SE Mods

Hammer97e

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Joined
Feb 7, 2015
Messages
4
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.

Awesome, will add a jack to my order as well. Thanks!
 

JHeavey12

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Joined
Jan 20, 2015
Messages
10
How easy is it to just drop in Tremonti pickups into a (Zach Myers) SE? I left for vacation so I was in a rush but I got it this past week. I told him I need them and the new pots installed. Disregarding the pot change, how easy is the swap of the 245s and the Tremontis? He had mentioned it would be cheaper if it's as easy as it looks.
 

wdpowel

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Oct 16, 2014
Messages
10
PRS SE Custom 24. US PRS nut, locking tuners, 500k pot, Mannmade USA NOS2000 vibrato, US PRS HFS and Vintage pickups.
 

DHW

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Feb 18, 2014
Messages
705
How easy is it to just drop in Tremonti pickups into a (Zach Myers) SE? I left for vacation so I was in a rush but I got it this past week. I told him I need them and the new pots installed. Disregarding the pot change, how easy is the swap of the 245s and the Tremontis? He had mentioned it would be cheaper if it's as easy as it looks.

If you are adding a push pull and splitting them there's a little extra work to do but it's not hard by any means.
 

Sneeks

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Aug 27, 2014
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Scotland
This looks like a very special guitar - Slash alnico pro II's, Schaller Locking Tuners, LP Fifties wiring. Does it sound as good as I think it does? And are those Jumbo frets?

Sorry only just noticed this reply. Yes the guitar plays very well now and sounds fantastic. I'm delighted with the upgrades. They are indeed jumbo frets and a ebony fretboard.
 
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DHW

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Feb 18, 2014
Messages
705
Nope. Literally just swapping pickups. No push-pulls.

Well... If you are having the pots done at the same time there is some light reaming(if you are doing cts pots) which takes about 5 minutes. Then the pickups swap is to de-solder/clip the old wires off the pots, 8 screws total and pull them out. Then for the new pickups you mount them in the rings(2 screws with springs for each pickup), Shove the wires through the holes, put those 8 screws back in, solder them to the pots. Measure the height and adjust till in spec and check for volume between the strings and adjust the pole pieces as needed. If you are doing the pots, switch, jack, and pickups it's a couple hours maybe. My luthier is $50/hour for labor, I have no idea how that compares to anyone else but he's the best in the area so I don't question him.
 

JHeavey17

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Dec 21, 2013
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45
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Well... If you are having the pots done at the same time there is some light reaming(if you are doing cts pots) which takes about 5 minutes. Then the pickups swap is to de-solder/clip the old wires off the pots, 8 screws total and pull them out. Then for the new pickups you mount them in the rings(2 screws with springs for each pickup), Shove the wires through the holes, put those 8 screws back in, solder them to the pots. Measure the height and adjust till in spec and check for volume between the strings and adjust the pole pieces as needed. If you are doing the pots, switch, jack, and pickups it's a couple hours maybe. My luthier is $50/hour for labor, I have no idea how that compares to anyone else but he's the best in the area so I don't question him.

My lutheir got a gig to be THE luthier at GC instead of my local shop so I brought it to him since I trust him. Said if it was super easy he'd just charge me $60 since GC has a draconian $60 for the firs and $40 for the second pickup policy. So I was hoping the swap was easy.
 

rubalup

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Sep 4, 2013
Messages
219
Location
Colombia
I replaced the tuners on my ZM with the Gotoh locking tuners (sd90). Direct fit, no need to replace the bushings.

I may be crazy and I still have to play it more but I felt the tone on the guitar improved... could be that now the angle regarding the nut is bigger due to the shorter post of these tuners... but probably is just that I´m in the "honey moon# stage with the tuners :p

great addition by the way. Super easy to change strings. I´m now thinking of replacing my Santana SE tuners too... any idea what would be a direct fit?

The color also pleased me more... not so green so it matches better with the pu rings

2rz2amx.jpg
 

JHeavey17

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Dec 21, 2013
Messages
45
Location
MA.
Quick question on pots I forgot to ask. I got core volume and tone pots for my SE ZM. Can I just swap the pots out with out needing any extra parts? Want to make sure I have all the right parts.
 

garrett

...
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Jul 27, 2012
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Quick question on pots I forgot to ask. I got core volume and tone pots for my SE ZM. Can I just swap the pots out with out needing any extra parts? Want to make sure I have all the right parts.

