I am having custom pickups made, can you tell me the angles and sizes of the pickup cavities?

In case you want to replace the stock pickups with some other brand or model, here is all the information you need to know.

We refer to two different models of pickups:

  • A "humbucker" pickup is the traditional design, which has a (usually) metal base plate with "legs" and "feet", where the height adjustment screws are anchored.
  • A "soapbar" or "active mount" pickup is usually encased in plastic and is rectangular in shape. The mounting/height adjustment screws run through the pickup housing itself.

These are quite standardized, and all makers use roughly the same dimensions. Some pickups may have covers that flare out at the bottom, leading to a tight fit, but generally works still.

  • All 6-string and 7-string models with humbucker cavities use standard sized cavities that should fit any standard pickup, with the following things to note:
    • The edges of the feet of the pickup may have to rounded off
    • Your replacement pickup should have short "legs"
    • If the replacement pickup has a wood or metal cover, ensure that the bottom edges don't flare out, since this may push the dimensions beyond the standard
  • 7- and 8-string guitars with soapbar (sometimes referred to as "Active Mount") sized pickups use standard sized cavities, with the following things to note:
    • 7-string guitars use a 3.5" sized cavity
    • 8-string guitars use a 4" sized cavity
    • 7-string fixed bridge guitars with 25.75" - 25" scale length (Washburn and Japanese production) and 8-string guitars with 28" - 26.5" scale lengths utilize 8 and 12 degree angles of the pickup cavities
    • 7-string fixed bridge guitars with 26.25" - 25.5" scale length (WMI/PT Cort production) utilize 7 and 10 degree angles of the pickup cavities
  • Older Boden Classic models have a so called swimming pool route under the pickguard, so any pickup configuration can be fitted. Current Boden Classic models have a HSH pickup rout to the body.
  • Sälen models have a standard sized Tele-style neck pickup cavity under the pickguard

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