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Topics - John H

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Off Topic / I just realized...
« on: September 25, 2017, 02:57:19 AM »
This forum only works on Google Chrome here in the rebel colonies. I have been having tons of trouble for months trying to access the forum through Internet Explorer and my iphone. Now, I know. Duh.

Guitar Tech and Talk / Captain Slow assembles a Strat
« on: April 10, 2016, 12:08:11 AM »
I just saw this, and thought it was quite funny. His commentary is quite good. Especially comments about "Stairway to Heaven", Motorhead, Mark Knopfler, and "gut" strings.

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Electric Guitar / Something different for me, a Tele
« on: January 03, 2016, 04:25:15 PM »
A few days ago, I got the bright idea that I would hit the local pawn shop before getting my radioactive iodine treatment. I figured that I would buy a cheap used guitar that I would not be heart broken over, if radioactivity set in. So, off I went only to find a few guitars that were overpriced and absolute rubbish.

Next, I drove by my local independent shop. He had a large stock of Fenders. Everything from Squires to Custom shop models. Of course the first couple I pointed at were Custom Shop models. There was a 50's style P-Bass with all the original style covers that I truly adored. It's funny how I have a nose for such things. Next I pointed at the Telecasters, and asked the price range. He said the were all made in Mexico, and were at a price around what I had in my pocket. I pointed to a transparent blonde finished Tele, and asked if I could check it out. He said that was priced slightly higher because it's a special model. I played it a bunch through a tweed reissue Champ, and really liked it. We worked out a price that included a very nice Fender Tweed hard case.

What I got is a '50's Fender Classic Tele "Lacquer." It has an ash body with white transparent blonde lacquer, maple slab neck with slightly tinted lacquer and a big round "C" shape, and vintage style pickups and wiring. It sounded pretty good through my Deluxe Reverb when I got it home. After my treatment, it sounded a bit like a Geiger Counter going off, but has subsided considerably over the past couple of days.

Looks pretty nice, no?

The Fender Spec Page:

Off Topic / Happy Birthday Rob!
« on: January 14, 2015, 04:00:59 AM »
Hope Harry has gotten his butt of the window sill, and polished up the cocktail shaker to get some Mulled Fanta's all spruced up for you and Carol. Have a great birthday!

The Workshop. / Correct Tools for the Job
« on: December 29, 2014, 04:30:47 PM »
I've seen this about twenty-five years ago at a shop I worked in, and saw it pop up again last week. I thought it would be useful to share.

A tall upright machine useful for suddenly snatching flat metal bar stock out of your hands so that it smacks you in the chest and flings your beer across the room, denting the freshly-painted project which you had carefully set in the corner where nothing could get to it.

Cleans paint off bolts and then throws them somewhere under the workbench with the speed of light. Also removes fingerprints and hard-earned calluses from fingers in about the time it takes you to say, "Oh, shit!"

A portable cutting tool used to make studs too short.

Used to round off bolt heads. Sometimes used in the creation of blood-blisters.

An electric sanding tool commonly used to convert minor touch-up jobs into major refinishing jobs.

One of a family of cutting tools built on the Ouija board principle... It transforms human energy into a crooked, unpredictable motion, and the more you attempt to influence its course, the more dismal your future becomes.

Generally used after pliers to completely round off bolt heads. If nothing else is available, they can also be used to transfer intense welding heat to the palm of your hand.

Used almost entirely for lighting various flammable objects in your shop on fire. Also handy for igniting the grease inside the wheel hub out of which you want to remove a bearing race.

A large stationary power tool commonly used to launch wood projectiles for testing wall integrity.

Used for lowering an automobile to the ground after you have installed your new brake shoes, trapping the jack handle firmly under the bumper.

A large stationary power saw primarily used by most shops to cut good aluminum sheet into smaller pieces that more easily fit into the trash can after you cut on the inside of the line instead of the outside edge.

A tool for testing the maximum tensile strength of everything you forgot to disconnect.

Normally used to stab the vacuum seals under lids or for opening old-style paper-and-tin oil cans and splashing oil on your shirt; but can also be used, as the name implies, to strip out Phillips screw heads.

A tool for opening paint cans. Sometimes used to convert common slotted screws into non-removable screws and butchering your palms.

