Help with my Yamaha SG-700S



I've discovered Warmoth - wow!!!  I had no idea that this "world" existed, and am absolutely dumbstruck by the guitars I see here.

I don't know anything about guitars.  I've been playing for a while, but just for my own enjoyment - not in a band, don't record anything, etc...  I have a (what I consider at least) nice, old, Japanese made Yamaha SG-700S.  It's a double cutaway curve top Les Paul, maple top, mahogany body, neck thru body.  I love this guitar, but it's getting tired.  Toggle switch doesn't work 50% of the time, the gold is peeling off the bridge and tail, knobs are shot, etc...  From what I've read about the Yamaha SG's, they're great guitars, but replacing the stock pickups is a must.

I'd like to give my guitar a "makeover".  New bridge, tail, switches, pots, etc... and I think that stuff should be pretty straightforward, but I have no idea where to start, when it comes to pickups.  What brands, models, etc...  All I know is that I need two humbuckers.  I like a heavier sound - I play all the standard classic rock, some reggae and some punk.  I don't follow any specific guitarist like SRV or EVH.  I like em all.  I guess if I had to list some names though, I'd say Santana, Buck Dharma, Wayne Perkins, Alex Lifeson, Keith Richards.  I don't know how much this matters - some of the posts I read are guys trying to recreate a certain sound...  I'd just like a good all-around classic rock heavy'ish sound, and something that will take advantage of my SG's incredible warmth and sustain.

Are there any general FAQ's here that I should be reading?  Anyone care to try to point me the right direction as far as which pickups to buy?  Also, I saw the copper shielding tape in the Warmoth catalog - is this something I should be doing "while I'm in there"?


Welcome to the forum mate!

Yes your right you do have a really great guitar. I LOVE Yamaha SGs! More so than the Gibson SG model actually.

The questions your asking are pretty broad but to start off with I'd like to point you in the general direction of one of the best Bridge humbuckers ever made the Seymour Duncan JB Humbucker. It gets the balance between power and response perfectly. Have a look in the gallery as to how many Warmoth users stick this PU in their guitars> theres a good reason. It rocks out.

As for pots and switches all of the Warmoth stuff is of high standard. Persoanlly I would leave the bridge to continue to "weather" for the vintage look unless it really is looking weird.

Anyway good luck.
+ 1 on leaving the original bridge in, as long as it does its job well. People pay extra for that weathered look.
I suggest the seymour duncan jazz humbucker for the neck position. Warm and incredibly articulate. Sounds amazing clean, and handles any amount of gain really nicely. One of my favorite pickups out there, of any type for any position.
I say go for the "New" look, and get as much new bling and paint as your wallet will handle, then try your luck ( not much luck really needed) at building a Warmoth.

Good luck keep us posted, with pics if you can
Alfang's powers of persuasion worked on me. Yeah, what the hell, throw a new bridge on there. The more things you try, the more you learn, and the modification is perfectly reversible. If nothing else, you'll accumulate a junk box of spare parts, accumulate enough parts, and you'll be able to build another guitar.
Remember that it may very well not be the Gibson standard spacing on the bridge - you'll need to find the dimensions to make sure you're getting the right parts. I say replace all the electronics and leave the bridge alone as long as it works.