New Lollar Pickups and brass saddles for my Tele


I've had this Squier Classic Vibe 60s Tele (Crafted in China) for a few years now, and I've enjoyed playing it from Day 1. After the switch broke, I installed a pre-wired 4-way switch assembly with CTS pots. Lovely sounds.

I had bought it assuming I would swap out the pickups one day, but I can't really complain too much about the stock set. The Bridge pup was perhaps a little thin-sounding, but really not bad. I think the CTS pots may have helped.

But not too long ago, I decided to replace the steel saddles with brass, and, I figured, while I was at it, why not try some new pickups. I had been curious to try a more strat-like neck pickup. So I settled on Lollars - the bridge is a J-Street, and the neck is a Royal T.

Well, that Royal T is sure stratty, indeed. And the J-Street is wonderfully Tele-spanky, a little more full-bodied perhaps, and not as trebly as many Tele bridge pups.

Initially I was a little disappointed that the combined positions – 2 & 4 – didn't seem to sound as good as with the stock pickups. But after some very careful height adjustment, now they're sounding very good in those positions. A little different than what I was used to, but still great sounds. Not sure how much difference the brass bridge saddles bring to the equation, but I imagine they help to some degree.


I have to admit, my heart sank a bit when I looked closely at the walls of the pickup cavity, and noticed what looks like a pronounced ridge along the top. I was pretty sure these CiC Classic Vibes were alder bodies, whereas later (made in Indonesia) CVs were basswood. So I thought, "Oh no, it's a basswood body with an alder veneer." (Now, maybe there's nothing wrong with basswood, per se, but I liked the fact that it was made from the same wood as a Fender Tele.)

However, I read online somewhere that someone else had noticed the same thing on their CVC Tele, but when they took the neck off and examined the neck pocket, there was no evidence of a veneer and it looked like all alder. Leading them to conclude that these ridges in the pickup cavity were made my the routing machine, and not indicative of a veneer. Make sense?

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