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Changing color of slug pole pieces?

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  • Changing color of slug pole pieces?

    I am really into these stock INF pickups for my new guitar. But I want to change to pole pieces to silver.

    They are black on black on black. One row is black allen, and the other row is black slugs.

    I know I can swap the allen poles for silver if I can find the exact size, but I'm not sure on the best approach for the black slugs.

    I'm not sure if its paint or if its annodized (or if the metal is just black). Close up of the slugs appears to be some sort of bulleseye pattern, so black may be down in the crevices. Possible solutions:

    1) Sand down the slug coil til it is silver. If I scratch up the cover (which I will), then sand and buff to a polish.
    2) Use a dremel on the slugs and try to mask the plastic.
    3) Solvent. Find some kind of solvent that will lift the paint without damaging the cover or the pickup underneath.
    4) Disassemble the pickup (and flip over the poles). There is a good chance the underside is silver. Or at least this would allow me to swap the slugs or at least sand them to silver outside the pickup. Of course I'd probably have to re-pot the whole thing. Not even sure if this is possible for a DIY.

    Opinions?

  • #2
    Anodizing is for aluminum. Powder coating is for steel. Neither would be for pup slugs. Probably paint.

    If they are just a steel alloy like in most humbucker slugs you could grind away to your heart's content. But keep in mind that the shavings are going to go right to the magnet and "infect" everything in the path.

    If they are magnets like in a StagMag, don't grind or sand at all...it will affect the magnetism.
    Originally Posted by IanBallard
    Rule of thumb... the more pot you have, the better your tone.

    Comment


    • #3
      If you take off the baseplate you can push the slugs out of the coil and then paint the heads. Or you can anodize them with a black chrome kit. https://www.caswellplating.com/elect...ting-kits.html

      Comment


      • #4
        They can just be punched out from the bottom using a nail set or similar tool. Some baseplates even have holes there, so you don't need to remove the bobbin to do it. Either way, you don't need to re-pot the pickup.

        I can pretty much guarantee you that the metal is not "just black," and that there is not a good chance that the other side of each slug is silver colored.

        I think your best bet, based on your comments, is to leave the slugs alone, and replace the screws with silver colored ones. Unless, of course, your baseplates have holes underneath each slug. In that case, it takes a few minutes to punch them out and put new ones in.
        Last edited by ItsaBass; 08-03-2020, 04:31 PM.
        Originally posted by LesStrat
        Yogi Berra was correct.
        Originally posted by JOLLY
        I do a few chord things, some crappy lead stuff, and then some rhythm stuff.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by ItsaBass View Post
          They can just be punched out from the bottom using a nail set or similar tool. Some baseplates even have holes there, so you don't need to remove the bobbin to do it. Either way, you don't need to re-pot the pickup.

          I can pretty much guarantee you that the metal is not "just black," and that there is not a good chance that the other side of each slug is silver colored.

          I think your best bet, based on your comments, is to leave the slugs alone, and replace the screws with silver colored ones. Unless, of course, your baseplates have holes underneath each slug. In that case, it takes a few minutes to punch them out and put new ones in.
          I will punch out the slugs. Backplate has already been off for a magnet swap.

          if it's just paint then a solvent should remove it.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Top-L View Post

            I will punch out the slugs. Backplate has already been off for a magnet swap.

            if it's just paint then a solvent should remove it.
            It's probably a form of plating, not a paint.

            If you are going to have them out, then you can just put them in a vise, file the plating off the top, smooth, and polish. I might clear coat, though, unless I wanted the tarnished look in time. In reality, I'd probably not bother with that, and just replace them with plated silver colored ones.
            Originally posted by LesStrat
            Yogi Berra was correct.
            Originally posted by JOLLY
            I do a few chord things, some crappy lead stuff, and then some rhythm stuff.

            Comment


            • #7
              Are the slugs standardized in properties?

              I have a cheap cast off Chinese pup with silver slugs I could swap with.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by idsnowdog View Post
                If you take off the baseplate you can push the slugs out of the coil and then paint the heads. Or you can anodize them with a black chrome kit. https://www.caswellplating.com/elect...ting-kits.html
                I'm not sure the use of "anodize" is appropriate in connection with steel slugs. Anodizing is a process of plating aluminum (and, I believe, titanium). The slugs in pickups are neither aluminum nor titanium.
                Originally Posted by IanBallard
                Rule of thumb... the more pot you have, the better your tone.

                Comment


                • #9
                  So, taking out the slugs to "clean" them to the bare metal is the best idea.

                  Slug diameter is pretty standard, but there are some exceptions. Take the slugs out of your cheap pup and see if they'll fit. They probably will.
                  Originally Posted by IanBallard
                  Rule of thumb... the more pot you have, the better your tone.

                  Comment

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