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  1. #1

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    Pretty much ruling out a clip-on mic...I bought one and the mic's fine but the attachment seems to be the headache with those things...

    So I'm seriously considering a p/u. I have a good luthier to do the install, so that's handled.

    I remember most owners here advising against ever cutting guitar tops so, ok, I can go with a floater.
    But - - I like to pick as close to the end of the fingerboard as I can get, and always have. So anything that'd give me an inch of two -at that spot - would be fine.
    ( Would a p/u install at that location look bad ?? hope not ). I have long arms and that's always been the most comfortable position for me. I'm guessing that location rules out a D'Armond, which is ok.

    I don't need state of the art sound reproduction, it'd just be for home playing.

    Thanks in advance.

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    The Jazz Guitar Chord Dictionary
     
  3. #2

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dennis D
    Pretty much ruling out a clip-on mic...I bought one and the mic's fine but the attachment seems to be the headache with those things...

    So I'm seriously considering a p/u. I have a good luthier to do the install, so that's handled.



    I remember most owners here advising against ever cutting guitar tops so, ok, I can go with a floater.
    But - - I like to pick as close to the end of the fingerboard as I can get, and always have. So anything that'd give me an inch of two -at that spot - would be fine.
    ( Would a p/u install at that location look bad ?? hope not ). I have long arms and that's always been the most comfortable position for me. I'm guessing that location rules out a D'Armond, which is ok.

    I don't need state of the art sound reproduction, it'd just be for home playing.

    Thanks in advance.
    You should be able to get a p.u. right up to the end of the board as that yr/model guitar should accommodate it fine.
    I'd start w a Dearmond, maybe a less expensive Guild reissue

  4. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by wintermoon
    You should be able to get a p.u. right up to the end of the board as that yr/model guitar should accommodate it fine.
    I'd start w a Dearmond, maybe a less expensive Guild reissue

    Thx WM as always...Just not sure I've ever liked the D'A look,.....

  5. #4

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    Just to make sure, measure the distance between the top and the strings @ the end of the board and compare it to the thickness of a Dearmond, but as that guitar has a raised board it should fit just fine.
    I really like the DA look for what it's worth

  6. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by wintermoon
    Just to make sure, measure the distance between the top and the strings @ the end of the board and compare it to the thickness of a Dearmond, but as that guitar has a raised board it should fit just fine.
    I really like the DA look for what it's worth
    I went looking for a 'slimbucker ' ( ? ) the other day. Not even sure I had the name right - I'd recalled seeing one on a friend's archtop at a gig. Couldn't find that specific one but figured I'd ask here anyway !

    Thx again !

  7. #6

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    The Slimbucker you are looking for is a Kent Armstrong Handmade. Call Kent Armstrong in Vermont.

    Guitar pickups - Handmade pickups by Kent Armstrong

  8. #7

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    Correct me but i get the impression that you want a couple of inches of open space for picking
    BETWEEN the end of the fretboard & the pickup.

    So, pickguard mounted pickup, right? Or, am I wrong again?

    By the way, thank you for not cutting up a classic guitar.

  9. #8

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    Dennis-have a look at Django Books, they have a large selection of jazz type pickups:

    Pickups - DjangoBooks.com

  10. #9

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    I would use either a DeArmond Rhythm Chief or a Zoller AZ48 floating pickup.

    Both have exceptional tone. Neither requires cutting the top.

  11. #10

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    I'm very happy with the Jason Lollar Gold Foil single coil floater on my '44 L7. It sounds fabulous.
    Attached Images Attached Images Resigned to Electrifying my '52 L-7 Acoustic - P/U suggestions, pls.-20190203_081855-jpg Resigned to Electrifying my '52 L-7 Acoustic - P/U suggestions, pls.-l71944-jpg 

  12. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by rabbit
    Correct me but i get the impression that you want a couple of inches of open space for picking
    BETWEEN the end of the fretboard & the pickup.

    So, pickguard mounted pickup, right? Or, am I wrong again?

    By the way, thank you for not cutting up a classic guitar.
    Yes - -just an inch or so open space from the end of the fretboard to the p/u. My WesMo has about 1/2 in. and even that works.

    I would think the p/g mtd. p/u's would sit higher - closer to the strings, right ?

    Thanks again.

  13. #12

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    What about a McCarty? It won’t give you extra space, but sits pretty low. This one is available by the way.
    Last edited by ThatRhythmMan; 09-11-2020 at 10:52 PM.

  14. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dennis D
    Yes - -just an inch or so open space from the end of the fretboard to the p/u. My WesMo has about 1/2 in. and even that works.

