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Everything posted by sbpark

  1. What is your reason for wanting to know? Regardless of what year they started PLEK'ing, I'd just evaluate each guitar individually and if it needs a fret level/crown/polish/PLEK who cares what year they started using the PLEK machine? I have a 2010 Advanced Jumbo that had a hump in the upper frets. Had a local shop go through the guitar, had it PLEK'd and it plays great now, no buzz anywhere on the neck now. Money well spent.
  2. The Gibson brand guitar cleaner/polish is awesome for getting that arm haze off. I don't clean or wipe down my guitars regularly. I just hit them with the Gibson polish maybe a couple times a year and it gets rid of that haze in no time. For scratches I've had great results with Scratch X. I've used it a couple times when I was selling a guitar that had some light surface scratches and it worked amazingly well, resulting in a mirror finish.
  3. Pics are really small, but from what I can see it's nothing I'd even lose sleep over, let alone take to a shop to have fixed.
  4. Since you asked for opinions, I'd say don't bother with the replacing the bridge pins. Stock pins are just fine. If you're wanting a cosmetic change then go for it, but if you're looking for some dramatic sonic "improvement" don't get your hopes up. I will agree though, that the stock tuners are a bit annoying and not the smoothest (same with the stock Grovers on my 2012 AJ). I've replaced the nut on my AJ, and filed the nut slots on both guitars and had have them set up perfectly, and the tuners on both guitars leave a little to be desired.
  5. Just to update, after a while messing with the 490R/498T combo I ended up replacing them. I messed with different pickup heights and riding the volume knob, etc. but just couldn't get anything I liked for the type of stuff I like to play. Was going to just keep the Quick Connect system and ordered a pair of 57 Classics with the Quick Connecters, but never installed them and ended up sending them back and instead went for some Seymour Duncan Seth Lovers and a pre-wired Golden Era harness from StewMac with absolutely no regrets. The guitar plays and fells great and sounds fantastic now. I put the Quick Connect pickups and harness in a box if for whatever reason I want to return it to stock in the future. I'm mostly an acoustic player, and when I do play an electric it's usually a Tele, but man, this SG definitely gives the Teles a run for their money. A few weeks ago I scored an old Gibson SG chainsaw case for $25 from someone who was cleaning out their garage because their kids have moved out of the house. Fits the guitar like a glove and all the latches work. Since I took the pictures below I ordered some thick, heavy adhesive-backed felt and replaced some of the worn out original felt and reinforced some spots where the felt was gone. It isn't the prettiest case, but it sure is burly.
  6. Would be better if you could see what guitars people are actually buying. Did the economic crash coincide with higher end guitar sale losses, and once sales went back up in latter years were people buying more "budget" guitars like the stuff from Yamaha, Recording King, etc. or were they buying your higher end stuff from Gibson, Martin and the elite boutique builders? I ask because even though people may be buying more acoustic guitars, it doesn't mean they are buying the higher end stuff necessarily.
  7. Disagree 100%, but alas, we are all entitled to our opinions, right? Who actually goes into buying a new acoustic with the intent or expectation of resale value in mind?! Thinking of selling the guitar before you even buy it? If that's a criteria of yours, it's not a knock at the manufacturers, but more of the fault or personal issue with the buyer. As far as young people not interested in acoustic music, I don't think it's as dramatic or dire as you may think. Maybe with the very young who are just going along with whats on the radio, etc., but believe it or not there are genres/sub-generes that are as popular or more popular than they have been in the recent past like modern country, Americana, Alt-Country (regardless of what your own personal opinion is of these genres, they are pretty much thriving) and a resurgence of the classic country stuff means that people are still wanting acoustic instruments. People are always dying and guitars are always popping up for sale. Sure, the market for vintage instruments isn't what it was a number of years ago when there was a boom and prices were inflated, but things happen in cycles, and to think that there simply wont be a market for said instruments is just ridiculous. I agree that the baby boomers are dying off, and these guys are the ones that mostly fueled the market for these vintage instruments because they wanted to relive their youth, own something from their childhood, said instruments were said to be superior to anything currently made along with the flood of reissues "authentics" or whatever marketing term you'd like to apply for those who couldn't afford the real deal. But keep in mind that we are already experiencing certain highly regarded and prized materials used in acoustic guitars either becoming extremely rare, protected, expensive, etc., which in my opinion will keep many guitars fairly collectible, desirable and expensive. I'm guessing that even certain guitars that we regard as just run of the mill, or nothing special may start becoming more collectible and desirable as more and more materials become more and more scarce. So even though the current population of people who have been driving the market are dying off doesn't mean that there isn't going to be a totally different population of players or a different number of reasons that will keep the market going. Think outside the box.
