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  1. #1

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    Hi,
    Has anybody use hollow-body Tele?
    is it sounding more acoustic?

    Thanks
    Hollow-body Tele-robin-77-jpg

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    The Jazz Guitar Chord Dictionary
     
  3. #2

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    I used one for a while (well, semihollow, not too different from the one you show)

    It had a brighter tone than my other tele. But that could have been the pickups too. Nothing particularly "acousticy" about it...I'd say even less difference compared to a solid tele than say, a Les Paul to a 335.

  4. #3

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    I think it's more of a difference you feel, the guitar resonates more against you and is also lighter. I'd really like a hollow tele at some point.

  5. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by mr. beaumont
    I used one for a while (well, semihollow, not too different from the one you show)

    It had a brighter tone than my other tele. But that could have been the pickups too. Nothing particularly "acousticy" about it...I'd say even less difference compared to a solid tele than say, a Les Paul to a 335.
    Thanks Jeff

  6. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gabe
    I think it's more of a difference you feel, the guitar resonates more against you and is also lighter. I'd really like a hollow tele at some point.
    Thanks Gabe,
    Is it easer to get "jazz sound" on it?

  7. #6
    Good friend built a chambered Warmouth walnut tele with duncan tele 59's on it. VERY warm, jazzy and comfortable. Light and balanced. The combination of hollow chambered body, thin humbucking alnicos and 10's or 11's make it really clear, good for chording and defined in the single line runs. But a lot of that comes from the player too.

  8. #7

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    I've often played, but never owned a thinline, but the tone seemed the same as a regular tele, and the difference was more about weight. Of course a thinline or any type of tele with HB pups is a whole 'nuther story.


  9. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gabe
    I think it's more of a difference you feel, the guitar resonates more against you and is also lighter. I'd really like a hollow tele at some point.
    This is a good point. I owned a chambered "tele" for a while and this was my experience.

    The magic ingredient is an old orange tolex covered cube 60 amp - jazz tele nirvana!

  10. #9

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    I think the pickups, the amp and even heavier, flat-wound strings could each make more a difference as far as a jazzier sound goes. That said, I like the lighter weight.

  11. #10

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    We've built a bunch of them. It does make a big difference but it's also a lot easier to get a classic jazz tone if it has a 24.75" scale length.

  12. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Soloway
    We've built a bunch of them. It does make a big difference but it's also a lot easier to get a classic jazz tone if it has a 24.75" scale length.
    That's a very interesting observation... do you know why that is?

    I recently bought a very inexpensive import semi-hollow tele clone from G&L with a 'bucker in the neck position. I'm in the process of changing out the electronics, but it does have a nice feel and weight and I like the neck. I have a vintage humbucker to install along with upgraded pots, switch, wiring and output jack (Stewmac tele rewire kit w cts pots) and I'm fairly confident that when it's done I'll have the sound I want in a very playable platform. Flatwound strings on a Rosewood board should help too.

  13. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by AlohaJoe
    That's a very interesting observation... do you know why that is?

    I recently bought a very inexpensive import semi-hollow tele clone from G&L with a 'bucker in the neck position. I'm in the process of changing out the electronics, but it does have a nice feel and weight and I like the neck. I have a vintage humbucker to install along with upgraded pots, switch, wiring and output jack (Stewmac tele rewire kit w cts pots) and I'm fairly confident that when it's done I'll have the sound I want in a very playable platform. Flatwound strings on a Rosewood board should help too.
    Shorter string length and less tension on the string makes it accelerate more slowly and vibrate in a wider arc. It's not that it can't be done on 25.5 but unless you're after a snappier acoustic sort of tone, all other things being equal, it's easier on a shorter scale length. When people talk about classic jazz tones, to me they're usually talking about a 175 type box and the 24.75" scale length is very much a part of that recipe.

  14. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Soloway
    We've built a bunch of them. It does make a big difference but it's also a lot easier to get a classic jazz tone if it has a 24.75" scale length.
    Squier do those now...



    Alder body and the shorter scale, nasty bridge though......

    Now I always post this up when the words jazz and telecaster come in the same thread. It's a humbucker and single coil set up with switching mods. It's a solder less system with resistors to be able to match the different pickup outputs without muddy sounding h/b or shrill s/c.

    The guy waffles a bit and yes the guitar player is a bit 'Rock' but interesting none the less.

    Check it out.....


  15. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by mr. beaumont
    I used one for a while (well, semihollow, not too different from the one you show)

    It had a brighter tone than my other tele. But that could have been the pickups too. Nothing particularly "acousticy" about it...I'd say even less difference compared to a solid tele than say, a Les Paul to a 335.
    I find that a Les Paul has a huge midrange chunk that adds to its famous milkshake tone, but makes it difficult to get good tring definition, especially with altered chords, compared to a 335. I find that a thin line Tele sounds more acoustic at a low volume, but quickly sounds the same or similar to a solid body fairly quickly up the volume chain. Never played a fully hollow Tele so can't compare that.

  16. #15

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    Another thought about this topic ... Because the Tele shape is not designed well to balance at lower weights, the interior design of the body can be really important. When we built our first couple, we used the same basic interior design as we had used in our original body shape and our larger Single 15. That design uses a small block directly under the bridge. Achieving neck body balance with the design turned out to be almost impossible and on later bodies we ended up running the block all the way from the front of the bridge to the back of the body. The 24.75" scale length also helped in this regard.

    Here's a look at the interior of one of the first bodies with the small block. Getting more mass behind that block turned out to be critical


  17. #16

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    Thanks Jim,
    Nice pic.
    Can you say it is hollow or chambered body?

