Jump to content
Heritage Owners Club

Starting Over


Recommended Posts

Posted (edited)

So I just got my first Heritage after all these years. A 2001 H-535.

A previous owner pulled the Schallers and wiring harness and installed a Gibson 57 Classic neck and Classic Plus bridge with a new harness. Both pickups read 8.0. They have the original labelling intact so I know its a plus.

The Schallers read 7.64 and 8.21

Should I bother to go back to the original pickups to see if I like them or am I already in a better place?  I've had other guitars with SD 59s and Seths and really like the sound of those pickups a lot.

 

Thanks for your opinions!

 

Jeff

Edited by JSeeksTone55
  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks. I agree. I went and took a look at the specs etc of a few duncans in the same ballpark and there's not enough difference. There's other ways to finely tweak your tone than a complete swap.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Unless there's a compelling reason to change (ie: you don't like the sound of the pickups or something isn't working correctly)  I wouldn't change anything.    Returning to  the original Schallers won't increase the value due to being "original".     From what I've seen over the years,  about a third of the people with Schallers in their guitars swap them out for other pickups.  

 

  

  • Upvote 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

You may be right about a third changing the pickups, meaning most don't.  But it is those who do change pickups who get the most ink (or press or copy or keystrokes).

Pickups are just one variable in the chain made of at least a dozen.  Schallers seem decent enough.  Long ago I had the sense that they must be "pickups of a lesser god" because I read so often about dumping them for something else.  I admit I did that.

I agree that a different set of pickups, like SD 59s or Gibson Classics, probably won't raise the value of the guitar much except with those who happen to like the particular set you put in.  It's a different story if you replace the pickups with Throbaks or other high end pickups.

On that topic, I don't know why the "plug in" systems for pickups swaps haven't become the default in the market.  The companies would probably sell more pickups if they were easier to exchange.

My guess is Heritage went with Schallers because they could get a good price when buying the bridge, tailpiece and pickups in large lots.  Like Gibson Classics and SD 59s, those pickups sound good for most purposes.

  • Like 1
  • Upvote 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, MartyGrass said:

You may be right about a third changing the pickups, meaning most don't.  But it is those who do change pickups who get the most ink (or press or copy or keystrokes).

Pickups are just one variable in the chain made of at least a dozen.  Schallers seem decent enough.  Long ago I had the sense that they must be "pickups of a lesser god" because I read so often about dumping them for something else.  I admit I did that.

I agree that a different set of pickups, like SD 59s or Gibson Classics, probably won't raise the value of the guitar much except with those who happen to like the particular set you put in.  It's a different story if you replace the pickups with Throbaks or other high end pickups.

On that topic, I don't know why the "plug in" systems for pickups swaps haven't become the default in the market.  The companies would probably sell more pickups if they were easier to exchange.

My guess is Heritage went with Schallers because they could get a good price when buying the bridge, tailpiece and pickups in large lots.  Like Gibson Classics and SD 59s, those pickups sound good for most purposes.

I guess the most improvement is when you change out an obviously junk pickup (epiphone "wax bucker" etc.) to a decent one like a 59 or a Seth which I have experience in doing. And it depends upon what you're looking for. I play mostly clean stuff so I'm looking for warmth with definition.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I had a LP that had a '57 Classic and a Super '57 in it from the factory. I waited a little over a year before I decided for sure that they weren't for me. I swapped them for some BKP Black Dogs. Those have been in there for 6 1/2 years, with no reason to swap them. 

  • Like 1
  • Upvote 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have Seth Lovers in my 535, the Alnico 2 pickups have less output, but seem to have a sweeter sound to my ears.  My favorite Gibson pickups were the original Gibson Burstbucker pro's, but there are so many variants of them, I don't know what is best anymore.  

I say play the guitar through your favorite amps and pedals.  Compare and contrast what you like about it to any other guitars you have and make you decision only then to swap or keep the pickups.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I've got the same pickups in My 1988 H-140CM since mid 90's. Much improved sound. Kept the Schallers just in case I ever want to go back to original.

  • Upvote 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Gibson 57 Classics are well matched with semihollows and very good pickups overall. I have tried them all including all of the high end boutique makers.

Not sure you will notice nay big difference in swapping them out unless you go with A5 PAFs if you are looking for a brighter tone or more bite.

