Ce24 replacement pickups

The Fight

Long Hair Demigod
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Hey guys !
I'm getting a used CE 1990 and was just wondering if anyone here on the forum has any experience with replacing pickups on the CE 24.
I was mby considering some 59/09 or mby a 57/08. Definitely not keeping the hfs in it, I think most of us can agree they tend to be a little harsh in the alder body's. I've actually been considering trying a set of Tremonti pickups, which I have a feeling will sound bad ass.

Any recommendations would be appreciated, and thanks in advance!
 

AP515

Mostly Normal
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HFS/Vintage were not 100% in them until 91 IIRC. You might have T&B's or something else. If you do end up changing, I'd go with 59/09's for the extra punch. I'd really pick Dragon 1's if I was choosing.
 

The Fight

Long Hair Demigod
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HFS/Vintage were not 100% in them until 91 IIRC. You might have T&B's or something else. If you do end up changing, I'd go with 59/09's for the extra punch. I'd really pick Dragon 1's if I was choosing.
Yeah I'm hoping they are Dragon 1's, I'm always hearing good things about them.
I'm actually going to pick up my 88 today, if you remember the discussion we had. I'm actually disappointed bcs the original owner changed out the pickups.
 

AP515

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Yeah I'm hoping they are Dragon 1's, I'm always hearing good things about them.
I'm actually going to pick up my 88 today, if you remember the discussion we had. I'm actually disappointed bcs the original owner changed out the pickups.
Yeah, but you can find re-issues T&B's if you want to put it back to original. I had SD 59's in mine for a while and they killed in it. If I hadn't of found the OEM original switch and put everything back original, I'd still have them in it.
 

AP515

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Right on, and do you find OEM parts off eBay?
I found it online. I had to research it and look up the part on a bunch of websites before I found it. I'll look at it and get the number off the back for you.
 

scott_

New Member
Joined
Jan 7, 2020
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31
Replaced the 58/15 pickups on my CE-24 with 57/08 pickups and it worked perfectly on the first try. Why? Because I love the CE24 neck, but I want vintage tone. Yes, I am feelin’ lucky and please don’t shoot. Other than the leap of faith in using partial information from sketchy internet forums, the most difficult part was working with the super fragile tiny wires of the 57/08 pickups.

This is the 57/08 wiring info I used...

Neck (bass) 57/08:
  • white = hot
  • black = ground
  • red = tap
  • shield = ground

Bridge (treble) 57/08:
  • black = hot
  • white = ground
  • red = tap
  • shield = ground

What you will need:
  • High enough IQ to follow these instructions and a low enough IQ to proceed after reading these instructions.
  • About 3.5 inches of some kind of ground wire. To make it look pro, use a solid nickel strand like you would use to ground the pots together on a strat. However, any wire about 18ga or better would probably work fine.
  • A hot soldering iron. Use a very hot soldering iron, so the solder melts quickly and you don’t melt and burn wires, switches, and pots before the solder melts.
  • Some low temp solder.
  • Small needle nose pliers to hold the wires while you solder.
  • Optional: small wire ties and various size shrink tube.
Remove the 58/15 Pickups:
  1. Take a picture of the unaltered insides for the luthier who you will take your expensive f’d up guitar to for fixing your mistakes.
  2. At this point, it would be best to remove the vol pot, tone push/pull pot, and 3-way switch from the guitar, so they can be maneuvered outside of the cavity while soldering and de-soldering. I did not. I left them mounted to the guitar, which required me to do some soldering acrobatics, that in hind-site were unnecessary trouble.
  3. Find the two white wires coming from the neck and bridge pickups connected to the push/pull pot. These are the 85/15 coil split wires. Note that with the push/pull pot still mounted to the guitar body, the coil split wire from the neck is on the terminal nearest the wood and the 3-way switch. The coil split wire from the bridge is on the opposite terminal nearest the wood and the volume pot. De-solder these wires from the push/pull tone pot.
  4. De-solder the connection of the two pickup wire braids that is about half-way to the 3-way switch.
  5. De-solder the neck pickup braid from the volume pot cover/ground.
  6. Find the two thicker black wires that are inside the braid and connected to the 3-way switch. These the “hot” wires from the 85/15 pickups. Note that with the 3-way still mounted to the guitar body, the hot wire from the neck is the on the terminal closest to the bridge, and the hot wire from the bridge is closest to the jack. De-solder these wires.
  7. Remove the pickup rings. Then remove the 85/15 pickups from the rings.
Install the 57/08 Pickups:
  1. Mount the 57/08 pickups to the rings, then mount the rings to the guitar. If you need me to tell you to put the treble by the bridge and the bass by the neck, then stop here and take your guitar to a professional. I coiled the pickup leads one turn before routing them through the holes, because that’s the way PRS installed my 58/15 pickups.
  2. Take the braids from both 57/08 pickups, the black wire from the 57/08 neck pickup, and the white wire from the 57/08 bridge pickup, and solder them all to one end of the 3.5 inch ground wire that you got because I said you will need it. Since those 57/08 black and white wires are so tiny and delicate, I soldered them to the ground wire about 1/8 inch from where I soldered the braids.
  3. At this point, I put shrink tube over the bundle of connected ground wires, to keep them from bending/breaking while I continued to work, but it’s not 100% necessary.
  4. Solder the red coil-split wire from the bridge pickup to the terminal on the push/pull tone pot that would be nearest the volume pot, if the push/pull tone pot were mounted to the guitar.
  5. Solder the red coil-split wire from the neck pickup to the opposite terminal on the push/pull tone pot.
  6. Solder the black “hot” wire from the bridge pickup to the 3-way switch terminal closest to the input jack (if the 3-way were mounted to the guitar).
  7. Solder the white “hot” wire from the neck pickup to the opposite 3-way switch terminal.
  8. Solder the end of the ground wire that is not connected to the bundle of braids and black/white wires, to the volume pot cover, where the 57/08 braid was soldered.
  9. At this point the wiring is complete, and everything will work fine. I put a couple of tiny wire ties on to assist with structural integrity because those 57/08 wires are so tiny and can break so easily.
  10. Put the covers and strings back on and cross your fingers. Mine worked perfectly!
 

InTooDeep

Out Lobstering...
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Oct 17, 2017
Messages
157
While my 1996 is mahogany bodied, it will share most tonal characteristics. I did not care for the HFS. I put a Duncan JB and Alnico Pro II in. I liked the sound especially of the Alnico Pro II. I had a Tremonti bridge hanging around that I swapped in, but it was a bit too scooped sounding with the maple neck imo. I put the JB back in which I liked, but it was just a bit too hot. I put a 5909 in the bridge about 2 years ago and I'm quite happy with it. I would be interested in hearing 5708s, but I'm happy where I am, to the point that I don't want to spend $300 on another set of pickups.
 

BrianC

more toys than talent
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Apr 26, 2012
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Location
Naperville IL
I actually like HFS pups. I have gone through numerous others and have landed on Suhr Aldrich pups in my 24's.
 

InTooDeep

Out Lobstering...
Joined
Oct 17, 2017
Messages
157
I will also add, I was not too impressed with the Tremonti Bass, although I only tried it in my Tremonti SE. It can not be coil split, and sounded fairly plain.
 

SamIV

New Member
Joined
Dec 7, 2015
Messages
179
I just bought a 23 year old CE24, so maybe I can add to the oldness, and newness of this thread. It has the HFS/VB pickups in it. Have yet to plug it in to see if the pickups are staying. Been busy getting life back to normal from hurricane IDA. Also owned a newer CE 24 for a couple days. I prefer the old one.
 
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