GET A MULTIMETER
Any working musician, not least one who dabbles in modding, needs a multimeter: a simple device that measures resistance, voltage and current. To measure a pickup’s DC resistance – which gives you a rough idea of its power compared to a similar pickup – put the multimeter in resistance mode, indicated by the omega symbol. Then set the ohm range to 20k and hold one of the probes on the ‘hot’ lead and the other on the ‘ground’ lead and you should get a reading. A vintage PAF-style pickup might measure 7k ohms and above while a Strat single coil will have a lower reading. If your pickup is fourconductor you’ll need to follow the brand’s wire colour code. For example, with a Seymour Duncan humbucker you’ll need to join the red and white wires and measure across the black (hot) and green (ground) wires to get the normal series humbucking reading.