Maple Top Weight

Discussion in 'Historics & Reissues' started by JUNAE9, Oct 5, 2017.

  1. L96A1

    L96A1 Senior Member

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    Not saying the ideal weight guarantees a good guitar, just the guitars at this weight have more chance of being good, to my ears.
     
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  2. BBD

    BBD Senior Member

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    And:

    It can be useful to think about the guitar as a physical system because it helps to understand why it behaves as it does.

    More of the vibrational energy from the strings is lost to the neck than via the bridge to the body (Fleischer & Zwicker 1998a). This is not surprising: the neck is relatively small and light and therefore more susceptible to forced vibration than the body. The addition of a hard, non-resonant maple cap to the body makes it even more resistant to forced vibration. So the neck has more influence on tone than the body. This is why attempts to identify a relationship between total weight and tone are inconclusive. It's also why two LPs with over a pound weight difference can both sound great.
     
  3. freebyrd 69

    freebyrd 69 Premium Member

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    I hear ya Rudi. I respect your opinion. We just agree to disagree.
     
  4. freebyrd 69

    freebyrd 69 Premium Member

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    Test not valid. Too many other factors to attribute the tone difference to other than weight alone. Let me put it to you this way....your test would be like this....

    You have two world class sprinters and line them up for a race. One weighs 150lbs, the other, 160lbs.. You put sprinting shoes on the 150lb. sprinter, and put him on a track. You make the 160lb. sprinter run barefoot on grass. According to you, the 150lb. sprinter is the faster guy, right? So, according to you, lighter sprinters are faster than heavier sprinters. That's what your "contest" was like.

    Pickups, pots, caps...even tweaking amp settings, can have a huge difference on tone impact.

    Now if you used the same set of pickups, pots, caps, tailpieces, bridges (they varied from 99-13), and EVERYTHING else, AND used the same amp settings, then you have a pretty valid test.
     
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  5. BBD

    BBD Senior Member

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    Assuming quality pickups, as a general rule, slightly heavier guitars are going to be that bit less resonant and therefore when amplified, they will be a bit louder, with a bit more sustain, and the tone will be on the brighter side. So the tendency for some players to find favourites in the 8.5 - 9.2lb range does make sense.
     
  6. jamman

    jamman Premium Member

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    So ,,,, Since the focus of the OP has not got to many focused answers . Anyone ...?????

    I don't know an answer to the sounds better question , What sounds "better" is a completely "Subjective opinion anyway "
    Or we could say a guitar /LP anywhere between 7.5(~) lbs. and 10.5 lbs. could/can sound good , BTW look at some of the new weights of USA LP's and some CS LP's recently (BB's) . closing in in 10 + lbs.

    IMO , weight . I never look at that as the 1st. attribute . It's close (when buying online), and buying online changes the way you shop for a new guitar . it's different . IN a store , you pick up the 1 that you like best and then test .... weight is farther down the list ....

    Hello Norlin , nice to see you've found your way back
     
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  7. freebyrd 69

    freebyrd 69 Premium Member

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    I never found that to be the case.
     
  8. BBD

    BBD Senior Member

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    There's a certain amount of confusion about this, I think. Guitars can be acoustically loud for two reasons: the body is resonating and moving air or the *strings* are vibrating and moving air. If the body is resonating it's robbing vibrational energy from the strings and that will make the amplified signal quieter, less sustaining and darker. Loud strings happen when the neck/body doesn't resonate as much and so doesn't rob vibrational energy from the strings. The result is an amplified sound that is loud, sustaining and more on the bright side.

    The physics of the system is what it is, and heavier, denser woods tend to be less efficient forced resonators than lighter woods.
     
  9. L96A1

    L96A1 Senior Member

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    All 13 r9s had stock harness and pickups(57,bb and cb), same strings, eb 2251, same amp, same player. Sorry we could not be more valid than this, didn't have enough pickups for every guitar.
    The lesson we learned, having an opinion without knowing what you say is just foolish.
     
