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Piezo question - vintage Yamaha FG365SE


Bizze
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Hey guys, long time no see,

I bought a vintage Yamaha FG365SE yesterday, a really nice guitar, solid spruce top, rosewood back & sides. As usual I intend to change the nut & bridge for new bone copies, as I don't like plastic and they're quite worn. Upon close inspection however, it seems the piezo pickup is actually inside the plastic saddle, which itself is encased in metal.. Does anyone have any experience with this? I don't know quite how to proceed. Perhaps a new pickup is in order, but hoping to find someone with some experience first.

I'll add a couple of photos of what I mean + a NGD-tax photo

IMG-0294.thumb.jpg.2bbddeb45888b3a13f66e0dad6f65b7a.jpgIMG-0313.thumb.jpg.0131eddc4c5228274e1e0d63f1813364.jpgIMG-0315.thumb.jpg.33e94db4499d3e3770030cfec5f7d4c8.jpgIMG-0316.thumb.jpg.36cc91d703676244b9e41d3a0f920ae0.jpg

Edited by Bizze
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27 minutes ago, daddymack said:

sadly, yes, the ceramic pickup on those are integral to the bridge. If the p-up works, leave it be!

Hey, thx for the reply. That seems to be the case, but I think I'd rather replace the piezo pickup so I can make a new saddle than stay suck with the worn out plastic saddle. Looking into options now.

Edited by Bizze
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Looking closer at the pic, there appears to be a seam line above the pickup, so you might be able to remove [all or most of] the old saddle and replace it with bone...I have not worked on that model, so I can't say one way or the other.

The sound of those ceramic pickups is pretty unique. 

Have you asked at a Yamaha authorized service shop?

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Buy a new saddle and nut.

Stew Mac will have the bone. A pre- cut one will save you a heap of work.

You will need to get a new piezo pup, if you ever want to plug it in. 

Too tell you the truth, you pics are very nice, but it doesn't look like the saddle is very wore down. This is the case of a great pic, not worth a 1000 words. It's difficulty to tell with out the instrument in hand. I believe this has a Volume, bass and treble 

I had a Yamaha 370s back in the 80's. I wore the frets out and it was hardly worth replacing them. I traded it out for a for a new Taylor 414 at the time. It paid for the tax and more.

The 365's  are rather nice sounding guitars. Solid top. The neck on the Yamaha I had was just lovely.

Fishman still makes a non active/ passive pup, if you don't want to mess with electronics. It's listed as the AG series.

I just dumped a Fishman Matrix Infinity Mic Blend  in a new Martin HD28. Well my luthier did. It's a killer system IMO, but far from inexpensive.

If you like the Yamaha, put the work into it that you think needs to be done.

It should solder right in.

images?q=tbn:ANd9GcTBwfkpLKMw38e6BJTGwJR

 

Try this for less than 10 buck.  I believe yours is the narrow width type.

 

https://www.amazon.com/Ultra-thin-pickups-passive-piezoelectric-acoustic/dp/B08RBR98FF/ref=sr_1_14_sspa?dchild=1&keywords=2%2F32"+piezo+pickup+for+acoustic+guitar&qid=1634421577&s=musical-instruments&sr=1-14-spons&psc=1&spLa=ZW5jcnlwdGVkUXVhbGlmaWVyPUExMVoyTFVCU1RVM09MJmVuY3J5cHRlZElkPUEwNTMyOTI4RzY1OTJCVEc4Q1MzJmVuY3J5cHRlZEFkSWQ9QTA4MjIwNTcxT1FDNFdNVkVPUkZLJndpZGdldE5hbWU9c3BfbXRmJmFjdGlvbj1jbGlja1JlZGlyZWN0JmRvTm90TG9nQ2xpY2s9dHJ1ZQ==

 

https://www.amazon.com/Musiclily-Guitar-Saddle-Acoustic-Replacement/dp/B00HFQZHL4/ref=sr_1_17?crid=T2C4VI6OW2CC&dchild=1&keywords=piezo+pickup+for+acoustic+guitar&qid=1634421485&s=musical-instruments&sr=1-17

 

 

 

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16 hours ago, daddymack said:

Looking closer at the pic, there appears to be a seam line above the pickup, so you might be able to remove [all or most of] the old saddle and replace it with bone...I have not worked on that model, so I can't say one way or the other.

The sound of those ceramic pickups is pretty unique. 

Have you asked at a Yamaha authorized service shop?

Hey, thanks. Not looking to replace part of the nut. There may be a seam but it's one piece, probablue due to a 2-step casting process. I don't think there is such a thing as an authorized Yamaha shop in my country ;). Looking to fix it myself anyway.

 

12 hours ago, Mikeo said:

Buy a new saddle and nut.

Stew Mac will have the bone. A pre- cut one will save you a heap of work.

You will need to get a new piezo pup, if you ever want to plug it in. 

Too tell you the truth, you pics are very nice, but it doesn't look like the saddle is very wore down. This is the case of a great pic, not worth a 1000 words. It's difficulty to tell with out the instrument in hand. I believe this has a Volume, bass and treble 

I had a Yamaha 370s back in the 80's. I wore the frets out and it was hardly worth replacing them. I traded it out for a for a new Taylor 414 at the time. It paid for the tax and more.

The 365's  are rather nice sounding guitars. Solid top. The neck on the Yamaha I had was just lovely.

Fishman still makes a non active/ passive pup, if you don't want to mess with electronics. It's listed as the AG series.

I just dumped a Fishman Matrix Infinity Mic Blend  in a new Martin HD28. Well my luthier did. It's a killer system IMO, but far from inexpensive.

If you like the Yamaha, put the work into it that you think needs to be done.

