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Pickups for swamp ash Strat

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  • Pickups for swamp ash Strat

    I need a recommendation of pickups for a new swamp ash with maple or rosewood fretboards Stratocaster that I am planning to buy. I am looking to get a modern blues sound similiar to Clapton or John Mayer's electric sound. I am willing to go with either single coils or single spaced hums. Thanks.

  • #2
    Re: Pickups for swamp ash Strat

    For the neck & middle, I'd suggest the APS pickups - #1 staggered if you've got a vintage up to 9-1/2" radius and #2 flat if the radius is flatter than that. The APS single coils are a bit warmer and sweeter than the SSL's - those might be too bright in an ash body, especially with a maple fingerboard.

    The bridge pickup is harder - Jeremy & Scott F. both seem to like a Twangbanger in the bridge with APS neck & middle pups. I've got a tapped Quarter Pound that I put a steel plate under just before the Twangbanger became available. Others like the higher output SSL-3 "Hot". A tapped version of that might be really cool. I tried an APS in the bridge and it just didn't have enough output or gonads IMHO.

    Heritage 535 Special, Warmoth frankenstrat, MIM Strat, & Taylor 314C(no E)
    Amp Builds: Tweed Princeton (5F2-A) variation, 2 BF Princeton Reverb clones, & Super Reverb clone
    Sometimes use a Blues Jr., Tech 21 Trademark 10 & Power Engine 60
    SPG modded DS-1, TS-7 & CryBaby; Visual Sounds Rte. 66 & H2O; Guyatone Tremolo
    SD pickups: SSL-2, APS-2, tapped Quarter Pound, Custom 5 & Antiquity humbuckers

    "Conan! What are the best things in life?"
    "Girls, guitars, guns and cars!"


    • #3
      Re: Pickups for swamp ash Strat

      I agree, definitely APS's for the neck & mid, the bridge is your call, really, but Chip gave a good rundown of the options.

      even though I haven't tried one, the twangbanger is probably the most likely candidate for matching the Alnico II magnet (if that's of any concern), and having enough juice to sound good in the bridge
      "music heals"