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Thread: Pickguard tales

  1. #11
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    OK...so I put everything together to able to play the damn thing. First off, the color mismatch is a real eyesore, so I honestly don't see this as being a long term situation. The split near the neck pickup isn't quite so bad, but that may only be because the chipped 5-way switch slot is so bad!! A battle-scarred pickguard that has never gone to battle!

    That said, I'm actually finding the tone to be a little thin. Granted I haven't played this guitar in a long time, so my memory may be questionable, but I think this may be because of the pickup heights. Unfortunately, I think the the screws may have slipped off the pickup covers because the neoprene tubing inside maybe too long - I should have cut them off more than I did.

    Still, it definitely doesn't sound as full as it did even with a plastic PG. I wonder if its the maple doing it, and whether it will be different with, say, a mahogany or koa PG.

    Anyway, for now its usable, and during the next string change, I'll fix the pickup screws and see if that changes the tone much.

    At the moment, I'm too embarassed by my performance to take pics and post them....maybe as a how-not-to-do-it example....

    Srini

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    Frankly my friend, I can't logically see how the composition of a pickguard is going to alter the tone produced by the pickups. Whether it's plastic, or any kind of wood, the tone of the note generated by the string begins in what the pickup does with that string's vibration. While I haven't tried any wood scratchplates, many years ago I had a Precision bass that I put an anodized pickguard on and nothing changed except the way it looked. Currently, I have a gold anodized pickguard on a Telecaster and it didn't change the tone either. Now, neither of those have a large routing under it, but still I think the tonal difference in this instance would be so small that it would be undetectable. But what do I know? I'm just a bozo posting on the internet!
    Some contend that rock 'n roll is bad for the body & bad for the soul
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    It makes some men crazy and they talk like fools.
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    I have always had a hard time believing that even the wood body of an electric guitar has any discernible effect on tone. Because it's an electric guitar. Without electricity, ya got nothing, essentially. I know a lot has been said about the 'sonic effects' of a nitro finish, or a thin skin, or "tonewoods" or whatever.... But I believe ya gotta have totally undamaged ears to hear any difference. (and no one over the age of (two ?) does. Not to mention the fact that it is virtually (truely?) impossible to perform any kind of scientific test since ya can't take a sonic "footprint" from one guitar, change the finish, and then get another 'footprint'. Or someone woulda posted proof by now.

    I could babble on about this, but I'm just another opinionated old geezer with nothing to back me but my opinion. However, I AM the worlds leading expert regarding my own opinion.... and in that, I trust.

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    RorysStrat has a swamp ash guard on a strat. Ask him if he hears a difference.



    The Human Torch was denied a bank loan.

  5. #15
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    Well...I went ahead and re attached the pickups and got the height about right. You guys are right - I can't hear any difference in tone between the plastic and this. My theory was that since the pickup is mounted on something stiffer, the transference of tone will be better, but if it is, I can't tell, so there!

    So now I have a really ugly looking guitar that sounds the same as it did before!

    Srini

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    Well, alrighty then!

    Some contend that rock 'n roll is bad for the body & bad for the soul
    Bad for the heart, bad for the mind, bad for the deaf & bad for the blind.
    It makes some men crazy and they talk like fools.
    Makes some men crazy and they start to drool.

  7. #17
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    Gentlemen, let me revise my assessment slightly..:)

    After getting the pickup heights adjusted correctly, I was finally able to get the tone I wanted. That was no mean feat, by the way, since those darn gold pickup mounting screws were not long enough. They would have worked fine with a plastic PG, but with this thick wood, I had very little leeway to adjust anything. So, I went back to the longer nickel screws I happened to have - hey, the cosmetics are messed up anyway, right? - and finally got everything set up.

    I'll have to agree and disagree with the previous comments. The tone, per se, is not different enough to warrant any comment. The feel, however, seems a bit more immediate, not completely like a rear routed guitar, but more similar to that than a regular strat. I compared it a few times with my rear routed swamp ash strat and the rear routed redwood strat, and the response is closer to the redwood strat, which is a chambered body, so not quite as snappy as the swamp ash. That said, I wouldn't rate the response as being quite so noticeable as going from a tube rectifier to a SS rectifier, but if your playing expression depends on picking variations, they may come across as being more noticeable.

    My two cents...:)

    Srini

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    I could see that. I know some guitars are just a little more lively than others. Some sound a little nicer and more acoustic-like sound even when they're not plugged in. I doubt I could hear any difference but the way a guitar feels affects how you play and I'm sure that makes a difference.

  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by badxmpl View Post
    I have always had a hard time believing that even the wood body of an electric guitar has any discernible effect on tone. Because it's an electric guitar. Without electricity, ya got nothing, essentially. I know a lot has been said about the 'sonic effects' of a nitro finish, or a thin skin, or "tonewoods" or whatever.... But I believe ya gotta have totally undamaged ears to hear any difference. (and no one over the age of (two ?) does. Not to mention the fact that it is virtually (truely?) impossible to perform any kind of scientific test since ya can't take a sonic "footprint" from one guitar, change the finish, and then get another 'footprint'. Or someone woulda posted proof by now.

    I could babble on about this, but I'm just another opinionated old geezer with nothing to back me but my opinion. However, I AM the worlds leading expert regarding my own opinion.... and in that, I trust.

    Disclaimer:
    (other opinions can and will vary. Proof either way may or may not mean anything. The emperors new clothes were purchased at JC Penny, and someone convinced against his will is of the same opinion, still.)

    Happy Halloween, Y'all!!
    I have always been skeptical of this as well. I mean after all, there electric guitars made out of metal as well. I think it is part of the romance we enjoy. I can tell you that there is an acoustic difference between a solid body strat that is rear loaded (no pickguard), a strat that has a swimming pool route or one that has a standard route. I think that is simply the acoustic principles of the plastic pickguard rattling. I don't see how that can really transfer to the pickups to amp signal chain. Nonetheless, we can still debate the sound of summer ash and winter ash all we want ;)
    I'm not sayin' that, I'm just sayin'......

  10. #20
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    My Swamp Ash guitars always sound a little soggy. Seriously though, I have a friend who swears that Swamp Ash is the worst of the Ash woods - like Velveeta to real Cheese, or Hot Dogs to Steak. Harrumph!
    Some contend that rock 'n roll is bad for the body & bad for the soul
    Bad for the heart, bad for the mind, bad for the deaf & bad for the blind.
    It makes some men crazy and they talk like fools.
    Makes some men crazy and they start to drool.

 

 

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