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Pumpkinhead

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  1. Thanks Rastus, Vomer and JonnyG. The Burns, Italia and Vintage 12 strings are all on my "to try" list if I can track them down locally. I suppose any of these would make sense if they sound nice but there's a part of me that's always wanted a Rickenbacker so I'm wondering if I won't actually be happy until I get one - stupidly thin neck not withstanding. I'm actually hoping that I might even be OK with it, given that I can play a bit of mandolin and I've been perfectly happy on my Peerless Casino which has something like a 30-40mm nut width. Need to try one out to be sure. Thanks for the suggestions.
  2. Cheers Tweed. I've just checked and mine are very close to those measurements so I know that raising anything isn't really going to help too much. I've also been messing about with the Casino for the first time in a few weeks and it's probably not as bad sounding as I made out. I think part of it is that I have limited experience of "full" hollowbodies and I was just surprised that the Casino sounded a bit "flabby", compared to a solid. I had expected something a bit more "airy" and "jangly".
  3. I just wish they'd re-issue the Riviera 12 string, signature or not. I'm looking for an electric 12 at the moment and the choice, particularly here in the UK, is very poor. I've not quite got enough cash for a Ricky and I'm not 100% sure that I want one, even if I did. That skinny neck and narrow nut combo seems like suicide on a 12 string. I have seen an Eastwood Nashville 12 on ebay that seems like a Riviera copy though. Anyone got any experience with these?
  4. Will, I'm pretty sure that comes under the "not an economic upgrade" category. That's not to say that you can't do it, just that it will end up costing a ludicrous amount of money. What about a new Epiphone Swingster? They come in black and are reasonably close. Epiphone Emperor Swingster Failing that, a couple of other manufacturers make large-bodied hollowbodies in that finish at a similar price point. I won't mention them here as I'm not sure if I can. That said, I'd definitely be checking out the Swingster myself.
  5. Out of interest - does anybody have any measurements how far they have their Casino pickups from the strings? I got mine rewound by a pickup builder here in the UK. The stock units (Korean Peerless) were wound to about 11.2k and they sounded very hot, dark and dull. I asked the builder for a lower output, more "vintage" sound. They came back at about 8.2k bridge (10,000 winds) and 6.7k neck (80000) winds. The bridge now uses a polished A5 magnet, the neck a rough-cast A3. Here's the rub - I still think it sounds "woofy" and dull. I have two other P90 guitars (LP Historic 56 reissue and Yamaha SA503 TVL) and they both share a sweet, chiming, jangly clean and do the dirty thing nicely. The Casino is just an ill-defined mess compared to these! Maybe I'm just fighting some inherent property of the hollow Casino but I struggle to dial it in. My first step is to completely remove all the bass on the amp/POD! I've tried raising the neck pickup polepieces and this has helped a bit and the pickups are now almost identical in volume. Someone suggested raising the bridge pickup but I imagine this would just make things even worse?
  6. G6120 - I did buy an ES330 reissue but it had some issues (including a loose piece of wood klonking about inside the body!) so I sent it back. Funnily enough the other Casino I liked was a Chinese "Inspired by" Lennon model. I just kept reading the whole "Peerless is better" thing so I bought one on ebay. To be fair, it's not bad, just not great either. I should have done more research into the pickup rewind specs. I left the maker to come up with his own, based on my perceived requirements. The stock units were way too hot and I thought this was making the guitar very muddy sounding but I now realise it was more than this! As they say "you live and learn".