  18. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by kris
    Thanks Jim,
    Nice pic.
    Can you say it is hollow or chambered body?
    I guess that's really open to some debate because of the block under the bridge, especially since the bridge is bolted directly into that bock. Air is moving freely inside the body but the bridge block prevents the top from moving much. So I call it hollow but I suppose someone else could rightly consider it to be chambered. What I do know is that with a spruce or cedar top, you get an awful lot of acoustic presence with this design. Here's a clip that I did with the last one of these that we built to give you an idea.


  19. #18

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    Thanks Jim,

    Thanks for the sound clip.
    I have a qustion:
    is it possible to make hollow tele with neck thrubody/similar to center block in semi-hollow guitars/?
    Best
    Kris

  20. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by kris
    Thanks Jim,

    Thanks for the sound clip.
    I have a qustion:
    is it possible to make hollow tele with neck thrubody/similar to center block in semi-hollow guitars/?
    Best
    Kris
    if you mean a true neck-through when the neck extends into the body to the bridge or beyond, then technically the answer is yes, but I suspect you wouldn't get much acoustic response from the body. My experience with neck-through guitars is that the neck (and it's extension into the body) tend to dominate the voice of the guitar and negate the impact of the body design.

  21. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Soloway
    if you mean a true neck-through when the neck extends into the body to the bridge or beyond, then technically the answer is yes, but I suspect you wouldn't get much acoustic response from the body. My experience with neck-through guitars is that the neck (and it's extension into the body) tend to dominate the voice of the guitar and negate the impact of the body design.
    Thank you Jim for great info.
    You have big experience with Tele style guitars.
    I am sorry that I can not touch one of yours beautifull made instruments.
    Best Regards
    Kris

  22. #21
    Hi Jim.

    I came across this thread while researching a build for a hollow body tele and was very happy to find someone who had already paved the road so to speak.
    I'm planning a hollow tele with a spruce lid, 24,75" scale and filtertron pups.
    I hope I'm not too forward in asking, but: When you build your hollow t-style guitars, do you float the whole lid or do you let it touch with the "centre block" under the bridge?
    I was planning to let the lid rest on a part of the rear block as support for the bridge and also have the strings either go through the body or hook then into ferrules fastned in the lid itself.
    Also, was thinking about mounting the pups directly into the back wood, completely free of direct contact with the vibrating lid to minimize feedback.

    I don't want you to give up any secrets, but if you have any insights to share on this I'd be very grateful.



    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Soloway
    Another thought about this topic ... Because the Tele shape is not designed well to balance at lower weights, the interior design of the body can be really important. When we built our first couple, we used the same basic interior design as we had used in our original body shape and our larger Single 15. That design uses a small block directly under the bridge. Achieving neck body balance with the design turned out to be almost impossible and on later bodies we ended up running the block all the way from the front of the bridge to the back of the body. The 24.75" scale length also helped in this regard.

    Here's a look at the interior of one of the first bodies with the small block. Getting more mass behind that block turned out to be critical


  23. #22

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    I currently own both. I would say the chambering on a thinline is (see story below) more about weight relief than about tone.... I would never put my thinline into the category of a centerblock guitar like a 335, it might as well be a solid body tele, just a lighter one (and the f-hole does look cool).

    So, the story with the Fender thinlines is, at that time, they were buying very heavy wood (we assume to save money), and developed the thinline concept as a way to weight-relieve those guitars at the time. Of course the put in the f-hole as a marketing tool, but in reality it was about taking a boat anchor piece of wood and lightening it so people wouldn't be put off by the excess weight.

    Sometimes, my solidbody tele (8.75 lbs!!!, with single coils), sounds more hollow than my thinline (7.4 lbs, has had several different pickups in it, both single coil and humbucking).

  24. #23
    Hi Ruger9

    The idea here is closer to a trad hollow body, hence the 24,75" scale and so on. I'm not really trying to build a tele, but thats the template i have at hand....



    Quote Originally Posted by ruger9
    I currently own both. I would say the chambering on a thinline is (see story below) more about weight relief than about tone.... I would never put my thinline into the category of a centerblock guitar like a 335, it might as well be a solid body tele, just a lighter one (and the f-hole does look cool).

    So, the story with the Fender thinlines is, at that time, they were buying very heavy wood (we assume to save money), and developed the thinline concept as a way to weight-relieve those guitars at the time. Of course the put in the f-hole as a marketing tool, but in reality it was about taking a boat anchor piece of wood and lightening it so people wouldn't be put off by the excess weight.

    Sometimes, my solidbody tele (8.75 lbs!!!, with single coils), sounds more hollow than my thinline (7.4 lbs, has had several different pickups in it, both single coil and humbucking).

  25. #24

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    Here's one I built last year. Regular Tele scale, 1-3/4" nut. DiMarzio 36th Anniversary PU. Very lightweight. I'm thinking the pickup has more to do with the tone than the hollow body. Haven't played it for a while so I don't really remember. I have a bad habit of building things and not playing them much - there's always another idea lurking in the wings to try out .
    Hollow-body Tele-hollow-tele-jpgHollow-body Tele-t2-jpg

  26. #25

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    Quote Originally Posted by Skip Ellis
    Here's one I built last year. Regular Tele scale, 1-3/4" nut. DiMarzio 36th Anniversary PU. Very lightweight. I'm thinking the pickup has more to do with the tone than the hollow body. Haven't played it for a while so I don't really remember. I have a bad habit of building things and not playing them much - there's always another idea lurking in the wings to try out .
    Hollow-body Tele-hollow-tele-jpgHollow-body Tele-t2-jpg
    Great work!