Should be good to go. I'm assuming you have wire and solder and you know you'll have to enlarge the mounting holes on the guitar.
 

JHeavey17

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Dec 21, 2013
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Should be good to go. I'm assuming you have wire and solder and you know you'll have to enlarge the mounting holes on the guitar.

Yeah I have pickups that I'm going to have installed. Just wanted to make sure I didn't need capacitors or something odd like that. Thanks!
 

henryr

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Feb 16, 2015
Messages
91
Location
Connecticut
Hi All,

I don't know if this is the right thread for my note but I need help. I recently bought my first electric guitar, a PRS, I think SE, Paul Allender model, in great condition except for a few bridge issues. When I got it I tuned it I noticed the back of the bridge was resting on the top and the front edge was at least 1/8 above the top. I went to the PRS site and learned it should be parallel to and 1/16th above the top. After some research I think I understood how to set it. I loosened all the strings and adjusted the two screws at the claw such that the back would rise up when at pitch. After several detuning, claw screw adjustments and retuning, the back edge was 1/16th above the top. I then loosened all strings and adjusted the six screws to lower the front edge to 1/16th above the top. After several iterations of claw screw and knife edge screws adjustments, loosening strings each time, the bridge is parallel to and 1/6th above the top.

I then noticed the strings were not centered over the pickup poles and that the front edge of the tremelo was out of parallel to the pickup body edge by about 3/16ths+. It was closer on the bass side and if that side of the tremelo could be pivoted, towards the back end of the guitar around a point on the treble side of the tremelo, to make it parallel to the pickup it would result in the strings moving towards the bass side making them much more centered over the pole pieces. Is there a way to move or rotate the tremolo to make it parallel? I have a small machine shop and do precision machining and turning in all metals from Al to Zr. If machining can fix the problem I have no issue with doing the required machining.

Thanks,
henryr
 
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rdb121775

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Joined
Oct 9, 2013
Messages
62
Location
NC
I've tried to search and find an answer, but with no luck. Who has replaced their SE/S2 trem block with a MannMade brass block? How big is the diff in sustain? Also, did everything line up correctly? I'm also considering the one-piece bridge. If anyone has installed this themselves, is it as easy as the MannMade video makes it look? Does everything line up correctly and new screws go in easily? Thanks in advance.
 

Duffy

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Jan 6, 2014
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On the South Bank of the West Branch of the Susque
I've tried to search and find an answer, but with no luck. Who has replaced their SE/S2 trem block with a MannMade brass block? How big is the diff in sustain? Also, did everything line up correctly? I'm also considering the one-piece bridge. If anyone has installed this themselves, is it as easy as the MannMade video makes it look? Does everything line up correctly and new screws go in easily? Thanks in advance.

Personally, I would leave the stock tremolo unit right on there, including the block. These should be quality items. A brass block may look like a good thing, but from what I have read, it can change the sound of your guitar. When PRS designs these guitars they build a tremolo unit that contributes to the sound of the guitar.

If you want to change these things, there is no problem with that. It's your guitar. The results can be unpredictable.

I don't think I would install a one piece tremolo. I like the way of being able to take it apart and I think when it is screwed together tightly, as it should be, that there is very excellent contact and the vibrations can move between the two parts with no problem. I don't think it is a contact surface that greatly changes the sound as the vibrations move from one piece to the other.

You have to do what you want to do, but sometimes it is best to leave a nice guitar alone when it comes to major assemblies. Changing tuners may be a good idea, especially if you get locking ones. Changing other items might also yield decent results. Many of these nice instruments have had a lot of precision work done to fit the various parts and assemblies so that they feel and play like great instruments.

When it comes to sustain I think that it can be improved by purchasing an amplifier that is known to yield great sustain. I don't know if they amplify the inherent sustain of the guitar or if they themselves impart greater more beautiful sustain. More likely it is a combination of the two.

A new speaker, preferably an upgrade, can change the sound of an amplifier and in some cases improve the sound and make it more satisfying to the user. Guitar pickup upgrades can sometimes offer greater sustain and improve the sound of the guitar to individual users. I'm not sure if replacing small parts attain these major changes in a guitar rig's sound.

Try some things out. A brass block might be great for you, as well as a one piece tremolo unit - that might be something you will like.

Saving up and buying guitars and amps that sound as close to what you are looking for, stock, might also be a good idea.