I also have a set of Seth Lovers from Heritage stock in my 2022 H535. I like unpotted so enjoy these.

My favorite SD pickups are Antiquities, but most of their PAF range pickups are very good.

 

 

  • Upvote 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)

The Schallers in my 87 H140 had an obvious problem.  I tried changing pots and caps, but it remained.   Sound was grossly out of whack.   I changed them to AlnicoPro2s and all has been fine.   I don't know if it had a short of what, but it didn't sound anything like either my 157 or 535 which both came with Schallers.

I still have the Schallers in my H157.  I changed out the ones in my 535, and all I can really say is that it's different.   It has Sheptones in it now,   they seem to be a bit more even from high to low, but as for a massive difference,   nah...    My Mille has Seth Lovers in it.  

Schallers aren't bad pickups,  they are just different.   To me, they seem to have that scooped midrange sound.. almost a "smile" on the EQ curve.   That seems to make them a bit on the bottom heavy side.    Of course I just tweak the amp setting to tame the bloom on the low strings.

Edited by TalismanRich
  • Upvote 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

A buddy's 150 came with '59s.  He change them to the lowly Schallers and is so much happier with it.  I changed the HRW pups to Phat Cats in my 535 and am happier with it now. 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

If we all used the same equipment, might as well start using auto-tune. Make your guitar YOUR guitar. There is no right and wrong. Only your ears. Make yourself happy. That is step one.

  • Upvote 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

They sound good that's for sure. They have longer legs than the Schallers though and bottom out in the pickup cavity so the bridge pickup is not level. I'll need to route out some wood in thereI guess. It looks like the pickup installer took a drill to it but put didn't take out enough wood. Neither one "floats" on the spring but the bridge for sure is not flat.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yep, that's an issue that I faced with my 140.   The neck pickup is pretty much bottomed out.    It's also part of the reason that the 157 still has the Schallers.   I had bought a pair of gold Seth Lovers to put in there, but they didn't fit, and I wasn't in the mood (or have the proper tools) to deepen the route.   I thought of having a set made with short legs, but in the end, decided that the Schallers are ok to keep.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I stay with the 57's.  I have them in my 335 and love them.  I also have Seth Lovers in both my 535 and love them too.  Sound is so subjective.  The is a difference in sound between these two pickups, both sound great.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

So I went down the rabbit hole today. Big time. I figured let me put the schaller back in the bridge slot and see what happens. Still had a problem with the fitment but it was livable, except the Schaller and the neck 57 were out of phase magnetically. So instead of re-installing the bridge 57, I swapped back in the neck Schaller so now it's stock. But the sound was very thin. I did not like the Schallers. So back in go the 57s. Bit there's still the problem with the bridge fitment, only worse and there's plenty of depth to work with. So I don't get it. I think it needs a thinner pickup up ring. to be continued..... But I ike the sound way better now.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just an FYI...

If pickups are out of phase, you can swap the hot lead with the ground lead on one of the pickups to make the set in phase. 

  • Upvote 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

15 hours ago, PunkKitty said:

Just an FYI...

If pickups are out of phase, you can swap the hot lead with the ground lead on one of the pickups to make the set in phase. 

The magnetic field was out of phase, the screw coil was north up on the Schaller while the screw coil was south up on the Gibson. It may have also been electrically OOP but I think it was the magnets this time.

 

I did figure out the mounting prob though, before screwing down on the pickup ring, slide it front and back to make sure the pickup edge falls into the cutout, mine was getting hung on the front wood edge.

 

Thanks

 

Jeff

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

19 hours ago, JSeeksTone55 said:

The magnetic field was out of phase, the screw coil was north up on the Schaller while the screw coil was south up on the Gibson. It may have also been electrically OOP but I think it was the magnets this time.

 

I did figure out the mounting prob though, before screwing down on the pickup ring, slide it front and back to make sure the pickup edge falls into the cutout, mine was getting hung on the front wood edge.

 

Thanks

 

Jeff

 

Yes. Switching the ground and hot leads on a 4 wire pickup will solve this problem. I've done it many, many times. The alternative is to flip the magnet in one of the pickups. Schaller magnets are glued in place, so that's not an option. I've had to do this on Gibson pickups several times. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...