SE Mods

Discussion in 'Electric Instruments' started by slev, Apr 26, 2012.

  1. PastorDame

    PastorDame New Member

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    I haven't posted in these forums in a while, but I finished a conversion/restoration project on a PRS SE EG a few months back and I've been too busy playing it to post pictures!

    Here it is:

    [​IMG]PRS SE EG Custom by pastordame, on Flickr

    Neck Pickup: PRS Dragon II
    Bridge Pickup: PRS Metal series
    Bridge: Tek2
    Push/Pull Tone Pot for coil splitting
    Custom cut acrylic pickguard... with textured silver scrapbook paper underneath in case I get bored with the

    (Currently working on a replacement pick guard... took a chunk out of one of the sides while mounting it to the guitar... oops.)
     
    grausch likes this.
  2. Duffy

    Duffy New Member

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    Dude, that is a really nice Akesson. Great job removing the FA sig from the headstock. Very nice looking, dark, top. I'm sure you are digging this guitar.
     
  3. drdoom8793

    drdoom8793 THAT guy at Chick-fil-A

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    Hey guys! Just picked up an 2013 SE Santana a couple days ago. Overall a great guitar, but the pickups leave a little to be desired. I was looking to put Seymour Duncan's JB and 59 but I'm not sure the whole humbucker vs trembucker thing. I'm assuming I'd need the trembucker but I'm not sure what the difference is. Could anybody help me out?
     
  4. DHW

    DHW New Member

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    It's all in the spacing. The SE bridge pickups are 52mm. From pictures I have seen(don't own an se trem guitar and haven't inspected too close) the strings pass ever so slightly to the inside of the pole pieces which means that 50mm should work just fine. F spaced or a trembucker model should also work without any trouble. Take a look closely at yours. If the strings cross the pole pieces dead center I would go with either a trembucker or any other humbucker in F spacing. If they are slightly on the inside of those end poles then you can go either way.
     
    #504 DHW, Jan 29, 2015
    Last edited: Jan 29, 2015
  5. garrett

    garrett knows just enough to be dangerous

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    Straight from the SD site: http://www.seymourduncan.com/blog/t...-spacing-explained-humbuckers-vs-trembuckers/

    And they mean measuring the distance between the strings at the bridge pickup.
     
  6. garrett

    garrett knows just enough to be dangerous

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    Oh yeah, the above did indeed go down. That's the Armstrong Stealth 90, which is hum canceling. I swear you'd never know if it wasn't for the lack of noise. It's lower output, brighter, spankier, and clearer than the stock SE soapbar. It's along the lines of a hot Tele bridge pickup, IMO. It still begs to be rocked, though.

    Also now with bone nut:

    [​IMG]
     
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  7. lynnj163

    lynnj163 Jeff Lynn

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    I posted this in the other forum as an introduction but thought I would post here as well since this is probably where it actually belongs. Here is my 2 SE's with mods and pics...



    My first PRS an SE245:
    Current Mods:
    Full Rewire with 500k CTS Volume Pots, 500k Push pulls on both Tones with Orange Drop Caps.
    Full Copper Shielding in all Electronics Cavities
    Graphtech Tusq Nut
    Switchcraft 3 way switch
    Switchcraft Output Jack
    Seymour Duncan Distortion Pickup Set
    Grover 406C Locking Tuners
    Schaller Strap Locks
    Gibson Amber Lampshade Knobs


    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]


    My more recent purchase an SE Custom 24...
    Current Mods:
    Full Rewire with CTS 500k Volume Pot, 500k Push pull Tone pot with Orange Drop Caps.
    Full Copper Shielding in all Electronics Cavities
    Graphtech Tusq Nut
    Switchcraft Output Jack
    Seymour Duncan Pearly Gates Zebra Pickups
    Schaller Strap Locks

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
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  8. DHW

    DHW New Member

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    Here is what I did yesterday. I've had this guitar for about a year. I had a bone nut cut when I initially had it setup. First pic is the sanding job on the neck. I initially did the bare minimum but since went back and did the heel up through the headstock wings. Other mods include tonepros vintage steel studs supporting an American made stoptail, 1/8 front pickup ring 3/8 rear, vintage paf style unpotted pickups from jonesy blues 8.8ka4 bridge 7.8ka4 neck wound by Tom Brantley with nickel covers and vintage shielded wire, full copper shielding, cts 550k pots, gold speed knobs, mojo tones vitamin t pio caps, switchcraft switch and Jack with the vintage shielded wire. Frets were polished up through the blue rouge. As a note, I measured from the front of the string slots on the old bridge to the back of the neck pickup ring and also the exact height of the bottom support on the old studs and put the new stuff in at the same measurements and my action and intonation was right on the money with zero tinkering. I used a the g string I took off to link the ground to all the cavities though with the braided wire it was likely not needed. There is continuity from the switch cavity to the tuners and everything in between. Guitar is dead silent even under high gain until those strings are vibrating.

    [​IMG]

    Before

    [​IMG]

    After

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
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  9. markintime

    markintime Wood Grain Devotee

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    Would like some opinions on pickups for my 2013 SE Custom 24. My preference would be for something to play blues and some rock a la CCR, Eagles, Clapton, as well as playing some very clean, no distortion stuff. I'm not a fan of metal or any of that kind. The stock pickups don't sound too bad, buI I don't like the zebra look and would also like to lose the volume drop when switching to single coil.

    Any thoughts, or am I posing conflicting issues? I have read through a lot of threads, but can't seem to get a path to achieve what I think I want. :dontknow:

    Thanks, guys, in advance.
     
