Maxon Pickup Codes

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jacco
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Post by jacco » Thu Oct 13, 2011 5:12 am

1977 seems to be a good year for '1' coded pickups, here's a few

DiMarzio PAF with Maxon code from an october 1977 EG900

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U2000 from a january 1978 EG700

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japanstrat
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Post by japanstrat » Tue Oct 25, 2011 4:20 am

Well, after looking at a fair few Maxon Greco pickups with stamped serials on them I noticed the following.

Most Maxon pickups up to 1981 have a serial starting with a 1 or 2 but there are early 70s Maxon pickups in SG's that have serials starting with a 3.

In late 1981 the Maxon pickups seem to also go to serials starting with a 8 or 5 but this is only for a short time and this is about the time that Fujigen starts making their own pickups in late 1981.
I think that Fujigen took over all of the Greco pickup making from Maxon sometime in 1982 and from then on there were no Maxon serial number stamps on Greco pickups and the Greco pickups just had model stickers like Dry 82, Screamin etc but there are transitional pickups around 1982 that have Maxon serial number stamps and model stickers like Dry 82 so that makes it a bit more confusing.
Eventually the model stickers on the Greco pickups were dropped around the mid/late 1980s I think.

The Maxon pickups starting with a 8 seem to follow the usual Maxon pickup code

First number = Nisshin Onpa (Maxon) pickup production line code (1, 2, 8 etc)
Second number = Year (9=1979)
Third and Fourth number = Month (01=Jan ... 12=Dec)
Fifth and sixth number = Day of Month (01-31)

but the Maxon? pickups starting with a 5 seem to have a different code that might be according to the serials starting with a 5 that I've seen


First number = Nisshin Onpa (Maxon) pickup production line code (5)
Second and Third number = Day of Month (01-31)
Fourth and Fifth number = Month (01=Jan ... 12=Dec)
Sixth number = Year (9=1979)


but I'm not totally sure of this.

So maybe production line 5 had their stamp back to front for some reason.

The Greco DiMarzio pickups with a Maxon serial number stamped on them seem to have been ordered by Maxon from the US and then stamped and then sent to Fujigen.

As usual, nothing is really straightforward and easy when there are transitions and other factory things involved so some of this might not be 100% accurate.

The 70s Maxon pickups like the U-1000 and U-2000 Dry Z etc seem to be Alnico magnet pickups with the U-1000 having Alnico 8 magnets and the U-2000 having Alnico 5 magnets and the Dry Z having Alnico 3 magnets.

Some of the later 1970s and early 1980s Maxon made U-1000 pickups might have Ceramic magnets.

It looks like Alnico 8 was replaced with Ceramic in the late 1970s/early 1980s.

The Mint Collection 1982 Screamin pickups have Ceramic magnets but most of the rest have Alnico like the Double Trick (probably Alnico 5) and Dry 1982 (probably Alnico 2 or 3) and these pickups don't seem to have been made by Maxon but by Fujigen.

When the Mint Collection starts around 1982, Maxon start dropping out of making Greco pickups and Fujigen starts making Greco pickups.
When I was a kid my parents moved a lot, but I always found them. Rodney Dangerfield

greco_burst
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Post by greco_burst » Sat Oct 29, 2011 6:59 pm

Thank you guys, and thank you japanstrat for info, good work mate.

Freebird
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Post by Freebird » Wed Dec 05, 2012 3:32 pm

JDB wrote:
greco_burst wrote:
I have not seen a pic of a prototype pup, ....... that would sure help.

I would say there are not many about at all. probably only a handfull.[/quote]

How about this? Does this help? I believe it is a 1978 U-1000.

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It reads 7.8 ohm.

What do you think one of these is worth these days, considering it's rarity and also its great condition?

dombat
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Post by dombat » Wed Dec 05, 2012 4:03 pm

I have one super 70 (supposed to be the same as the u1000) which may be considered as a prototype, "super 70"and the serial number (Year 76 and beginning with 1) is hand graven on the backplate still with the inked 75 serial number! And it really sounds like the other super 70 I have

jibby
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78 Greco EG700

Post by jibby » Fri Oct 17, 2014 5:34 pm

Hi, I know this is an old thread but was hoping someone might be able to help me.

The pic of the 1978 EG700 pup(code#171214) that jacco posted is one of the pics from the ebay listing for the black 1978 EG700(serial#A786076) I purchased from chingo123. The production dates for the guitar and pups are very close which leads me to believe they are original to the guitar.

I have read that eg700's came stock with u-2000 pickups but have also read that the maxon codes went as such:
codes starting with 1 were u-1000, 2=u-2000,3=u-3000 etc...

Can anybody shed any light on the matter for me?

Thx,

Jibby.

jacco
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Re: 78 Greco EG700

Post by jacco » Sat Oct 18, 2014 12:41 am

Hi Jibby!
This part is incorrect:
jib by wrote:..but have also read that the maxon codes went as such:
codes starting with 1 were u-1000, 2=u-2000,3=u-3000 etc...

jibby
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78 greco eg700

Post by jibby » Sat Oct 18, 2014 10:12 am

Thanks Jacco much appreciated.

Jibby.

muccax
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Post by muccax » Sun Oct 19, 2014 4:10 pm

japanstrat wrote:Well, after looking at a fair few Maxon Greco pickups with stamped serials on them I noticed the following.

