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2018 Southern Jumbo


Alex_78
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Quick post regarding my new guitar following up another thread.

 

2nr3ea9.jpg

 

I don't know how much has changed from the previous model years, my understanding is that the Southern Jumbo wasn't produced regularly for a while, I don't even know if they changed anything... this guitar has been made the 5th of January, as discussed before there are some glue spots due to early return to work after Christmas, it doesn't have the CS logo (some have it, strange), neither the orange sticker....I assume it's the "new" modern classis with Grover, for what it looks I assume it was based on a late 50s SJ besides the tuners.

 

The package is interesting: there is a new high quality (and heavy), brown outside and black inside, with just written Gibson. Inside there was a small kit with a nice leather strap (alas too short for me), a Gibson cloth and the truss rod key (much appreciated), TUSQ nut, saddle and pins (to be replaced should I like the guitar).

 

Out of the box it came with the usual Gibson terrible set tup, but in this case the truss rod moved smoothly and I shaved a little the Tusq saddle to make it play easier, now it plays like butter with Ernie Ball PB everlast (as I can't find John Pearse bluegrass at the moment). Oh yes, regarding the setup the pins are so low on the bridge that it's a little hard to change strings, but at least they are vertical.

 

3151zdt.jpg

 

In terms of sound it's a surprise as it has a powerful bass register, in particular the low E, something that I wouldn't expect from a Gibson..it is less resonant than the J45 but with more volume with a more masculine voice so to say. It's also significantly heavier (and not just because of the Rotos), this might give less warmth but I prefer a structurally robust instrument. I wonder how they are able to get such different sounds from guitars with the same nominal specs....anybody have ideas on the matter?

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A beautiful Southern Jumbo. Congratulations. In my recollection we haven't seen a new slope SJ here for some time.

 

 

In terms of sound it's a surprise as it has a powerful bass register, in particular the low E, something that I wouldn't expect from a Gibson..it is less resonant than the J45 but with more volume with a more masculine voice so to say. It's also significantly heavier (and not just because of the Rotos), this might give less warmth but I prefer a structurally robust instrument. I wonder how they are able to get such different sounds from guitars with the same nominal specs....anybody have ideas on the matter?

Well, you cannot measure or expect things like that.

My 2010 J-45 Std. fx has bass enough to blow down the walls of Jericho. My pal's 2003/5 lacks low end and will never develop it.

 

And yep, as we know these guitars differ like a litter of puppies.

Why and how similar models vary so much is beyond 1-dimensional explanation. A riddle of great and ever alluring mystique.

Actually it can be quite worrying to realize how many options we miss when choosing/getting our one and only.

 

Enjoy the H-moon - and may it last long.

Edited by E-minor7
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Alex_78, thank you for your description. I have bought a 2018 Souther Jumbo in April 2018 in a huge store in Berlin. So my SJ could have been produced around the same time as yours. It has the "Custom Shop" logo at the end of the neck but was shipped in the normal black case. Surprisingly my 2018 Dove which I bought some months later was shipped in the heavy case with the tools etc. you show on your photo. The strategy behind this is hard to understand.

 

My SJ Shows no glue drops, but has a small crack in the coating of the top - no crack in the Wood, only in the lacquer as older guitars show. The lacquer is really thin, the structure of the wood can been seen more prominent than on my 2017 J45. Seems as if this depends on the person handling the spray gun and the ampount of plasticizer they have mixes in - or the Gibson Controller calculating the lacquer consumption ...

 

The string action was really high and I had to remove some material from the saddle, too. During the first string replacement I even had problems with the piezo pickup which did not like to stay under the saddle, but not it works.

 

And yes - it has a might bass, the deep E-string sounds totally different than on the J45. No idea why but this was the first I found out in the store. Unfortunaltely they had no other SJ to compare, but I was glad to find one of the 2018 series as the have a reasonable price and look good. On the other hand - if the SJ would sound exactly like the J45 it would be boring.

