The JPPre72 set is a flip side of the Jimmy Page coin from Colorado-based ReWind Electric. As essentially being a take on the original pickups in Jimmy Page’s 1959 Les Paul, the JPPre72 set is a PAF replica set for all intents and purposes.
It seems that all the rage is about what Jimmy Page had going on in 1972 when he changed out the failing bridge PAF in his 1959 Les Paul. And there is plenty of ink being spilled across the interwebs each and every day on the resources to get “that” tone. Third world nations can run off the marketing budgets given to that tone quest. HaHa!
In fact, you might have already seen my article on the ReWind JPPost72 set. Still, there is not nearly enough attention given to what Jimmy Page had going on before he had to replace the bridge humbucker. That’s where the JPPre72 comes in to play, and I was recently able to lay hands on a set.
Now, I can dig that not everyone has heard of ReWind Electric. They pretty much came on the scene relatively recently in 2012. That means they didn’t have to live through Elektrisola’s big 2007-ish slip up of sending out poly as plain enamel. You know, the sort of thing that’s important to be aware of when performing a rewind or a repair on other brands that unknowingly fell victim to that mistake.
After starting a series of core PAF offerings, ReWind introduced the JP sets in the tail end of 2012. The same year as the worldwide release of another highly-promoted Page-themed humbucker set. Quite a year, wasn’t it? LOL! But still, the JPPre72 set has that different approach we are talking about.
The JPPre72 set is installed in the same double-hum guitar as the JPPost72 evaluation. Each pickup is wired for series/split/parellel options going to Bourns 500k pots and a Switchcraft 12120X toggle & output jack. The harness is connected with aerospace grade wire. And then out via an American Stage series cable from Planet Waves, which has a 28pF/ft capacitance and 22AWG oxygen-free copper conductor. I might not be cork-sniffing with certain types and brands of caps, by my rigs aren’t chopped liver either. HaHa!
The JPPre72 bridge is what you should expect from a PAF replica. Woody, clear note definition, and a little punchy. You might benefit from a little more drive to get this one to push into breakup. The voice is fairly balanced, which lends itself a lot to the transparency. And it gets pretty darned clean when backed off. A right solid effort.
The neck in the JPPre72 should be the same as the JPPost72 neck. It was the bridge that was swapped out, after all. You’d think I could cut and paste my comments from the JPPost72 in here, right? HaHa! Well… not so fast. LOL!
Apparently, my JPPost72 set was from the first year or so of JP-style production. How did I learn about that? The neck pickups don’t sound the same. Nor have the same readings, for that matter. The older JPPost72 neck has a dynamic liveliness to it that had put it in my preferred list of neck humbuckers. So then, imagine my surprise when the JPPre72 is bigger and fuller sounding in the same sense that you can get from much more affordable mass-produced beefier-voiced vintage-style replicas.
I did ask, and there is a running change in the line that accounts for this variation. There’s a definite change in the coil wire and a probable change in the magnet. And as we know, even the slightest change in the spec of a wire can result in a different tone from other variables (i.e., number of turns, tension, coil geometry, etc.) being the same.
There is some curious math going on with the number of turns and the DC resistance, but I’m not going to beat a dead horse at this point. The bottom line is there are differences. If there are people are buying it and liking it, that’s what matters. HaHa!
While there are some JPPost72 videos to be found, ones for the JPPre72 set appear to be in very short supply. It is strongly believed that Page used the 1959 Les Paul on “Whole Lotta Love” from 1969’s Led Zeppelin II, so let’s check out the vibe the JPPre72 is aiming for:
How about we look at some specs?
Series – 8.607 K
Inductance – 5.051 H
Screw – 4.477 K
Slug – 4.122 K
Parallel – 2.145 K
Magnet – Unoriented Alnico 5
Series – 8.286 K
Inductance – 4.975 H
Screw – 4.023 K
Slug – 4.256 K
Parallel – 2.067 K
Magnet – Unoriented Alnico 5
As already suggested, the JPPre72 set is intended to be a replica of PAF humbuckers from a 1959 Les Paul. Do they replicate what any of us hear on certain recordings? As much as most any PAF replica. And that’s the rub with the boutique PAF market. The available replica options can be as all-over-the-place as the original ones coming off the line 60 years ago. And these days, there may very well be as many (or more!) PAF replicas available on the market as actual functional PAFs in existence.
You can find the JPPre72 set with different cover options with varying degress of aging/relic. You can go all vintage style with the braided shield hookup wire, or you can give yourself all the Page wiring options with 4-con lead. The only ReWind models that I’ve found have the long mounting legs, which can be a little limiting if you’re looking to install in some of the more modern guitar options out there.
For reference, this ReWind Electric JPPre72 Humbucker Set evaluation was conducted with a Fractal Axe-Fx II XL+ featuring Celestion Impluse Responses and Fractal MFC-101 MIDI Foot Controller. Real cabs used were Marshall 1960B cabs loaded with Celestion Vintage 30s and G12M Greenbacks.