Custom Jazzmaster project (looking for advice)

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molul
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Custom Jazzmaster project (looking for advice)

Post by molul » Sat Aug 10, 2019 9:54 am

Hi! This is my first post here :) I recently fell in love with jazzmasters (after playing a friend's AM original 60) and due to my little OCD I have been a few days consuming every bit of info I've been able to find xD

What I've realized so far is that I don't really dig any of the currently available models, so I'm starting the custom route (only ordering the parts, the assembly would be made by my luthier).

So far I know I want:

-A chambered alder body, trasparent (or maybe solid) turquoise satin.
Image

-A maple neck. Yes, I know the jazzmaster neck is meant to be rosewood but I don't like it ^_^U

-Sperzel trimlok tuners.

-No rhythm circuit (don't really need it and would save some money and assembly time).

-A black pickguard (not tortoise, not white, and certainly not black-white-black xD).

-(new) Fender Pure Vintage 65 Jazzmaster pickups.


What I would appreciate some advice on:
-(already replied) Pickups. Which model would have the most "authentic" sound?

-Bridge. I know many change the bridge for a Mustang or... Mastery was the name I think? I also read that J Mascis model has a tuneomatic bridge. Would this be even better?

-The rest of the pieces (pots, switch, whatever else is needed).


And some crazy idea that will most likely not make it: can you figure out a way to integrate a sustainiac pickup? Having it in this guitar would be so awesome but not sure if the guitar would have space for the kit. If anyone has experience with this, I would really appreciate any hint :)
Last edited by molul on Sun Aug 11, 2019 11:28 am, edited 3 times in total.

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marqueemoon
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Re: Custom Jazzmaster project (looking for advice)

Post by marqueemoon » Sat Aug 10, 2019 10:04 am

Unless you want an F hole I would go roasted alder instead of chambered. It will drop a little weight and add some resonance while being simpler to construct.

If you’re looking at 7.25” radius the Marr bridge is an option if you’re in a market where you can’t get a Staytrem affordably.

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Re: Custom Jazzmaster project (looking for advice)

Post by Danley » Sat Aug 10, 2019 10:14 am

I don’t know about other people (well I sort of do,) but I’ve had zero problems with stock (American/vintage) Jaguar bridges. Mustang/Marr bridges are fine though. You’ll find few people (here) who will say there is any benefit around a Tune-O-Matic.
King Buzzo: I love when people come up to me and say “Your guitar sound was better on Stoner Witch, when you used a Les Paul. “...I used a Fender Mustang reissue on that, dumbass!

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Re: Custom Jazzmaster project (looking for advice)

Post by timtam » Sat Aug 10, 2019 8:18 pm

If you don't want the vintage-style bridge, the Marr jag bridge is the go-to Mustang-style bridge for 7.25" radius and the Am Pro jag/JM's Mustang-style bridge for 9.5" radius. The latest versions both have the desirable ~52mm E-E spacing.

Two wiring options without rhythm circuits would be the American Special and Am Pro ...
http://www.fmicassets.com/Damroot/Origi ... A_SISD.pdf
https://www.fmicassets.com/Damroot/Orig ... 7-2016.pdf
They're about as simple as it gets. Basically the same circuit, but the Am Pro has a treble bleed which you may or may not want (some people like to use the volume pot as is to roll off some brightness).

For pickups, Pure Vintage 65s or AV62s ...
https://darrenriley.com/product-categor ... r-pickups/

Johnny Marr has a custom jaguar with Fernandes sustainer, modelled on the Fender Ed O'Brien signature strat. Not sure I've seen any sustainiac retrofits to JMs.
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Re: Custom Jazzmaster project (looking for advice)

Post by molul » Sat Aug 10, 2019 11:30 pm

Cool! Thanks so much for those pdfs. They will certainly help :) Also thanks for the pickups recommendation ^_^

Is there any switch-pots pack for the jazzmaster? I heard the pots are a bit special.

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Re: Custom Jazzmaster project (looking for advice)

Post by marqueemoon » Sun Aug 11, 2019 6:23 am

molul wrote:
Sat Aug 10, 2019 11:30 pm
Cool! Thanks so much for those pdfs. They will certainly help :) Also thanks for the pickups recommendation ^_^

Is there any switch-pots pack for the jazzmaster? I heard the pots are a bit special.
Yes. You can get kits with all the part or a full on wiring harness.

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Re: Custom Jazzmaster project (looking for advice)

Post by molul » Mon Aug 12, 2019 2:30 pm

Hmmm... The project gets more complicated. I tried my friend's Jazzmaster (American Original 60) today with my gear and I wasn't that fond of the sound, maybe because my amp and pedals are configured for my vision Strat, maybe because I'm too used to my strat.

I only truly liked the neck pickup. I liked the strong attack and low end. The bridge pickup sounded too bright, even annoying sometimes. I could correct it by tweaking the pot but not my cup of tea.

