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Rich W

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Posts posted by Rich W


  1. I hang mine. But I have a dust issue. So I also take outdoor trash bags and make clear plastic dust covers for them.

     

    Dust is the enemy. Doesn't take too long for guitars left out in even mildly dusty rooms to end up with crackelly pots and sometimes even a bit of neck stickiness.

     

    On the other hand, displayed guitars get played more. And newer guitars with nitro finishes that are still curing seem to dry out faster when not stored in the case. Also, I just love looking at them.


  2. I haven't called it to there attention yet but am wondering if I should take this matter up with the store or contact Gibson directly.

     

    It's disappointing to discover that your brand new "baby" isn't totally brand new. You do have a lifetime warranty ... and you would only have to return the PG and not the whole guitar.

     

    If you feel strongly enough about this, it might be worth insisting on a new PG. Or, if you're going to scuff it up anyhow in the coming years, it might not be worth it. In your position, I think I might ask for a new one.

     

    Either way, thanks for the post. I'm always curious about folk's experiences on new guitar day, and things to look out for.


  3. When I got my new ES335 in January, I bought it because it sounded like nothing else I'd ever played. Since I've always got sucked into modding my LPs, SGs, & Firebirds, only to achieve marginal (if any) results, I knew this one was gonna be left alone.

     

    I'm happy with the tone of my 339 with the 57s. And I've listened to enough to "tone cap comparisons" on YouTube and other sites to know that the effect on tone that various cap types have is pretty subtle.

     

    The reason I did my 339 re-wire with an RS Guitarworks pre-wired harness is that I didn't like the limited range of the 339 volume controls with the stock Gibson pots.

     

    The pots in the RS kit have a more useable taper, and now the volume doesn't suddenly drop off when turning down past 7. I prefer volume controls that are still functional, even when turned down from 10 to 2 or 3.

     

     

    Out of curiosity, I compared the tapers of the stock ES-339 Gibson pots and RS Guitarworks Superpots by measuring the resistance change at each of the knob settings from 0 - 10.

     

    Turning down from 10 (by increments of 1), the resistance of Gibson pots increased more rapidly than the RS pots. And the Gibson pots were at close to full resistance (92%) when turned down to just 6. At the 0 - 5 knob settings, the Gibson pot resistances were equivalent to the volume being turned off.

     

    The RS pots, on the other hand, had a more gradual increase in resistance when the volume was turned down from 10.

     

     

    I also posted these numbers on the MyLesPaul forum (ToneFreaks subforum). The numbers in k ohms are:

     

    Gibson

    10: (0.4 / 462) 0%

    9: (72 / 462) 15%

    8: (217 / 462) 47%

    7: (358 / 462) 77%

    6: (426 / 462) 92%

    5: (445 / 462) 96%

    4: (455 / 462) 98%

    3: (456 / 462) 98%

    2: (462 / 465) 99%

    1: (465 / 465) 100%

    0: (465 / 465) 100%

    (values are the average of all 4 pots)

     

    RS Superpots

    10: (.03 / 545) 0%

    9: (44 / 545) 8%

    8: (155 / 545) 28%

    7: (260 / 545) 48%

    6: (357 / 545) 66%

    5: (399 / 545) 73%

    4: (433 / 545) 79%

    3: (475 / 545) 87%

    2: (521 / 545) 92%

    1: (545 / 545) 100%

    0: (545 / 545) 100%

    (values are the average of the 2 volume pots)

     

     

    This is consistent with what some people are saying about their ES-339 volume controls. But the volume sudden drop off when turning below 8 is not caused by the “Memphis Tone Circuit” (aka 50’s wiring). The sharp volume drop off is because of the extreme audio taper of the pots Gibson uses in the 339.

     

    I’m happier with taper of the RS SuperPots, and my volume controls are now more useable. Unlike before the change, the guitar is still audible at 2 and 3.

     

     

    Also, for what it’s worth, not all CTS pots are the same. The CTS tone pots I got from RS have a wider and more useable range than the stock Gibson pots.

     

    RS CTS Tone Pots

    0: (.04 / 558) 0%

    1: (1 / 558) 0%

    2: (26 / 558) 5%

    3: (51 / 558) 9%

    4: (77 / 558) 14%

    5: (103 / 558) 18%

    6: (244 / 558) 44%

    7: (283 / 558) 51%

    8: (404 / 558) 72%

    9: (529 / 558) 95%

    10: (558 / 558) 100%

    (values are the average of the 2 tone pots)

     

    I was hesitating making this change because of the challenge of replacing pots in a semi-hollow. But the job was easier than I thought (thanks to the instructions in the sticky thread in the MyLesPaul ToneFreaks forum).

     

    Although I did the upgrade primarily to make the volume controls more useable, to my ears, it sounds better too. I’m not a fan of ceramic tone caps.

     

    After this upgrade, I have a better, more usable guitar now. For those folks who are not satisfied with their 339 volume controls, I recommend it.