    I would think the p/g mtd. p/u's would sit higher - closer to the strings, right ?

    Thanks again.
    Wiser heads can correct me but i think that further back toward the bridge affords more daylight between the strings & p/up
    and you can rest the p/up, attached to the pick guard, on the top insulated by a bit of felt. Or, more than a bit as necessary.
    By which I mean you& your tech will have room to decide & adjust. Probably don't want to use the original guard for this.

    In fourteen seconds someone will advise that moving the p/up slightly toward the bridge will sound "horrible, just horrible."
    Laugh at this.

    Good luck!

  15. #14

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    I put a reissue DeArmond RC1100 on my ‘37 L7 a couple of years ago. I love it for playing solo or small ensembles. I have mine butted up to the end of the neck, but the rod is long enough to mount it with 1.5” space. My pick guard is routed for it, so I can’t move mine. I could have avoided the routing to make it movable by relocating the pick guard, but I’m happy with mine where it is. It protrudes no higher than the frets and it’s not very microphonic if I do happen to contact it, so picking over it is no problem.

  16. #15

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    I'd say move the pickups under the bridge! K&K Big Twins, on the underside of the top, one under each bridge foot area mounted with superglue gel. Acoustic sound with a output about like a single coil Tele or Strat pickup with waaay more dynamics. I mean, this is a acoustic guitar right? The output, strap jack is a great upgrade, strong, holds the guitar strap very securely, setup to handle stereo inputs if you ever do mount that floater......

    Disregard this post if you are searching for a magnetic pickup tone.

  17. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by ThatRhythmMan

    What about a McCarty? It won’t give you extra space, but sits pretty low. This one is available by the way.
    Would you believe - -it had a single p/u McCarty on it when I got it and I removed it. Just couldn't get used to it.

  18. #17

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    I pick over the last couple of frets of the fingerboard, most of the time, and sometimes over the pickup which is right up against the end of the neck. This has never interfered with picking for me, so I have never understood that concern. Perhaps it is a difference in picking technique, as I use just the tip of the plectrum.

  19. #18

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    Me too! Just like Keith's GJS.
    Works like a charm. If Johnny Smith liked it there, it's good enough for me! The Lollar still has my vote! Clean and plenty of room on the old L7.

  20. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by wintermoon
    Just to make sure, measure the distance between the top and the strings @ the end of the board and compare it to the thickness of a Dearmond, but as that guitar has a raised board it should fit just fine.
    I really like the DA look for what it's worth
    I measured both my L-7 and WesMO - - - -and they each have 5/8 in. clearance from strings to guitar top - -at the end of each fretboard.........
    The WesMo gives me about a 1/2 in. clear area from fingerboard end to front of P.U. That is enough room for me.

    So with the slimbucker being 3/8 in. high, I'd have 1/4 in.+/- clear space above top of the p/g to the strings.....

    I can see where a side mount - p/g attached p/u would probably give me that free area the easiest, right ?. Thx.

    Resigned to Electrifying my '52 L-7 Acoustic - P/U suggestions, pls.-p-u-001-1024x768-jpg

  21. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by skykomishone
    I'm very happy with the Jason Lollar Gold Foil single coil floater on my '44 L7. It sounds fabulous.
    That folks is the finest L7 anyone here would love to own...if they heard it.

  22. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by rabbit
    By the way, thank you for not cutting up a classic guitar.
    I can see your point, about not cutting the top of a classic, but it could be getting close to me doing that. The market for my 52 * Blonde * Cutaway* L-7 * clean * as an acoustic, is about what ES 150's with P-90's are selling for......I know we can both go to Reverb right now and see these blonde cutaway L-7's listed for $5995., - and more - but trust me, I have never been offered half that on a trade. And that was from 2 different dealers - -and one was Dave's.

    So rather than go through that ' endless ' guitar search mission, maybe I pay my luthier to do this right and figure all in, it won't be half the price of a replacement electric guitar - ES150, ES 300. I wouldn't be destroying any value to this L-7 because right now it doesn't have much....And if even after I'd do this new p/u work, the value is still the same - so be it - at least it'd be electric now.

    Not sure, but just my thoughts so far.....

    Ideas / suggestions welcome....

  23. #22

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    I’m not sure if you looked into this pickup by TK Smith. I think I recommended it on the previous thread. I’m going to plug it here. It’s excellent.



  24. #23

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dennis D View Post
    I can see your point, about not cutting the top of a classic, but it could be getting close to me doing that. ...
    I hate the idea of making such drastic mod to a lovely carved top instrument. Why not try a floater first? You could mount one temporarily with doubleback or sticky putty to see how you like it before committing to the full installation. That’s what I did before I had my RC1100 installed. The installation only involved two small screws on the side of the neck, a notch in the pick guard, and an endpen jack.

