OK, guys, I haven't edited anyone's post here, but this discussion is turning political, which is inappropriate for the forum. Let's talk guitars and leave the rest for other venues . . .
EDIT: I took 'em out. Too much potential for starting a meltdown, no matter how unintentional at the beginning.
re-EDIT: Upon second thought, I'm not sorry I took out the political talking points, but I could have done it with simple Edits instead of wholesale carnage. I apologize for abusing my Weapons of Crass Destruction.
But the lesson learned here is, I don't play favorites - everyone gets it when they need it, my friends included.
newey gets close - most sources give the nod to George Beauchamp, while working at Rickenbacker in the early 40's.
Some fanboi's like to think it was Bill Lawrence, but he was quite a few years later. (However, you might give Bill kudos for kick-starting the whole after-market pickup industry.) Seth Lover came along in between those two, but he really gets the credit for the Humbucker, which wasn't potted for several years after its introduction.
I have no hard and fast evidence, only anecdotal legend and lore. I'm open to persuasion that someone else first did the job.... but it better be good.
Rule #1: All Lives Are Final. Make sure that the life you have just been issued is appropriate for your needs, before departing the womb.
Rule #2: In case you don't like the life you have, see Rule #1.
Wax encasing things would have been second nature to any electrical designer, back to the 1910s and '20s. So, the first guy who ever heard a pickup squeal probably immediately thought "Dunk it in wax".
By 1955, Fender was lacquering their pickups to accomplish the same thing. But wax is easier to get out if you ever need to take it apart later. . .
I tell ya, there's a few politicians on this side of the Ball that we'd like to see wax-potted!!! ;D
...seriously though, I just kinda thought that the whole wax-potting thing had been going on forever..I remember my dear old electrical-engineer Dad talking to me (in the 1950s) about stuff like that being very old-school.....and he had been working for the BBC in the 1930s & 40s...
More than six guitars?
..it's only an addiction if you're trying to quit...
isnt it amazing that that "we" always think that "we" invented EVERYTHING ?
our forefathers were not idiots ... they came up with a few pretty cool things way back when.
heck , our ancient ancestors created things that we cant duplicate today ... maybe in a few decades we will "invent" the technology to do what was being done thousands of years ago by " ignorant savages" ;D