  4. Feeling sort of bad for Henry, that they have to return it, or let it sit on the wall, I almost kept it. I wanted to like it, but it just didn't blow my skirt up and I didn't want to settle for something I didn't want. It also had some defects in the polishing on the back and top leading radius, like the buffing wheel was loading up.

     

    Good move. You might have it for a long time, and you would have regretted settling for one that you don't love. You can change pretty much everything else with mods, but not the neck.


  5. I think I've got it figured out now. Gibson is calling the tall-skinny (.055 x .09") frets on 339s (similar to Dunlop 6105 profile) MEDIUM JUMBO ... with medium referring to width (.09") and jumbo referring to height (.055").

     

    Other fret wire manufacturers, suppliers like Stew-Mac, after-market replacement neck builders like Warmouth and US Guitars, and guitar builders like Fender use the term MEDIUM JUMBO to refer to wider frets (usually at least .1") of a more intermediate height (more like .04").

     

    Different builders use different terminology. For years, Leo Fender insisted on referring to vibrato as tremolo, and some folks still call the vibrato arms on guitars the trem bar.


  6. The reason some guitars just sound better is mainly due to the nature of the wood used on a particular guitar when it was constructed. The used 339 that you played that sounded better is not related to aging. The guitars that just don't sound that good unfortunately will never sound good, you become accustomed to their sound.

     

    Another reason why it's best to buy a semi-hollow (or any kind of guitar) only after you've had a chance to really play it and, if possible, compare its tone to others that are the same model.

     

    Acoustically, the pick of the litter will ring out the most, and it will sound the best plugged in.

     

    A dog will always be a dog ... and aging, pickup swaps, and other upgrades won't do much improve the mojo in bad wood.


  7. Last week I ordered a 339 with the 59 neck in antique red. I called Gibson directly and they said it could take 30-90 days to ship because they are back ordered. He said that model was the most popular and demand is high.

     

    Maybe that's partly why they bumped the 339 price up by $300 since last year.


  8. Is it possible to get a pickguard with an 'aged' look so whites in the white/black/white laminate part of the pickguard are more yellowed and fit in better with the aesthetics of this instrument?

     

    I agree with you Bob. But before you fork out cash for a custom pick guard, you might want to try aging yours first.

     

    One way to darken the white plastic is to let it sit in a tray coffee for a few minutes ... but not long, or you'll age it too much. Keep taking it out periodically and checking it until white of the PG has darkened enough to match that of the binding.

     

    I haven't done this myself, but considered it. Instead, because I'm a finger picker and because I like the "naked" look, I ended up just leaving the guard off.


  9. Some people prefer the tone of semi-hollows with laminate tops as opposed to solid tops, and would go for the 359.

     

    Bill Collings makes fantastic guitars, including a couple of I-35s that are similar to the 356 and 359. If you have the time to read this Tone Quest Report interview and are interested in tone woods, you might be surprised by Collings' discoveries about the beautiful and consistent and more musical tone of the one with the laminate top when compared to the one with the solid top.

     

    http://www.collingsguitars.com/Images/reviews/I35LC_tonequest.pdf


  10. The frets on my 339 are tall-skinny (.055 x .09). I measured them with digital calipers and they're close to the dimensions of Dunlop 6105s.

     

    Gibson is advertising 339s on their website as having "medium jumbo" frets, which are wider and not as tall than 6105s.

     

    Medium jumbos are more like .36 x .106 (cf. Dunlop 6130s).

     

    Does anyone have true medium jumbos on their 339?

     

    Maybe Gibson was using tall-skinny frets on 339s, but changed to medium jumbos very recently? I bought my 339 new about a year ago.

     

    Or is what Gibson refers to as "medium jumbo" actually what other manufacturers and fret makers call tall-skinny?


  11. Holy Crap! I really hit a sore spot with some people by suggesting this.

     

    I don’t really care what you boys want to talk about besides music.

     

    I mentioned the idea, thinking it might make things more efficient ... but if the status quo is working well for everyone, then that’s fine too.


  12. Dudes...seriously? You can't just not click on the threads you don't like? Someone has to create a new section just for you?

     

    The issue, from my perspective, is that having a lot of "noise" threads about coyotes and favorite cigarettes can quickly bump music-related threads down the top couple of pages and bury them.

     

    Yes, I could leave, as suggested by Mr. Dem00n.

     

    But perhaps I'm not the only one who is tired of sifting through the non-music threads ... maybe a lot of people would prefer to see those types of threads on another board.


  13. Looking at these new pre-slotted bone nuts at Stew-Mac. Anyone know if the 35.56mm fits the 50's neck profile and the 33.65mm fits the 60's neck? Or is it not that simple? I guess I may have to break out the ruler. Thought one of you may have used them before.

     

    Did you decide to get one? If so, how was the install?


  14. To be honest, for me it's all about 68-74. Beggar's Banquet, Let it Bleed,

    Sticky Fingers, Exile on Main Street, Goat's Head Soup and It's Only Rock & Roll

    are the Stones albums I love. So even though they aren't exactly "early"

    work, here are some of my favorite tunes...

     

     

     

    I agree 100% ... the Mick Taylor version of the Stones was the finest

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