Sorry to hear that you were experiencing noise issues with your Gilmour style Black Strat pickguard assembly you purchased from us at OverDrive Custom Guitar works. But I do find it odd that if you were experiencing such “complete failure” as you describe it due to noise issues, why is this the first we’ve heard about it months after you took possession and after you disassembled and modified it, and only then here in a forum, not direct? You never contacted us to allow us the opportunity to determine what the root cause of your noise issues and what action might be taken to solve or reduce your noise problem so you could use the complete pickguard assembly as you had purchased without compromise of the pickup set. You say you know your way around guitar electronics, then you must be aware of the possibility of noise or hum associated with true single coil pickups and also know there are many factors that can contribute to noise as well as factors that can accentuate the issue. There are many different things that can cause hum or noise issues that it would be too lengthy to go into detail here, but if you do not attempt to address all the possibilities it is often easiest to blame the manufacturer and not the installation or environment in which it is used. Also, if you were previously accustomed to noiseless pickups or Humbucking pickups and switch to a true single coil pickup system your first thoughts and impressions of them are with the inherent characteristic hum or noise you experience and figure that there must be something wrong. With so many of these Gilmour style Black Strat true single coil pickup assemblies leaving our shop each week and zero complaints to such similar noise issues you have have described, there is always the possibility that your particular pickguard assembly may have had a specific issue, or possibly it was the installation, associated equipment, wiring, etc… But with all of these we’ve built and not a single complaint along the lines as yours, have you considered that it may of just been your particular pickguard, installation or that you are accentuating the noise issue with high gain pedals, poor cords (patch cords too), bad equipment grounds, etc… the list can go on and on of possible contributors to excessive hum/noise. But when you start saying that your purchase from us was a complete failure because of noise, that goes against all statistics to the contrary, you just neglected to address the issue in a logical straight forward manor to isolate the source of the noise and took the drastic measure in replacing the pickups with a set of noiseless as the only solution. The pickups in the Gilmour Black Strat are superb quality and sonically great pickups, they have been used for decades without issue, there’s a lot to be said positively for a true single coil Strat pickup tone, nothing can compare in their class as long as you are willing to understand the characteristic hum/noise that is associated with the design and know how to work with it if you do experience problems. One must go through a process of elimination to get to the root cause and only then can an appropriate solution be applied.
David Gilmour’s black Stratocaster is almost as legendary as the man himself. The guitar has been featured on some of the world’s biggest selling albums of all time and classic Pink Floyd songs like Money, Shine On You Crazy Diamond and Comfortably Numb. Now, some 40 years later, Fender has released a signature model and a whole generation guitar players are modifying their guitars for a similar look and sound.
David bought the Black Strat at Manny’s guitar store in New York, USA in May 1970 during Pink Floyd’s North American tour. As fate would have it, David had just weeks earlier bough his first black Stratocaster at the same store but it was stolen along with the rest of Floyd’s rig. Being forced to cancel the rest of the tour David once again visited Manny’s on their way back home and the rest is pretty much history. The Black Strat made its debut performance at the Bath festival in June 1970.
The guitar has gone through many changes over the years with different necks, pickups and custom features. Years changed though and by the mid 80s David had replaced all his guitars with Fender’s new line of 1957 reissues. The Black Strat was donated to Hard Rock Café were it was on display until 1997. In 2005 Pink Floyd reunited for a last time at the Live 8 show in London’s Hyde Park and the Black Strat made its triumphant return. It’s been David’s main guitar ever since.