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johnnyvn

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Everything posted by johnnyvn

  1. Yes, we did measure the distance and moved the bridge height on the 1961 so that it would match the 1959 height. Good question about the guage of the strings. Not sure about that. Felt the same but perhaps it could be string related at least a bit. Yes, to strumming and playing at pretty much the same volume, same guitar chords, same cables, picks, same amp, etc.
  2. Hey, thanks for that explanation. But now I have a follow up question. Both guitars *supposedly* have the same pickup in them (I forgot to mention that important fact in my first post). They are the MHS P90's. So, I was thinking that the pickups *should* be pretty similar sounding. Yet the '59 bridge pickup was much louder and (perhaps simply because of the volume) sounded like it had more character and "balls" (sorry, ladies, it's just figure of speech). So would it make sense that there would be a big volume difference from the *same* pickups made by the same company? Thanks again...
  3. Hey guys, As you can tell from the title of this thread, I don't know tons about guitar electronics. So, I own a Memphis '59 Reissue ES-330. As many of you know, these were released about 4 years ago. A year or two later, Memphis released a '61 Reissue ES-330. My friend owns one of those. So, the other day, we compared the two, and one thing that really stood out was that the bridge pickup on the '59 was way louder than the bridge pickup on the '61. We looked at the distance from the poles of each pickup to the strings above, and they were pretty much the same. So would it be right to assume that it's simply the pickups themselves that account for the volume difference (BTW, same amp, same cable, etc). I mean, what else could it be? And if we believe it's just the pickup itself, what makes one pickup louder than another? Is it the amount of "winds" of wire around the magnet(s) or something? Can anyone explain? Thanks much...
  4. Push and Big, thanks so much for the awesome descriptions. Big, those pics are worth a thousand words, right? Really cool to have that info...thank you both...
  5. Hi all, OK. Slim Taper Neck. We've all heard the term. But what does it actually mean? Is it slimmer in width? Is it slimmer in depth? Is it both? If it is slimmer in width, is it that way up and down the whole neck? If it is slimmer in depth, is it that way up and down the whole neck? Or does it taper at one end of the neck more than the other? Does it taper from a "fatter" profile near the body to a thinner one by the nut? Vice versa? Any thoughts would be appreciated! Thanks, John
  6. Dave, sorry for the very delayed response to your awesome post! I've been visiting my 90yo+ parents for the last several days and didn't have much free time. And thank you for joining just to inform me of your experience. I really appreciate it! I also hope you enjoy your time here! I really appreciated your perspective on nearly every point you made. One of the things I've been concerned about is whether the guitar would look like some bastardized piece of wood upon completion, so your statement that "the finish is as good as new" is quite reassuring. The person I'm thinking of having do the work is, I feel, a complete professional, and I'm sure he'll tell me whether he would recommend undertaking the process or not once he has seen my actual guitar. Like you, I'm not a guitar "collector" and certainly did NOT buy this guitar with "collecting" or "investment" in mind. Rather, I bought it because I want to play the thing every day and if I thought there were exercises I could do to actually increase the size of my hands, I would do them. But I'm in my early 60's and doubt that my hands will be growing larger anytime soon. I've got the same problem as you...can barely reach my thumb to the 6th string and there would be NO hope of reaching the 5th. And even on the 6th, then I'm having troubles keeping the 1st and 2nd strings ringing clear. It's frustrating. But the look, feel, and especially SOUND of this guitar is everything I could ever hope for. AND, the fact that it is a sunburst model with factory installed Bigsby means I probably won't ever find another (Mike Voltz, who oversaw the manufacture of these guitars in Memphis, told me that they probably only made 20-40 sunburst with Bigsby before finally settling on offer the Bigs only on the cherry color. One last question...might you wish to share how much the procedure cost in your case? I have NO idea, but I'm presuming that it would be $500 - $1000 to have it done properly and well. I hope I'm in the ballpark. Anyway, thanks again so much for sharing your experience. Much appreciated! John
  7. V, awesome! What do you feel are the major differences sonically or otherwise between the 225 and the 330? Obviously the single cutaway...but given that they probably share the same awesome underwound P90's, what do you feel are the differences? Thanks, J
  8. Wow, V, That looks like a killer box! Do you own one? Pics? Can you tell me about the neck profile? I'd love to have one of those, and I'd be throwing a Bigsby on that bad boy straight away! Thanks for pointing out what looks to be a great box...
  9. MHS, as you probably know, stands for Memphis Historic Spec. As such, I believe they come humbucker style and they also come P-90 style. The ES-330 uses MHS pickups, and I can tell you that I think these are the coolest sounding P90's I have ever heard. I just love mine. It's the tone of the 60's for sure!