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....In terms of sound it's a surprise as it has a powerful bass register, in particular the low E, something that I wouldn't expect from a Gibson....

 

I'm no expert, but I'd expect a strong and well balanced bass from any higher-end guitar. If it ain't got that, it ain't got it.

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Alex_78, thank you for your description. I have bought a 2018 Souther Jumbo in April 2018 in a huge store in Berlin. So my SJ could have been produced around the same time as yours. It has the "Custom Shop" logo at the end of the neck but was shipped in the normal black case. Surprisingly my 2018 Dove which I bought some months later was shipped in the heavy case with the tools etc. you show on your photo. The strategy behind this is hard to understand.

 

My SJ Shows no glue drops, but has a small crack in the coating of the top - no crack in the Wood, only in the lacquer as older guitars show. The lacquer is really thin, the structure of the wood can been seen more prominent than on my 2017 J45. Seems as if this depends on the person handling the spray gun and the ampount of plasticizer they have mixes in - or the Gibson Controller calculating the lacquer consumption ...

 

The string action was really high and I had to remove some material from the saddle, too. During the first string replacement I even had problems with the piezo pickup which did not like to stay under the saddle, but not it works.

 

And yes - it has a might bass, the deep E-string sounds totally different than on the J45. No idea why but this was the first I found out in the store. Unfortunaltely they had no other SJ to compare, but I was glad to find one of the 2018 series as the have a reasonable price and look good. On the other hand - if the SJ would sound exactly like the J45 it would be boring.

 

Interesting, can I ask the serial number? Mine was made the 5th of January as already discussed...I might drop a line to Gibson to ask if they forgot the CS logo.

 

And yes I strongly suspect the SJ has a different bracing than the J45.

 

I'm no expert, but I'd expect a strong and well balanced bass from any higher-end guitar. If it ain't got that, it ain't got it.

 

 

Mmm no, there are some guitars who are designed with a strong bass to the level they are unbalanced, the Martin HD28V is an example. My SC has more upper mid and sweet high end, that would be what I would define as "Gibson sound". The J45 from the 60s was phenomenal as it had some sort of singing mid/upper end, while this SJ has more bass than my AJ, which is interesting especially because others had the same impression.

 

Congratulations!! I got my southern jumbo this time last year and love it, and it did sound different from the J45 in the exact way you described. I had to get the action fixed and replaced the saddle and nut with bone and it plays great. I hope you love it as much as I love mine

 

 

That is my plan as well and I would like to try to swap the tuners as discussed in the other thread.

Edited by Alex_78
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Mmm no, there are some guitars who are designed with a strong bass to the level they are unbalanced, the Martin HD28V is an example.

You are right about the HD-28V bein' very bassy due to the scalloped and forward shifted bracing.

But they too are different like puppies. For that reason I had 2 for a couple of years.

 

The 2000 monstrous to the edge of boom and with loads of bass.

 

The 2005 with a similar voice, but extraordinary balanced and 'decent'.

 

So well behaving that the sales-guy I passed it further to called it one of the best Martins he ever heard.

Yes, I kept the monster - it has more character and I basically don't think a Mart. rose dreadnought should be too polite.

(besides it has cooler p-guard. The 05 was cmyk-color-dot-print, which isn't what you want to see when having a 'tortoise' guard)

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You are right about the HD-28V bein' very bassy due to the scalloped and forward shifted bracing.

But they too are different like puppies. For that reason I had 2 for a couple of years.

 

The 2000 monstrous to the edge of boom and with loads of bass.

 

The 2005 with a similar voice, but extraordinary balanced and 'decent'.

 

So well behaving that the sales-guy I passed it further to called it one of the best Martins he ever heard.

Yes, I kept the monster - it has more character and I basically don't think a Mart. rose dreadnought should be too polite.