It should solder right in.

images?q=tbn:ANd9GcTBwfkpLKMw38e6BJTGwJR

 

Try this for less than 10 buck.  I believe yours is the narrow width type.

 

https://www.amazon.com/Ultra-thin-pickups-passive-piezoelectric-acoustic/dp/B08RBR98FF/ref=sr_1_14_sspa?dchild=1&keywords=2%2F32"+piezo+pickup+for+acoustic+guitar&qid=1634421577&s=musical-instruments&sr=1-14-spons&psc=1&spLa=ZW5jcnlwdGVkUXVhbGlmaWVyPUExMVoyTFVCU1RVM09MJmVuY3J5cHRlZElkPUEwNTMyOTI4RzY1OTJCVEc4Q1MzJmVuY3J5cHRlZEFkSWQ9QTA4MjIwNTcxT1FDNFdNVkVPUkZLJndpZGdldE5hbWU9c3BfbXRmJmFjdGlvbj1jbGlja1JlZGlyZWN0JmRvTm90TG9nQ2xpY2s9dHJ1ZQ==

 

https://www.amazon.com/Musiclily-Guitar-Saddle-Acoustic-Replacement/dp/B00HFQZHL4/ref=sr_1_17?crid=T2C4VI6OW2CC&dchild=1&keywords=piezo+pickup+for+acoustic+guitar&qid=1634421485&s=musical-instruments&sr=1-17

 

Hey, thanks for the info. I was looking at different pickup systems. I could go with a piezo but I'm also partial to for instance a K&K mini, which isn't a piezo, but is fitted under the bridge. Seems less invasive and I can keep a solid bone nut. I'll shape the bone nut & saddle myself, I'm not in the USA so stew-mac isn't really an option. Plus shaping them isn't that big of a deal. Although it'll be the first time I'll do a saddle, so I'll have to be careful getting the intonation just right.

The FG365SE is nice indeed. It has 3 knobs which are rather good looking, so if I use a system with a different pre-amp I'm looking to keep those knobs. Otherwise I may just add a piezo and solder it into the existing one.

Right now I'm still checking options and different acoustic pickup-systems. It isn't my forte, as I don't really play amplified regularly (not with acoustic anyway). I just don't want to lose the function. And yes, the saddle is okay - but no more than that. The high E and B strings have cut down quite a bit. I'm a big fan of changing plastic nuts / saddles out of bone ones anyway. Thanks for the info.

 

IMG-0295.thumb.jpg.df7cb825fcaf996910f1fb683269514e.jpg

Edited by Bizze
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The K&K mini is a good system. My luthier likes it a lot.

I did the Fishman Matrix Blend on the Martin HD 28 and a Martin 00028, but also looked at the LR Baggs Anthem at the time. The LR Baggs Anthem like the K&K mounts under the bridge Plate. I have other Fishman pick-ups in other guitars, and I am in Massachusetts, so at the last minute, I went with the Fishman instead of the Baggs system.

Back in  the day when your Yamaha was made, there wasn't a lot of pick ups available in acoustic guitars. Especially factory installed.

Good luck 

 

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6 hours ago, Bizze said:

Hey, thanks. Not looking to replace part of the nut. There may be a seam but it's one piece, probablue due to a 2-step casting process. I don't think there is such a thing as an authorized Yamaha shop in my country ;). Looking to fix it myself anyway.

...

I was thinking you could grind off the plastic saddle and bond on a bone saddle, since you'd said you were going to make one anyway. But if you want to replace the entire thing, go for it!

Since I do not know your electronic skill level, and as I mentioned, I am not very familiar with that model, but be aware that the control system installed may be designed specifically to the OEM pick-up, and not compatible with an 'off the shelf' piezo or other under saddle type mic.  It is possible there is no on-board preamp...is there a battery compartment? :wave:

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7 hours ago, Bizze said:

 I was looking at different pickup systems. I could go with a piezo but I'm also partial to for instance a K&K mini, which isn't a piezo, but is fitted under the bridge. Seems less invasive and I can keep a solid bone nut.

The K&K mini is a piezo pickup: each of the three small discs is a piezo transducer.

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16 hours ago, garthman said:

The K&K mini is a piezo pickup: each of the three small discs is a piezo transducer.

You're right, I meant an undersaddle piezo. Sunday woes ;).

 

17 hours ago, daddymack said:

I was thinking you could grind off the plastic saddle and bond on a bone saddle, since you'd said you were going to make one anyway. But if you want to replace the entire thing, go for it!

Since I do not know your electronic skill level, and as I mentioned, I am not very familiar with that model, but be aware that the control system installed may be designed specifically to the OEM pick-up, and not compatible with an 'off the shelf' piezo or other under saddle type mic.  It is possible there is no on-board preamp...is there a battery compartment? :wave:

Well, that's the difficult bit. There is an onboard pre-amp, which I still have to check out. The most risky thing is connecting a different pickup to that pre-amp. It seems to be a bit of a hit and miss from what I've read.

 

21 hours ago, Mikeo said:

The K&K mini is a good system. My luthier likes it a lot.

I did the Fishman Matrix Blend on the Martin HD 28 and a Martin 00028, but also looked at the LR Baggs Anthem at the time. The LR Baggs Anthem like the K&K mounts under the bridge Plate. I have other Fishman pick-ups in other guitars, and I am in Massachusetts, so at the last minute, I went with the Fishman instead of the Baggs system.

Back in  the day when your Yamaha was made, there wasn't a lot of pick ups available in acoustic guitars. Especially factory installed.

Good luck 

 

Yeah, mainly checked the K&K because of the bang-for-the-buck. The Fishman Blend seems really nice, but it's a more expensive system than what I payed for the guitar in the first place, and I will be using the pickup sparingly. Thanks for the advice.

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