Doubleday Guitars
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Doubleday Guitars
Your Tone Is Your Signature



Explore the many options to creating your own tone. Magnet type to wax potting, learn how each variable affects the final product. Every slight change creates a new tonal possibility.


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MAgnet Type


Magnet type

The type of magnet used in a pickups causes the greatest change in tone over any other variable in the construction. Generally, pickup magnets are cast from an Aluminum Nickel and Cobalt alloy (AlNiCo), but sometimes Ceramic material is used. The magnet will change not only the frequency response of the pickup, but also the strength of the output. Magnets can be degaussed, reducing the magnet strength, to produce a more vintage tone. 



  • AlNiCo II - The warmest sounding of all magnet types, has soft bass, focused mid-range, and rounded, harmonic rich highs. Excels in producing vintage type tones. Great in all positions. Low output. 
  • AlNiCo 3 - A little more treble and less bass than the AlNiCo II. Bright and clear articulate tone. Great in the neck position.
  • AlNiCo 4 - Fairly flat frequency response that allows the true tone of the guitar to come through. Used mainly in the bridge position. Moderate output.
  • AlNiCo V - The most common of magnet types for pickups. Boosted highs and lows, with a scooped mid tone. Very versatile from vintage tones to heavy modern tones. Great for all positions. Higher output.
  • AlNiCo 8 - Warm with a tight low end and sharp highs, a sort of blend between Ceramic and A5. Aggressive mid range and fairly high output. Great for metal.
  • Ceramic - Very tight low end and brash high end. Bold presence. Provides a big tone, great for metal. High output.


Wire type



The wire type can be changed to affect the sound of the pickup. Most notably, the gauge of the wire will affect the output of the pickup. A smaller gauge wire will allow for more turns on the bobbin, creating more resistance in the electrical current, thus providing more output from the pickup. The different insulations on the wire do not affect the tone of the pickup other than the minimal effect it may have on the way the turns lay on each other. 



  • 42 Gauge Formvar - The most commonly used pickup wire, typical of nearly all Fender style single coil pickups
  • 42 Gauge Plain Enamel - The wire of choice for Gibson's PAF style humbucking pickup
  • 43 Gauge Formvar - Commonly found in a Tele style neck pickup
  • 43 Gauge Plain Enamel - Used in humbucking pickups where a higher output is desired
  • 44 Gauge Plain Enamel - Used for the highest output pickups





The number of turns on a pickup's bobbin is the second most influential variable toward its tone. All Doubleday Pickups are hand scatter-wound, similar to the techniques used to create the PAF style pickups and early Fender single coils. More turns on a bobbin will increase a pickups resistance, and respectively its output. More output will also roll off the highs on a pickups frequency response, resulting in a smoother tone. Less turns will produce a weaker sounding pickup, but with more clarity. 



  • With Doubleday custom hand wound pickups, we offer a standard number of turns, specific to each gauge of wire to produce its "sweet spot". This can be adjusted with a +/- 5% value to customize the tone to desired results. 
  • With humbucking pickups, the coils are intentionally slightly mismatched to provide a rich harmonic content into the tone, typically lost with perfectly matched coils. This technique mimics the accidental results of PAF style pickups. A greater difference between the resistance of bobbins will allow for more harmonic content, but diminishes the pickups capability to reduce hum.


Wax Potting



Wax Potting is the process of dipping the completed pickup into a heated mixture of waxes in order to solidify and protect the winds in the coils. The wax penetrates deep into the winds of the coils, helping prevent vibrations from creating unwanted sounds in the output of the pickup. On the other hand, an un-potted pickup can produce some more harmonically rich tones. A properly wound coil should be able to stand the test of time without potting if properly handled. 



  • Doubleday Pickups are potted using a wax mixture of 80% Paraffin wax to 20% local Beeswax. 
  • The wax must be at a temperature of 140 degrees Fahrenheit to prevent the pickup from overheating.
  • Pickups are dipped in the wax for around five minutes, constantly agitated to ensure all air bubbles are released. All excess wax is then cleaned off and the pickup is allowed to cool.