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jaygl

HNGD- 2014 Melody Maker

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Picked it up yesterday from my local L&M. TV Yellow and scored it at the price before hike. First off the fit and finish on this guitar are impecable. There is some orange peel in the finish here and there, I expected as much with the faded but, otherwise, beautiful. I had read that alot of people have been impressed with how the setup is right out of the box....not the case here. The neck was back bowed and the tail piece was super high....choked out notes all over the place...

After a truss rod/tailpiece adjustment( and blank truss rod cover install) we were in buisness. Pluged her into my 4x10 Blues Deville and was blown away!! The P90's sound great in this thing. Very crisp with some snap but not too trebly....maintains some nice lo spank. Very articulate both clean and dirty. I also noticed that the response on the volume controls is superb. Nice and gradual smooth, same with the tone pots. Playability gets a 10 for sure. Frets are beautifully done, no sharp ends. Intonation is spot on.Addicting little crunchy beast for sure. Sound killer through my Marshall JCM800 4212 at high gain settings as well. She'll definately cut through the mix at jam!

I'm not 100% sold on the "max grip" speedknobs yet. They are taller than standard speedknobs and have a sharp edge that doesn't hurt, but feels slightly uncomfortable. May swap them out, but not sure yet. Also, just a cosmetic observation here...the tuning pegs have a slightly rosey/pink hue to them. Kinda funky weird, but they hold tune perfectly.

Overall the folks at Gibson have done an amazing job with this model. Bravo! I would recomend it to anyone from beginer to pro, you won't be disapointed. I will give it a 9 out of 10, only because the setup wasn't great out of the box, but that is the case with most new guitars anyway, gibson, or otherwise.

An instrument like this at the price it's offered for just might make it hard to justify the steep prices of some of the other Gibson models....try one out for yourself and see. It's all the thrills with none of the frills, but you won't miss them one bit.

IMG_0699_zps6c1c1f2e.jpg

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Congrats - hope you get your toggle switch issue solved soon.

 

Share your opinion on the grip speed knobs. I like the "traditional" speed knobs over everything else. I also prefer blank truss rod covers.

 

I am surprised the fixed compensations on the tailpiece/bridge combo work for you. To my experience those of PRS guitars didn't for years, not even strung up stock and after trying improvements. A perfect adjustment, however, is impossible at the factory unless they would store all the guitars for several days and refine the setup.

 

None of these one-piece wtaparound tailpieces would match the strings I play. The D4th of these has a relatively heavy core and correspondingly light wound wire. This provides higher level and fatter tone, closer to that of the plain G3rd and the A5th, but calls for larger string length than the A5th to ensure proper intonation. So I would have to switch to an aftermarket wraparound bridge with adjustable saddles.

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Hey cap, ya the intonation and tuning are virtually perfect...i have 10-46 guage strings. The faulty toggle is someone else's issue....mine functions fine. [thumbup]

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Hey cap, ya the intonation and tuning are virtually perfect...i have 10-46 guage strings. The faulty toggle is someone else's issue....mine functions fine. [thumbup]

[blush] ...sorry, my bad, confused your name with the OP's after you had replied in the related topic. :rolleyes:

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Yeah the faulty toggle was my issue but I fixed it after looking inside. One of the pins was bent so I bent it back. Works perfect now I think.

 

The issue that I'm having now is string buzz. Been looking online about setup and I'm just gonna either do-it-myself with a lot of trial and error or pay a luthier. Otherwise I totally agree with the OP, lovin' this guitar and how it sounds. Intonation seems decent, had to use the adjustment screws on the bridge a bit.

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"The issue that I'm having now is string buzz. Been looking online about setup and I'm just gonna either do-it-myself with a lot of trial and error or pay a luthier."

I find that my perfect setup on my Gibsons sounds buzzy when unpluged, but when they are amped, you can't hear it. Only way to avoid the buzz is to set 'em up with an action that's just a bit too high for me. If you can't hear it amped, don't worry about it.

