Steel vs Aluminum ABR

Discussion in 'The Custom Shop' started by nibus, Jun 4, 2017.

  1. 1981 LPC

    1981 LPC Senior Member

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    Not to be a jerk, but what is 'zing?'?
     
  2. nibus

    nibus Senior Member

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    Top end / overtones / treble.
     
  3. Norton

    Norton Senior Member

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    That's funny.

    Brass is generally a bit mellow sounding next to steel. Steel usually has a pretty even response.
     
  4. ajory72

    ajory72 Senior Member

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    You havent mentioned what pickups you are using so I assume they possibly have A5 magnets?

    The Les Paul in my Avatar has a camel bone nut, aluminium stop bar, tone-pros locking stop-bar studs + steel threaded stopbar sleeves. It took some time to get things to that point and I dont think it really made a great deal of difference, as tried other options [many] as it was so bright it was ear peircing, and I couldnt find a way to stop it [i changed pots, caps, strings, stop bar] ... It was only through this forum that I learnt the A5 Magnet might be the cause, I swapped it with an A2 and now its WAY better, so much so I did the same with the neck pickup also and viola - she is a beast! [I love playing Zeppelin and it fits the bill to my ears]

    Its wiring harness is top notch as well and now I can really control the tone so can make it brighter or a little darker depending on what I want. So I imagine that the magnets play a decent role in end-tone and may possibly brighten your guitar somewhat? - magnets, pots, and strings are pretty cheap = so if you dont need new pick-ups for any reason [I cant afford new ones] maybe these small changes are worth a shot first before changing bridge and stop bars chasing sound? [which can run up the $$'s].

    Good luck :)
     
  5. nibus

    nibus Senior Member

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    I was also surprised. Could be the conversion studs, not being drilled directly into the wood like a Historic.
     
  6. PierM

    PierM Premium Member

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    I've personally solved a guitar with dull attack, using double thumbwheels in an ABR1, mounted with conversion posts. The second thumbwheel has been tightened properly on top of the bushing, giving the posts much more contact area, also reducing mechanical play between parts. Worked out really good for me, night and day.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2017
    blackat and nibus like this.
  7. Norton

    Norton Senior Member

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    Night and day?
     
  8. PierM

    PierM Premium Member

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    Morning and afternoon, if makes you feel better.
     
  9. Norton

    Norton Senior Member

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    Sure.....Whichever.
     
  10. unlisted

    unlisted Member

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    Has anyone tried TiSonix titanium parts? I've seen TiSonix parts used on John Bolin guitars from time to time, but haven't heard how they might sound.

    https://www.tisonix.com/
     
  11. ReZZ

    ReZZ Junior Member

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    First, you have to state what are you trying to brighten. An acoustical (unplugged) sound of an electric guitar or "pluged in" sound of electrical instrument. They are two different things.
    If you want to brighten unplugged sound, the material of the hardware is going to play a big role in this.
    There are number of things to consider too, such as species of wood, nut material, instalation of hardware parts and build quality (not neccessarily in that order).
    You have to try some different materials to find what does the trick for your axe.
    I realy thought, a brass bridge and tailpiece are going to fit nicely on my alder body, maple neck LP, but it turned out a Faber bridge with titanium saddles and a aluminum tailpiece is what ultimately sounds best.
     
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2017
  12. jimbob137

    jimbob137 Senior Member

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    Looking to replace my original hardware with nickel. Bought upgraded chrome covered pickups a few years ago and regret not opting for nickel as chrome never ages. Going to opt for the Callaham abr-1 as It seems the best choice to replace the Nashville setup and it would be nice to tame the trebles and have a more balanced output than bass guitar like lows and bright treble without the mids shining through.
     
  13. KP11520

    KP11520 Senior Member

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  14. jimbob137

    jimbob137 Senior Member

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  15. KP11520

    KP11520 Senior Member

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    Just in case you didn't see this, look here: http://www.abm-guitarpartsshop.com/Accessories/Studs-Adapters/Tuneomatic:::19_39_160.html

    But you most likely did. Try emailing them. I'd think they'd want the rest of the business being left on the table and hopefully have something.
     
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2017
  16. jimbob137

    jimbob137 Senior Member

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    Hi yes I did see those, although essentially that's the same mounting method as any other Nashville bridge and I really want to try out the one piece shaft conversion as per the original ABR-1 bridge like the faber iNsert style or the Callaham.

    Although I'm kind of worried to go tapping inserts in and then trying to use a mismatch from different makers for fear of the bridge being a poor fit onto the inserts. I like the idea of switching to an ABR-1 setup as I'm already switching out hardware purely for cosmetic reasons switching from chrome to nickel, then after reading the blurb from Callaham about billet milled bridges I'm kinda seeing an opportunity to get better tone at the same time making the spend a much more worthwhile one than just for cosmetics.

    If I'm only saving £30 by mixing and matching I'm inclined to just get the full Callaham Nashville conversion set as I know the posts are purpose milled for the bridge itself. Maybe completely naive of me to buy into an expensive product so easily but the description on their site of the effects of the setup really seem to be what I'm after, especially the acoustic quality's my guitar being a semi hollow.

    I'd be gutted if I had to start sending things back because they don't fit each other properly when I could have just bought one kit from the same place for £30 more
     
  17. KP11520

    KP11520 Senior Member

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    When you get into this finesse quadrant, spending so much, hoping you get the results, really gets unnerving.

    Please do a thread when you go through your process. I think many of us will find your experience(s) quite useful!

    Especially with just about no comparison videos available for these mods.
     
  18. jimbob137

    jimbob137 Senior Member

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    You know I've just spent the last hour listening to videos on youtube where people have changed bridge hardware to either Callaham or Faber etc and to be honest the differences seem so negligible it's like any minor difference in playing or volumes etc would blow the difference in hardware right out of the equation.

    Maybe the difference is so subtle that youtube file compression just looses those nuances completely. I have done other slight modifications to my guitar before e.g locking tuners / bridge and nut setup and I would say beyond a shadow of a doubt that those things made a pretty big difference to the feel and sound in fact probably much more to the feel and resonance qualities of the guitar.

    I am really undecided now and will price up Faber stuff to see just how much more I'd be paying for the Callaham. I'll keep you posted what I decide either way.
     
  19. The_Nuge

    The_Nuge Senior Member

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    I've had good success in adding snap to an all-mahogany LP R7 BB using a Faber locking aluminium tailpiece. The ABR-1 is the original Gibson one, but with "MapleFlame" steel studs. The pups are TysonTone, which are amazing, with 500K pots and PIO caps, and all-in-all it's now an amazing sounding guitar :thumb:

    I've also got a replica '58 korina Explorer with Faber ABR-1 & steel studs and aluminium tailpiece, but not locking. ECP pups, 500K pots and PIO cap - and that's got plenty of snap too!
     
  20. ReZZ

    ReZZ Junior Member

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    I have tried both, Faber and ABM bridges and tailpieces and in my opinion, the difference in sound is in the materials used.
    While the difference is subtile, it is maybe not even notisable struming an unplugged guitar. It becomes more apparent when playing fretted notes arround the fretboard where you can hear those little differencies in sound.
    I had Faber bridge with brass saddles and aluminum TP. And allthough it gave more definition, I didn't like the sound of it as a whole. I eventualy replaced brass saddles with titanium ones, and I like the sound of that combination best on my guitar (alder body/maple neck LP).
    I've also tried a brass ABM bridge and TP and while it sounded good, I did't go with that combination at the end.
     

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