Tele Bridge Feedback Issue

Greetings all

I have a slight feedback issue with my Tokai Tele.

I had Dimarzio Twang King pickups fitted about 18 months ago, which improved the sound dramatically, but recently I noticed that the bridge pup tends to feedback at higher gain settings. It's an awful high-pitched squeal which I can stop by pushing down on the front of the bridge, so I tightened up the 4 screws in the rear of the plate and this helped a lot. However, using more gain and higher volumes makes it squeal again and I suspect that this is only a temporary fix.

I am wondering if I can either drill a couple of holes in the front of the plate to screw it down squarely and that may cure it? Would there be any other prep needed when I take the plate of to help fix the problem?

It's a Wilkinson vintage-style bridge, if that helps.


  • ESBlondeESBlonde Posts: 949Member
    Hi, the bridge is not likely to be the main culprit. Two areas to look at.
    1) the mounting of the pickup in the bridge plate. If the springs etc. allow undue movement then feedback is more likely, you can wedge a piece of cardboard down the side of the pickup in the slot to see if that improves things. If it does you can either beef up the springs, leave the card in there or replace the springs with rubber tube.
    2) There is movement of the loose wound coil and or magnet within the pickup cover which is actually the cause of the feedback (you might find the pickup is slightly microphonic when the gain is well up too). There is a technique called potting where bees wax or similar is poured around the coil to solidify it. A degree of improvement can be attained by cramming something like paper between the cover and the top surface of the coil.
    BEWARE: The springs and a certain something to the typical architypal tele sound and doing fixes can detract from it if you want that particular sound. There is controvosy about how much potting also effects the 'classic' sound too but it will effect it a little for sure.
    Now if you aren't playing 1960s country covers very often ;-) and that sound isn't one you'll miss because you are mainly a high gain player, these 'fixes' are likely to be what you need - or buy a high gain pickup thats designed that way and keep the present one in the case so you can go back if you want to.

    Hope that helps.
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