So, I'm thinking of removing my sideways vibrato...

Discussion in 'Vintage SG' started by Monstronaut, Apr 24, 2014.

  1. Dolebludger

    Dolebludger Premium Member

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    I don't think you are derailing the thread, as the subject is woes with the side pull trem. IMO, a roller bridge would help with the failure to return to tone, but wouldn't totally solve the tuning problem. In 2013, Gibson made a new SG with a "new and improved (?)" side pull trem. This was done for only one year, and reports from owners say the trem is still bad.

    My problem wasn't failure to return to tune, as I never used the thing after the first time, when I discovered the tuning problem. My problem was that the trem tailpiece unit sucked tone. TPs need to be securely mounted to the guitar body, and this trem connected the strings to a spring loaded unit -- not a very good contact with the body for tone transmission.
     
  2. David Mccarroll

    David Mccarroll Senior Member

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    Ahem - Gibson tried it last year (?) as expected it was an unmitigated disaster and disappeared almost as quickly as their "Hendrix Experience" Strat copy made in China for them that they seem to have done their best to erase any evidence of - somewhat wisely.
     
  3. David Mccarroll

    David Mccarroll Senior Member

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    Oh My God! - I'd forgotten just what a hideous engineering debacle those things were - haven't taken the cover off one in years - if anyone thinks there is any vintage mojo in the workings of that thing I guess they are probably members of the Trabant fan club!

    What on Earth did Gibson think they were doing?????? The Fred Flintstone and Barney Rubble Trem?
     
  4. Dolebludger

    Dolebludger Premium Member

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    Yes, Gibson introduced what was supposed to be a "new and improved" version of this trem on their 2013 SG Standard. Only problem, it wasn't new and improved. Same old crap.

    I messed around with my original version for decades to no avail. I never actually used it, but even left alone it sucks tone. But finally, salvation! Above in this thread Danelectro of Mojoaxe describes a product that makes the trem a fixed TP. I bought one and it improved the tone on my SG LP 100%. Now I actually play it instead of just collecting it.

    Believe it or not, TPs do affect tone. You want a TP that transmits as much of what is left of the string vibration to the body. The side-pull trem just has too many moving parts to do that.
     
  5. David Mccarroll

    David Mccarroll Senior Member

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    Agree on all counts - I think though the worst thing about the sideways trem is the almost complete lack of break angle over the bridge - I had a 65 or so SG with a Meastro which also was as bad tone-wise as any Sideways Trem equipped SG/LP I have played - they are both just horrible mistakes - other guitar in our previous band had an SG Special and a Firebird 3 with Maestros, and we spent more time listening to him tuning up than playing - horrible, especially in light of what fabulous sounding guitars they are for the extremely short periods they stay in tune! Bigsbys have none of these issues in my experience, even cheap Bigsbys - even Bigsby copies!
     
  6. Dolebludger

    Dolebludger Premium Member

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    David,

    One of the things Danelectro's mod does is to increase the break angle at the bridge, as well as "solidifying the tailpiece.

    This mod is easy to install and the part costs about $150. Considering that those '60 - '63 LP SG Standards with side-pull are now bringing at least $8K to $9K if they are in one piece and much more if they are nice, the price of the mod is cheap considering it makes the guitar actually sound good.
     
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