A tool used to crumple the metal surrounding that clip or bracket you needed to remove in order to replace a 50 cent part.

A tool used to make hoses too short.

Originally employed as a weapon of war, the hammer nowadays is used as a kind of divining rod to locate the most expensive parts adjacent the object we are trying to hit.

Used to open and slice through the contents of cardboard cartons delivered to your front door; works particularly well on contents such as seats, vinyl records, liquids in plastic bottles, collector magazines, refund checks, and rubber or plastic parts. Especially useful for slicing work clothes, but only while in use.

Son of a ***** TOOL :
Any handy tool that you grab and throw across the garage while yelling "Son of a *****" at the top of your lungs. It is also, most often, the next tool that you will need.

FILE: Useful tool for locating the bone right where your left thumb joins your left hand.

The prefect combination for removing facial hair (including eyebrows) and that unsightly forearm hair.

Amps / New little valve amp
« on: August 23, 2014, 05:09:22 AM »
Bob at DST Engineering has decided to retire from the amplifier business. He'll still do work for a small group of people (who own amps he built), but does not want to work a full time job and repair 300+ amps a year anymore.

As part of his decision to retire, he's been selling many amps that he has. Some are demos, and at blow out prices. This is one of them. The model is a DST U84 TNT. The design is based on a Fender front end, with a power section similar to the 18 watt MarWatts that he was building several years ago during the 18 watt amp craze. It is switchable between 2 and 8 watts, two EL82 valves, two 12AX7 valves, a Princeton transformer, and uses resistors to soak off the extra wattage so that the transformer still works hard when the volume is turned up. Speaking of turning up the volume, all the knobs go to 11.

He also threw in a free speaker cab with an Eminence Legend 12" speaker. The cab itself is for the combo version of this amp.

I'm having way too much fun with this. I've never had a low watt valve amp. It actually sounds better at the 2 watt setting. It gets really loose.

Electric Guitar / I sniffed out anouther cheapo
« on: July 22, 2014, 03:26:20 AM »
I really was not in the market to buy anything for a long time, unless it was parts to build a few guitars. Then someone from the Rickenbacker facebook page sent me a link saying that this guitar was near my home. What made things worse is that I had some cash hidden away. So, I checked it out. A JetGlow 330/6 from October of 1991. It looked like no one had ever cleaned the guitar... ever! The neck pickup sounded like crap, and there was no case.

I ended up buying it, and giving the electronics a thorough douching, and I starting buffing some of the lacquer. The ten or fifteen minutes that I spent with the guitar was almost a Cinderella transformation. After I get some more important things done, I'll work on this a bit more. I've always wanted a Rick 6 string, and I have plans to build a copy of a certain model soon, but my I don't want to mess with my 12 string to cure the 6 string fix. This will get me where I was going with sounds in my head for the time being, then who knows.

Gratuitous porn....

Electric Guitar / Thank you internet!
« on: April 12, 2014, 07:51:26 PM »
Ever since David J posted the thread about cleaning and re-stringing his Les Paul, I felt that had to do the same to my #1. I have played it quite a bit since then. I have always loved both of my Les Pauls. One is an '82 Standard, and the other an '85 Standard. That makes both of them Norlins. Before the internet, I had no idea that these guitars were supposed to SUCK. I'd put either up against any Les Paul, custom Shop or Vintage. They would give any other a Lester a serious run for their life.

Again, thank you internet. Good thing I'm not easily swayed.

Effects / Burst Boost
« on: January 26, 2014, 08:35:20 PM »
I found this roaming around some other forums. I think it's abeautiful looking pedal, and wouldn't mind owning one. However, for my my money, it seems a bit extreme. It's probably the same circuit as a $75-$150 clean boost. I bet the cork sniffers and modders are going to be all over this. Does it have the period correct poker chip and knob?

Amps / Been showing up here and there, new valves
« on: December 23, 2013, 03:26:17 PM »
This is how I'll be spending my next couple of days off. I've been buying various Telefunken, Siemens, Mullard, Amperex, RCA, and GE valves. Some of these are EL34, EL84, CTZ34 Rectifier, 12AX7, 12AT7, 12AU7, and EF86.

This afternoon, I'll put one of the Mullard rectifier valves in my DST 30 along with one of the Telefunken EL84 sets, EF86, and a couple of 12AX7's.

