Replacing uncovered 59/09 with covered 57/08 on Custom 24


New Member
May 25, 2021
Hello everyone. I just got on eBay a set of 57/08 pickups. I currently have 59/09 uncovered pickups that came factory installed on my 2012 Custom 24 with 5-way blade. I wanted a bit less harsh and vintage sounding pickup and wanted to give the 57/08 a try. Anyway, i think I’ll have some trouble with the 5-way blade and those pickups. The seller told me:
“They will work fine, however they are braided wire so they do not support fancy switching options like coil split and phase and all that. A prs 5 way with two humbuckers prolly uses those options like coil split,etc. these don ot do that.”
I’m not sure what that implies, i mean, do I have to change the 5-way blade for a 3-way blade and loose positions 2 and 4? Or is there a way to keep my current switching with those pickups? I have no experience in swapping pickups, I’ll have my Tech doing it but I’d like to know my options before i send him the guitar. I know, I should have asked the seller (and here) before I buy, but it was a last minute auction I won in the last seconds and got a very good deal on them.
So there’s two separate issues here: 1. braided shield style wiring can work with the 5 way switch with limitations and 2. some braided shield style wiring pickups do not have a series link to achieve coil splitting. In regards to #1, you have to use the shield as a ground which is tricky to not short other lines in the cavity and you cannot electrically reverse the phase without the shield coupling in 60Hz to the hot. On #2 check the listing photos for a white extra wire: that’s the series link you can activate or ground to get a coil split. Without that you could switch to a 3 way for simplicity or duplicate positions on the 5 way.
Thank you. It does not have the extra wire, so i guess my only option is to replace the 5-way blade with a 3-way blade. I didnt't want to loose the 2 and 4 position options. But i guess is that or not changing the pickups. Any recomendation on a 3-way blade to replace de 5-way that came factory installed?
I have 57/08's in my Private stock and I have a 3 way switch and coil tap push/pull on the tone knob. I think you should be able to accomplish this. I have not opened mine up to see what the wiring is like, but I have to assume all 57/08's are wired similarly? unless there's " splitting" option?

FWIW- The 57/08's will sound HUGELY better than the others you have. A buddy of mine is switching his Eagle out with these- Personal opinion is the 08's are cleaner, smoother and richer in tone.
I've seen 57/08's come in all wiring combinations (single conductor, single conductor with tap, PRS 3 wire).

If you really want to use a 3 way blade this legacy one can work with single conductor, but you won't get any split capability if they're only single conductor:

Personally I'd just looks for a pair of 3 conductor 57/08's since they're fairly common second hand and sell or save the single conductor for a McCarty style wiring guitar.
I just sold them and will buy again in the future the ones with 5-way compatibility. Thank you all!