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Maestro Vibrola on ES339

#1 User is offline   Austin19 

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Posted 22 November 2015 - 01:25 PM

Hello Gibson compadres,

I'm considering putting a Maestro vibrola system on my ES 339. Any suggestions? I haven't actually seen one on this guitar so I want to make sure it will fit and be functional on the instrument. Please hit me with some feedback, I'd really love to hear any comments about the Maestro, the 339, your dog, whatever I dont care :)


Austin from Portland Oregon, USA

#2 User is offline   capmaster 

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Posted 22 November 2015 - 01:49 PM

Hello Austin, and welcome here.

First, I think I wouldn't want to mar the top of an ES-339.

Second, and same important I think, the Maestro vibrato is of very little use. It came stock on my Frank Zappa "Roxy" SGs, and like Frank mostly did, I just swing the lever out of the way. When putting the guitars back into their cases, I swing the lever back right across the string suspension so that it doesn't affect tuning from the case lid's pressure.

Even roller bridges don't make that thing work without strings gone out of tune after even light use. When I want to apply vibrato, I play one of my Floyd Rose equipped guitars. There's nothing that keeps up with double-locked strings.

The FZ "Roxy" SG is such a nice guitar that I decided to go with her despite of the unusable Maestro system. Into the bargain, this has been the instrument, or more precisely what Frank Zappa got out of it, which made me want to start playing guitars years later. But for the Maestro's functionality it's the same as with the "vintage" style vibratos on the Fender Stratocasters of all of my pals. They mount strong springs to lock the synchronized bridge to the top and leave out the arm. The Maestro calls for leaving it alone and taking some more time for tuning the guitar. All of my Strats have Floyd Rose systems stock.

Honestly, I wish I could tell you something more pleasant, but that's it.
(The Fates lead the willing and drag those who are unwilling.)
Lucius Annaeus Seneca

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