The manual that comes with the guitars has some good setup tips in it. Fretting the first and 14th and checking the height at the 9th on your low E string will help tell you where your truss rod is at. Should be a gap about the thickness of a business card (.10 i think...??? anyone?). If it's too high, tighten by turning the TR clockwise...only 1/8th of a turn at a time, checking in between. If it's touching or buzzing, loosen the TR by turning counter clockwise. The rest is just string height (action) preference,(moving bridge up or down with thumb screws or bolts in the case of the MM- loosen the little screws on the back of the wrap arround to do this) and intonation....fixed in this case. Maybe someone could post a link to a good setup video for you... Do some reading/watching and go for it, just don't over tighten you TR.

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Thanks for the post. I've kinda been doing what you have suggested. Searching YouTube videos and getting tips on setup, adjusting the bridge, truss rod, looking for how much relief I have in the strings. I am getting the feeling that the nut was set a fraction too low at the factory. I may have to shim it up a bit. Gotta get a set of measurement gauge to be sure.

 

"The issue that I'm having now is string buzz. Been looking online about setup and I'm just gonna either do-it-myself with a lot of trial and error or pay a luthier."

I find that my perfect setup on my Gibsons sounds buzzy when unpluged, but when they are amped, you can't hear it. Only way to avoid the buzz is to set 'em up with an action that's just a bit too high for me. If you can't hear it amped, don't worry about it.

The manual that comes with the guitars has some good setup tips in it. Fretting the first and 14th and checking the height at the 9th on your low E string will help tell you where your truss rod is at. Should be a gap about the thickness of a business card (.10 i think...??? anyone?). If it's too high, tighten by turning the TR clockwise...only 1/8th of a turn at a time, checking in between. If it's touching or buzzing, loosen the TR by turning counter clockwise. The rest is just string height (action) preference,(moving bridge up or down with thumb screws or bolts in the case of the MM- loosen the little screws on the back of the wrap arround to do this) and intonation....fixed in this case. Maybe someone could post a link to a good setup video for you... Do some reading/watching and go for it, just don't over tighten you TR.

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"I am getting the feeling that the nut was set a fraction too low at the factory. I may have to shim it up a bit. Gotta get a set of measurement gauge to be sure."

Just make sure the truss rod isn't too tight....that will choke notes out on the first couople of frets. Also, the little allan srcews are to move the tailpiece forwards or backwards for intonation, the bolts go up and down for acrtion. Start by loosening your strings and turning the allan screws in(clockwise).....i turned mine in 3/4 of the way, then tighten strings and check intonation with the note and harmonic at the 12th. It's much easier to loosen those allan screws with full string tension than to tighten them.... intonate and set action. Start with the truss rod (Fret 1st and 14th, check string height at 9th)...Good luck. Lemme know how it turns out for you.

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IMG_0699_zps6c1c1f2e.jpg

DSC_0024_zpsebdb3ced.jpg

Lovin' mine... came outa' the box perfect... I added a pickguard and changed the knobs, pup covers, and switch .... It's my 'Cream Machine' now.... Tone monster...

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DSC_0024_zpsebdb3ced.jpg

Lovin' mine... came outa' the box perfect... I added a pickguard and changed the knobs, pup covers, and switch .... It's my 'Cream Machine' now.... Tone monster...

Wow....looks killer! These little beasts have amazing sound and playability. Best Gibson I've bought probably ever.....

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DSC_0024_zpsebdb3ced.jpg

Lovin' mine... came outa' the box perfect... I added a pickguard and changed the knobs, pup covers, and switch .... It's my 'Cream Machine' now.... Tone monster...

 

 

WOW, that is exactly what I was going to do to mine if I had bought it......looks as great as I imagined!!!

Nice job!

NHTom

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Are my eyes deceiving me, or is the pickguard cutout pushing the bottom

of the neck pickup, up (toward the neck) a bit? Neck pickup looks a bit

crooked, as a result. May need to do a little filing out, of the pickguard

cutaway, to correct that? :-k

 

CB

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Where did you get the pickguard? All Parts?