  10. Yeah, you're right! When I first opened the case of the guitar, I gasped from its just jaw-dropping beauty. I mean, simply stunning stunning stunning. But even the first time I picked it up, and before I even got it into playing position, I could tell just holding it that the neck was large...much larger than I've ever played in my life, and I'm afraid that my hand is simply not big enough to handle it. The guy who I'm considering is named Bill Asher (asherguitars.com). He builds for David Lindley, Lindsay Buckingham, Ben Harper, Jackson Browne and bunch of west coast cats. When I asked him if it was a crazy idea, he says he does it all the time for those guys, because they want their necks JUST RIGHT. His wife later pulled me aside and told me that Bill is simply as passionate as can be about his work and that he'd be the kind of guy who would put as much love into my guitar as I would! I know...she's his wife, for heaven sakes, but she's Japanese, and I know from experience that the Japanese are often very passionate about workmanship, so I felt that her opinion had value. My first step would be to take him my guitar along with my Casino and let him evaluate the situation. I'm fairly certain after speaking with him that if he didn't feel it was the right thing to do, he'd tell me. One more thing...when I was a teenager, I had a red 335 which my Dad bought for me and which I sold along the way in life (before I realized my stupid ways of youth!). And that neck was quite thin. In this case, the guitar has beautifully rolled binding along the neck, so I won't or maybe can't even make it thinner...but I'm hoping the "depth" of the neck can be made more shallow. But Bill will measure my Casino and see if it's possible to match... Thanks for your comments!
  11. Thanks, J, Yes, some great points there. I didn't buy it for any sort of "collection". I bought it simply to relive my Beatle days with it (I know, they were really using Casino's, but I read such great things about the Memphis VOS 330 reissues that I just had to try it...and yes, it's amazing and still VERY Beatles!). I agree about it not holding its value like "the real thing", but again, I just want to enjoy the guitar and will probably never sell it while I'm alive. I'm going to try the neck push/pull idea...great thought there. And yes, I'll see if the luthier in question, Bill Asher (asherguitars.com) has some samples on hand. The guy was super nice in talking with him, and by the last day of NAMM (where we met), all of his guitars had SOLD signs on them. About 20 guitars at least. But do you really think Gibson does this? I mean, do you think they would reshape the neck of one of their "already-built" guitars? The one nice aspect of doing it here locally in SoCal is being able to take him my Casino to copy. Thanks for your great thoughts!
  12. Thanks, guys. Bobouz, yes I recall your having a choice of three necks...it's amazing to think of finding three of these all in one place! As I think I have written before, mine is a rare bird...a sunburst model with factory installed Bigsby (which is only "supposed" to be on the cherry model). Apparently they made a small run of Sunburst Bigsby units. Stein, very interesting about sonic perspectives. I'm going to talk to the luthier about that, because one of the things I like most about the guitar is its tone. Hmmmm. As far as neck profiles, yes, the luthier suggested I bring a guitar with a neck I love so that he could match it completely. Fortunately, I have two such guitars. One is a strat, but the one that I think is the best example is my Casino Elite. The strat being a Fender makes me think we'd have better luck with the Casino being an Epiphone. Although, I think I prefer the Casino ever so slightly anyway... Thanks for your thoughts...
  13. Hey all, I bought a super sweet Gibson ES-330 VOS 1959 reissue off of eBay a year ago. I just fricking LOVE the guitar. Just the most awesome thing ever! BUT, there is one problem. The neck is simply too large for my hands. I ran into a luthier here in Southern California. A very highly respected guy here in town, and I talked with him about it. The first thing he asked was how old the guitar was. He said that he would never recommend such a procedure for a vintage guitar. When I told him it was a 2005 reissue model, he asked whether I had bought it as an investment or to play actively. I told him the latter. While I wouldn't say that I don't care at all about the guitar's value, I'm in my 60's and just want to play this thing for the rest of my life. I didn't buy it with investment in mind at all. He then said that he reshapes necks for people all the time, and if the neck's current shape makes me play it less (it does), he encouraged me to bring the guitar by his shop so we could take a look together. I know, I know...some of you probably think I'm nuts. Because the thing is simply a thing of beauty visually. Yet, it's just too big for my hands. So, has anyone ever done this? Am I nuts for even thinking about it? Actually, no, I don't think I'm nuts because I love this guitar and simply want to play it more. But does anyone have experience for such a procedure turning out amazingly or becoming a nightmare? Thanks in advance for your comments...
