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Sometimes You Walk Out With Something Different


zombywoof

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A couple of days ago I went out to check a 1940s Epi archtop and Elektra amp (both purchased by the original owner at the same time) a friend of mine who owns a store got in. Really beautiful stuff and the art deco amp was unbelievable. Not a bad price for both. But having the attention span of a gnat I got distracted by a guitar I spied sitting in the back corner. Just another 1930s el cheapo. But I felt my heart start a thumping. So guess which one I walked out with. This time it was a mid- to late 1930s Regal-made guitar. 0 Size with a spruce top and solid maple body with a really eye catching flame back. Not sure if the bridge is original but this may be one of the worst designs I have ever run across so it will be history in a bit. 1 3/4" nut and a maple V neck. It did not take much to get it playable. Mainly some work on the tuners and a new set of strings and away we go.

 

Regal%200%20Flame%20Maple%20001_zpsobfndudi.jpg

 

Regal%200%20Flame%20Maple%20004_zps71tln7bl.jpg

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A couple of days ago I went out to check a 1940s Epi archtop and Elektra amp (both purchased by the original owner at the same time) a friend of mine who owns a store got in. Really beautiful stuff and the art deco amp was unbelievable. Not a bad price for both. But having the attention span of a gnat I got distracted by a guitar I spied sitting in the back corner. Just another 1930s el cheapo. But I felt my heart start a thumping. So guess which one I walked out with. This time it was a mid- to late 1930s Regal-made guitar. 0 Size with a spruce top and solid maple body with a really eye catching flame back. Not sure if the bridge is original but this may be one of the worst designs I have ever run across so it will be history in a bit. 1 3/4" nut and a maple V neck. It did not take much to get it playable. Mainly some work on the tuners and a new set of strings and away we go.

 

Regal%200%20Flame%20Maple%20001_zpsobfndudi.jpg

 

Regal%200%20Flame%20Maple%20004_zps71tln7bl.jpg

 

 

 

 

Nice find, ZW!

 

The bridge does look like a real nuisance for dampening the strings type of playing.... What are your plans - pin bridge?

 

 

BluesKing777.

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The bridge does look like a real nuisance for dampening the strings type of playing.... What are your plans - pin bridge?

 

 

BluesKing777.

 

 

Not only that but it is a top adjuster which means the saddle underneath makes no contact with the top. I will probably swap out the spruce bridge plate for a maple one and go with a pin bridge.

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If you want to try a floating archtop bridge AND electrify the guitar, the Schatten Archtop Pickup I have on my old L50 is truly fantastic - probably costs more than the guitar but you can remove it easily and use on something else.... don't forget to make a decent mark where the existing saddle is and if you ever get it back in tune, change one string at a time. Apart from all that - could be an easy solution.... they also make a portable volume control...

 

http://www.schattendesign.com/archtop.htm

 

 

 

BluesKing777.

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If you want to try a floating archtop bridge AND electrify the guitar, the Schatten Archtop Pickup I have on my old L50 is truly fantastic - probably costs more than the guitar but you can remove it easily and use on something else.... don't forget to make a decent mark where the existing saddle is and if you ever get it back in tune, change one string at a time. Apart from all that - could be an easy solution.... they also make a portable volume control...

 

http://www.schattendesign.com/archtop.htm

 

 

 

BluesKing777.

 

Sounds very cool but I only paid $150 for the guitar and had the parts I needed to quickly put it on the road. I have a floating bridge somebody made for me which is a simple oval mahogany base with a compensated saddle. I will probably throw that one on and then replace the nut and see where I end up. If I think there is still room for improvement I will probably go to a pin bridge.

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Can you post a close-up of the bridge? I don't think I understand what the deal is.

 

 

Here is the bridge. The way it is designed when you raise the saddle portion, you lose all contact between it and the guitar top. Not cool! If it is original it almost makes me think the guitar might have been put together to be played either Spanish or lap style. Still, I have never run across a bridge quite like this one.

 

Regal%20Bridge%20003_zps3spjkwle.jpg

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Here is the bridge. The way it is designed when you raise the saddle portion, you lose all contact between it and the guitar top. Not cool! If it is original it almost makes me think the guitar might have been put together to be played either Spanish or lap style. Still, I have never run across a bridge quite like this one.

 

 

 

That might be the most counterintuitive bridge design I have ever seen. There is a quirk ingenuity to it, but a complete lack of understanding of sound energy transfer. You may be right that it was designed for both Spanish and Hawaiian.

 

Never seen anything like it.

 

Looks like the low E has slipped out of its groove.

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Looks like the low E has slipped out of its groove.

 

Yup, this is about the third time it has done that when playing hard. I just needed to hear what the guitar sounded like with the bridge. For all I knew the guy who designed it could have been the Lloyd Loar of ADJ bridges. But I will probably try the other bridge out later today. Again, I do not have a clue if this bridge is that which came with the guitar when new. I have only run across a pic of one other of these guitars which had a more standard style bridge with the wheel adjusters. But it definitely stands one of those "what were they thinking" designs. Strangely, the guitar is a lot louder than I would have expected given that so little energy is making it to the top.

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Here is the bridge. The way it is designed when you raise the saddle portion, you lose all contact between it and the guitar top. Not cool! If it is original it almost makes me think the guitar might have been put together to be played either Spanish or lap style. Still, I have never run across a bridge quite like this one.

 

Thanks for posting that. A buddy of mine would say "they didn't put it there to save money" - given the low budget nature of the rest of the guitar, no doubt there was some rationale.

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