Travel Guitar

Talk about guitars, amplifiers, effects and other gear
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12bar
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Re: Travel Guitar

Post by 12bar » Tue Oct 25, 2016 4:36 pm

Bad news - guitars sometimes become irrelevant when things happen. Take your time, we'll keep :fingerscrossed: for your family.

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VikingBlues
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Re: Travel Guitar

Post by VikingBlues » Tue Oct 25, 2016 6:46 pm

I hope your family member gets well soon. :fingerscrossed:

The finished travel guitar looks very good - much more pleasing to the eye than the pre project pictures.

Hope you have fun with it on your travels. :thumbsup:
An improv a day keeps the demons at bay!

MichaelRobinson
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Re: Travel Guitar

Post by MichaelRobinson » Wed Oct 26, 2016 10:56 am

Oki doki.

She is a good looker. That's for sure................. :drool:

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Blindboy
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Re: Travel Guitar

Post by Blindboy » Sat Oct 29, 2016 4:59 am

Hope your family crisis turns out ok.
Sweet project! I used to have an old John Mayall album, and on the cover he was playing a severely chopped down Strat. Looked almost like a Stienberger. (I no longer have the album... I sold all my whole collection last weekend) Yours came out looking really nice. I like how you handled the headstock.
"Throw yo' big leg over me Mama, I might not feel this good again!"

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Golfxzq
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Re: Travel Guitar

Post by Golfxzq » Sat Nov 05, 2016 6:55 am

Hi Guys,

I'm back... its been a long few weeks but I'm finally back in the nest and I've been trying to put together a sampling of the travel guitar. I sure was glad that I had it sea worthy before I had to rush off for a few weeks. It really was nice having a guitar along that I could practice on and at least keep my fingers limber.

This sound clip is nothing spectacular for sure, just a few things that I can "sort of" play. My timing is off, I hit a lot of bad notes and in general... it's not too good, but that's where I am on my learning curve right now. It's amazing how recording and listening back to yourself reveals everything that you should work on, I need to do more of that. Maybe you can at least get an idea of how the guitar sounds. Remember, it's a $50 guitar with cheap pickups and lousy tuners (that will be the first thing I change, eventually).

By the way... if you guys want to critique, please feel free. I can use all the help that I can get.
"Whether you think that you can, or that you can't, you are usually right."
- Henry Ford

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12bar
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Re: Travel Guitar

Post by 12bar » Sun Nov 06, 2016 12:08 am

Still the strat sound, I'm surprised that the bass notes are still there. Which PU did you use? :thumbsup:

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Golfxzq
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Re: Travel Guitar

Post by Golfxzq » Sun Nov 06, 2016 4:06 am

All tracks were made using the middle/bridge position (2). I tried a few other positions but they sounded too thin for me. I'm not very knowledgeable on which pu combination should be used for what. Any guidelines or suggestions on that topic?
"Whether you think that you can, or that you can't, you are usually right."
- Henry Ford

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12bar
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Re: Travel Guitar

Post by 12bar » Sun Nov 06, 2016 10:43 am

Golfxzq wrote: Any guidelines or suggestions on that topic?
There are many, every guitarist has his favorite. Usually, the bridge pickup is used for solo and the neck pickup for rhythm. This is mainly due to the fact that the position at the bridge produces the higher frequencies (near to the human voice), which are good for lead, while the neck pickup is the basic, deeper and cleaner tone. Combining two single coils (in-between position) has a humbucking effect.
However, many guitar players used other settings. Clapton's woman tone was done with the neck PU, SRV and Hendrix often used the middle one.

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VikingBlues
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Re: Travel Guitar

Post by VikingBlues » Sun Nov 06, 2016 12:01 pm

Not at all shabby soundwise for a $50 guitar. :thumbsup:

But as for the 'thin' sound on other settings ..... hmmm :think:
Middle / neck and neck should sound fatter than middle / bridge. Bridge on its own can often sound close to painfully piercing!

One possibility that affects sound - the neck is not quite right in its contact with the body - apparently not being quite seated right can have a big impact on thickness of tone. But the neck pickup should still sound thicker if that neck issue exists. So unlikely it's that.