  8. The J-15 was previously made with a sunburst finish, although it was a bit rare and they did only make a few, but they did exist before the 2018 model.
  9. Price increases seem a bit much, but the used market also seems a bit inflated as well. Seems like everyone is asking close to new prices for their used gear nowadays. Happy I picked up a '10 J45 True Vintage (for around $1900) last year and traded '76 Precision Bass for my '12 Advanced Jumbo. Neither of those are going anywhere. I bought a new Martin 000-15M a couple years ago and it actually needed a neck reset only 2 years after buying it brand new, and being the original owner, but Martin refused to fix it properly and instead authorized the bridge to be shaved down. Apparently this is such an issue with newer Martins that they changed their warranty because they were getting so many back for the same issue. Based on that experience I sold the guitar once I got it back from the shop and also sold my HD-28 because it left a very bad taste in my mouth. No want, need or desire for any other acoustics at the moment given the current state of the market. Just happy I have the two Gibsons and a Waterloo that I enjoy a great deal.
  10. Yep, pretty much came to the conclusion that all of these preferences and opinions are just that...preferences and opinions and there's nothing wrong with the guitar fro a manufacturing/ fit and finish perspective. Some like things one way, others seem to have VERY strong opinions about what they hypothesize is the right way and is the ONLY right way with no real proof to substantiate it, even though they seem very passionate that their way is the only way. Personally, I'll side with those who say I've been doing it this way for 30 years and have had no ill-effects. That works for me. Simple and to the point!
  11. Wow, so after all the insane back and forth between some members on this thread I came to the conclusion that my guitar is just fine, and some of you guys take this way too seriously! Thanks to those like RCT that gave some helpful and real-world info. Much appreciated!
  12. I think somewhere I saw 4/64" recommended as a Gibson starting point for their pickups. Granted that was for the 498T hat used to be in there and now it's a SD Seth Lover. I've noticed with the Seth Lovers they are VERY sensible to pickup height changes. Too night and they get a bit wooly/muddy but if they're too low you really lose some low end. Nice sounding pickups but seem more finicky to pickup height than other pickups. Granted, I'm also mostly used to single coils so himbuckers are a bit new to me. It's been a bit since I had a guitar with humbuxkers.
  13. Using the bridge pickup as an example, it's pretty much impossible to get the bridge pickup at say 4/64" from the string when fretted at the last fret because the way the pickup is angled results in the string hitting the other side of the pickup in some cases.
  14. Wondering where you take your measurements on SG's that don't use pickup rings, resulting in the pickup not being parallel to the strings? I installed a set of SD Seth Lovers into my SG Standard and have been tweaking them, and of course it's don by ear, but just curious for and hose of you who measure where on the pickup are you taking your measurements on the tilted pickup? Thanks!
  15. Wondering where you take your measurements on SG's that don't use pickup rings, resulting in the pickup not being parallel to the strings? I installed a set of SD Seth Lovers into my SG Standard and have been tweaking them, and of course it's don by ear, but just curious for and hose of you who measure where on the pickup are you taking your measurements on the tilted pickup? Thanks!
  16. Thanks for the thought out reply. Much appreciated. I'm not losing sleep over it at all. Just was curious. I tend to prefer higher action on my Telecasters because I do love to bend, do pedal steel licks, etc., and the guitars just feel better me that way. This SG though seems to feel it's best with low action and for now I'll just go with it and see what happens.