  10. d1m1

    d1m1 Senior Member

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    Yep thats why i compared the 7.9 and 9.2 lbs les pauls. There is way more factors affecting tone. The weight for sure as well but not that much as some would thing. A lightweight lp is for sure more comfortable to play. If you find a good sounding lightweight, grab it.

    As for the neck, you can see how much it affects tone when you change the neck on a strat or tele. You get a different guitar. Maybe 50% of tone is in the neck.
     
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  11. BBD

    BBD Senior Member

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    It's difficult to quantify the effect on tone, but the neck is without doubt the most important piece of wood in the guitar. The pickups are the most important contributors to tone (if we set aside the player and the amp), then the neck, then the body and the bridge. But just as you say, all else being equal, the neck will make or break a guitar.
     
  12. jamman

    jamman Premium Member

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    Just to be a PITA .... Good Pups , will sound like crap with Crappy Pots ..... depending on what sound you want from the guitar . When Gibson used 300K pots ... They sounded sickly when played(and compared with 500K (pots) with some volume ... At lower volumes it wasn't to noticeable , but still the mud was there .... Me , I'd swap pots before I'd swap Pups . 500K (or+) pots can make a huge difference in what you hear . And those Caps Gibson used to use .... Geez ...Don't get started on that :Ohno:
     
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  13. BBD

    BBD Senior Member

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    Yup, my bad. :)

    Imagine that I had written: "Assuming a decent harness, the pickups are the most important contributors [blah...]"
     
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  14. jamman

    jamman Premium Member

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    Hey When we can keep a thread going ,,,, All bets are off :cheers2:
     
  15. freebyrd 69

    freebyrd 69 Premium Member

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    You just validated my point. All of those harnesses, pickups, and pots vary. They may have all been stock, but they were all different. Different values, different ohms, all of it.
     
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  16. freebyrd 69

    freebyrd 69 Premium Member

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    I have never once gigged my L.P.'s unplugged. Come on over and plug into my Friedman. I promise you that any guitar you bring will not lack sustain. Brightness and tone will be determined by the pickups and harness.
     
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  17. BBD

    BBD Senior Member

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    Is to miss the point, but it doesn't matter.

    We're slightly talking past each other, I think, but what we are saying is compatible :wave:

    If you isolate the guitar from the 'triangle of tone' (player-amp-guitar), then the two things that have the most impact on tone are pickups/harness (by far the most influential) and the vibrational properties of the neck. The latter will influence the loudness and sustain of the amplified signal and to an extent how bright or dark it sounds. The body influences the tone in the same way as the neck, but to a lesser degree as it bleeds less vibrational energy from the strings than the neck. That's why the most important piece of wood in an electric guitar is the neck, not the body, and why weight (mainly the body) doesn't correlate with killer tone.
     
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  18. L96A1

    L96A1 Senior Member

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    Yes, not a really strict test, the result would have been different if all the factors are even, though I doubt those fell out of the contest will become a black dog over the winnner if, everything are equal.
    Not an expert but I found good ones are good ones, even with old strings and stock parts, they may not sound at their best potential but they don't sound bad. Vise versa.
     
  19. freebyrd 69

    freebyrd 69 Premium Member

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    I see what you are saying, and I don't know how much you have played around with the electronics I general. I agree, sometimes, you have a winner "out of the box", but more often than not, well, let's say at least 50% of the time, Gibson's stock stuff doesn't get it done.

    Harness's are #1. Uneven volume and tone sweeps.....it can be bad. Pickups are #2. I got my 2003 57 Reissue with the stock parts. It was very much "meh". It wouldn't have won any contests. It now has a MSSC harness in it and Bonamassa/Duncan pickups. The f&$er SCREAMS. TOTALLY changed the guitar for the better. That, and a proper set up (which is personal preference) make a HUGE difference. I bet I could have taken most of your "losers" and moved them toward the top very quickly.
     
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  20. L96A1

    L96A1 Senior Member

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    I see you are talking about potentials, I agree.
    BTW, SD’s JB pickups are superb. I love them.
     
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