(besides it has cooler p-guard. The 05 was cmyk-color-dot-print, which isn't what you want to see when having a 'tortoise' guard)

 

I don't know if I am authorised to post this in the Gibson forum but this is my V:

 

e9gp01.jpg

 

That day I wanted to buy a D21 Special but this one was too superior...as you can see I changed the pickguard with a real celloloid one that looks better IMO. Besides that it also received a set of Colosi fossilized ivory pins (unfortunately he didn't have a saddle long enough in the same material).

 

24320ww.jpg

 

In the meantime the setup of the SJ is completed, as you can see it's low but I still have quite a lot of saddle:

 

 

2uj412w.jpg

 

166c4td.jpg

 

Playing a line of bass in songs like "this land is your land" makes me appreciate the powerful bass. I need to ask Colosi if he has a fossilised ivory saddle Gibson style...

 

 

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I don't know if I am authorised to post this in the Gibson forum but this is my V:

 

 

Playing a line of bass in songs like "this land is your land" makes me appreciate the powerful bass. I need to ask Colosi if he has a fossilised ivory saddle Gibson style...

You are not the first to post a Mart. here. The 28V looks so good - and hep for the new guard. The burgundy case tells me the previous guard had the cmyk-dots.

Neither are you the first to ask Colosi about Gibson pins. I'm sure he will fix 'xactly what you want.

 

All on all you can't go wrong with that pair. 2 of the finest acoustics on the planet, if you want my 5 Yen.

The M/G - rose/hog - square/slope switch will keep you entertained a long way ahead - perhaps forever. . . . . . . . . . ^

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First, congrats on the new Gibson.

 

But speaking of D-28s years ago I went up to the repair shop. Ironically I was there to drop off my 1956 SJ to have the divots in the board taken care of and to get some brand new shiny frets. While I was there, he asked me if I wanted to see what gave a late 1930s Martin D-28 its thunder. So we walked over to the table where he had just taken the back off of a pre-War D-28 Herringbone. First thing I noticed was there was no popsicle bracing around the sound hole. The second thing I noticed was that the top bracing was rear shifted rather than forward shifted. The bracing itself was tall and chunkier than I would have expected while the back bracing got progressively heavier when you got to the two lowest ones. He told this was the same exact bracing you found in the original Gibson AJ which, of course, was a blatant attempt to copy a D-28. If recall correctly he told me the main difference was Martin took time to do a final sanding of the braces while Gibson, given the visible saw marks, did not apparently put a lot of stock in that task.

Edited by zombywoof
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First, congrats on the new Gibson.

 

But speaking of D-28s years ago I went up to the repair shop. Ironically I was there to drop off my 1956 SJ to have the divots in the board taken care of and to get some brand new shiny frets. While I was there, he asked me if I wanted to see what gave a late 1930s Martin D-28 its thunder. So we walked over to the table where he had just taken the back off of a pre-War D-28 Herringbone. First thing I noticed was there was no popsicle bracing around the sound hole. The second thing I noticed was that the top bracing was rear shifted rather than forward shifted. The bracing itself was tall and chunkier than I would have expected while the back bracing got progressively heavier when you got to the two lowest ones. He told this was the same exact bracing you found in the original Gibson AJ which, of course, was a blatant attempt to copy a D-28. If recall correctly he told me the main difference was Martin took time to do a final sanding of the braces while Gibson, given the visible saw marks, did not apparently put a lot of stock in that task.

BLATANT COPY?I dont see much resemblance...

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HD-28's always sounded very unbalanced to my ear with a bass low end, but super thin, weak, unbalanced highs. I tried to like an HD-28 I had for a while but couldn't get along with it. I do have one of the new D-35's that I prefer MUCH better offer an HD-35, and also have an older D-28 that is very nice.

 

OP, what's the action at the 12th fret on the new SJ? It looks a little high in that new photo, but it could be the angle. The saddle also looks like it's a tad short width wise if you look at the bass side, and appears that whoever setup the guitar rounded off the end weird. Almost looks pointed or sanded at an angle instead of rounded to match the bridge slot.

