Um...I'm getting a 2015 Special

Discussion in 'Gibson SG' started by WDeranged, Jan 21, 2015.

  1. WDeranged

    WDeranged Active Member

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    I've gone back and set the relief to .012" at the 8th fret, capo on on 1st and a finger on the last fret. Measuring relief this way has given me back a fair amount of adjustment on the bridge but I've got way less relief than how I previously set up, which was supposedly Gibson's own method.

    I'm in a right old mess now, what's the EverythingSG method of measuring relief?
     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2015
  2. LeadFinger

    LeadFinger Well-Known Member

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    Gibson glues in the neck at such a droopy angle that I use the higher frets to get a read on neck bow, not the point where the neck meets the body but closer to the bridge, then look for which fret has the most space to the string and use that as the measuring point. That's probably not the book way but my guitars play really well.
     
  3. Paul G.

    Paul G. Well-Known Member

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    I'm confused. You have 1/8" relief? Correct relief for a guitar is in the range of .010" (.25mm). Neck should look straight, just a bit of bounce (the thickness of a business card) at the 9th fret with capo on first, depressed at last. Most Gibby's can actually go straighter and feel better if they do. I treat .010" as a starting point. I usually go down from there until guitar doesn't fret cleanly at frets 1-7.

    Your guitar should be able to have 1/16" at the 17th fret treble, 3/32" bass, with a nearly straight neck.

    If this isn't attainable, and you haven't damaged the guitar, I'd see about returning it.

    P.
     
  4. WDeranged

    WDeranged Active Member

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    I'm thinking this way (last fret) is the proper way and I've been setting up my SGs wrong for about two years...probably serves me right for believing the first thing I read somewhere on the net.

    I'll set up the guitar from scratch using this method and see where I end up :hmm:
     
  5. WDeranged

    WDeranged Active Member

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    Whoaa I meant .012", post corrected. Sorry about that and sincere thanks for the info :smile:

    *edit*

    I've set the guitar up exactly as you describe (including action) and so far the world hasn't ended :fingersx:

    No buzz when playing lightly but heavy picking rattles a bit more than I'm used to, no choked notes or nasty sounds though.

    I've noticed the open strings rattle a bit, I should probably adjust the nut but I've never measured clearance at the first fret before and I'd love some tips.
     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2015
  6. WDeranged

    WDeranged Active Member

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    This is how the bridge looks with those measurements
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  7. WDeranged

    WDeranged Active Member

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    I decided to set my Faded to the same specs, the bridge seems to have much more adjustment left compared to the 2015 Special but could this just be a body style/neck angle thing?

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  8. LeadFinger

    LeadFinger Well-Known Member

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    Your treble strings are definitely sitting on top of the saddle slots on the 2015. Just looking at my LP now, they are in the grooves. It looks like that's the case on your Faded as well, but there's glare so I can't be positive.
     
  9. WDeranged

    WDeranged Active Member

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    Yeah I just checked and you're right, the grooves on the 2015 are cut much shallower. Nicely spotted, and you also noticed my neck had too much relief a page ago :cheers:

    Also looking at my Faded, I notice the break angle of the strings over the bridge pickup seems considerably steeper. I think the neck of my Faded must have a steeper angle, it'd totally account for having the bridge jacked up so high.

    Going back to the 2015 Special, official shots look very similar to mine, with a shallower break angle and lower bridge...I think this is making a bit more sense to me now.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2015
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  10. LeadFinger

    LeadFinger Well-Known Member

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    Didn't GIbson say they made some changes to the bridge for 2015? I seem to recall reading something like that. My guess is that, if they did a change, it will ultimately be for the better but only with real finesse used during setup (which of course they won't routinely do at the factory).

    Bridge saddles are an easily overlooked aspect of setup on guitars, but it can make a big difference. My Nighthawk (with poorly designed Strat-type saddles) kept breaking strings and giving me sitar sounds until I finessed them with my little ignition file. Same thing with my LP Classic. After that experience I looked at all of them under magnification. The Gibson ones all looked like hack work. Thing is, if there's any incidental contact in the saddle slot it will rob you of sustain, and even make the notes sound choked or otherwise wonky -- especially during bends. And of course they cut the slots right down the middle of the saddles, which is just production convenience.

    How many "oh man, this thing sucks, man! Gibson quality sucks, man!" Gibsons simply need a full setup? All of them do, if mine are any indication. It's amazing when you hear that guitar sound like it's supposed to, though. Devil is in the details. (Now, if I could only play the fking things better -- they're such nice guitars now lol).
     
