I'm going to build my second cigar box guitar and i wanted to use a magnetic pickup this time (maybe hybrid with piezo too). I bought a mini humbucker but now i was wondering where i should put it on the box : bridge position, neck, in the middle ?

So, i'd like if you can share your experiences on pickup position and their effect on CBG tone.

Thanks for your help and advices.



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Near the bridge will bring out the treble tone, near the neck will give you a fatter thicker tone. Watch out for putting the pickup in the middle - if you mount the pickup high above the face of the box  it can interfere with being able to pick the strings. If you don't like your first effort..make another!!! I wouldn't bother complicating it by adding in a piezo - waste of time (unless you are going to pre-amp it) and to much hassle in my view.

put it in the bridge position. ive done it with a cbg and it is awesome!!! 

 If you look on my page , my last build i used a minihumbucker and put it in the neck position , mainly so it's out of the way and it gives a mellower tone and if i want a bit more treble i use the tone knob , also see the vids it's played through a Marshall 15w reverb with a lot of bass 3/4 gain and 1/2 reverb and full gain sounds awsome .

Thank you all guys !

Sounds like i'm going to try both positions :-D

Grant, how do you get more treble with the tone knob ? I thought that the tone was to darken the sound. Am i wrong ?

My suggestion is to get some of those alligator clip test wires and hook up the pickup to a jack. Then plug it into your amp. Then if you can get it under the strings, move it around to various positions on the box to see how it sounds. You can also hold the pickup over the strings to do the same thing.

In general, the pickup will reflect the tension of the strings. So you put it by the bridge where the string tension is tight and you get a treblier sound. You put it by the neck where the strings are looser, and you get a bassier sound. You can pluck the strings acoustically near the bridge and neck and hear this. I like to put mine by the neck to emphasize bass because CBG's are light on bass.

Skeesix..the tension in the string is the same along the string, it can't change, they can't be tighter or looser unless you physically alter the tension on them by re-tuning them...but theres more "excursion" to use the technical term toward the centre of the string than at the ends. 

I'm not a builder but I prefer the pickup at the neck position-as several folk have suggested to get a phatter tone-not a fan of it in the middle cos its in the way.I'd also put the piezo in the trash but hey, just my preference.


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