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Strat bridge pickup

4785 Views 12 Replies 8 Participants Last post by  Jemwielder
This may seem like a simple question to some of you, but I was curious. Why is the bridge pickup on a Strat angled? I know the pole piece spacing is larger on that pickup. Is the pickup angled just to make the wider-spaced poles line up with the strings? If so, what is the reason for the wider spacing in the pickup? Or was it done for some other reason (better sound) and the pickup spacing was set to match the angled pickup?
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Well, I would assume it's for string spacing. But also by the look of the pole placements, it might allow for some fatter bass sound because the poles on that side of the pickup align to the strings closer to the middle of the body than would the regular-positioned pickup. Then again, I could be completely wrong. ;p
i'll go with tone maximumisation*... makes the trebles more treble-y.

if it was just about string spacing, they could've used the same pickups as the other two positions!

*look everybody! a new word!
Actually, I think "maximization" is the word you're looking for, damo. ;p
It's nothing to do with pole piece spacing, it is just to balance the tone accross the strings. All 3 pickups are the same size!
IMO it should have been the other way around. That's the Hendrix way. :) I think for surf music and other totally hollow, tinny early pop rock sounds its fine but for today, it seems everyone is trying to get a thicker strat bridge sound. So all these overwound pickups are made to try to compensate, when a straight or "lefty" angled pickup would help to "undo" some of the damage.
Frank, I don't even know why I post here anymore, lol, there's absolutely nothing I could add to anything you've ever posted, except "i never thought of that, but you're right." Interesting, bro. It'd look f'in weird, but...

Now, hurry up and sign up over at www.sevenstring.org! ;)

Pole spacing? Aligning the poles with the strings? What are you people thinking! It was because Leo Fender had a fat bag of crack when he designed the thing! :p
Algiman said:
It's nothing to do with pole piece spacing, it is just to balance the tone accross the strings. All 3 pickups are the same size!
Well, that seems to be true some of the time. The '54 reproduction pickups on my American Strat are all the same spacing. However, the set of Vintage Noisless pickups I just got are definitely not the same spacing. The bridge pickup is significantly wider spaced. Fender makes the distinction between the bridge pup and the neck/middle pup.

It does seem reasonable, though, that it is all about the tone.
OK, let me explain myself more fully: All 3 pickups ARE the same size.

On some modern pickups the pole piece spacing is set differently to take account of the angle of the pickup.

Basically, the pole piece spacing is arranged to take account of the angle, the angle was not invented to fit the pole spacing as suggested in the first post.
^^ Yes, angling it would actually make the spacing worse wouldn't it?
OK. Thanks guys. That is what I was looking for.

(Though I will add that my Vintage Noiseless bridge pickup IS physically longer in addition to having wider pole piece spacing. This clearly was a modern change.)
i believe it just for better balance on the treble strings, that was part of what hendrix's tone unique, the balance was reversed so the high were really thick and the lows cut thru better. I don't think it's really enough of a difference
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