Gibson SG Standard 61 with Sideways Vibrola

Terry Pterodactyl

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I've been wanting a SG Standard 61 with Sideways Vibrola since they came out in 2019. I've been considering trading my 2019 Les Paul Standard on one that I recently played at Sam Ash. I was researching them on the internet and found this review on The Trogly's Guitar Show

I've found his reviews to be helpful in the past, and now I'm really wondering if I should pursue the trade. Any thoughts?
 

Bettyboo

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If you played one already then you know how you feel about it, don't worry about what somebody on the internet says - just one of many opinions, none of which are as important as yours.
 

PauloQS

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That dude is not a tech. He doesn’t know how to address nut binding issues, which are not uncommon with Gibson. They’re much better than they used to be, but you still find examples with issues here and there. Anyways, he’s not in a position to make that type of conclusions because he’s not able to eliminate other possibilities or set that system up correctly. Have you encountered any of the issues that this dude brings up yourself?

I have a good friend who was eying one, but I suggested he try the Maestro vibrola first before pulling the trigger on the sideway vibrola. However, I know my friend well and I nerd out more than him about guitar minutiae. Even then, it was merely a suggestion to try a different option that he might like it more, or not.

Personally I’m not s fan of the sideways vibrola. Not that it should mean anything to you.
 

Norton

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Get what You want.

If you can swing it and have both? It’s just more of a win win.
 

njpaulc

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Well, the review just re-enforced what has always been said about the sideways vibrola...."They stink". Gibson stopped making them for a reason. Owners replaced them with Bigsbys and stop tail pieces for a reason. The problems with the design have historically gone beyond setup issues. I was surprised when Gibson reissued them. Know what you are buying, if you buy it new, make sure it is set up correctly coming out of the store, or that the cost of a set up is is considered in the final price.
 

Blueline

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You can clearly hear the string pinging in that video meaning the nut is catching the string. I am surprised he does not mention that. Some nut sauce will fix that. It is not the vibrola, it is the nut. The other thing is that that middle piece for mounting the vibrola is new and not on the original. The sloppy saddle cuts and the nut are poor workmanship.
These vibrolas work fine and stay in tune. How do I know? I have 3 of these babies. !960, 1961 and the new one on the 2013 ' 61 Les Paul Tribute. The best one is the 1961 as it has the domed thumbwheels and rocks on the bridge. You can can go crazy and it will not go out of tune. My 2013 needed the nut sauce to stay in tune. So there you have real experience.

So get one and you will love it.
 

Goldtone

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yes to the domed thumb wheels!!! Crucial for sideways, maestro/vibrola, or Bigsby to work correctly

Big thing Gibson has been missing on the reissues for decades.
 

crashbelt

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I'd be careful to thoroughly try out an SG with a sideways before you buy.

I can't speak for modern re-issues but the original sideways caused horrible tuning issues, made a too shallow break angle to the bridge and sucked tone. That's why so many were converted to stop tails, or like mine had the brilliant Mojoaxe block replace the sideways mechanism and disable the sideways. Solves all the problems as on my 61 in my avatar. I'm not sure the Mojoaxe block fits the modern sideways though.

Best of luck if you get the guitar. It looks very cool - but be sure the sideways works properly first!
 

Blueline

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yes the mojoaxe block works on the on the new sideways. Follow this link for installation info:


However, I have found no tuning problems with the sideways vibrola as I have already noted with my 2 vintage Les Paul Standards in the SG style. Your vibrola must have been defective. No "tone sucking", whatever that is, was found. The 1960 Les Paul has a slightly steeper neck angle than the 61 that produces more angle across the bridge. It has great sustain and tone. I wouldn't dream of messing with that vibrola. I have already mentioned why the 61 is stable.
 

PermissionToLand

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Much like the usual narrative about Gibsons in general having "crappy tuners" and "never staying in tune for a full song" or the SG having a "flimsy neck", it's all a bunch of nonsense that's simply caused by either a lack of proper setting up or user error (in the case of a "flimsy neck", the problem is the player. Why would you be putting any pressure on the neck at all while playing?). Hell, Angus Young alone dispels all of those myths; he jumps off amps and rolls around on the floor with a "flimsy neck" SG with "crappy tuners" and manages to stay in tune just fine for an entire 1.5 hour show.

99% of these problems can be solved by stretching every set of strings you put on, and lubricating the nut slots. Secondary to those, set up your intonation properly and loosen your grip.
 

fuzbuzz78

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The inside of the sideways vibrola was slightly modified to improve the spring back action, on the reissues. Also, trogly might have subscribers and a lot of videos, but his lack of knowledge is concerning when it comes to technical service issues related to guitars. In his review, you can hear the string catching on the nut, which is a clear indicator that the nut needs to be cleaned up. It’s people like him who keep gotoh and kluson in business with tuner swaps. Uggghh.
 

PermissionToLand

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The inside of the sideways vibrola was slightly modified to improve the spring back action, on the reissues. Also, trogly might have subscribers and a lot of videos, but his lack of knowledge is concerning when it comes to technical service issues related to guitars. In his review, you can hear the string catching on the nut, which is a clear indicator that the nut needs to be cleaned up. It’s people like him who keep gotoh and kluson in business with tuner swaps. Uggghh.

Agreed very much. He has a lot of viewers and frequently displays ignorance of not only technical stuff, but also market value for his supposed area of specialization; Gibsons. Then again, that's probably inseparable from the fact that he's essentially a scalper who just buys and resells guitars for a profit while adding zero value and just artificially inflates the market.
 

Gibbo SG

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Well first up, I wouldn't trade a Les Paul Standard for an SG, but it's none of my business. Secondly, whatever the situation with the Sidewayser tremolo, it is normally sought for its tone that it lends the guitar and not as a tremolo, per se. The 1961 SG's most famous player, Elvis Presley, he removed the cover from his, as well as the tremolo bar. His guitar is on display at the Graceland museum-don't get me started on Graceland please!
 

gypsyseven

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That trogly knows almost nothing about guitars...accidentally watched one video and had to stop immediately...
 

ajory72

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Hello people, I joined recently after I found the link to this site on the My Les Paul forum, gotta say I love the '61 Sg with Sideways Tremolo so much I've bought one...! It should be here in a couple of weeks...

I can say that I have no experience what-so-ever with the tremolo device, but, I noticed Les Paul favoured the sideways tremolo as an addition to his 50's Les Pauls - I was surprised to find that out when checking out his "number one" a 52/53 Les Paul.
It's a different brand/design than the one Gibson provides but if its good enough for Les to persevere with its good enough for the likes of me :) As to functionality - looks like I'll sort out a couple of things (nut-and possibly bridge) and then it should be good to use...

Interest for me comes from my decades long love of Jimi Page and his twin neck... though I could never afford one (and am not going to lug that thing around to practise!)... after seeing Trogley demo this one I actually thought - man I gotta have one, its just the coolest looking SG around..!

A quick qusetion for those of you that own one - especially a vintage 61 original, do you think the domed thumbwheels make any difference to tuning stability - I ask as I'm going to install a nashville to ABR conversion post, and notice the original 61's had the domed thumbwheels..???
https://www.crazyparts.de/bridges--...s/domed-thumbwheels-bigsby-maestro-chrome.php
 


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