Humbucker brass fade problem


New Member
Feb 28, 2016
Hey guys im new to the forum. I have a 25th anniversary custom 24 with 57/08 Humbuckers and the brass has completely faded on the pickups. Leaving them blotchy and unattractive. Is this normal? And is there a way to fix. Cheers in advance
When you say brass, do you mean the front covers or the backs of the pickups?
The covers are not brass. They are nickel or chrome (I don't remember which). It is natural that they fade with time. There are polishes that will clean then up, but lots of folks like the fade. The best polish I have found is really a guitar polish with a micro-abrasive in it to clean up scratches on guitars. I don't know what the polish is but it cleans up the covers instantly. Ultimately however, the covers will fade and you won't be able to polish them up. It's just the nature of plating. The old PAF's are all faded.
Ok. No troubles i just really like that shiny new look but all good. If they fade too much i may look at restoring them and brass of nickel dipping
Depending on if your finger prints been there for a wile, in most cases the pickup cover becomes anodize from a chemical reaction caused by the oil from your hands. You can clean some of it, but it's more of a maintenance thing. Similar to what happens to the guitar bridge, it's a good idea to wipe after use.
But it never hurts to try a cleaning solution that's designed for such application, just be careful and make sure it's the right kind.
Good luck!
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Wiping down is good, but some of the patina is enevitiable. The marks under the strings, the bass ends of the covers from picks and palms.. it will tarnish a bit. Since I don't play out, my 13 yr old McCarty is still very fresh and shiny looking, because, I keep it that way, but the mentioned is there and it's just part of the equation.
If you thought they were brass I can only assume they are actually gold which would line up with the 25th anniv custom 24 with 57/08's. The gold plating is very thin, I certainly wouldn't use even a mild abrasive on it. Gold plating doesn't wear very well at all. You shouldn't really be using anything other than a microfiber cloth on gold hardware. You can dampen it lightly if there is gunk on them just make sure you aren't actually dripping water into anywhere.