Good luck with your mods.
 

henryr

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Feb 16, 2015
Messages
91
Location
Connecticut
Hi,
Thanks for the reply. The more I think about my out of parallel tremelo and string misalignment problem I'm beginning to think the six hole drilling setup was not correct. This caused the six holes to be drilled in a line that was out of parallel to the pickups and shifted, as a group, to the treble side causing the strings to be over the treble edge of the pickup pole pieces. This makes me think the only repair would be to fill the existing six holes with some epoxy and redrill them to put the tremelo bridge in the proper alignment and location. If anyone knows of a better solution please let me know. Also, has anyone bought a Korean made PRS with similar problems? If my guess is correct I would hope PRS would step up to the plate and fix the problem.

Thanks,
henryr
 

garrett

...
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Jul 27, 2012
Messages
6,239
Location
The southern tip of Tampa Bay
Hi,
Thanks for the reply. The more I think about my out of parallel tremelo and string misalignment problem I'm beginning to think the six hole drilling setup was not correct. This caused the six holes to be drilled in a line that was out of parallel to the pickups and shifted, as a group, to the treble side causing the strings to be over the treble edge of the pickup pole pieces. This makes me think the only repair would be to fill the existing six holes with some epoxy and redrill them to put the tremelo bridge in the proper alignment and location. If anyone knows of a better solution please let me know. Also, has anyone bought a Korean made PRS with similar problems? If my guess is correct I would hope PRS would step up to the plate and fix the problem.

Thanks,
henryr

We need to see some pics. I recommend starting a new thread about it. It's highly unlikely the holes were drilled incorrectly.

Did you get all six bridge mounting screws the exact same height? They have grooves in them, so if not properly aligned, the bridge won't sit correctly.
 

henryr

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Feb 16, 2015
Messages
91
Location
Connecticut
I'll get some pics tomorrow. However all the screws are the same height. Also I was an aerospace engineer for 42 years and believe me I've seen $200K parts machined incorrectly. In fact any large aerospace company will have many containers full of scrap parts due to machining hacks and many many parts in the repair loop. These are only Korean guitars. I can imagine you would be surprised at how many hacks they make. I've seen top line Martins and other brands with manufacturing problems and consider all the recalls for cars and other consumer items. Now back to the problem...I also think the out of parallelism is why the claw has to be out of parallel with the machined cavity front face to get the trem set parallel to and 1/16th above to top.
 

rdb121775

PRS Addict
Joined
Oct 9, 2013
Messages
62
Location
NC
Personally, I would leave the stock tremolo unit right on there, including the block. These should be quality items. A brass block may look like a good thing, but from what I have read, it can change the sound of your guitar. When PRS designs these guitars they build a tremolo unit that contributes to the sound of the guitar.

If you want to change these things, there is no problem with that. It's your guitar. The results can be unpredictable.

I don't think I would install a one piece tremolo. I like the way of being able to take it apart and I think when it is screwed together tightly, as it should be, that there is very excellent contact and the vibrations can move between the two parts with no problem. I don't think it is a contact surface that greatly changes the sound as the vibrations move from one piece to the other.

You have to do what you want to do, but sometimes it is best to leave a nice guitar alone when it comes to major assemblies. Changing tuners may be a good idea, especially if you get locking ones. Changing other items might also yield decent results. Many of these nice instruments have had a lot of precision work done to fit the various parts and assemblies so that they feel and play like great instruments.

When it comes to sustain I think that it can be improved by purchasing an amplifier that is known to yield great sustain. I don't know if they amplify the inherent sustain of the guitar or if they themselves impart greater more beautiful sustain. More likely it is a combination of the two.

A new speaker, preferably an upgrade, can change the sound of an amplifier and in some cases improve the sound and make it more satisfying to the user. Guitar pickup upgrades can sometimes offer greater sustain and improve the sound of the guitar to individual users. I'm not sure if replacing small parts attain these major changes in a guitar rig's sound.

Try some things out. A brass block might be great for you, as well as a one piece tremolo unit - that might be something you will like.

Saving up and buying guitars and amps that sound as close to what you are looking for, stock, might also be a good idea.

Good luck with your mods.

Thanks for the lengthy advice, but I just like to tinker. And I guess I'm just one of those that likes to toy around for the elusive "perfect" tone. I was really just wondering who had done the mod and the effect of it. And though I truly appreciate Paul's vision for guitars, there are certain things I will always modify to my preference; unless Paul and I start sharing guitars.
 
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