Reply to Thread Bookmark Thread
Posts 1 to 16 of 16
  1. #1

    User Info Menu

    Hi All!
    I just installed a KA 12 floating paf and I'm wondering if I should make some adjustments for better height and angle. The stock pickup installation was worse in all these regards but when I got the KA installed it didn't come out completely level in that the bass side is slightly higher that the treble side and the whole thing is too high in my opinion. The pickup is level with the pickguard though and when I did a dry fit it looked fine but when I fully tightened the pickguard the clearance changed. With the bass E fretted at the last fret there is barely a millimeter of clearance over the pole and the pole is almost flush. On the high e string there is more clearance but not much. On the bass poles the only adjustment I have left is to lower the poles below the level of the pickup face.

    My question is: Should I shoot for absolute level with a clearance of about 2mm overall and then adjust the poles from there? I think I could add a shim to the bottom of the pickguard and mount the pickup to the shim to add some clearance but would that be worth it? Or should I focus on the angle of the pickguard where it mounts to the neck?

    This pickup sounds amazing right now but the tone seems to change on the bass side as I go up the neck... although I rarely play past the 12th fret on the bass side. I can't help but think that a little more space would make things more uniform up and down the neck. This pickup also seems pretty forgiving in regards to height... would I even notice a difference?

    Thanks in advance for any insight!

  2.  

    The Jazz Guitar Chord Dictionary
     
  3. #2

    User Info Menu

    I had mine professionally installed. It’s about level with the fingerboard wood. Bass side ever so slightly lower but diff is so small that I can’t imagine it matters. It’s epoxied to the pickguard.

    Thing is, the strings have an angle too, so the coil farther from the fingerboard has slightly more distance.

    I’m not sure if any of this matters, the pickup sounds great with Thomastik jazz 12. One could always tweak the poles but it sounds good as is. Great pickup.

    For your situation, 1mm clearance seems a touch close, you can try to shim the pickguard... but how does it sound? Does the bass string buzz against the pickup? Is your pickup higher than the fingerboard wood? And how often do you plan to fret the last fret on the bass side?

    Here is how mine turned out.

    KA PAF 12 install Height-6c5d6e24-0a34-4ca5-9e27-0573a4c02124-jpg

  4. #3

    User Info Menu

    Looks about like mine! Thanks for posting a pic... I may try to upload one when I'm home just to compare.. As I said though, it sounds great now but I'll always be wondering if it couldn't be better or if I'm not close enough to the optimal height.

  5. #4

    User Info Menu

    Quote Originally Posted by frankhond

    Here is how mine turned out.
    Bryant Trenier installed mine on my recent Jazz Special laminate/floater he built for me, and it looks pretty much the same as the image above. On the bass side the pickup comes close to touching the soundboard but does not quite touch it.

    So far I'm very happy with the sound, but I'm still experimenting with guitar vs. amp volume levels to find what sounds best to me.

  6. #5

    User Info Menu

    Here’s some pics of mine.. just worried I don’t have any adjustment left with the way it hangs now
    KA PAF 12 install Height-5cfeafc3-68d6-469c-936c-884c64afb52f-jpgKA PAF 12 install Height-5367d601-a38c-489e-a29c-201b477bec76-jpg
    Attached Images Attached Images KA PAF 12 install Height-49af77e0-fc93-40f8-acfb-220dbcd0e1c1-jpg 

  7. #6

    User Info Menu

    Quote Originally Posted by booneroo
    Here’s some pics of mine.. just worried I don’t have any adjustment left with the way it hangs now
    Mine is definitely lower than that on the bass side.

  8. #7

    User Info Menu

    Looks like you raised some of the polepieces even closer, maybe to compensate for a loud low E? I would definitely try to bring the whole thing down. Is it epoxied to the pickguard?

  9. #8

    User Info Menu

    Yeah I used a plastic glue... I raised the D string pole a bit to level things out.

    But I have to keep my volume pot below half.

    I think I’ll do a thin veneer on the underside and mount the pickup to that.. I’m guessing I only need to drop it a millimeter or so.

    Thanks for the advice all!

  10. #9

    User Info Menu

    Quote Originally Posted by booneroo
    ...

    But I have to keep my volume pot below half.
    ...
    My Trenier with the KA 12-pole floater is still fairly new to me but I seem to be getting the best results with the volume pot around 6 or 7 (and tone pot around 8 or 9).

    With my old guitar (also a 16" laminate but with a routed pickup, and just generally a much darker sounding guitar), I had to run the volume wide-open otherwise it was too dark.

  11. #10

    User Info Menu

    I have no tone pot. But there is a whole range of tones available between 5-10 on the volume. Still learning how that works.

  12. #11

    User Info Menu

    QUESTION: so the epoxy holding my KA 12-pole lost its grip and my tech is going to re-attach it for me. However, I no longer have faith in the epoxy approach so I want to also use screws to attach it to the pickguard. I have the KA 12-pole floater handwound with sidetab.

    I've read in older threads that there is some wiring in the sidetab so one must be careful when drilling holes...does anyone have knowledge of the "safe" and "avoid" spots? Ideally I will have two holes drilled to attach it to the pickguard. My tech has the guitar and I need to get her some instructions.

    Please help!

    Thanks!

  13. #12

    User Info Menu

    That's a good question... I considered screw-mount to the pickguard but it doesn't look like there's much wiggle room for the holes that need drilled and tapped.
    On my copy... the lead and ground are right together in the middle of the tab. This leads me to believe that there is room on the "ears" for drilling.
    Again though, I did a lot of research on this pickup before getting it and I didn't see any specs as to where those lead wires are exactly.

  14. #13

    User Info Menu

    If I remember correctly the connectors were on the outside in mine... I suggest emailing Kent Armstrong about this directly, it's an expensive pickup to mess up. I would stay away from having a luthier drilling if he/she doesn't have experience with this particular pickup.

    The epoxy method is widely applied, and that's what my luthier (an accomplished archtop builder) did with my KA. A piece of non-reactive felt can be placed under the PU to steady it (absolutely not foam, that will react with the finish). An experienced luthier is the key.

  15. #14

    User Info Menu

    The guitar's builder is going to send me detailed instructions, but from the few pics I've managed to track down on the internet it appears that screwing into the corners of the tab is pretty safe. For example there is an Andersen Gold Standard on Reverb where you can see this has been done.

  16. #15

    User Info Menu

    I now have it from multiple reliable sources (including luthiers who have installed the KA) that it's safe to screw into the corners of the side tab.

  17. #16

    User Info Menu

    Quote Originally Posted by coolvinny View Post
    I now have it from multiple reliable sources (including luthiers who have installed the KA) that it's safe to screw into the corners of the side tab.
    The funny thing is that on mine, the connectors were at the corners. So screwing anything there would obviously break it.

    I guess apply common sense.