Claescaster

Month: February, 2014

Ernie Ball Slinky Acoustic

Ernie Ball Super Slinky 11-52

I have recently started to use Ernie Ball strings for my acoustic guitars as well, I mentioned in a previous post about guitar strings that I now solely use Ernie Ball Regular Slinky 10-46 for my electric guitars. I still find it hard to know what to choose, I mean you can’t buy all the strings on the market and try them one by one, or I guess you can but it would cost quite a lot. On top of that, you can’t even have different strings on different guitars and that way hear the difference, unless you have a lot of guitars that sound very similar but I don’t. What I like with Ernie Ball is that they have nice tone and still doesn’t feel stiff, or too flimsy for that matter. I also like that you can listen to how the different strings sound on their website, I found that quite useful when I decided between their Earthwood strings and their Acoustic Slinky. I have only used them for a couple of weeks but so far I really like them, they sound a lot better than the cheap Martin strings I used before. I hope I don’t change my mind because I just bought 12 sets from an eBay seller in the US, 6 sets of  Ernie Ball’s Acoustic Slinky Phosphor Bronze 011 for Araceli and 6 sets of 012 for me.

Ernie Ball Regular Slinky 12-54

Daniel Romano

Daniel Romano

I have recently fallen in love with Daniel Romano, well not in a gay way, he just happens to do exactly what I would like to do. When I discover artists like this I never really know what to feel. Should I slap him in the face out of pure jealousy or just shake his hand and say, well done? Everything is so perfect, the songs, the band, his voice, the guitars, the suits, even down to the artwork. Well he seems like a nice guy and I really like what his doing so I have decided to just take off my hat and bow.

Ad of the day

Back from the grave, Goya 174 ad from 1970 2
Back from the grave, Goya 174 ad from 1970

It seems like I will soon be the proud owner of an early 1970’s Levin 174. A nice Danish chap by the name of Orla wrote a comment on my previous post about Levin, saying that he had one for sale. I will write more about it as soon as I get it but for now, enjoy this Goya ad for the same guitar from 1970.

Gibson Walnut SG Standard

1977 Gibson Walnut SG Standard
1977 Gibson Walnut SG StandardGibson Walnut SG Standard made in Kalamazoo, USA in 1977

I recently had the pleasure of having an awesome 1977 Gibson Walnut SG Standard at home to play with. Well the idea was to look over the electronics and make sure it was fit to gig with for Patrycja, a friend of Verushka that I sorted the Hondo II bass for. According to The Guitar Dater Project it was made at the Kalamazoo Plant, USA on December 15th 1977, production number 103. It was great that I got a chance to play around with a Gibson Walnut SG Standard from the Seventies, that’s exactly what I was tempted to get myself, see my previous post about Gibson SG. Luckily I tried one before I bought one and I realised straight away that I still prefer Telecasters, SGs have too much neck for me. It was interesting to try a 1970’s Gibson made in USA just to compare it to all the made in Japan copies in my collection. I have to say that the feel and quality of the Japanese guitars are right up there with the American originals.

1977 Gibson Walnut SG Standard
Everything seems to be original, except one pot, so I thought it was unnecessary to change the original jack just because of a bit of crackle so I cleaned it instead. I cleaned all the contact surfaces with wire wool and contact spray, it seems to be enough. I tightened the pots and all the screws on machine heads, strap buttons, pickguard, pickup rings, bridge and polished up the wood a bit.

1977 Gibson Walnut SG Standard
There was a fairly nasty cut in the edge binding on the 5th fret. You could feel it when you played so I masked it off and then filled it with wood filler, that happened to match in colour, then sanded it smooth and dropped a bit of nitro lacquer over it. Unfortunately I forgot to take a picture when it was all done, the last picture is before the lacquer and the final sanding with 2500 grit.

1977 Gibson Walnut SG Standard
Patrycja wanted to keep the dents and scratches to the body and I agreed, it’s nice when a guitar shows it’s real age. However, nobody likes dents in the back of the neck so I did what I could to soften them a bit. I recently learned a great way of removing dents and scratches, or at least making them stand out less. Use a soldering iron and some wet paper folded up, the steam from the iron will make the wood swell and that way make the dent less deep. Sometimes this works extremely well, especially on surface scratches, and sometimes it makes no difference at all so it’s a bit hit and miss but it’s quick and easy and therefore at least worth a try. Make sure you move the soldering iron and just hold it down for a sec to not damage the surface. The last step was to polish the frets and fretboard, put on some lemon oil and then new strings. The action and intonation was already great so I didn’t have to adjust that.