  14. Ratty, I share Bobouz's belief that acoustic tone will tell you a lot about a guitar even prior to plugging in. To elaborate further, if the acoustic tone of an electric guitar is dark and muddy, I think that it's electric tone will be starting from that point. To compensate, you could turn up the treble on the guitar and/or amp, and you could do most of your playing on the middle or bridge position. But still, if the acoustic tone is not "clear", it will be harder (impossible?) to achieve the clear tone you may be going for. That's my opinion. I look at it kind of like a house. The foundation must be perfectly built, even though once in the house, you won't see the foundation at all. Bobouz, I might not have communicated the basic question clearly. Yes, I'm using my Casino's as the example here, but the basic question is more to determine on any guitar, what variables will have the most affect on tonal clarity. You said, "There can be wide tonal variations within any given model", and while I agree 100%, my question is: what would be the leading factors in the wide tonal variations within any given model? That's the real question I was hoping to pose via this thread...
  15. Bobouz, I generally agree but would like to make two points. 1) One question would be, when playing guitars of the same model side-by-side-by-side, what do you think made (in your cases) the one stand out (presuming that you mean that the *sound* of the guitar stood out to you). Would you think it's a combination of the various possibilities I outlined above? Or do you think it was the way the nut was cut? Or the string age? Etc. 2) Secondly, my original post really wasn't in search of an answer specific to my two guitars, nor an answer specific to a general make and model, but rather...what are the main ingredients in producing clarity in any instrument? PS. Yes, I am aware the my "Vintage Outfit" uses poly and has 3-ply versus the 5-ply of my normal Elitist Casino. I do suspect that I should put new strings on the normal Elitist and see what difference that makes. I just have no experience with changing nuts, bridges, etc, so I have no point of reference there to how much either affects "clarity".
  16. Hey all, In my possession, I have two Elitist Casino's. One is the current '65 Elitist. The other is the Limited Edition '65 Elitist Casino "Vintage Outfit". In comparing the two ACOUSTICALLY (not plugged in), the Vintage Outfit is quite a bit clearer sounding. More brilliant, less dull. Now, this may be due simply to new strings vs old strings. I bought both of the guitars second hand, so I have no idea about how much either guitar has been played. STILL, I'd like to pose the question to the experts here. What do you believe are the main ingredients to CLARITY. (You know the sound, that sound where when you hit the open string, it has a clear, piano-like quality). Speaking only acoustically, here are some possibilities: 1) How many ply and type of wood 2) What type of tailpiece (trapeze, bigsby, stop tail). 3) Type of bridge and material 4) Material used in nut 5) Strings There might be more (feel free to add). But in your expert opinion, what are the most important aspects to achieve CLARITY? Thanks much, everyone. I'm also going to be starting a thread regarding Elitist '65 Casino VS Limited Edition Elitist '65 Casino VINTAGE OUTFIT for anyone who would like comparisons between the two.
  17. I recently purchase a (used) ES-330 VOS (current model), and I think it's as fine a guitar as I've ever held or played. Utterly stunning in every single way.
  18. Can you also speak to the issue of the new upgrades that you mentioned? I'm not an expert on 335's and would love to know what has changed for this model year. Thanks so much in advance! John PS. LOVE your guitar!
  19. Can you try to describe the neck profile? Thin? Chunky? C? etc?
  20. Thanks so much... With Macca and the rest, I figure that those were factory installs with extra bracing for the Bigsby (not sure about that). I should check with Mike Voltz at Gibson to ask whether their Bigsby installed ES330's have any extra bracing. Hmmmm. But thanks so much!
  21. Dennis, I presume you added the Bigsby to your Elitist? is that a B7 model? Weren't you concerned about screwing into the top face? I'm wanting to put one on mine, but I was thinking about the B3 model, so I wouldn't have to use screws. Or is yours a B3 model? Thanks for sharing any info you might have... John
  22. Do any stores that you know of carry this item normally or does one have to special order it? It doesn't seem to be in stock at any Guitar Centers in Southern California. Hmmmm. I'd love to check one out prior to buying... Anyone have ideas or knowledge about this? Thanks in advance...
  23. KidB, thanks for your post. Interestingly, the Elitists don't have tremendously good electronics...250k pots, small size pots (to use regular sized pots, you have to route the holes larger!), and who knows what is being used for caps. The pickups are some form of US Gibson P90's, but regular Gib P90's don't say "Epiphone" on the bottom of them. I think the main thing about Elitist Casinos is the care that goes into the body, which is flawless and wonderful.
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