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  11. Biddlin

    Biddlin Well-Known Member

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    not the approved way, but it works:in the tuning you normally use.
    put a capo on fret 15 Adjust your bridge height by finding the lowest possible setting where all notes from frets 16 to 22(4) are clear and ring.(no buzz, no fret out) Be sure to do some bends to make sure you are clear of all frets . I start with the bass side, not sure it makes a difference.Then remove the capo and set the lower neck action with the trussrod for the same results. Now set your intonation. On my Specials, I end up with about .06 measured at the 8th fret, but that's purely incidental.On my SGJ, it's closer to .08, I would guess, I don't really measure. Retune between each adjustment. Check the adjustments while in your normal playing position. I can setup my SGs while wearing them on a strap, my larger guitars, not so much. now you have my secret setup.
    ;>)/
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2015
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  12. WDeranged

    WDeranged Active Member

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    Thanks Biddlin, I can see the logic in your method, I'll give it a go later. Are you holding down the last fret when you do measure your relief?

    Also the issue of buzz, low relief is new territory for me and I can be quite an aggressive player, it's an old question but how much is normal?
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2015
  13. Biddlin

    Biddlin Well-Known Member

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    Most players are between .010 an .008. My last three Gibsons, from the factory, had significantly less.I am using 9-42 EB super-slinky strings. I had to raise everything up a little bit on both LP Melody Makers and my LPJ,and I have a feather-light touch! I will also note that my two SG Specials have almost no relief and my classic has probably close to factory spec. (.010)I would guess .008 would do you pretty good as a baseline, but tweak it until you get it right for you. :dude:
    ;>)/
     
  14. Paul G.

    Paul G. Well-Known Member

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    Just one more thing: If you're concerned that when everything is right, your bridge is pretty much all the way down, I wouldn't worry. Unlike acoustic or arch top guitars, the neck set on a solid body doesn't usually drift with age, plus you don't have variations in temperature and humidity moving the top up and down. If it's ok today, it will be ok in 40 years.

    My SG Standard is pretty much cranked all the way down. My 1960 Les Paul (yes an original 'burst, sold for way too little way too early) was the same way. I have a friend who swears lower neck sets on a Gibson make the guitar "sing". He may be full of it, but I think I agree. Given a guitar with the bridge teetering high, or down low, I'll pick the low one any day.

    Just me, of course.
     
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  15. WDeranged

    WDeranged Active Member

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    All great info, thanks!


    Reassuring to know, I think I'm pretty close right now and there's a little bit of adjustment left so I'll try to chill about it :bowdown:


    This guitar does that crazy harmonic wailing thing when I turn everything up, glad it's looking like a keeper :dude:
     
  16. OV7

    OV7 New Member

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    Hey WDeranged, nice guitar. I've got a 2015 LP Jr. I've grown to really love the G-Force tuners. If you're gigging, though, make sure you have a fresh and full charge on the battery as it can behave a little erratically when the battery gets weak. I've also found that the tuning is way more precise if you tune string-by-string instead of all at once. I really like the wider neck when playing standing up. Enjoy!
     
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  17. Biddlin

    Biddlin Well-Known Member

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    DSCN1119.JPG DSCN1120.JPG DSCN1121.JPG DSCN1143.JPG DSCN1148.JPG DSCN1149.JPG
    Here are my 02 and 03 Specials.
    The tailpiece and bridge height are dictated, largely, by the neck set angle.
    ;>)/
     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2015
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  18. WDeranged

    WDeranged Active Member

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    I really like the g-force but I'm still skeptical about how long it will last. Right now it's puzzling me, it insists on tuning my D string sharp by up to 5 cents, even on the highest accuracy setting :confused:
     
  19. OV7

    OV7 New Member

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    Weird. Another quirk is that when I'm playing in certain rooms, with other instruments, PA, and ambient crowd noise, the G-Force tends to sputter a bit and never get in tune until it cuts out, then I turn it back on and strum all, and it works perfect.
     
  20. LeadFinger

    LeadFinger Well-Known Member

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    Setting the intonation as good as possible helps with that, as does tuning with the individual string setting. I still often wind up 2-3 cents off on one or two strings, but it's a lot better than when I first got it. Also, keep the battery topped up, it really loses it when the battery gets low.
     
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