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60th Anniversary SG Custom Sideways Vibrola


IOMMI

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Hi again. It's me. Lol. SORRY for the huge story that's about to begin.

Today, I bring forth another question, because I need a genuine answer. I've added an imgur link. You can see the difference of the bar locations, where it rests. I've had this guitar for almost 2 months now. Yes, I know the best way to set one of these units up is to remove them. Roflmao. 

I'm starting to go, slightly, insane with this vibrola unit(that I don't even use because I want to stay in pitch for as long as possible.) I've heard the horror stories.

What is the neutral position for one of these? It doesn't ever reset position. Are these really push/pull units to reset the position of it to neutral? To pitch? You push the bar up, sharp. You pull it, flat.

I did a bend on the treble e once, without the vibrola, on the 15th fret, and it made all of the strings just fret out... everywhere. I had to move the vibrola up, and down to fix the issue. This unit requires force to use. 

The nut appears to be cut pretty well. Overall, it's a very nice piece. I'm just having weird issues when not even using the bar. LOL?

Another issue I have is... when you do use the sideways vibrola, it never comes back down into pitch. You have to pull it back down till it comes back into pitch. I've never used it dramatically. Just a slight wiggle, and unless I,  manually, move the sideways bar into a position where the strings are back in pitch, the bar will just stay there. Are these really push/pull units?

I assumed it would be, you move the vibrola unit, and it would just reset itself. I know this is how the Maestro/Lyre Vibrolas work. You can move the bar up, or down, not dramatically, and the pitch will reset itself. Is mine defective(more so than the others? Lol!)

My apologies for the ridiculous read. I wish I could show everyone what I mean. I thought these units would be SORT OF usable, or that they wouldn't just do weird things to your strings when playing without using it. Frets out, sometimes, if you bend a string too far with your finger. Roflmao? When you use it, you have to retune like 5 times, because it'll just keep going out without using it. 

I do love this guitar, and I love my SG Diablo as well. I'm just seeking some guidance. I don't want to remove it. I just want to know why it's being weird, and requiring a little bit of force to use. Should I contact Gibson about it? 

Thanks. 

 

http://imgur.com/gallery/X8nGa36

Edited by IOMMI
Adding photos.
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1 no magic on posting pictures here, get yourself a public imaging site like imgur.com and past/post the jpg link.

2 don't get mad but there's a reason why guitars with "standard " transmissions have been a frustration to many guitarists that they've blocked the tremo 

Good luck; but now you know how to post pictures for the vibrolo experts to see

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Sounds as if your guitar needs a good set-up.   And the vibrato needs oil or vaseline to loosen it up a bit.

There is currently another forum member experiencing the same problem -

 

Edited by jdgm
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1 hour ago, jdgm said:

Sounds as if your guitar needs a good set-up.   And the vibrato needs oil or vaseline to loosen it up a bit.

There is currently another forum member experiencing the same problem -

 

I was afraid of this. The dreadful vibrola setup. It plays well, but yeah, I bet the vibrola needs attention. Thanks. I'll go look. :]

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9 hours ago, Eracer_Team said:

1 no magic on posting pictures here, get yourself a public imaging site like imgur.com and past/post the jpg link.

2 don't get mad but there's a reason why guitars with "standard " transmissions have been a frustration to many guitarists that they've blocked the tremo 

Good luck; but now you know how to post pictures for the vibrolo experts to see

I'll do this.  I have imgur. Thanks. I was thinking of just blocking the vibrola, but I'm hoping to make it usable. Thanks again. :]

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  • 10 months later...
  • 5 months later...

I’m having exactly the same issue, with the other 60th Anniversary model (the cherry 1961 Standard)

the vibrato sticks, requires a fair amount of force to operate, and there’s no neutral position for it to return to.

@IOMMIdid you ever find a solution for this? I’m considering trying some oil but I’m not sure which moving part needs the attention

 

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16 minutes ago, lesorphee said:

I’m having exactly the same issue, with the other 60th Anniversary model (the cherry 1961 Standard)

the vibrato sticks, requires a fair amount of force to operate, and there’s no neutral position for it to return to.

@IOMMIdid you ever find a solution for this? I’m considering trying some oil but I’m not sure which moving part needs the attention

 

I think you have to do some major work on it to get it to function, sort of, alright. I just tried to place the bar in a position of how it looked whenever I bought it, tuned it up, and left it alone. I've never messed with it since. I haven't had any tuning issues since. The spring tensioner bolts might have something to do with it, but I'm not brave enough to mess with them. I'd like it to function well, so that I could use it for some Hank Marvin, and The Shadows stuff.

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  • 4 weeks later...
On 6/14/2021 at 9:06 PM, IOMMI said:

I was afraid of this. The dreadful vibrola setup. It plays well, but yeah, I bet the vibrola needs attention. Thanks. I'll go look. :]

This is my post that's been quoted. I had the same issue it seems. The trem never returned to it's original position leaving the guitar out of tune. I have some kind of a trem system on all of my guitars as I like to use it. Right now, my SG is away have a Bigsby B7 installed on it. The sideways unit looks amazing but is an unusable piece of garbage and I've given up on it ever working properly. Probably why Gibson changed it for the Maestro so early on.

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I drooled over the original 61 SG (cherry) when it hung in the window of the guitar shop where I took lessons. It was next to the SG Jr. that I was fortunate to have my parents buy for me. Over the years I thought about buying one and  just never quite got there. When the recent versions began to be produces, I thought about either the Gibson USA version or the Custom Shop version. The poorly performing vibrato just haunted me to the point I couldn't pull the trigger. I wound up getting a CS Les Paul Axcess Bengal Burst. I'm getting good at twanging the strings on the neck. Can't do the lower twang, but at least the guitar stays in tune. Good Luck. It is a BEAUTIFUL guitar.

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On 10/29/2022 at 8:53 AM, GuitarsAnn said:

I drooled over the original 61 SG (cherry) when it hung in the window of the guitar shop where I took lessons. It was next to the SG Jr. that I was fortunate to have my parents buy for me. Over the years I thought about buying one and  just never quite got there. When the recent versions began to be produces, I thought about either the Gibson USA version or the Custom Shop version. The poorly performing vibrato just haunted me to the point I couldn't pull the trigger. I wound up getting a CS Les Paul Axcess Bengal Burst. I'm getting good at twanging the strings on the neck. Can't do the lower twang, but at least the guitar stays in tune. Good Luck. It is a BEAUTIFUL guitar.

I wish I could've seen those '61s new! As the story goes, nobody really expects anything to be worth a lot of money in the future. Eventually, they just become used guitars, and sometimes, worth a small fortune. At least you got a nice Jr.!

It's unfortunate that the vibrola unit just isn't reliable, or stable. It's a very cool design. I'd like to do some Hank Marvin vibrola stuff with Apache, but it just never goes back to pitch. I haven't touched the bar since the first time that I bought the guitar, it's been alright. I thought about just removing the bar entirely, but I haven't. 

Those CS Les Paul Axcess' are very nice; especially the Bengal Burst. I have an SG Diablo Tremolo, and I've been waiting for them to do another SG with a floating floyd rose. Tuning stability is most of the battle for me. Thanks, and thanks!

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IIRC the SG Jr. sold for $165.00 back in 1963 when my folks bought it for me and the SG  with the sideways vibrola sold for $275.00. Both were Cherry and hung in the window of the music shop until I got the Jr. Hard times back in the late 70s forced me to give it up. Now I understand it could be worth up to 5k and the SG upwards of 20K. Oh Well. Better times are here and I have quite a nice family and a great collection of guitars. None have a vibrola.

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