Authentic tone and visuals come from using the best parts (and a few other tricks). If you want to sound your best and look good doing it, the Bluesman Vintage Series is for you.
Accurate P.A.F. – Bluesman Vintage Series
Sigil Pickups have been steadily evolving from the first time I put wire to bobbin. In the beginning, the intent was to replicate the sounds of specific Gibson P.A.F. pickups as per my favorite recordings with appearance being a distant concern. Experience and experimentation has shown me that they go hand in hand. I found I wasn’t getting all the way there with some of the readily available parts; close but not quite. My journey continued…
Every step in the process has involved seeking out the best materials and process to achieve an accurate P.A.F. in tone and appearance. Tone was easier to nail down than look but recently I’ve made a few big steps in my push for the proper look to give a great visual in addition to the tone. Now it’s time to differentiate the Bluesman Vintage Series, a more accurate P.A.F. clone from the Session Series which are P.A.F. Style but not visual clones. I still have a few minor cosmetic things to work on and will continue that journey, but for now the major parts are in place.
There are guys out there who do amazing clones to the point that they’re nearly indistinguishable from the real thing and I commend them for the work, but the intent with the Bluesman Vintage Series is to get all the tone and most of the look so the heavy aging isn’t offered. I see the merits of making them look old, but it has no impact on tone so I’ll leave the artificial aging to the experts and real aging to the players for now. That said, you can expect a little pre-wear on a set of pickups with my Vintage P.A.F. replica covers out of the box that will continue to age as you use them. Polished covers will be clean and crisp.
Some parts are just there for looks, but proper covers, bobbins, baseplates, metals and wire all add to the effect and tone and that doesn’t come cheap. The Bluesman Vintage Series aims to use the most authentic parts I can source to get there as well as properly wound and dressed P.A.F. spec coils from in hand examination of vintage Gibson pickups.
You can get 95% of the way to authentic P.A.F. tone with less expensive parts, but why stop there?
Bluesman Vintage Series
- authentic 50s Gibson P.A.F. style butyrate bobbins
- 42 AWG plain enamel coil wire
- nickel silver baseplates based on a 1957 P.A.F.
- steel keeper based on a 1957 P.A.F.
- Canadian hard rock maple spacer
- accurate P.A.F. style paper tape on coils
- vintage P.A.F. coil geometry, machine wound for authenticity and consistency.
- internal leads and coil dress as per 50’s P.A.F. specs and process
- custom blend magnets; Rough cast A2, A3, A4 and UOA5 depending on application.
- laminated COA with serial and specs
- screen printed pickup labels
- protective felt bags to keep your removed pickups in great shape
- guitar testing of every set (2003 Gibson Les Paul Standard with 50’s harness and vintage Bees; Fender Blues DeVille amp and various pedals.)
- Hookup wire options of vintage braided or 4 conductor
- Wax potting available on request (although I might complain a little!)
- Covers are stamped in the USA; ‘Standard’ raw or polished nickel and ‘Vintage 59 P.A.F.’ in raw German nickel silver.
- Magnets hand picked and charged in house to specs
- Hand built one set at a time
- customization available for specific tone seekers and/or DC ratings and magnet options at no extra charge.
- Same guarantee and 30 day exchange policy