 

cVfTRyT.jpg

Edited by sbpark
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HD-28's always sounded very unbalanced to my ear with a bass low end, but super thin, weak, unbalanced highs. I tried to like an HD-28 I had for a while but couldn't get along with it. I do have one of the new D-35's that I prefer MUCH better offer an HD-35, and also have an older D-28 that is very nice.

 

OP, what's the action at the 12th fret on the new SJ? It looks a little high in that new photo, but it could be the angle. The bridge also looks like it's a tad short width wise if you look a the bass side and appears that whoever setup the guitar rounded off the end weird. Almost looks pointed or sanded at an angle instead of rounded to match the bridge slot.

 

cVfTRyT.jpg

Assume you mean saddle. Not sure better contact would mean much - in my experience, no.

. . . . . . . .

Here is a good video which shows the 3 M-dread musketeers side by side.

 

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Assume you mean saddle. Not sure better contact would mean much - in my experience, no.

. . . . . . . .

Here is a good video which shows the 3 M-dread musketeers side by side.

 

 

That was a good comparison. Certainly more similarities than differences there, but the HDV seemed to have a more warmth and balance than the other two. The HD had a bit more top-end "chime", but I wouldn't trade that for the overall warmth and balance of the HDV.

 

Are the wood specs and bracing the same on all three? My Chinese is a bit rusty...

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Assume you mean saddle. Not sure better contact would mean much - in my experience, no.

. . . . . . . .

Here is a good video which shows the 3 M-dread musketeers side by side.

 

 

Yep, meant saddle. Was typing while multi-tasking, sorry!

 

Regardless of whether or not it "matters" as far as sound, if that was done by a professional, It would make me wonder about having them perform other things that did actually require a little more attention to detail, and if I'd trust them with a more serious undertaking. The way I see it, if you're a tech/repair person the guitars you work on are advertising your services, for better or worse, and that saddle looks like a bit of a hack job, even if it is just cosmetic. It's like taking your car to a mechanic to have them perform a super simple, routine oil change, but they spill oil all over the engine block, over tighten the oil filter, etc. If they cant perform a simple task correctly why would you ever trust them to rebuild your engine, replace a timing belt, etc.? You'd most likely go elsewhere. Having a shop perform a basic set-up is a great way to gauge how much attention to detail a shop put into their work. So many shops just tweak a truss rod and adjust the action and call it a day. Other shops for the same price will do that plus address the nut slots, give the guitar a quick wipe down and even polish your frets as part of a basic set up. I'd be more inclined to be a repeat customer at the shop that puts in just a little more time and effort and pays attention to what you may consider as insignificant details.

Edited by sbpark
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Yep, meant saddle. Was typing while multi-tasking, sorry!

 

Regardless of whether or not it "matters" as far as sound, if that was done by a professional, It would make me wonder about having them perform other things that did actually require a little more attention to detail, and if I'd trust them with a more serious undertaking. The way I see it, if you're a tech/repair person the guitars you work on are advertising your services, for better or worse, and that saddle looks like a bit of a hack job, even if it is just cosmetic. It's like taking your car to a mechanic to have them perform a super simple, routine oil change, but they spill oil all over the engine block, over tighten the oil filter, etc. If they cant perform a simple task correctly why would you ever trust them to rebuild your engine, replace a timing belt, etc.? You'd most likely go elsewhere. Having a shop perform a basic set-up is a great way to gauge how much attention to detail a shop put into their work. So many shops just tweak a truss rod and adjust the action and call it a day. Other shops for the same price will do that plus address the nut slots, give the guitar a quick wipe down and even polish your frets as part of a basic set up. I'd be more inclined to be a repeat customer at the shop that puts in just a little more time and effort and pays attention to what you may consider as insignificant details.

Copy that ^

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Yep, meant saddle. Was typing while multi-tasking, sorry!