Most Maxon pickups up to 1981 have a serial starting with a 1 or 2 but there are early 70s Maxon pickups in SG's that have serials starting with a 3.

In late 1981 the Maxon pickups seem to also go to serials starting with a 8 or 5 but this is only for a short time and this is about the time that Fujigen starts making their own pickups in late 1981.
I think that Fujigen took over all of the Greco pickup making from Maxon sometime in 1982 and from then on there were no Maxon serial number stamps on Greco pickups and the Greco pickups just had model stickers like Dry 82, Screamin etc but there are transitional pickups around 1982 that have Maxon serial number stamps and model stickers like Dry 82 so that makes it a bit more confusing.
Eventually the model stickers on the Greco pickups were dropped around the mid/late 1980s I think.

The Maxon pickups starting with a 8 seem to follow the usual Maxon pickup code

First number = Nisshin Onpa (Maxon) pickup production line code (1, 2, 8 etc)
Second number = Year (9=1979)
Third and Fourth number = Month (01=Jan ... 12=Dec)
Fifth and sixth number = Day of Month (01-31)

but the Maxon? pickups starting with a 5 seem to have a different code that might be according to the serials starting with a 5 that I've seen


First number = Nisshin Onpa (Maxon) pickup production line code (5)
Second and Third number = Day of Month (01-31)
Fourth and Fifth number = Month (01=Jan ... 12=Dec)
Sixth number = Year (9=1979)


but I'm not totally sure of this.

So maybe production line 5 had their stamp back to front for some reason.

The Greco DiMarzio pickups with a Maxon serial number stamped on them seem to have been ordered by Maxon from the US and then stamped and then sent to Fujigen.

As usual, nothing is really straightforward and easy when there are transitions and other factory things involved so some of this might not be 100% accurate.

The 70s Maxon pickups like the U-1000 and U-2000 Dry Z etc seem to be Alnico magnet pickups with the U-1000 having Alnico 8 magnets and the U-2000 having Alnico 5 magnets and the Dry Z having Alnico 3 magnets.

Some of the later 1970s and early 1980s Maxon made U-1000 pickups might have Ceramic magnets.

It looks like Alnico 8 was replaced with Ceramic in the late 1970s/early 1980s.

The Mint Collection 1982 Screamin pickups have Ceramic magnets but most of the rest have Alnico like the Double Trick (probably Alnico 5) and Dry 1982 (probably Alnico 2 or 3) and these pickups don't seem to have been made by Maxon but by Fujigen.

When the Mint Collection starts around 1982, Maxon start dropping out of making Greco pickups and Fujigen starts making Greco pickups.
hi
all the u 1000 i have had in my hands have ceramic magnets
all the best
otto

dombat
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Post by dombat » Sun Oct 19, 2014 5:10 pm

"all the u 1000 i have had in my hands have ceramic magnets "

People here say that U-1000 = Super 70. All my Super 70 (2 spare sets) have alnico magnets

japanstrat
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Post by japanstrat » Thu Apr 23, 2015 2:02 am

The U-1000 pickups from the "Super 70" classic period (which is around the mid/late 70s), have Alnico 8 magnets.

The U-2000 had an Alnico 5 magnet btw.

The Maxon made "Super 70" and the Maxon made U-1000 were the lowest pickup model in the available pickup model lines and the lowest Maxon made pickups got Alnico 8 magnets.

The photos below show a U-1000 pickup from 1976 with an Alnico magnet (not ceramic) and anyone who has played a guitar with a U-1000 pickup will know that it's basically a Super 70 and the magnet is an Alnico 8.

The pickup specs changed when Fujigen took over pickup making from Maxon in late 1981.

There might be a possibility that later made Maxon U-1000 pickups from the late 70s/early 80s might have had ceramic magnets, I do not know because I've only had experience with 1977 and 1976 U-1000 pickups that had Alnico 8 magnets.

If someone doesn't like the Alnico 8 sound too much, then i's pretty easy to buy an Alnico 2 or Alnico 3 or Alnico 4 or Alnico 5 magnet and just replace the Alnico 8 magnet with whatever magnet.

Dry Z's are probably Alnico 3 because Maxon was also using Alnico 3 for the "Super 58's" but Alnico 2 and Alnico 4 and Alnico 5 all sound PAFish as well in various ways.

Gibson didn't use Alnico 8 or ceramic in the early PAF's.


Greco Maxon U-1000 pickup from 1976, and the Alnico magnet is pretty easy to see (bright shiny metal magnet).

Alnico magnets are metal and ceramic magnets are different, and alnico magnets can be tested with a multimeter signal continuity tester (place the multimeters probes on 2 different points on the magnet) as the metal will conduct the multimeters continuity signal (usually the multimeter beeps when there is continuity of the signal) and the ceramics will not conduct the multimeters continuity signal.


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When I was a kid my parents moved a lot, but I always found them. Rodney Dangerfield

knight_yyz
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Re: Maxon Pickup Codes

Post by knight_yyz » Fri Jan 15, 2021 2:39 pm

Very late to this party, but someone asked...

This set is from my 73 SE500w Greco Strat... they are on 1 megohm pots. I'm pretty sure these are Maxon Excel Silvers, most pics I have seen have black bottoms.


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