The process is continuing...
as part of my quest to clear out gear I'm not using, and get the stuff I use actually working, I've sold a Hofner Club 50 and a beautiful old Couesnon Alto sax in the last couple of weeks. I've since had my '54 Champ fixed (plus a new strap, the old one broke and the fall damaged it).
With the Champ back, I'm playing the JM just about every day and it's beautiful to have it out all the time.
It's weird returning to an old guitar, my memory is I mostly used the bridge pickup; now it seems it's the neck that has the sound.
But I messed with the wiring when I was using it regularly so some of my sales income will go to restoring the wiring. I think I must have put the old bridge pickup in neck, and replaced it with what I think is an ESP pickup with a coil tap. I also disconnected the rhythm circuit. The bridge pickup sounds terrible, although that''s likely also due to its physical height. So at the end of Jan I plan to get the wiring restored. In the past i'd do this work myself but this time I'm going to try Jo Dobson at the london Workshop as he knows Jazzmasters well and should have all the period correct wires etc.
Fortunately I kept the old rhythm pickup safe. It's not like me to keep something important for 25 years and not lose it but miracles can occasionally happen. For many years the pickup was in the kitchen drawer... with no memory of having switched out the pickup I thought it might be a spare one I'd acquired on my travels!
Here's the ESP pickup. No, I don't remember why I got it, but it is a higher resistance wind so I presume I wanted a bit more output.
Here's the original rhythm pickup, which sounds absolutely stonking.
And here's what I think is the original neck pickup, which I will return to the guitar, and put the current neck back in bridge.
Both the originals are fairly low resistance, 6.51 and 8.04k... my plan is to stick with them. The old me would have have the 6.51 rewound. Instead I think I might try and source a tube boost. I'm planning to make a tube reverb via the Tube TOwn kit, I have a valve amp expert (the fella repaired the Champ) to help me, so perhaps I can add a boost valve to the build.
So I'll report back on the rewire. And I will probably update with my current project, adding an extension speaker to the Champ...