  17. Recently pickup up a used, but mint 2012 SG Standard. Not a mark on the thing, film still on the pickguard, all stock and original. Couldn't bond wth the stock 480R/498T pickups despite giving them a chance, messing with pickup heights, amp settings, etc. Went with some SD Seth Lovers and a StewMac Golden Age harness (I'm sure the 500k pots also made a difference compared to the origina stock 300k pots). Either way the guitar sounds fantastic with the new pickups. Then I discovered that people like the tailpiece as low as possible, and a high tailpiece means an incorrectly set neck angle. I have my tailpiece set so the strings are just missing touching the back of the bridge, resulting in about a quarter of the studs threads being visible above the body.. I tried "tone wrapping" the strings around the tailpiece to see if that improved or changed the sound, and got the tailpiece down to the body and the strings still cleared the back of the bridge, but to my surprise the guitar lost some clarity and chime, and had sort of a mid-range bump that was not pleasing. Pickup height was identical, strings were brand new with the tone wrapped and regularly strung tailpiece. I put the guitar back to the way it was previously not tone wrapping the strings around the tailpiece and the guitar sounds great again. Lots of warmth and chime, full and round and woody in the middle and neck positions, spanky and articulate on the bridge, with great response to pick attack and dynamics. The guitar is also set-up great. Action is surprisingly low at 4/64" on the low E and 3/64" on the high E with 0.008" of relief in the neck with no buzzing when the guitar is plugged in and the guitar feels great. (Usually I prefer slightly higher action like I have on my Telecaster, but on this guitar the lower action just feels "right". This findings got me thinking...If you have a vintage style Tele and raise the saddles you can for sure hear an improvement in the guitars resonance and increased volume when the guitar is played unplugged. Banjo players go for higher action for increased volume and projection. So what do may Gibson players feel that a lower tailpiece is more desirable? And does a higher tailpiece in the example of my guitar really mean that the neck angle is off from factory spec? I'm not super upon Gibson electrics. My thing are Fender Tells and Gibson acoustics, so the world of Gibson electrics is new to me, and just looking to get schooled on the topic and learn something and expand my knowledge base. Here's a picture of the the SG, and thank's to anyone who replies!
  18. Had the itch to own an SG again and came across a decent deal on a 2012 Standard. Paid $700 with a (pretty beat up) TKL hardshell case, guitar was bone stock, not a mark or scratch on it, and it still had the film on the pick guard (which I promptly removed). Tossed the horribly soft nylon nut and made a bone nut earlier today. Love how the neck is much chunkier and substantial than the thin neck that was on a 2013 SG Standard I had in the past. More like the neck that was on an SG Classic I foolishly sold last year. I'm loving the neck. After making the new nut and setting the guitar up it plays and feels great. The pickups are another story however. I'm not a super picky person, and really try my best to keep the electronics stock and not really a fan of modding and going down the rabbit hole of replacing everything, but I will say, despite messing with the pickups for a couple hours, they really aren't to my liking, in particular the bridge pickup. I can get it to sound just alright, but for the low gain, edge of breakup stuff the guitar just sounds generic and lacks clarity and note separation, and the pickup kind of has no character or personality. I like to play older country type stuff, alt-country/Americana, etc. Think along the lines of Wilco, Son Volt, Jayhawks, etc. I had 57 Classics in the 2013 SG I used to have and even though I though the bridge pickup was a bit bright, they were much more usable and "older" sounding than the 498T thats in this 2012 Standard, all I needed to do with the 57 Classics was roll off the tone a little and they were good to go. I messed with pickup height of the 498T, and lowering the pickup helped a little, but it always seems a bit too hot unless it's lowered quite a bit, but then it just ends up sounding small and weak and thin. Raise it up and it has a fuller sound, but then has too much gain, and I lose note separation when I play embellishments and quick little multiple note riffs, and also lose the chime that I remember from lower output humbuckers. I really don't want to put any money into the guitar, but I could justify dropping in a different bridge pickup it it would make all the difference. Not looking to change the wiring harness or anything like that, and would rather spend my time playing than tinkering and modding. This guitar does have the PCB and quick connects (love it or hate it). I'm wondering based on what I've just described and the type of music I like to play if one of the Burstbucker pickups would be a good choice, and if so, which version? I really do like this guitar a lot as far as the look, feel, weight, etc. Just wish I could get it to sound a bit more of a classic sound or have a bit more character/personality and make it more suited for the lower gain/edge of breakup type stuff I play. UPDATE: Ended up ordering a 57 Classic to replace the bridge and think it will pair well with the 490R neck pickup and be a better choice for the stuff I like to play.
  19. Every guitar is different, and will need to be set up differently. I know a lot of guys will set up every guitar to whatever measurements they think are ideal for them, others go by feel. I have a couple Gibson acoustics. One likes more relief, while the other seems to prefer an almost perfectly straight neck. I have my preferences of course, but also let the guitar dictate what it needs, or what adjustments allow the guitar to feel it's best. And as it's already been mentioned, Earlwine does NOT recommend that much relief in his book. He likes an almost dead-straight neck. He lists the manufacturers spec along with his own, which is usually around half of what the manufacturer recommends. I've had nothing but awesome results using his tips and recommendations. For the person learning this stuff his information is priceless. Not saying he's the be-all-end-all, because there are obviously many ways and techniques to achieve the same end result, but to insult the guy and say he's rubbish is a bit harsh.
