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Seymour Duncan Custom Shop Hand Scatter-Wound SSL-1C DG Pickup Information

We get a lot of questions about our two Seymour Duncan Custom Shop Hand Scatter-Wound SSL-1C DG pickups.  So we thought it would be a good idea to run through the details about these two pickups and why our pickups are being made the way they are and how they compare to the SSL-5.

We are having two versions of the SSL-1C DG single coil Strat pickup custom hand scatter-wound for us by MJ (Maricela Juarez) in the Seymour Duncan Custom Shop. Each of these completed SSL-1C DG pickups are signed by MJ to signify that she has personally wound them.

These SSL-1C DG pickups are being wound exclusively for our Gilmour inspired Black Strat pickguard assembly as well as being offered to those performing their own black Strat build project.

  • Our 1'st version is the SSL-1C DG (Original).
  • Our 2'nd version is the SSL-1C DG Rw/Rp (Reverse Wind / Reverse Polarity).

Both of our SSL-1C DG pickups are hand scatter-wound, vintage staggered, beveled Alnico 5 pole pieces, cloth tape wrapped coil with a target DC resistance of 12.7K (+/- 10%).

There are a few factors we considered when having these custom pickups wound.  First thing we took into consideration is that predominantly these two SSL-1C DG pickups are being installed with a Fender Custom Shop Custom ‘69 in the middle position and a Fender Custom Shop Fat 50 in the neck position.  Comparatively, Fender and Seymour Duncan’s “normal” wind direction of their standard production single coil pickups are the opposite of one-another, so we set out to make sure both of our custom wound SSL-1C DG pickups are 100% compatible with Fenders Custom Shop pickups in their wind direction and polarity. This is to prevent a situation like with an SSL-5 that would require its hook-up leads reversed in order to prevent phasing issues when installed with Fender Custom Shop pickups. 

Second characteristic we wanted in these pickups is to have them hand scatter-wound. With hand scatter-wound pickups the copper winding wire is wound more irregularly (scattered) onto the bobbin, resulting in lower electrical capacitance which results in a slightly more open sound (more high frequency’s).

For a point of reference. A standard production Seymour Duncan SSL-5 is wound the opposite direction of the Fender Custom Shop Custom ‘69 and the Fat 50 (neck) but has the same pole piece polarity orientation, so when a SSL-5 is installed with a Fender Custom Shop Custom ‘69 and Fat 50 (neck) you must reverse the hook-up leads on the SSL-5 in order to prevent electrical phasing issues when it is selected with the Custom ‘69 or Fat 50.  Reversing the leads means you have to hook up the SSL-5's black wire to the selector switch and its white wire to ground. By reversing the SSL-5's hookup leads corrects the electrical phasing problem when two pickups are selected together but can create other issues such as increased hum and the possibility that its pole pieces become energized. This will become apparent when a guitar string is pressed down and touches a pickups pole piece it acts as a kill switch and completely shuts down the audio signal while the string is in contact with the pickups pole piece. This is because the guitar string is connected to ground and the energized pole piece is hot (not physically, but part of the audio side of the electronics) .  This is obviously a bad thing to happen, that is why we have our SSL-1C DG pickups both wound the correct direction so that when installed with Fender Custom Shop Pickups both of our SSL-1C DG pickups will always have their black (ground) wire connected to ground, no need for reversal of their hookup leads.

Seymour Duncan SSL-1C DGOur first version, the SSL-1C DG (Original) is hand-scatter wound the same direction and pole piece polarity as Fender’s Custom Shop pickups (Not Fender's Rw/Rp pickups). This version will not give you any hum cancelling in any of the pickup combination selections.





Seymour Duncan SSL-1C DG Rw/Rp (Reverse Wind / Reverse Polarity)Our second version, the SSL-1C DG Rw/Rp is hand- scatter wound the opposite direction and has the opposite pole piece polarity in reference to Fender’s Custom Shop pickups (Not Fender's Rw/Rp pickups). Within our Gilmour inspired Black Strat pickguard assembly this pickup will give you two pickup combination selections of hum cancelling. To help differentiate our two SSL-1C DG pickups from one another the Rw/Rp version has yellow and black hookup leads.




Since these two versions of the SSL-1C DG pickups are assembled or built different, the question always comes up will they sound different?  The answer is no.  They are essentially the same pickup, it is only the winding direction and pole piece polarity orientation that is different, this does not effect output, tonality, harmonics or sustain.  The only thing that is different is that when the SSL-1C DG Rw/Rp pickup is installed with a Fender Custom Shop Custom ‘69 in the middle pickup position and the Fat 50 in the neck pickup position you will gain two pickup selection positions of hum cancelling.  When the bridge and middle pickup are selected together in selector switch position #2 you achieve hum cancelling, also when the bridge and neck pickups are selected together via the recessed mini-toggle switch you also achieve hum cancelling.


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