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  1. #1

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    After a long bout of pick-up blues with the stock KA on my EXL-1, I decided to order a Pete Biltoft JS CC floater. I’m gonna try Blu-tack and the stock pots for now and may upgrade later to Schattens if there’s any oddness that crops up. Has anyone used one of the VV CC housed in the JS style from Biltoft? I haven’t been able to find anything but the man himself recommended this configuration based on this guitar. Who am I to disagree with such a suggestion?


    New CC for my EXL-1-1b74f0f9-fe87-4b98-8f42-25b825cb2ee4-png

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    The Jazz Guitar Chord Dictionary
     
  3. #2

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    Yep here. I have a CC floater on my 1953 L5C. Great mic'.

    Best.

  4. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Fred Archtop
    Yep here. I have a CC floater on my 1953 L5C. Great mic'.

    Best.
    Fred, your recording of The Moon Was Full inspired me to choose the VV CC.

  5. #4
    How much Blu-tack should I use to get the height right? Wanna be close enough to the strings to ensure the Pu is operating accurately. Never used the stuff before.

  6. #5

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    I had Peter Biltoft of Vintage Vibe Pickups build me a CC Rider floater humbucker to replace my Kent Armstrong 12 Pole peice PAF floater. Wonderful pickup but same can be said of the K.A. As well.

  7. #6

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    These are great pickups. I've got two of them - I've just ordered another for a newly acquired instrument, this time with adjustable poles as I intend to use it with bronze and monel strings.

  8. #7
    Pete’s CC showed up today. Can’t wait to install this lil beauty. Having to work the next eight days in a row is bumming me out, since I’ll have to wait to get this guy connected. Here’s a sneak with it perchedNew CC for my EXL-1-4b1c0f3e-e1d4-4124-b50a-9051a4de0197-jpg

  9. #8

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    Man, that pickup looks great -- better on the guitar than just by itself in the first picture. Congrats!

  10. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by archtopeddy
    Man, that pickup looks great -- better on the guitar than just by itself in the first picture. Congrats!
    It is great looking! Pete makes a fine piece of gear. Can’t wait to hear it!

  11. #10
    I have my Blu-Tack at the ready. Gonna mount it like that for the initial ride then test out the results.

  12. #11

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    Start with a small amount, about half the size of a pea on either end of the pickup. Aim to have the pickup just high enough that it is about 3/16 of an inch away from the strings. The bond sets up really quite strongly, so when you go to remove it- if you decide to mount it to the pick guard, for example- remove with gentle persistent pressure rather than yanking on it.

  13. #12
    Would you recommend using the blu-tack to adhere the mounting tab to the underside of the pick guard in addition to mounting the pu to the body?

  14. #13
    I’m leaving the stock pots that are mounted to the pickguard and already removed the KA that came with the guitar. Where should the new ground go? The KA had the hot lead soldered to the far right lug and the ground soldered to the back of the vol pot. However, the VV has instructions that SEEM to indicate that the braided SS wire needs to be grounded, too. Here’s the KA:New CC for my EXL-1-407af177-c5ad-44e3-b16f-868e5014d888-jpeg

  15. #14
    Finally found time this morning to install the Biltoft CC. It was a little tricky dealing with the smaller pots but it didn’t take too long to get it buttoned up. I think it looks great and the sound is so much sweeter, smoother and bell-like than the Jazzy Joe that came stock. So far, it feels balanced and articulate. I have it attached with Blu Tack to the Pg and top right now. I’m aware that there is a screw missing where the pickup tab is meant to be mounted but I didn’t tap the tab on the CC so I’ll leave it as is for a bit while I see how the Blu Tack holds up. I’ve only played it for half an hour through my Katana 100 so I’m still very much in the honeymoon phase. All in all, I really like it so far. The Biltoft pickup is beautifully made and Pete was excellent to work with!New CC for my EXL-1-f3bb5169-ba69-4d76-aee6-94b60ae2c9aa-jpgNew CC for my EXL-1-a0139b52-1ed4-4ef9-a351-b44d3170552a-jpgNew CC for my EXL-1-89d398dc-f7a6-473e-949c-50762f4efebf-jpgNew CC for my EXL-1-7ccc4bcb-30d5-4d89-a944-5d5f1f0205df-jpgNew CC for my EXL-1-65d0841b-267e-480a-ac5d-f99055b9fa6d-jpg

  16. #15
    Man, I’m loving this pickup. It really changed the character of the D’A. Such an improvement in tone over the KA. Where the KA was a bit boomy but brassy up top and lacked volume, the Biltoft is flatter, more dynamic and SEEMS to be louder. Could be a difference in frequency distribution maybe. Also, the new pickup is now in contact(sort of) with the top of the guitar, now. I’m really glad I didn’t pursue my original idea of routing the top to mount a set-in HB. Installing a new floater was waaaay easier.