  10. DHW

    DHW New Member

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    you will always loose some volume when splitting. You are cutting the output in half or almost if you put American pups in that tap the inactive coil. Maybe p rails would get you the closest and you'd have all the tones you'd ever dream of for those music types. Otherwise you could put covers on what you have.
     
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  11. Victek

    Victek New Member

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    Looks like covering the zebra pickups is an option. Look here:

    https://prsguitars.com/forum/showth...ng-nickel-silver-covers-onto-SE-zebra-pickups

    As for the volume dropping when you switch to single-coil mode I wonder if there's a pickup where that wouldn't happen?
     
  12. Duffy

    Duffy New Member

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    That is my vintage yellow SE Custom 24 with raw nickel/silver pickup covers, something like antiquities, in your link. Those are the stock pickups and I like the sound of them. I have heard that the Seymour Duncan "Custom Custom", SH-11 I think it is, and the '59 sound really good in these guitars and are good replacement pickups for the stock ones. I want to try a SD "Custom Custom" one of these days. The SD '59 I have in the neck of a couple guitars and I especially like it, clear, clean, and great sounding. The Custom Custom is supposed to be a great pickup. I called the tech guy at Seymour Duncan and discussed the pickup with him. He explained that it is designed to be the type of pickup like the one in the bridge of the SE Custom 24 and that a lot of dudes have bought it and liked it a lot.

    Coil split humbuckers seem to "never" sound like good single coils. I almost never use the coils split. I grab a strat or tele, or now I can grab my new Les Paul Junior (from which I stripped the junk auto tuners and put on a nice set of Grover Roto-Grip locking sealed, lubricated tuners just yesterday). It sounds great and I like the feel of being able to tune up.

    I'd say don't worry about the split coils and concentrate on the main humbucking sound.
     
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  13. markintime

    markintime Wood Grain Devotee

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    Yes, I was kind of afraid that I would have to go that route, which I guess would be ok. I'd be looking for black covers and rings since it is a Gray/Black model. :)

    For the volume drop, the only pickup I know of is the one in my Paul's Guitar, the 408 Narrow Fields. Of course they use the mini toggles for that. Doubt that would be an option because it wouldn't allow selection of individual pickups where you could set one for humbucking and the other for single, and vice versa. So, that would not make sense cost-wise, to even attempt to convert. And really, it's not so much the sound of the stock pickups ('cause they are pretty good, really), but the look, so the cover option seems to be the way for me to go and just live with the adjustment of volume when splitting.

    Thanks for all the input, guys. Rock on, :rock:.
     
  14. Kridedude

    Kridedude New Member

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    New Schaller 455 bridge for my Åkesson. Had to file the saddles a bit to get lower action and proper radius. These bridges are 12" radius IIRC and the fretboards is 10".

    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
     
  15. Kridedude

    Kridedude New Member

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    I bought the guitar 2nd hand and it had the non-adjustable tailpiece. I guess the previous owner didn't like the TonePros for some reason but kept the locking studs.

    And you're right the 455has 14" radius, sorry my bad. But after the filing I have now around 1.2mm action at 12th on high e side and 1.5mm on low E side and the radius follows the fretboard pretty accurate. Bends don't die out either.

    All in all the pros are that the guitar has now more attack and feels more resonant compared to the standard wraparound bridge. Can't compare to the TonePros since I've not played one on this guitar.


     
  16. JHeavey17

    JHeavey17 New Member

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    I'm sure this has been brought up in this thread but it's now 26 pages long so forgive me please :)

    I Just got a Zach Myers SE. I ordered core volume and tone pots. Are those a straight swap or does something extra need to be done for them? Also installing the core nut and some Tremontis in it. Absolutely amazing guitar.
     
  17. DHW

    DHW New Member

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    You will need to ream the mounting holes out. I believe the US pots are cts so they would likely need a 3/8" mounting hole. Use an actual reamer, not a drill. Only takes a few turns and you won't mess up the finish or the veneer. Low pressure, go slow, test fit often. Took me just a few minutes on my se 245 test fitting about ever 1/4 turn.

    http://www.amazon.com/Grizzly-H5890..._1?s=industrial&ie=UTF8&qid=1423258506&sr=1-1 is the sort of tool for the job.

    Protip - do it from the inside out since it is tapered, that way the body of the pot is against the ever so slightly larger side of the hole and the outside is exactly 3/8
     
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  18. Hammer97e

    Hammer97e New Member

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    Hey guys, I previously had a tortoise shell 245 that i regrettably sold, so recently I snagged up one of the clearanced out vintage yellow 245s and absolutely love it, it seems much nicer than from what I remember from my old. Anyways the 3-way toggle is giving me a problem, doesn't always "activate" the neck p/u so I would like to replace it with a switchcraft, I tried searching, but just curious if anyone knows off the top of their head what size of switch I need and if I will need to enlarge the hole at all since it won't be a metric switch. Any help is greatly appreciated. I plan on doing this mod while adding some nickel pickup covers from Philly. I am also curious if anyone has moved the pots around to the more traditional lp layout, if so is there sufficient wire length to do so with out rewiring? Thanks again.
     
  19. DHW

    DHW New Member

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    You need a short shaft switch. it will slide right in with no mods. There is tons of wire in the cavity so you'll have no trouble switching the controls around.

    Get a Jack while you're at it. Big upgrade there too.
     
    #519 DHW, Feb 8, 2015
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2015
    grausch likes this.
  20. dogrocketp

    dogrocketp I drank the PRS kool aid, and it was tasty!

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    I had my luthier put the Schaller on my SE 245. The guitar is much easier to restring now. I also think the sustain is greater, and the intonation is spot on.
     

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