Messing about with my 2019 R8

BDW60

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So I got diagnosed with RA about 18 months ago - the last couple years have been a trip. Lots of bad flare ups, lots of issues, lots of doc appointments. My hands, wrists and fingers have been truly screwed up with pain, swelling and stiffness. Along with all the other joints.

So when I say I had to defile my CME spec R8 with locking tuners, I actually had to. I have been finding all sorts of cheats for everyday tasks, and the lockers make string changing one less thing that is awkward. I got the Kluson Revolution nickel G Mount non collared locking gears and installed them today. More on that in a bit ...

My R8 is the best historic I’ve owned. Love it. But always been a little meh about the board ... it’s a medium chocolate with some nice movement in it but I would have loved it to be darker. So I got some Music Nomad F1 oil and treated the board today. It looked a bit dry and eagerly drank up the very small amount of F1 I applied. Maybe I didn’t let it sit quite long enough before buffing it totally dry ... based on some videos I had seen, I expected a little bit richer tone than I got. It looks better for sure, and needed a drink. It’s now one shade more chocolate. And more chocolate is always good.

In an effort to make playing and bending easier, I decided to drop down to 9.5-.44 strings. Only ever had 10-46 on Les Pauls. Went with a set of the Curt Mangan Fusion Matched nickel wound. What came off was a set of D’Addario XLs. Don’t let anyone tell you won’t notice such a small drop in size — it is obvious and feels really great. Need to play them in a bit, but my initial impression is very positive. They ring very clear and balanced. Not too bright, not too dark, smack in the happy middle. Chording is easier, bending is easier, but it’s not slinky to the point where I am pushing stuff out of tune, etc. I suppose I have a medium touch anyway so not really a concern.

The string size drop does not appear to necessitate a truss adjustment. Action seems pretty much the same. Will need to intonate as it is just a bit off.

Back to the tuners ... they’re a drop in replacement for the vintage peg holes. Took the stock machines off (thanks for almost stripping one of the screws on original install, custom shop). I did get it out but it was close. Put the Revolutions on, strung it up, easy peasy. Used the original screws to put them on, minus the one bad one. It didn’t appear necessary to change the press-in bushings to the Klusons because the posts seemed nice and solid in the stock ones, so I left it alone. Under full tension, there does seem to be the tiniest bit of post lean on the low E especially. I don’t think it’s enough to matter but I will probably install the right ones eventually.

The Revolutions are just incredibly smooth to turn, and the 19-1 ratio Is specific, indeed. You can creep right up on the pitch without over shooting. The stock tuners were just fine, but there is no question these are nicer to use. From the front of the headstock, they look pretty good. More modern obviously with the closed housing but only geeks that hang around here (like us) would ever notice. Now, the player view from the back is a whole ‘nuther can of worms. They stick out farther with the round locking mechanism and generally look quite techy to be on a historic. Not sure how much this bothers me, but early on it’s kind of an unsettling visual. Maybe a concession I just have to live with. Maybe I will try to age these to get them more in line with the VOS look. I’m sure these are slightly heavier than stock but guitar feels the same to me in hand.

That’s my report.
 

SkaneatelesLake

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Hey, while I know this is a guitar forum, let me say how sorry I am about your RA. My wife has it and has suffered for 18+ years. The one thing that she found really caused flair-ups was using artificial sweetners, especially aspartame. Try to avoid things like that. Also, when having a flair-up, don't try to push through it. Take it easy and wait until you feel better. Best of luck to you. And, congrats on the '19 R8 - just as good as you can get! Here is my late '19 or early '20 R8 in Lemon Burst:
Best smaller.jpg
 

BDW60

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Thanks. It’s a life changer. But life goes on, as you know. It just figures that my only passionate hobbies are golf and guitar ... lol. And we just built a new house on the first fairway of my course before/during my diagnosis. But I still play when I can - I will never be a 1 handicap again but I still get around Ok.
 