 

Regardless of whether or not it "matters" as far as sound, if that was done by a professional, It would make me wonder about having them perform other things that did actually require a little more attention to detail, and if I'd trust them with a more serious undertaking. The way I see it, if you're a tech/repair person the guitars you work on are advertising your services, for better or worse, and that saddle looks like a bit of a hack job, even if it is just cosmetic. It's like taking your car to a mechanic to have them perform a super simple, routine oil change, but they spill oil all over the engine block, over tighten the oil filter, etc. If they cant perform a simple task correctly why would you ever trust them to rebuild your engine, replace a timing belt, etc.? You'd most likely go elsewhere. Having a shop perform a basic set-up is a great way to gauge how much attention to detail a shop put into their work. So many shops just tweak a truss rod and adjust the action and call it a day. Other shops for the same price will do that plus address the nut slots, give the guitar a quick wipe down and even polish your frets as part of a basic set up. I'd be more inclined to be a repeat customer at the shop that puts in just a little more time and effort and pays attention to what you may consider as insignificant details.

 

Unfortunately all the Gibson guitars I played there had a terrible setup, and yes I have been a little disappointed by the quality of these last Montana guitar.

 

Yes the slot is a little wider than the saddle, I assume it was a part of the package "Friday the 5th" along with the glue spots, but however SJs are difficult to find. For the shop, they didn't even want to give the truss rod key and stated Gibson doesn't supply anymore besides to "certified luthiers", however I found it in the package and I'm happy with that.

 

I used to work in a luthier's shop when I was a kid so I do the setup by self (and action is pretty low for an acoustic) otherwise the guitar were borderline unplayable unless you have strongs hands and play just on the first five frets.

 

My next step is to get a bone saddle the correct size of the slot along with pins slightly oversized (they are sinking down...I like the effect but it's hard to change strings)...nut is fine but not being bone it bothers me and I have never been good in making them from blank.

 

You are not the first to post a Mart. here. The 28V looks so good - and hep for the new guard. The burgundy case tells me the previous guard had the cmyk-dots.

Neither are you the first to ask Colosi about Gibson pins. I'm sure he will fix 'xactly what you want.

 

All on all you can't go wrong with that pair. 2 of the finest acoustics on the planet, if you want my 5 Yen.

The M/G - rose/hog - square/slope switch will keep you entertained a long way ahead - perhaps forever. . . . . . . . . . ^

 

 

I already received a set of rosewood pins for my Sheryl Crow (as well as a vintage bone saddle) as well as for AJ...for the pickguard of the Martin I don't know if it was pixeled or not, but the colour was too dark and I like to customise my guitars...to an slight level.

Edited by Alex_78
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I already received a set of rosewood pins for my Sheryl Crow (as well as a vintage bone saddle) as well as for AJ...for the pickguard of the Martin I don't know if it was pixeled or not, but the colour was too dark and I like to customise my guitars...to an slight level.

There U go.

 

Regarding the guard, I never noticed the dots on mine until the sun hit the guitar from a certain angle.

Of course compared with the 2000 in the same position, which was/is organic.

The burgundy cased '05 p-g was made from orange and purple pixels and kind of betrayed the splendid Mart.

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The thick, rubberized pickguards are pixilated, at least they are as well on the J45's. I've had two from Gibson that would not stay stuck down do I'm just putting a more traditional guard on mine that's used in the Vintage models.

 

We are talking about the Martin ones, the SJ pickguard is very red but has some clarity, I seriously doubt it's pixilated.

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We are talking about the Martin ones, the SJ pickguard is very red but has some clarity, I seriously doubt it's pixilated.

 

Well, I have two flubber/flubber J45 guards that I removed the glue from, and they are clearly pixilated. Not saying it doesn't look good when on the guitar, but if it's the same material used on the J45 Standards, it is in fact a bit blurry/pixilated, but you'll most likely only be able to notice it when the pickguard is off the guitar, so it's pretty much a moot point.

Edited by sbpark
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