SG neck dive solution

Chiefhibachi1

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I originally posted this on a dead thread it seems. Looking for some feedback positive or negative.
I recently purchased a 2016 SG HP. I liked the wider neck feature Gibson offers with this model but the auto tune contraption on the head stock is useless. Not sure what they were thinking with that piece of shite.
I do love the feel, weight, and tone of this guitar but the neck dive was killing me. I started trying to balance the guitar by replacing the auto tuner with light weight Planet Waves mini locking tuners then replacing the plastic pickguard with a brushed stainless steel one to add a little weight to the body. It helped a little but still wasn't comfortable. I didn't want to add any more weight to the body since it would ruin one of the best features of the SG, it's weight.
I knew Stienberger had a solution for neck dive on their small body headless bases by adding an extended strap hook arm to change the center of balance but my searches for one of those arms was fruitless since they don't make them anymore and trying to find a used one was just as futile.
So I decided to make my own extension arm. I used 3/16" aluminum plate and mounted Dunlop strap locks on it. The guitar came with the cool aluminum form fitted case so I couldn't mount the extender permanently so I had to use knurled thumb screws and threaded inserts to mount it to the guitar and make it easily removable.
Luckily I have a friend that knows a guy that does powder coating which added a nice touch. Blends right in with the guitar.
sg11.jpg sg22.jpg sg33.jpg
 

gball

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Honestly, I just never had that much trouble with neck dive. If I'm playing there is little reason to have both hands off the guitar, and I have found with SG's that just resting my forearm on the upper bass bout balance the guitar nicely. I don't think I would want to add something like this to one of my guitars, but if you are happy with it and it works for you then mo' power.
 

Biddlin

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Maybe you're an ESP guy...
Seriously, I've never seen one with neck dive bad enough to be uncontrollable, by holding on to the neck, which I do when I play anyhow. I hate the aesthetic carnage wrought by folks trying to cure it.
 

Clifdawg

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Two words: suede strap.

That's not to dis*suede* you or anything (nyuck, nyuck), as your solution looks perfectly functional, it's just... It looks a bit like a trailer hitch attached to an Aston Martin. Not very elegant, IMHO.

There's a lot of opinion regarding the neck dive of an SG, and I understand many just can't get past it, either opting for drastic DIY solutions like this or just going after a different guitar altogether. My strap is a C.F. Martin branded one (probably odd, given it's application, I'll admit), but it's got a nice, wide shoulder to it, a roughened-up texture, and it was cheap (~$30). It's perfect for the application. I need to get another one now that I have two, now that I think about it...

Anyway, regardless of anyone else's reaction, if you like it, way to go! :cheers:

EDIT: I just noticed that you mentioned it was removable with thumbscrews... Not going to lie, that's actually pretty cool. There when you need it, off when you don't.

I very much do, however, like the brushed aluminum pickguard and the zebra pups. Nice axe you got there, Chief.
 

Chiefhibachi1

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Seems a lot simpler to move the rear strap button, and it's a mod you can leave in place when it's in the case.
This model already had the button on the back side of the horn. I thought about moving it to the tip of the horn but there was no guarantee it would be balanced there. I tested mounting the arm with the removable double sided tape used for hanging picture frames and found that the strap button had to move that far out to find the balance I was looking for.
 
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Chiefhibachi1

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Maybe you're an ESP guy...
Seriously, I've never seen one with neck dive bad enough to be uncontrollable, by holding on to the neck, which I do when I play anyhow. I hate the aesthetic carnage wrought by folks trying to cure it.
Ones mans aesthetic carnage is another mans beauty of function I guess. As far as control is concerned this guitar is so much easier to play now. Like I said in my original post I love the this guitar, I just didn't like having to fight gravity to play it the way I like. I appreciate the feedback. I do like ESP guitars, I'd love to get my hands on an urban camo Viper some day. Very cool.
 
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Chiefhibachi1

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Two words: suede strap.

That's not to dis*suede* you or anything (nyuck, nyuck), as your solution looks perfectly functional, it's just... It looks a bit like a trailer hitch attached to an Aston Martin. Not very elegant, IMHO.

There's a lot of opinion regarding the neck dive of an SG, and I understand many just can't get past it, either opting for drastic DIY solutions like this or just going after a different guitar altogether. My strap is a C.F. Martin branded one (probably odd, given it's application, I'll admit), but it's got a nice, wide shoulder to it, a roughened-up texture, and it was cheap (~$30). It's perfect for the application. I need to get another one now that I have two, now that I think about it...

Anyway, regardless of anyone else's reaction, if you like it, way to go! :cheers:

EDIT: I just noticed that you mentioned it was removable with thumbscrews... Not going to lie, that's actually pretty cool. There when you need it, off when you don't.

