self made tools

Pickup Pickup winding itself with the sewing machine

The desire to wrap your own pickup has been there for a long time. But it should be a special humbucker for the Cigarbox Guitar. But it's not as simple as that.
What is needed for it all. Winding machine, lacquer wire etc. must be used. Maybe with a drilling machine? No, it can't be that I don't have a hand enough afterwards. The device must be able to be operated with the foot. So I started looking for an old sewing machine. On an exchange platform I found what I was looking for. It was sold as defective. Should I take the risk? Said done I am now an owner of an old defective sewing machine.
The remark is sold as defective" was also true. Something is causing the machine to block. First the wonder spray WD40 is used. The success failed.
So I took drastichen means. Everything out which is not needed. And see there I could breathe new life into the sewing machine. You can't sew with it any more but it will be enough to wrap a pickup.

Windungszaehler  spike3

Pickup winding machine in operation. The windings are counted with an old calculator which has been converted to a winding counter. A reed contact and a magnet serve as signal transmitters.
The construction of the winding meter is recorded in a separate report.

Pickup winding counter with old calculator

If you are winding your own pickups, you want to know how many windings you want to wind. One option is to count the windings yourself or to build a winding counter from an old pocket calculator. What does it take?

  • old calculator
  • Reed Contact
  • Magnets for reed contact
  • a little wire
  • soldering station

TaschenrechnerTischrechner vor dem Umbau zum WindungszählerTischrechner offengeöffneter Tischrechner mit der Leiterplatte


An old computer is particularly suitable for this. This calculator still contains printed circuit boards with correct solder joints. First you have to look for the two solder joints of the "+" key. If you have found what you are looking for, you can test it with a wire remainder. Strip both ends of a piece of wire. Then enter 1+ on the computer. Use the wire to bridge the contact at the "+" key on the solder joints. At each contact the computer will list a number 1,2,3 and so on.
Once you have found the right contact, a cable is soldered to each of the two solder joints and led out of the computer. Afterwards the computer can be closed again. The two wire ends are connected to the reed contact. Now only the reed contact has to be mounted next to the shaft and the magnet has to be mounted on the rotor. In just a few steps you have built a pickup winding counter.

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