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ES-175 Strap Button

#1 User is offline   TomToJapan 

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Posted 21 February 2009 - 08:23 AM

I have a beautiful Gibson hollow-body. I love the sound but the guitar has only one strap button located on the bottom of the body. There is nothing on the upper bout/neck heel. Is this normal? The models I've seen on ebay seem to share this trait.

I'd like to be able to play standing so I am planning on having a second strap button installed. Will having one added decrease the value of the guitar?
Anything I should know about placement?

Also, the last 3 digits of the serial number are 714. Does this mean it was the 14th or 714th guitar made that day?


Thanks,

Tom
(Edited for stupidity)
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#2 User is offline   bobv 

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Posted 21 February 2009 - 03:18 PM

I'm a little confused by your title. If it's an ES-175 it isn't a solidbody.

In any event, the placement of the strap button probably won't affect the value if it's done properly. That's the rub. There are different opinions on where it should be put. My vote is on the treble side of the neck heel.

Not for anything (the polite version of the Brooklynese "notfornuthin") you could do a search of the forum and find lots of answers on strap buttons, not to mention decoding serial numbers.
"Why don't you just make 10 louder, and make 10 be the top number, and make that a little louder?"

#3 User is offline   TomToJapan 

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Posted 21 February 2009 - 04:18 PM

bobv,

Thanks for the response. You are absolutely right. Momentary brain lapse. It is indeed a hollow-body.

I did a search for the strap button and found some interesting answers.

Unfortunately, the serial number is a bit more of a problem. According to Gibson, my guitar was built on May 5th, 2008. The location of the build is a little more hazy. The last three digits of the serial number refer to:

"...RRR is the factory ranking/plant designation number.

Since 1989, all Gibson acoustics are built in Bozeman, MT and all Gibson electrics are built in Nashville or Memphis. Ranking numbers for Bozeman start each day at 001 and the electrics may start as low as the 300s."

This still doesn't help with what 714 represents. Any help would be appreciated.

Thanks again,

Tom

#4 User is offline   Mr. Robot 

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Posted 21 February 2009 - 10:31 PM

Tom. My 175 is the same. I am told that this is because it is a reissue and probably out of the Custom Shop.

What you need is a guitar strap designed to handle such things. Have a look at old photos of guitarists and you will see that hollowbodies straps are tied to the headstock.

So you you need a good strap designed with the capability of being tied to the neck. They work perfectly well.
I would avoid adding something to the original.
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#5 User is offline   bobv 

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Posted 22 February 2009 - 04:58 AM

ES guitars in 2008 would've all been made in the relatively new Memphis "Custom" plant. It's not the Nashville Custom Shop where the historics are made, but it is considered part of the custom shop operations and it's certainly nothing like the videos you may have seen of the GibsonUSA plant where thousands of guitars are flying overhead like a drycleaning shop. There's a video on the Gibson site somewhere (good luck finding it with the new site) of the ES Memphis factory. Used to be a separate ES microsite.

I believe L5Larry has the answer regarding your strap button.
"Why don't you just make 10 louder, and make 10 be the top number, and make that a little louder?"

#6 User is offline   hallgroper 

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Posted 22 February 2009 - 05:28 AM

I maintain and use mine as Mr. Robot siggested, but certainly Bob is right about where you could do a button if you prefer. Don't forget your felt buffer!

Steve
"The empty vessel makes the loudest sound." w.s.

#7 User is offline   L5Larry 

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Posted 22 February 2009 - 05:47 AM

Quote

I believe L5Larry has the answer regarding your strap button.


Thanks for the vote of confidence, BUT, especially in this matter, I have only an OPINION and preference.

My preference, and the place where I've installed front strap buttons on both my L-5 and L-7, is on the butt-end of the heel cap. Other members have different opinions of the proper location, and there have been a few very heated discussions in these threads on this question. To me the heel cap is the "classic" location, and ANY other location not only looks funny, but runs the risk of interfereing with your left hand while playing high on the neck.

Here's a pic of the installation of my L-5
Posted Image

Many members of this forum disagree with me, so I guess it's really up to personal preference. Here's a link to a very good discussion on the matter even if a lot, if not most, of the people involved did NOT agree with me.

http://forums.gibson...?g=posts&t=6716

#8 User is offline   InsideMan 

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Posted 22 February 2009 - 11:53 AM

There are two solutions that will have zero impact on your guitar. The first is the "old-timey" strap with a buttonhole on one end and "shoelaces" on the other to tie around the head just above the nut.

The other is a little gizmo sold by Martin:

Posted Image

This accomplishes the same thing with a two-buttonhole strap and is what I use on my L-5 WM. Cheers.
"There's a fine line between genius and insanity. I have erased this line." - Oscar Levant

#9 User is offline   TomToJapan 

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Posted 22 February 2009 - 03:22 PM

Thank you all. What a resource!!! I appreciate all the help.

Tom

#10 User is offline   Californiaman 

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Posted 23 February 2009 - 08:10 AM

I use a shoelaces style strap and it simply ties right around the headstock.
Works great for me.
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#11 User is offline   dudehead 

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Posted 23 February 2009 - 08:55 AM

I took my 1960 125T to the guitar repair man just after I'd bought because I was convinced I needed a strap button on the body to be able to play it properly like my other guitars. He winced and then refused to do it.

He told me to take it another guitar repair store - he only charges five pounds to install strap buttons but he forsook the cash because he didn't want it on his conscience. I see what he means - if it is really 'beautiful' 175 why not leave it in its current condition? My 125 is probably worth 1400 dollars, not that much, but it is a shame to drill into an instrument that is in great condition after 50 years.

I tie the strap round the headstock and it works fine...

#12 User is offline   dudehead 

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Posted 23 February 2009 - 08:58 AM

PS - the martin gizmo is pretty cool but i picked up a wooden coat toggle button from a dressmaker shop which, tied to a shoelace, works in just the same way and looks pretty nice too, and it only cost me 20p the martin made thing is around 15 bucks i think

#13 User is offline   dudehead 

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Posted 23 February 2009 - 09:40 AM

this is what it looks like...
http://www.23hq.com/...970956/standard

#14 User is online   Murph 

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Posted 24 February 2009 - 12:37 PM

Good job, dude (head..)

Murph.

#15 User is offline   anothersixstringer 

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Posted 24 February 2009 - 07:16 PM

I use this with my Es-175 and it works like a charm. You only have to attach it to your favourite strap O:)
http://store.daddari...category/152500
Cheers!

#16 User is offline   AlanC 

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Posted 25 February 2009 - 01:21 PM

I can read in the responses provided some hesitancy about adding anything to the guitar that makes it non standard.

I sort of agree, but I like having strap buttons so that I can use a normal strap. L5larry's approach on his L5 looked good to me. I also have an L5 and I put the button just up from where L5larry put his.

Recently I converted my strap buttons on all my guitars to the new schaller buttons to enable me to use schaller strap locks. I have kept the Gibson buttons so that if I ever sell any of my guitars I can return it to almost its original form except that it will have two buttons not one.

I also put strap buttons on my acoustics again something that some would be horrified by.

In the end my view is that the guitars are made to be played and I like to make them fit my needs whilst endeavouring to retain the beauty of all Gibson guiitars (and they are beautiful)!!
AlanC.



#17 User is offline   kawa 

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Posted 02 January 2010 - 10:06 AM

I chose the 'LP'style positions at last for the best standing playability.

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