By Alison Shell. Guitar Electric. Published at Friday, August 31st, 2018 - 10:50:20 AM.
A solution to this hum was the development of a pickup which was created slightly differently to the normal ones. Instead of a single coil of wire wrapped round the magnets, two coils were used, but each wired to the opposite polarity, both electrically and magnetically. This meant that any electromagnetic noise that was detected by both if these coils was effectively cancelled out - like adding minus five and positive five, the answer is zero. This also had the added effect of creating a much fatter sound to the guitar too. Because these pickups were designed to cancel out the hum, they were named humbuckers, and are still extremely popular today.
The classic form of Fender Telecaster was a very simple framework, which had a neck and fingerboard including a single piece of maple, which was bolted to an ash or alder body with both sides flat, the front and back. The hardware included the two single coil pickups, which were controlled by a three-way selector switch with volume and tone controls. Earlier, the pickguard was made of bakelite, which was later made with plastic and was fixed on the body with five screws at first but later on with eight screws. The bridge had three saddles, which were adjustable with the strings doubled up on each. This became a thrilling addition in the world if guitars and soon different companies followed its lead.
Another cheap and easy mod is to shield the control cavity. This helps eliminate noise and interference and is especially useful for dampening the inherent 60 cycle hum of single coils. There are a few ways to do this, such as copper shielding tape or conductive shielding paint. While not necessarily a tone upgrade, the shielding will eliminate a lot of noise if done properly, but is necessary for a single-coil equipped guitar used in conjunction with a lot of overdrive or distortion in the studio.
But if what you want is the closest thing to the original RCA 6l6 clear top, there are a number of other 6l6 tubes you may also want to give a listen to. Groove Tubes makes a clear top GT 6l6GE, Sovtek has a clear top Tung Sol 6l6GC STR and Tube Amp Doctor also sells a clear top Chinese made TAD 6l6WGC STR. These are long plate, high output tubes, but they come in medium size bottles; and they have the clear top, side getter construction of the original RCA and GE 6l6's. The TAD and Tung Sol versions have the "black plates" the RCA tubes had; and the Groove Tubes version is mostly American made. But the tube with the best tone is definitely the TAD 6l6WGC STR. The TAD is a nice, warm tube with a sweet, silky high end. To me, it is the perfect choice for a vintage series Fender amp, like the Super Reverb.
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