  17. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by Esport
    Finally found time this morning to install the Biltoft CC. It was a little tricky dealing with the smaller pots but it didn’t take too long to get it buttoned up. I think it looks great and the sound is so much sweeter, smoother and bell-like than the Jazzy Joe that came stock. So far, it feels balanced and articulate. I have it attached with Blu Tack to the Pg and top right now. I’m aware that there is a screw missing where the pickup tab is meant to be mounted but I didn’t tap the tab on the CC so I’ll leave it as is for a bit while I see how the Blu Tack holds up. I’ve only played it for half an hour through my Katana 100 so I’m still very much in the honeymoon phase. All in all, I really like it so far. The Biltoft pickup is beautifully made and Pete was excellent to work with!New CC for my EXL-1-f3bb5169-ba69-4d76-aee6-94b60ae2c9aa-jpgNew CC for my EXL-1-a0139b52-1ed4-4ef9-a351-b44d3170552a-jpgNew CC for my EXL-1-89d398dc-f7a6-473e-949c-50762f4efebf-jpgNew CC for my EXL-1-7ccc4bcb-30d5-4d89-a944-5d5f1f0205df-jpgNew CC for my EXL-1-65d0841b-267e-480a-ac5d-f99055b9fa6d-jpg
    That pickups BELONGS on that guitar. Just gorgeous.

  18. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by ruger9
    That pickups BELONGS on that guitar. Just gorgeous.
    Thanks, I agree. It fits the aesthetic really really well and sounds excellent.

  19. #18

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    Beautiful guitar, great addition.

    A comment and a question: those D’Angelicos are just beautiful. It seems that D’A has taken over the archtop mantle from Gibson. Yes they’re not carved top, made in America. And yes the electronics may not be up to Gibson standards. But you can’t say you can’t get a beautiful archtop at a great price these days. Under the definition of jazz guitar in Websters, you could put the picture of the EXL-1. In fact, I think Mel Bay did that.

    Per my recent discussion re’ the Grateful Dead, I am kind of jonesing for their GD SS with the American Beauty rose. I will resist the urge though.

    The question is—does anyone have an opinion about a floating pickup on a laminate guitar? I put one on my Godin 5th Avenue—a GFS cheapie—and find the results to be quite acceptable. But my dumb brain seems to equate floater with carved top, set in with laminate top. Any thoughts?

    Oh one more comment...I didn’t know they made a CC floater. With all the talk of CC’s on this website, I am sorely tempted to put one in one of my guitars. That seems like an interesting product. I don’t see it on their website. Do you mind sharing how much one of those costs? Looks like their set-in CC’s go for about $120.

  20. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by Doctor Jeff
    Beautiful guitar, great addition.

    A comment and a question: those D’Angelicos are just beautiful. It seems that D’A has taken over the archtop mantle from Gibson. Yes they’re not carved top, made in America. And yes the electronics may not be up to Gibson standards. But you can’t say you can’t get a beautiful archtop at a great price these days. Under the definition of jazz guitar in Websters, you could put the picture of the EXL-1. In fact, I think Mel Bay did that.

    Per my recent discussion re’ the Grateful Dead, I am kind of jonesing for their GD SS with the American Beauty rose. I will resist the urge though.

    The question is—does anyone have an opinion about a floating pickup on a laminate guitar? I put one on my Godin 5th Avenue—a GFS cheapie—and find the results to be quite acceptable. But my dumb brain seems to equate floater with carved top, set in with laminate top. Any thoughts?

    Oh one more comment...I didn’t know they made a CC floater. With all the talk of CC’s on this website, I am sorely tempted to put one in one of my guitars. That seems like an interesting product. I don’t see it on their website. Do you mind sharing how much one of those costs? Looks like their set-in CC’s go for about $120.
    The EXL is surely a beauty. The construction and execution of fit and finish is very well done, too. I was lucky to purchase mine, in mint condition, for $650 w OEM case. That’s about the best deal I’ve made with all my guit purchases. Almost sold it, several times, not because of the guitar but due to the sound of the stock floater. Now, it sounds right to me and the tone matches the looks. I contacted Pete directly and we discussed a couple of options before selecting the pu in the pictures. It was $160 shipped. I really got close to cutting out a hole for a humbucker. Glad I held off.

  21. #20

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    Looks fab. What will you use to fill that hole in the guard?

  22. #21
    Quote Originally Posted by Woody Sound
    Looks fab. What will you use to fill that hole in the guard?
    Not sure, yet. I could always try a little plastic wood filler then use a tiny bit of acrylic paint to color match it.

  23. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by Esport
    Not sure, yet. I could always try a little plastic wood filler then use a tiny bit of acrylic paint to color match it.
    That's the old screw hole, right? I'd just stick a gold screw in it, glue it in. Or if you feel like working, Dremel the head off of a gold screw, and glue it in place.

  24. #23
    Quote Originally Posted by ruger9
    That's the old screw hole, right? I'd just stick a gold screw in it, glue it in. Or if you feel like working, Dremel the head off of a gold screw, and glue it in place.
    Could try that too. I actually like that idea better!

  25. #24

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    Quote Originally Posted by Esport
    Could try that too. I actually like that idea better!
    Or even better: IF you can find a SHORT machine screw (has a flat bottom instead of a point) and a nut that goes with it, you could do that... that way, it could be easily reversed if you ever needed.

  26. #25
    Quote Originally Posted by ruger9
    Or even better: IF you can find a SHORT machine screw (has a flat bottom instead of a point) and a nut that goes with it, you could do that... that way, it could be easily reversed if you ever needed.
    With the tab of the floater attached right up against the underside of the pick guard, I can’t see a way to do that. I have a Dremel. Wouldn’t take long to put that screw in a vice and trim off the post.

  27. #26
    New CC for my EXL-1-49662b75-cab5-4e7c-a0d5-34b953942398-jpg
    I wish I could accelerate the yellowing process so the natural color would be like this filter. Looks so much better as a darkened, old, smoke-saturated player. I don’t smoke and impatience is my weakness. Guess it’ll look new forever.