The Deluxe Reverb and JTM45 will have to wait until after the holidays because I don't have equipment to bias tubes.

Don't they look pretty?

Bass Guitar / I must be out of my mind, or NBD is the title of this
« on: November 26, 2013, 03:49:11 AM »
Over here, we have some big online and mail order music supply houses. One of them, Musician's Friend recently posted "end of the year Gibson Blowout" prices. As I was scrolling through, I noticed that a reverse body Gibson Thunderbird was only $825.00. Normally a $2000.00 bass. Since Musician's Friend also owns Guitar Center, I hunted for a location that had one in stock. There was one location between where I'm working and where I live.

So, I drive down there yesterday (one hour each way), and their website is so overloaded that they can not access it to verify the price I gave them. It was hanging on the wall with a $1500.00 price tag at that time. They take my phone number, and promise to call me today. In the meantime, late Sunday night I am able to read the fine print regarding the sale. "Prices are in effect each day until 1:00pm leading to this Friday."

OK, I get online before I leave for work, and order one with the option to pick it up at the store. I got confirmation today, and made the 1+ hour trek from my hotel. The action is a bit high and it could use an adjustment, but otherwise it's pretty sweet! I've been playing it all night, and it sustains incredibly. The new guitar smell is amazing. I've wanted a Thunderbird for years, and at this price I couldn't resist. I could easily flip it for a profit, but I doubt I would. Maybe, tomorrow night I'll be home, and can plug it in.

Here:s some obligatory eye candy:

That's it for new toys for me. I have far more important things I need to be doing with money lately. I'm defitely going to have to sneak this one in.

Amp Settings And Sweet Spots / My Marshall JTM45 settings
« on: November 24, 2013, 06:03:48 PM »
I'll play! This is how I had my settings for my JTM45 yesterday. It is an '88 reissue, and was plugged into an 8 ohm Sovtek 2x12 with Eminence speakers. Normally, I use a Marshall Silver Jubilee 4 x 12 with Celestion G12-T75 (?) speakers.
Presence: 8
Bass: 7
Mid: 8.5
High: 7.5
Treble Volume: 3
Normal Volume: 3

I used a jumper between the treble and normal volume to bridge the preamp circuits.

This worked fine with a loud bass player and drummer.

Electric Guitar / I shouldn't have... New axe on it's way.
« on: November 23, 2013, 06:13:02 PM »
I probably shouldn't have, but I did. Gibson introduced an SG/Les Paul with an upgraded early style sideways vibrato. I have always wanted one, and the originals have always been just out of reach for me in the past. I think they are introducing this first run at this price, then when they sell out, they'll re-introduce them at a much higher price tag.

This link is to the actual guitar. I love the way Sweetwater sets up their website. I'm paranoid buying a guitar mail order, but I think things will go smoothly. They're sending it to my parents house via FedEx. I'll be away for work, then heading straight to Germany for our long holiday weekend. I may not see this until next week, hence sending it to my folk's house.

I can't wait to get my hands on it. I'll give you the update when I get it.

A shot of the actual guitar:

Cheers.    :cool:

Off Topic / Jamming later today.
« on: November 09, 2013, 05:13:39 AM »
It's past midnight here, and I have been at work all evening getting things in order downstairs to play some music later today. I think it's been about a year, but the bass player from the last incarnation of the Vogon Poets will be coming over, as well as a friend who I have been wanting to play with for quite some time. He's a great drummer, and has an amazing singing voice. Imagine, a drummer that has played in prog bands, and can sing at the same time. He has had interest in some of my songs for a while, and has ideas for improvement.

So, the drum set is spiffed up. He only needs to bring cymbals and sticks. The bass rig is all set. My Deluxe Reverb has new NOS RCA 12AX7's in the two gain stages of Channel two. They're now broken in, and it sounds killer. The guitar stuff I plan on using is all set. And, the PA seems to be working, as well as the computer system (which seems to crash regularly).

I can't wait to play with a drummer, and in a band (sort of) situation again. I hope things go well enough that we'll try it again.

Off Topic / R.I.P. Lou Reed, at 71
« on: October 27, 2013, 07:55:04 PM »
R.I.P. Lou Reed.

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