I very much do, however, like the brushed aluminum pickguard and the zebra pups. Nice axe you got there, Chief.
Thanks Clifdawg, it's been a lot of fun modifying this axe. I just installed the pups the other day, Pearly Gates matched set. Gibsons new wiring system made it a snap. I tried the wide strap option but I found all it did was drag my shirt down and I would have to constantly readjust. The pick guard is stainless, my failed attempt to add a little weight to the body to improve the balance.
 
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Chiefhibachi1

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Well you asked for feedback, good or bad...
Though well executed, I find it butt ugly.
Sorry, I just can't sugar coat it.
I'm sure it does what you ask of it but I'm just not seeing the need.
But, it's your guitar... Rock on!
Yeah, it's a little angular eh? I was going for function more than form on my first attempt. Now that it's mounted I can see a few better designs that will improve it's appearance. Thanks for the feedback.
 
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SG standard

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This model already had the button on the back side of the horn.
No, that's the front strap button - the one you've replaced. See the link in my previous post, moving the rear strap button is a simple, permanent solution. You'll see some manufacturers do this on their models to create a better balance. Even Gibson did it on the original '58 Explorers.
 

grausch

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Yeah, it's a little angular eh? I was going for function more than form on my first attempt. Now that it's mounted I can see a few better designs that will improve it's appearance. Thanks for the feedback.

Not bad for a first attempt and at least it works. My preferred solution would be lighter tuners with the second solution being moving the rear strap button. Since tuners didn't work for you, I get that you went for something to solve the problem once and for all.

Another solution I saw but am not too keen on is adding weights to the control cavity using wheel balancing weights. They already come with adhesive tape and their small size allows you to really dial in the needed weight. Reason I don't like them is that they add weight.
 

Chiefhibachi1

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No, that's the front strap button - the one you've replaced. See the link in my previous post, moving the rear strap button is a simple, permanent solution. You'll see some manufacturers do this on their models to create a better balance. Even Gibson did it on the original '58 Explorers.
Oh OK. I refer to them as bottom and top. I didn't think of that option. I will try that on my next guitar build project. Why wouldn't Gibson try this on the SG's? It's well known that they have this issue.
 

Biddlin

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Why wouldn't Gibson try this on the SG's? It's well known that they have this issue.
No, it's well known that some players have this issue. The guitars are quite content as they are. The aesthetics may not matter to you and as Dave says,"it's your guitar... Rock on!" From a marketing point of view, I don't think I'd radically alter the appearance of my best selling product to appease a very small minority of customers who obviously are capable of any modification themselves.
 

Raiyn

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Interesting bit of overengineering there. It's certainly different, that's for sure. I'd be more inclined to just move the rear strap button like they used to before people got hung up on strap buttons being aesthetically pleasing and insisting on them being in the same spot on the neck centerline regardless of the actual balance point of the guitar.
 

Col Mustard

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And before you get too involved in surgery with the balance of your SG, I recommend
you take a really good look at how much your tuners weigh. Take a radical look, with your mind open to all possibilities. Take an accurate look.

What I'm talking about is to compare the actual weight of your tuners with
what StewMac reports as the weight of the Grover Vintage Keystone tuners... here:
http://www.stewmac.com/Hardware_and...s/Grover_Vintage_135_Series_3and3_Tuners.html

SGs are very sensitive to excess weight on the headstock. If you click on the link above
you'll see that StewMac gives precise weight information for every type of tuner they sell.
The Grover Vintage Keystone tuners are identical in weight to the stock Gibson deluxe
tuners that your guitar was designed to balance with.

So before you do anything else, I recommend that you remove your strings, remove your
locking tuners and weigh them carefully. On an accurate scale. Or look up the weight if you can find trustworthy information. But I'd take them off and weigh them. Then you'll know whether the tuners you installed are causing the problem. And that's good information to have.

We see so many posts about SGs with neck dive... and IMHO most of them are due to
guitarists rigid notions of what tuners must go on the headstock. Grover Rotomatics are
the usual culprit (especially among the Epi owners) but Sperzels and Schallers and other
locking tuners are also too heavy.

I own two SGs and they both balance perfectly. But I haven't saddled mine with excessive
weight. One has the Grover Keystones mentioned above which work fine and balance correctly.
The other has the stock tuners made for Gibson by TonePros in 2012. Those also work fine
and balance correctly. *shrugs. I use the self-locking method of installing strings, so I don't
need locking tuners. Good luck...

Oh and ETSG will now and forever refer to your innovative upper bout extension
as a Bayonet. Admins ought to make this thread into a sticky, so we can always find it when the next Neck Dive post appears. *grins
 
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