If the magnets in the pickups are quite strong and they're a bit too near the strings that can thin the sound - maybe the neck one needs backed off. There's a tendency for people to raise them thinking it makes the sound stronger. Like the incorrect tendency to think that all high output pickups help increase sustain! :roll:

Was there a thin pickup sound in its original state? If not maybe some wiring connection has been compromised in the rebuilding process? Or if it was like this before there's maybe something that was already out of kilter in the wiring.

If the wiring is effectively making for out of phase pickups then that will thin the sound as the sounds you get are the 'leftovers' from the two pickups cancellations. If in phase they will work together and reinforce each other. A long time since I did this sort of stuff so I'm not sure if it's possible for a wiring schematic to have bridge and middle in phase but middle and neck out of phase, but if they could be it might fit your scenario.

There are various wiring diagrams on line for the sundry possible strat wiring systems.
Some here - http://www.seymourduncan.com/wiring-dia ... all,strats

But - on the plus side - it plays and it sounds well enough to fulfil the role of a travel guitar! :thumbsup:
An improv a day keeps the demons at bay!

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Golfxzq
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Re: Travel Guitar

Post by Golfxzq » Mon Nov 07, 2016 8:22 am

Thanks Gerd & VB... all good information for me to investigate.

As for the neck attachment... When I removed the neck there was a small Velcro-like square between the neck and body. I assumed this was a shim used to align the two pieces (cheap guitar) so I replaced it when I bolted the neck back on. This could definitely affect the neck to body contact so if this contact affects the neck output it very well may have a bearing.

I set the heights of the pickups according to a YouTube instructional video that said to set the high E at 1/16" and the low E at 1/8" while fretting at the highest fret. Maybe this is just a "starting point". I'll play around with it and see what happens.

As for the before and after tone... I have no idea! The strings were all rusted up and the neck pickup would cut out occasionally. Besides, I was anxious to start tearing into this thing so I didn't make a "before" recording to compare to.

When I dismantled things the tone pot had one wire which was stripped pretty far back. I thought this was shorting to another post causing the cut-out. I fixed that, but I've since discovered that the selector switch is the cause for the cut-out when in the neck position. (Second thing I'll replace... right after the tuners).

Now, the wiring. It seems to be a standard wiring.. nec/neck-mid/mid/mid-bridge/bridge and the tone knobs seem to affect the proper pickups. But... Who knows, I didn't really compare the wiring to any sort of diagram.

From the looks of the original I'm guessing that it belonged to a kid who was more interested in dressing it up with stickers than converting the pickup wiring.

Also, this model is two single coils with a humbucker at the bridge, not three single coils. Maybe that's why I like position 2 the best.

Thanks again for all the fantastic information, it can only help to make this cheap guitar sound better! I'll keep tinkering, it's what I like to do.

Anyone want to explain to me how to include a quote from someone else's comment? I can't figure out how to do that. :think: Thanks.
"Whether you think that you can, or that you can't, you are usually right."
- Henry Ford

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12bar
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Re: Travel Guitar

Post by 12bar » Mon Nov 07, 2016 9:35 am

Golfxzq wrote:Anyone want to explain to me how to include a quote from someone else's comment? I can't figure out how to do that. :think: Thanks.
That's easy - just click the " - icon on the post you want to quote (see pic below) and delete the parts of the text you don't want to quote (quoting complete posts is often too much text). In the Editor it looks like

(quote="Golfxzq")Anyone want to explain to me how to include a quote from someone else's comment? I can't figure out how to do that. :think: Thanks.(/quote)

but with square brackets instead of ().
quote.jpg
quote.jpg (62.49 KiB) Viewed 6615 times

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Golfxzq
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Re: Travel Guitar

Post by Golfxzq » Tue Nov 08, 2016 7:23 am

12bar wrote:That's easy - just click the " - icon on the post you want to quote (see pic below) and delete the parts of the text you don't want to quote
.... Thanks, easy enough.
"Whether you think that you can, or that you can't, you are usually right."
- Henry Ford

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