Rockin Rola

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I feel for you-Know first hand how debilitating it can be. We musicians have had it bad this year-although unless you are a top pro its never really been easy right? The show must go on. If you got your hearing and a discerning ear, that’s really the most important stuff-caring deeply about a great tone on an instrument that simply works for you. Do you think Jimmy Page coveted his axe? - he modded the shit out of each and everyone one of them to get the job done. It ain’t a museum - I got a nice 2019 R0 that just suits me fine but I’d sure as hell do what I need to do to it to carry on playing comfortably. Remember it’s rock and roll and you “deserve“ to like it!
 

Brek

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Go slow with the oil, you don’t want the wood absorbing too much and expanding. The revolutions are awesome, I have them on my R0, the tuning is so much easier for me to get spot on, non of this tighten, doh, to much, slacken, malarkey.
 
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dmac in SC

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Hey, I am scheduled to have surgery on Monday to correct my cubital tunnel syndrome..This thing has been going on for over a year, and based on what I was told, the only result would be numbness and discomfort in my fingers and hand...turns out, that by delaying surgery, I have suffered irreversible atrophy in my left hand...something that the well educated and highly paid health care professionals failed to inform me of.. so I feel your pain and more of it

I have dropped string gauges to .009's on all my guitars, and there is no 'loss' of tone on any..there may be some change in the sounds, but it honestly sounds better here than it ever has, and that is pretty damned awesome :cheers2:

Getting old and incompetent health care providers both suck out loud
 

BDW60

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Hey, I am scheduled to have surgery on Monday to correct my cubital tunnel syndrome..This thing has been going on for over a year, and based on what I was told, the only result would be numbness and discomfort in my fingers and hand...turns out, that by delaying surgery, I have suffered irreversible atrophy in my left hand...something that the well educated and highly paid health care professionals failed to inform me of.. so I feel your pain and more of it

I have dropped string gauges to .009's on all my guitars, and there is no 'loss' of tone on any..there may be some change in the sounds, but it honestly sounds better here than it ever has, and that is pretty damned awesome :cheers2:

Getting old and incompetent health care providers both suck out loud
All the best on the surgery — hope it works for you. Coming from a medical family (wife and son are MDs) I can tell you the overwhelming majority of physicians do a very tough job to the best of their ability every day. But, they are human and aren’t perfect. Sometimes balls get dropped, and a lot of medicine is art as well as science. And a lot of the science isn’t even settled.

My rheumatologist wants me to take Plaquenil for my RA. That’s hydroxychloriquine. He straight up told me they do not understand its mechanism of action for Inflammatory arthritis, literally have no idea why it works. And there is about a 5 percent chance I will get irreversible retinopathy (permanent vision damage) if I take it long term. Normally I would take those odds, but the retinopathy actually did happen to my sister, who has lupus. So I’m spooked.

And I’m not too keen on starting something else — an immunosuppressant drug — during a pandemic.
 

BDW60

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Go slow with the oil, you don’t want the wood absorbing too much and expanding. The revolutions are awesome, I have them on my R0, the tuning is so much easier for me to get spot on, non of this tighten, doh, to much, slacken, malarkey.
Did you leave the stock bushings in or use the ones that came with the Revolutions?
 

Brek

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The stock bushings were too loose a fit, I noticed the new posts wobbled, so i took them out, was easy to do on the 60th R0, the R9 was a different story were really tight had to be very careful not to put excess pressure on neck. So installed the new bushings on both. I was going to use a g clamp at one point the r9 were so stiff, would have needed a contraption making to prevent the clamp from touching the guitar and allowing the bushing to be pushed out. 3 strips of wood to make an H shape was my thinking with a thin dowel to drive bushing out.
 

musicmaniac

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Well, I've got both and can say the Revolutions are great and RA sucks! I've been on hydroxy for 20+ years and so far so good. It's to the point though the Doc wants me to use Bio's and I don't want to go that route. I'd rather be in pain than dead! Enjoy you guitars while you can!
 


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