So I'm thinking of using strat pickups instead. Most likely Sustainiac for neck, and a DiMarzio humbucker in single coil format or a P90 humbucker for bridge. I know that's not a pure jazzmaster anymore but I guess I'm nothing but a strat guy that happens to like the jazzmaster shape and bridge ^_^U

I gotta investigate the different pickups options I have now. I would love having a sound like the jazzmaster neck pickup's (maybe adding a middle pickup?), but I need that space for the Sustainiac.

Now I have to figure out if the sustainiac will fit into the jazzmaster body with a standard front routing.

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Re: Custom Jazzmaster project (looking for advice)

Post by Danley » Mon Aug 12, 2019 3:11 pm

One thought - you could mount Strat singles under Jazzmaster covers; it would keep you open to swapping to real Jazzmaster pickups when you ‘graduate’ ;)
King Buzzo: I love when people come up to me and say “Your guitar sound was better on Stoner Witch, when you used a Les Paul. “...I used a Fender Mustang reissue on that, dumbass!

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Re: Custom Jazzmaster project (looking for advice)

Post by molul » Mon Aug 12, 2019 3:17 pm

Danley wrote:
Mon Aug 12, 2019 3:11 pm
One thought - you could mount Strat singles under Jazzmaster covers; it would keep you open to swapping to real Jazzmaster pickups when you ‘graduate’ ;)
Oh really? That's so cool. Thanks! I thought the covers would need a jazzmaster pickup to properly fit. This might certainly be useful in the future, hehe.

One question: is there a jazzmaster bridge pickup (much) less brighter than the one in the American Original 60? I know I'm sacrificing the neck one (as much as I love its sound, but I need a sustainiac) but I wouldn't mind having a jazzmaster bridge pickup.

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Re: Custom Jazzmaster project (looking for advice)

Post by Danley » Mon Aug 12, 2019 3:20 pm

molul wrote:
Mon Aug 12, 2019 3:17 pm
Danley wrote:
Mon Aug 12, 2019 3:11 pm
One thought - you could mount Strat singles under Jazzmaster covers; it would keep you open to swapping to real Jazzmaster pickups when you ‘graduate’ ;)
Oh really? That's so cool. Thanks! I thought the covers would need a jazzmaster pickup to properly fit. This might certainly be useful in the future, hehe.

One question: is there a jazzmaster bridge pickup (much) less brighter than the one in the American Original 60? I know I'm sacrificing the neck one (as much as I love its sound, but I need a sustainiac) but I wouldn't mind having a jazzmaster bridge pickup.
I’ve had a few Strat and Jaguar pickups under Jazzmaster covers, in general you just need to adjust the foam backing to make it work. I have a Duncan Jazzmaster Hot pickup that reduces some brightness, but adjusting them higher makes any pickup a bit ‘fatter.’ Keep in mind a stock Jazzmaster has 1 meg pots that add brightness.
King Buzzo: I love when people come up to me and say “Your guitar sound was better on Stoner Witch, when you used a Les Paul. “...I used a Fender Mustang reissue on that, dumbass!

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Re: Custom Jazzmaster project (looking for advice)

Post by molul » Mon Aug 12, 2019 3:41 pm

Very useful info as well. Thanks again :)

Would changing the pot to less than 1M kill the jazzmaster sound or would it just reduce brightness a bit?

If so, would you change the pot having that Seymour Duncan or would that be too much?

I might get a really cheap jazzmaster just to change the pickup to a sustainiac and that Duncan bridge one, then make the custom body. Just to make sure the sustainiac would fit and would work fine with the Duncan pickup.

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Re: Custom Jazzmaster project (looking for advice)

Post by Danley » Mon Aug 12, 2019 4:06 pm

molul wrote:
Mon Aug 12, 2019 3:41 pm
Very useful info as well. Thanks again :)

Would changing the pot to less than 1M kill the jazzmaster sound or would it just reduce brightness a bit?
No - despite the value of the pot changing by 75% , I don't find a pot swap to be a 'make/break' thing for Jazzmaster tone. On the other hand, in my experience the effect of the load change on the pickup can neither 'fix' a bright pickup/guitar nor can it 'break' anything. Other people do seem to detect a bigger difference from pot swaps than I do, but 'it is subtle' is my two cents :)
If so, would you change the pot having that Seymour Duncan or would that be too much?
I've used it with both 250k and 1 meg pots, and it was fine either way. They're wound something crazy-high DCR-wise like 16k on the bridge, but they still aren't as hot as humbuckers and do still 'sound like a Jazzmaster.'
King Buzzo: I love when people come up to me and say “Your guitar sound was better on Stoner Witch, when you used a Les Paul. “...I used a Fender Mustang reissue on that, dumbass!

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Re: Custom Jazzmaster project (looking for advice)

Post by molul » Tue Aug 13, 2019 2:33 am

Cool. That Seymour Duncan pickup might be a lifesaver to this project (for it to sound like a jazzmaster) ^_^

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