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61 Gibson SG with Vibrola. Should I get a VIBROLA?

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Hi everybody,

I am looking to buy a new guitar and I have been considering the 61 Gibson SG with SIDEWAYS VIBROLA and or MAESTRO VIBROLA.
I do not have access to try these models because I can not find a music store in my area (small city in Europe) that has them in stock.
I can only order them online from Germany or Italy and shipping back the guitar is minimum 100 Euros ~= 115 USD.

I have seen some pretty bad reviews but I have never had the chance to try one myself.
It has been said that the VIBROLAS work better with .10 or .11 strings...

Does anyone have any experience with these things?
Is one better than the other?
Are they both crap?
Should I just get a Bigsby?
(I admit I am a little afraid of color damage to the guitar due to long term Bigsby installation...)

Any feedback on this would be greatly appreciated.

Edited by siod

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With a vibrola you still have mount it to the top of the guitar. How would a Bigsby damage the SG. You would have to put screw holes in it to mount one or other.

Edited by Sgt. Pepper

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1 hour ago, Sgt. Pepper said:

With s vibrola you still have mount it to the top of the guitar. How would a Bigsby damage the SG. You would have to put screw holes in it to mount one or other.

 

Vibramate & Bigsby.. No holes. Completely reversible...

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26 minutes ago, Larsongs said:

 

Vibramate & Bigsby.. No holes. Completely reversible...

What holds a Bigs down?  Never owned one. I assumed since you are raising and lowering a bar it just doesn't float there. So no screws hold it down?

Edited by Sgt. Pepper

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The Vibramate is an adapter that allows the Bigsby to use the pre-existing holes to be mounted to the guitar...

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20 minutes ago, siod said:

The Vibramate is an adapter that allows the Bigsby to use the pre-existing holes to be mounted to the guitar...

Thanks. I only owned Strats with whammy bars and one Jazzmaster. Never a Bigs or anything on my SG's.

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Friends Don't Let Friends Vibrola.

rct

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I like my German made Duesenberg Les Trem II's that just replace the stop bar and have about twice the range of Bigsby. The angled Trem bar holds in your desired dive position by set screws and swings easily out of the way.  Admittedly I am a Trem addict, seems like we have had this same conversation several times before. 

My Trem collection below..

MTDjKBA.jpg

But if you are going for the look of the Sideways Vibrola and or Maestro Vibrola they are permanently mounted.  Unlike the Vibramate with a Bigsby that can be taken off, but will require enough bridge height to work with the additional thickness of the Vibramate..

Edited by mihcmac

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I had a 2000 ‘61 RI with maestro.

maestro arm always in the way. Rides too low over face. An annoyance. Cheap phillips bolt attachment of arm made  it impossible to get the arm tension just right to position conveniently.

next time i will get a dusenberg les trem

  • Thanks 2

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"61 Gibson SG with Vibrola. Should I get a VIBROLA?"

"Should" you get a Vibrola?  If you want a Vibrola, get a Vibrola.  I've got a Bigsby on my SG.  I like it, but, to each his own.

 

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A lot depends on if you are going for the Maestro look or a tremolo that works better.

The Stetsbar Stop Tail uses the stock Gibson mounts and will not damage your guitar. In addition the Stetsbar is a very smooth finely machined tremolo with a very large range in both directions.

They do cost about double what the Les Trem does. 

The bridge and stop tail move together as one unit, no dragging the strings over the bridge making it smooth as silk and its very adjustable..

s-l400.jpg

The Gibson Vibrolas do look great..

 

Edited by mihcmac

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I think that the regular SG with tail piece and then the Bigsby B5 with Vibramate base or the Dusemberg Les Trem.

Both good and reversible alternatives. 

BR

Andy

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I've seen the Gary Clark Jr video. If you pay attention, he has to tune his guitar twice.
Once in the beginning, (even before the song starts and right after he uses the vibrola) and once again before one of his solos...

 

In the end, I picked up a standard SG without vibrola...  

Thanks to everyone for their feedback!!!

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If you bend Strings like a Gary Clark you'll be retuning your Guitar without Vibrola...

Almost all my Collection of Guitars have Trems, Bigsby's or Vibratos... Doubt I'll buy another Electric without some type of Trem... I have no Tuning issues with any of them that I don't have with non  Trem Guitars.. I'm not a dive bomber....

I've played many Guitars with Vibrolas with no issues.... They're a great Effect to have at your fingertips at will.... But to each his own..

Congrats & enjoy your new Guitar!

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I do dive bomb once in a while, which is why I love my Duesenbergs with their super tough German steel springs. One of mine is over 5 years old with little or no degradation. It is easy to adjust the angled dive bar for your optimal position.. The Les Trem II is my choice over all others for it simplicity and its so reliable...

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