Ebay......... Got the cream knobs and pup covers there too... I also put cream back plates on it... I also tried a cream truss cover but it didn't look right... maybe if I coulda' found a cream truss cover that had a logo or writing or something but couldn't find that....

Thanks all... the pickguard is off just a tad by the neck pup ... not enough for me to bother with it...

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Are my eyes deceiving me, or is the pickguard cutout pushing the bottom

of the neck pickup, up (toward the neck) a bit? Neck pickup looks a bit

crooked, as a result. May need to do a little filing out, of the pickguard

cutaway, to correct that? :-k

 

CB

the pickup cover is on correct... just looks off from the angle... I feel shame for the pickguard but I'll get over it.... hehe

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I love the look of the M-M. Great score.

 

No offence to anyone but I must say that if I had one and was thinking about a p'guard my first impulse would be in this direction;

http://www2.gibson.c...Single-VOS.aspx

 

But each to his own and the 'Rocket-Fin' guard is certainly more of an original statement.

 

[thumbup]

 

P.

 

EDIT : Off-topic, I know, but why does Gibson refer to the single-cut in the above link as a 1960? The Double-cut was introduced in '58.......:blink:

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I love the look of the M-M. Great score.

 

No offence to anyone but I must say that if I had one and was thinking about a p'guard my first impulse would be in this direction;

http://www2.gibson.c...Single-VOS.aspx

 

But each to his own and the 'Rocket-Fin' guard is certainly more of an original statement.

 

[thumbup]

 

P.

 

EDIT : Off-topic, I know, but why does Gibson refer to the single-cut in the above link as a 1960? The Double-cut was introduced in '58.......:blink:

 

Problem is, Pippy, the pickguard you prefer, is for (flat) "slab" bodies, and the new Melody Maker

is carved top. So, the LP pickguard seems the better option. [mellow]

 

CB

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Problem is, Pippy, the pickguard you prefer, is for (flat) "slab" bodies, and the new Melody Maker

is carved top. So, the LP pickguard seems the better option. [mellow] ....

Yeah....I knew that.......:^o...........8-[

 

Sorry - My Bad! I didn't realise the new M-M's had carved tops.

Why? They never had them before?! But then again; Why Not?........[laugh]

 

Even knowing (now) they have carved tops looking at the snaps posted they still all look like slab-boards to me!..................[blink]

Just goes to show that a gloss finish shows curves better!

 

P.

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No problems with the tuning here. She sounded sour on open chords before the tailpiece and intonation were set.... I have been seeing people complaining about the tuning and intonation with these guitars and yet mine has no problem with either....after i set it up that is. If the intonation is out it will sound out of tune. These lightning bar tailpieces are a bit of a pain to deal with....maybe someone knows a link to a setup guide for them? Or maybe we will have to post one ourselves here...Had her out for her first 3 setter lastnight and she held up great. No need to touch my backup guitar!The MM is a little workhorse that plays and sounds great. The P90's cut through the mix nicely and have a nice round openess with my Marshall jcm 800 combo. I'll say it again, I couldn't be happier with this guitar. It's the best $550 i've dropped on anything in a long time. [thumbup]

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Any of you guys have issues with keeping your Melody Maker in tune? I'm thinking of swapping out the tuners.

 

Before you do that, check the "lightening bar" bridge adjustment, for intonation, and the

corian nut, for string "pinging." IF anything, I'd change the nut, to a bone nut! The

tuners are rarely the problem. It's usually intonation and/or the nut! Good Luck!

 

CB

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I'm pretty amazed... Mine came outa' the box set up, for my tastes, perfect and I've had no intonation or tuning problems... Still blown away how, after the GC discount, I got this guitar for $508.00......... And those P90's are so much fun...... Love the neck too.. Oh, and the frets..... Not a fan of the finish but who GAF.... It's a player and a very happy member in the stable.... [thumbup]=D>

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