randy99CL Country Gent

    Feb 17, 2020
    Albuquerque
    Excellent tip that some may not realize. With so many pencil irons in the 20-30 watt range (designed for circuit board work) in use today many screw things up trying to use them where a bigger iron is needed.

    The small irons are great for wiring but not metal. This 80 watt is great for bigger stuff as it gets hotter and the big tip holds the heat.
    Weller SP80NUS 80-Watts LED Soldering Iron - - Amazon.com

    And I like a solder sucker better than the braid solder remover.
    Weller 7874B Manual ESD-Safe Desoldering Pump with Aluminum Body - Power Soldering Accessories - Amazon.com
     
    Stefan87 likes this.
  11. Stefan87

    Stefan87 Country Gent

    May 20, 2019
    Brisbane, Australia
    Thanks for more tips everyone, very helpful info.

    @TV the Wired Turtle Thanks for chiming in Tavo and will do it as you said if I go down that road, one question on putting the Classic covers back on, do they need to be soldered? only asking as aren't the RB pick ups cover unsoldered?
     
  12. TV the Wired Turtle

    TV the Wired Turtle Gretschified

    Jul 25, 2009
    Sandy Eggo
    I would say if youre playing at high volume with overdrive maybe there's a possibility of increased feedback due to microvibrations??? Who plays like that in a normal world :) Why not just return it back to the way it was and since both sides are already tinned, it will be a breeze. if not mehh shove some soft candle wax in the grooves, no harm no foul.
     
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  13. G5422T

    G5422T Country Gent

    May 24, 2012
    usa
    Here's a bottom pic of an RB that I put in my RI -58 Gent.

    20191218_140938.jpg

    The two wood screws hold the cover down on the coil assembly. No soldering needed on RB's
     
    Stefan87 likes this.
  14. Stefan87

    Stefan87 Country Gent

    May 20, 2019
    Brisbane, Australia
    Yeah that is great as these are what I'm considering, so I would only have to unsolder my classics.
     
    G5422T likes this.
  15. G5422T

    G5422T Country Gent

    May 24, 2012
    usa
    If you can, you should try a pair. I love Classics, but the RB's have something special going on.

    Very glad I put these in my -58.
     
    Stefan87 likes this.
  16. stiv

    stiv Country Gent

    Sep 12, 2014
    Florence, Italy
    Agree.
    I have tried all type of pickups on my pre FMIC 6120: Ceramic Filters (stock), HS Filters, TVJ Classics, Dynas and EC type P90 (from Lindy Fralin).
    Nothing sounded better than RB.
     
    Stefan87 likes this.
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