  7. Korean Peerless Epiphone Casino. Mods are: Tusq nut. New bridge and tuners (gotoh). Refretted with stewmac jumbo wire. Full rewire with new capacitors and CTS Pots. Black witches hat knobs and a custom black pickguard. Pickups rewound to following spec: Neck - 8000 turns (underwound)/A3 rough cast magnet/6.66K DC resistance Bridge - 10,000 turns (stock wind)/A5 polished magnet/8.2k DC resistance New "1018 steel" polepice screws. And guess what? After giving it a few months to try and get used to it. I still don't like it :( It's hard to play. The narrow nut has had the string spacing maximised but I prefer the original - the top E is too close to the edge of the fingerboard. There's also much more tension than my other 24.75" guitars with the same strings (D'Addario 10s). Sound-wise, I also made some poor decisions with the electrics. The pickups are insipid - no real "spank" and very "woofy" sounding - even rolling the bass to zero on my amp/POD it still sounds very muddy. The tone pots are useless too - they're .047 caps. I've since realised that my Gibsons use .022 and I like this value much more with humbuckers and P90s. All my own fault really - should have gone with new pickups over the rewind and done more research regarding the caps. So, all things considered, an expensive lesson! I'm not going to throw good money after bad trying to rectify it. I've decided to give the guitar away to a family member and try and forget about it. I sold a good guitar (Tokai 335) to get this one and it ranks as one of the more stupid decisions of my guitar playing life. As they say, "there's no fool like an old fool".
  8. Another Casino, as opposed to a Sheraton, but I figured that one more wouldn't cause a problem. I was inspired in part by Notes Norton's Casino and had a similar makeover done when I had it upgraded:
  9. Fair comment. I was just offering an alternative idea of what might be wrong but I agree that it makes sense to start with the basics. For the bridge wire problem, on my LP I (very carefully) pushed the wire down with a small screwdriver, putting a small kink in the wire in-between the saddle adjustment screws and that fixed it. Another solution I've read of is to use a dab of clear nail polish to temporarily fix the wire into place. On my Casino, I was getting sick of buzzing so I had a Gotoh wireless ABR installed.
  10. +1 Mine had a terrible buzzing that would stop if I pressed my finger on the pickup cover. During some recent mods, my tech said that the solder joint holding the cover to the pickup body was loose and this was causing the problem. I don't like the look of those polepiece screws below the cover and it would support the theory that the it is not properly fixed on. As someone was calling for pictures, here's mine after the mods. I've had "witches hat" knobs and a black pickguard made for more of an ES330 look:
  11. Funnily enough, that was one thing that put me off the IBJL Casino I tried out. The black paint was very sloppily applied. Even my wife, not one for generally noticing things on guitars said that it looked cheap and nasty! (Although she probably had a vested interest in me not buying another guitar )
  12. The models with "Orville by Gibson" on the headstock had USA-made pickups ('57 Classics I think) whereas the ones badged "Orville" had Japanese pickups. I don't think there were too many other differences (electronics possibly?) but obviously the "Orville by Gibson" guitars are more desirable/expensive. At the time I did some research into my "Orville" badged ES335 (although, like this example, the label inside said "Orville by Gibson"). Mine was a late example. By then they were not making "Orville by Gibson" guitars and they were all badged just "Orville" and I presume had the Japanese pickups. Also: the examples of "Orville by Gibson" 335s I've seen all had kluson-style tuners (green plastic pegs) whereas my "Orville" had Grover-style tuners (metal pegs).
  13. I used to have an Orville ES335 and it was a great guitar. Watch out though. My understanding is that, as with Epis, there are fake Orvilles out there (although a quick google leads me to believe it's the Les Pauls that seem more common targets for the scammers). It seems very cheap for what it is and I'd not be risking it if I wasn't 100% sure it was genuine.
  14. Very nice! I like fat necks too. I've never found them a problem playing-wise (my hands are medium/normal sized) and they always seem to add something sonically. Sound-wise, I'd be prepared to bet it's pretty close to my '88 Strat Plus - also in cream but it's gone very yellow over the years. I swapped out the Wilkinson nut for the same LSR model you have on yours. Great for those Jeff Beck impersonations! (Not that my Jeff Beck impersonations are all that great )
  15. What a great site I've seen it before when I was looking for tab but I must have missed the gear section. At least with my boss BCB6 pedalboard I've got one of the pieces of gear that JM used I'll enjoy reading that properly when I get chance.
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