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Everything posted by jmendoza

  1. Fret wear will depend on the materials the fret and string are made of, the fret width and the string gauge, and the amount you play. Wider frets will tend to wear less, smaller strings will cut into the fret faster, hard alloy strings will wear the frets more. I found my 2005 Peerless Regent needed a fret dressing and had flat spots, so after I did that, I changed the strings from .011 to .012, and went with TIs because they are a softer alloy. You are lucky to have enough time to play guitar enough to wear out the frets!! Virtually all steel string guitars, with the exception of those usi
  2. Ok, this thread is really old! But I have a little to add: The average current Gibson compares much more favorably to the ones produced by Norlin, although occasionally Norlin screwed up and made an exceptional guitar. The 1950s Gibsons I have are all exceptional, and have steadily improved over the 30 some years I have owned them. The Norlin era guitars from Gibson are not as good on an average, the quality varies quite a bit between each guitar, even of the same exact model. So you can find a great Norlin or a dud Norlin, and there seems to have been an increase in the duds and "2n
  3. Ok, this thread is really old! But I have a little to add: The average current Gibson compares much more favorably to the ones produced by Norlin, although occasionally Norlin screwed up and made an exceptional guitar. The 1950s Gibsons I have are all exceptional, and have steadily improved over the 30 some years I have owned them. The Norlin era guitars from Gibson are not as good on an average, the quality varies quite a bit between each guitar, even of the same exact model. So you can find a great Norlin or a dud Norlin, and there seems to have been an increase in the duds and "2n
  4. You will need to add a tube socket to the chassis, and wire it properly for the filament supply, which you can parallel off of one of the other tube sockets. The wires from the secondary of the AC power transformer that went to the solid state rectifier will now got to the Anode and Cathode of the rectifier tube pins, via the socket. A good start is to take a peek at an original VOX AC-15 schematic that had a tube rectifier and the changes will be readily apparent. You can add more filter caps in parallel with the existing one or replace it with a larger one for more "punch" and tone. Replace
  5. Hey Charlie Brown, The deal is this: Epiphone/ Gibson draws a price line in the sand, and we step across it. That is your answer. They will keep raising the bar like this as long as people keep paying the prices, and people do, so the prices go up. Is it worth it? Well it must be to those who pay, and for us who paid less, well it makes our guitars all the more valuable. The older MIK and MIJ Epis have quality features in the workmanship and the wood itself, that are no longer available. One example would be the binding nibs on the pre 1999 Sheraton necks, it's no longer available an
  6. I too have MIK 1989 Sheri, same finish as yours. I replaced the P/Us myself, and FYI, changing the pots and caps and wiring are not necessary, they are fine, it's the PUs that are lousy. In addition, these Sheris have very small openings on the F-Holes, smaller than the newer ones, making fitting larger pots in there impossible, so you have to stick with the mini-pots. You should put in a Switchcraft jack though, the originals are not that good and get noisy. With Gibson 57 Humbuckers, mine now is a blues king. I put on a set of Ernie Ball .010 slinkys, plays great. None of the
  7. Here is what you got: Gibson ES175 VSB GH (vintage sunburst) laminated flamed maple top palisander fretboard gold hardware
  8. Cracking of wood and finish is a much bigger issue with guitars made from solid woods. Your laminated instruments will fare much better as the wood is more stable. Your other problem is related to being on an island in the ocean and an in northern latitudes: You simply have greater temperature and humidity swings than say like here, in California, and so, once again, solid woods will react by moving and crack the lacquer. The only thing you can do is to make sure you do not store the instrument in a closet or room against a wall that faces outside. If you take the instrument anywhere, allo
  9. That is what I did, started by working on old Kays and Harmony guitars. They have brass frets, so many need new frets. I practiced replacing the binding, re-setting the neck, re-finishing, fixing cracks, you name it. It just takes time and patience, and the right tools, and Hideo Kanamoto's book is an excellent resource. Every luthier was once a beginner, even Orville Gibson!
  10. jmendoza