  20. Just so I don't leave everyone hanging, I actually ended up with an SG Standard with humbuckers. I know I was looking for something with P90's, but changed my mind at the last minute found a 2012 SG Standard with a rosewood board in darn near mint condition, 100% stock (even still has the film on the pick guard, which I will be promptly peeling off after I give her a set up and some new strings). Came is a pretty banged up TKL case, but hey, that's what the case is there for, to protect the guitar, right? Picked it up for $700. After I set her up I'll take some pics and post them in a NGD later today or tomorrow. I've been up since around 4pm yesterday. Worked from 7pm last night until 7am this morning, then drove an hour to go get the guitar. I'm wiped out! I decided to go with hum buckers because my only other guitar at the moment was a Telecaster. I do love P90's, but figured I'd be able to cover a little more ground with the hum buckers, compared to two guitars with single coils, even though P90's are obviously a totally different beast than standard single coils. I've never owned a guitar with the 490R/498T combo, and have read very mixed reviews about them. I play mostly in the bridge position and middle position, and rarely use the neck by itself. I don't even come close to playing stuff that's very overdriven, just edge of break-up type stuff. Hoping I can make these pickups work for me! Good thing is if I don't bond with the guitar I could easily sell it for what I paid for it. Thanks again to everyone for their input!
  21. Just to clarify, not necessarily intending on using the SG for the really twangy country stuff, just giving you guys an idea of the stuff I like to play. I'd for sure be using the Tele for the old school, Honky Tonk type stuff. RCT does make a good point about the noise with P90's. Maybe just a regular old SG Standard with some hum buckers would be a better choice to compliment a Telecaster. And I'd say I like to play more "clean-ish" than clean. Just on the edge of break-up, with some more grit and bite when you dig in, and a cleaner tone when you back off. I've had pretty good luck with 57 Classics accomplishing that in the past, but the 57 Classic bridge can be a little bright and harsh. Wondering if the 490R/490T combo can do that kind of stuff? If my memory serves me correctly, the bridge pickup in that combo is a little hot, right?
  22. Used to have an SG Classic and sold it a little while ago, and have the hankering for an SG again, as all I have right now is a Tele. Wondering what the SG Standard P90 version is like in comparison as far as neck shape, feel, etc. I can pick up a used SG Classic for around $700 with a hardshell case, or take advantage of the 15% coupons right now and get a '16 SG Standard with P-90's for $850 plus tax, new with a warranty, then I'd have to get a hardshell case because they only come with gig bags. Only problem is, I'd have to order the Standard P-90, as there are none in stock near me. I play mostly old school country, alt-country stuff along the lines of anything from George Jones, Dwight Yoakam/Tom Anderson, Wilco, Son Volt, Jayhawks, etc. Whats the consensus? I've also owned a '13 SG Standard which was ok, but the neck was pretty darn slim/thin.
  23. Slotted saddles aren't always glued in,at least on Gibson so there is no "ripping or breaking" the glue joint. I am NOT a repairman, luthier, etc. Just a guy who misses around and has made three slotted saddles now after buying some blanks and files from StewMac and using my Dremel. My first attempt took forever, but by the third one I can made a new saddle for my AJ in a couple hours, like 2-3 hours, and you can see the results inputs #7 in this thread. If a dingus like me can do it, I'm sure any skilled tech or luthier with better/more tools at their disposal can crank one out MUCH faster. Let's face it, making a nit or saddle for a guitar is a pretty BASIC skill that EVERY competent should know how to do. If you have someone giving you grief and protesting a slotted saddle, they are either being super lazy or just can't do it, and you should find someone else. Yes, it is true that it's quite a but easier to lower the action on a drop-in saddle simply by sanding the bottom, and if you go too far you can shim it using super glue and thin wood strip and not have any real change in sound compared to the slotted saddle where you lower the action by sanding from the top. This is more difficult and you also have to retain the proper radius. If you go to far, well then you have to start over, but again, this is a BASIC skill for a tech in my opinion. Now, plugging and routing out a bridge that set up for a drop in saddle and converting it to a slotted saddle is a whole different story for sure.
  24. Another excellent choice, but may be just slightly above the Op's budget, but if I ever wanted to own a Martin again I'd probably go for a D-18.
  25. Just have them replicate an AJ bridge.
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