    NGD L5

    Well, it just goes to show how no two guitars are exactly alike, even when made on precise factory tooling. How they screwed up the fingerboard slots is somewhat troubling, especially given that L-5s are supposedly hand made by the most skilled Gibson employees. I did some research and found that some guys intonate the bridge saddles by comparing the 2nd and 14th fret, then the set the open string intonation by intonating the nut. Others take the approach of asymmetrically crowning the frets to move the fret pinch point either towards, or away from the bridge. In extreme cases, larger fre
  11. Ditto here on my ES-175. I had the same buzz, same spot on the neck, but not amplified. Replaced the springs on the neck pick-up with some pieces of silicon tubing (1/8" model airplane fuel line) and good bye buzz. BTW, this did not happen until I put on Thomastiks; apparently they deliver more warm tones that provoke the pick-up to rattle.
  12. Was watching Hee Haw this weekend and saw Buck Owens and the Buckaroos doing a number with a few members of the Texas Troubadours, one of whom was Leon Rhodes. Leon was playing a made in USA Epiphone Sheraton, with the original Frequensator tail piece, cherry red, gold hardware. That was one nice sounding guitar. Buck BTW was playing his RWB dreadnought Mosrite. The special guest was Ernest Tubb, and on one song, Roy Clark jumped in with his fabulous 1930s era Super 400, man what a guitar.
  13. Epiphone Regent tune up Sorry, double posted!
  14. Epiphone Regent tune up My Epi Emperor Regent had a few issues with some minor fret buzz on the A and D strings at the 8th and the 13th frets. Raising the action only partially cured the issue, and the truss rod adjustment would not eliminate it either. The higher action also affected the ability to correct the intonation completely with the fixed saddle bridge, and made it harder to play as well. The edges of the fret ends also had a sharp feel to them, as the factory fret dressing leaves quite a bit to be desired. After speaking with the local luthier at GC, I was informed that $85.00 woul
  15. An Epi is like a Karmann Ghia; it's the poor mans Porsche. If you have an Epi made with good wood, with some work, you can really improve them. For the most part, Gibsons are made with better materials, electronics, and they spend more time on the details that relate to action and playability(set-up). Like all makes, some are exceptional, and others are dogs. The older Gibsons, with the fret nibs on the neck binding, have a feel that is unbeatable. See my other post on my Regent to see what all it took to make it more comfortable and playable.
  16. Quote: I don't know about Epi's, but I know for a fact Rickenbacker saves the uglier pieces of wood for their solid colors. LOL, I deleted that exact comment from my post above. At Fender, and Gibson, they do the same thing. Premium grade figured wood is always set aside for natural and sunburst finishes. If a natural or sunburst finish gets a blemish or ding, depending on how bad it is, they will re-paint it in a solid color to save it. Some guys have reported finding beautiful flamed maple tops under the solid color paint on Pauls, which the above would explain.
  17. jmendoza

    NGD L5

    I agree, every guitar is different, but usually only in very minor and subtle details, especially when you are comparing two models that are the same, and when comparing models made by the same manufacturer using the same hardware and scale lengths. For the intonation to be that far off from what is normal for Gibsons indicates something else is not right. I can see a given string being maybe 1/32" out from one guitar to the next, but most likely that would be due to action height and string gauge. However, in this case we see a major difference, especially with a wound G string being intona
  18. Wish I had taken pictures of this one, but let me describe it: My buddy in San Clemente Ca. purchased an ES-335, cherry, lefty guitar around 1972. He said it had been in the Four Muses music store for some time, as it was a lefty, and the only guitar they had he could play, as he was left handed. They gave hime a discount on it so he bought it. Around 1990, he had enough fret wear that it began to buzz a bit so he brought it to me for a fret leveling and polish. Upon close inspection, I saw that the neck edge binding had the black dot on the bottom! This meant it was a right hand neck that wa
  19. Anyone notice the screws in the top ahead of the bridge? I have always been suspicious of what the wood looks like on solid color guitars, mainly because you can't see it.
  20. jmendoza

    NGD L5

    What is perplexing here is that the stagger of the saddle notches is so much different than a 175 w/ a TOM bridge, or any other Gibson for that matter. Normally, the E-A-D- and G strings are progressively a little shorter, the E being the longest, the G being the shortest. This is also the case with flat-tops as well. Then the plain B and E have their own stagger, with the B being longer than the E. When you go to a plain G, it then has to be longer than the D. But on your guitar, the D is longer than the A, which is highly unusual, as I have never encountered this situation when inton
  21. The Stew-Mac selector switches I have purchased for my Gibsons were Switchcraft brand. The problem you are describing is most likely not just the switch, but you have a bad connection or wire, pickup, or pot. What is most likely happening is that whenever you remove the switch to replace it, it pulls on the wiring, which either cures, or aggravates the bad connection, so it either starts working, or manifests yet another problem, exactly as you have described. You could try reaching into the f-hole and moving the wires around with the selector switch in the 'bad' position and see if
  22. If you just use some Wenol, or Happitcsh Semichrome, or Mother Mag polish on the hardware, the gold will come right off and you will have a nice nickel/chrome look without having to re-plate or replace the hardware. A couple hours spent taking it off, polishing, and put it back on and you'll be good to go. Guys pay big bucks to get the worn 'relic" look, so you could just clean it up as is, not take it apart, and go play.
  23. jmendoza


    Of all the guitars I have, including my Gibsons and Epiphones, my 1989 ES-175D has something about it that makes you not want to put it down. Last night, I picked it up to play a few riffs and before I knew it, it was 1:20AM!!! It's like everything fades away, even time itself, whenever I play it.
  24. Old guitar finishes don't look anything like what they do to a VOS. Guitars get dings, scratches, but not dull all over, as the wear areas tend to stay shiny. The artificially aged look may appeal to posers, but it's quite pretentious compared to an actual vintage instrument. Satin finishes have their place, but my preference is for gloss because it enhances the depth and beauty of the figuring in the wood. The dulled finishes detract from the depth and make it one dimensional, less character. The other thing is a dull or satin finish can have some pretty bad flaws, and not be very leve
  25. You can hand me over the Lee any time now, besides, you can only play one at a time, so I'm waiting! Jay
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