    The ‘37 top carve is raised near the neck join so I was limited to thin pickups. I think later years have a different carve, so you might have a wider variety of floaters to choose from than I did.
    Last edited by KirkP; 09-13-2020 at 07:38 PM.

  25. #24

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    don't do it. exhaust every other avenue first.

  26. #25

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    Krivo. Putty mount until you are happy with the location then mount it on the pickguard if you prefer.

  27. #26

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    Quote Originally Posted by pcjazz View Post
    Krivo. Putty mount until you are happy with the location then mount it on the pickguard if you prefer.
    I just went to their site and those look pretty wide......

    I just bought and tried out a clip-on mic p/u, and at low volume - - before the feedback starts, the reproduction isn't bad.....I would bet the mic portions of most of these floaters are pretty comparable.......That technology seems ok..

    But then come the headaches and / or irritations: - - routing the wires and how to hide them, then the mic attachment process itself - -where and how to clip, glue or fasten the p/u...Then finally the end pin connection......I am guessing you can spend 3 times the cost of the p/u on the labor to attach, connect and then professionally install the pieces. I am perfectly willing to pay my luthier to do this. But after all that, I'd still have a feeding back floater controlled at the amp.

    I mean I understand completely how we'd all like to avoid cutting a carved top guitar - -but like I said, these days, a 1952 L-7 blonde acoustic cutaway is worth no more than a similar year s/b, non-cut, laminate like an ES150 or even L-50 ......So it's not like I'd be modifying a priceless work of art and making it worthless.....

    It'll just be that now, while this L-7 is still worth the same as an ES 150 with a P-90, this L-7 will have a humbucker or similar p/u - and for half of what I'd have to pay for one of these other guitars.

    ???


    Thanks.

  28. #27

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    If you use a Dearmond monkey on a stick it's 2 thumbscrews to clamp it on the strings and you're done

  29. #28

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    hey dd, don't cut it...it's survived 68 years in it's original state...honor it...hopefully it'll be around for decades more to come...your are but a caretaker..take care of it

    look into kent armstrong ultra thin...and lollar^

    pickguard mount is always safe option as you can get repro guard to work with..and store/save original pickguard/fingerrest! hah

    cheers

  30. #29

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    The Krivo is not a mic; it is a very thin single coil or humbucker magnetic pickup designed to be attached to the top with removable putty or mounted on a pickguard. I use one on a 1934 L7 with excellent results. You are probably thinking of the Schertler dynamic mic or Schaller oyster, both of which are putty-mounted microphones which, in my experience, have serious feedback limitations on an acoustic archtop. The Krivos are a different kind of beast altogether.


    Quote Originally Posted by Dennis D View Post
    I just went to their site and those look pretty wide......

    I just bought and tried out a clip-on mic p/u, and at low volume - - before the feedback starts, the reproduction isn't bad.....I would bet the mic portions of most of these floaters are pretty comparable.......That technology seems ok..

    But then come the headaches and / or irritations: - - routing the wires and how to hide them, then the mic attachment process itself - -where and how to clip, glue or fasten the p/u...Then finally the end pin connection......I am guessing you can spend 3 times the cost of the p/u on the labor to attach, connect and then professionally install the pieces. I am perfectly willing to pay my luthier to do this. But after all that, I'd still have a feeding back floater controlled at the amp.

    I mean I understand completely how we'd all like to avoid cutting a carved top guitar - -but like I said, these days, a 1952 L-7 blonde acoustic cutaway is worth no more than a similar year s/b, non-cut, laminate like an ES150 or even L-50 ......So it's not like I'd be modifying a priceless work of art and making it worthless.....

    It'll just be that now, while this L-7 is still worth the same as an ES 150 with a P-90, this L-7 will have a humbucker or similar p/u - and for half of what I'd have to pay for one of these other guitars.

    ???


    Thanks.

  31. #30

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    Quote Originally Posted by wintermoon View Post
    If you use a Dearmond monkey on a stick it's 2 thumbscrews to clamp it on the strings and you're done
    ...Sorry, but that look for me is too much........

  32. #31

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dennis D View Post
    ...Sorry, but that look for me is too much........
    Form follows function.

    Sent from my SGH-I337M using Tapatalk

  33. #32

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    Quote Originally Posted by wintermoon View Post
    don't do it. exhaust every other avenue first.
    .........Tomorrow's the luthier call.....: )

  34. #33

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dennis D View Post
    I mean I understand completely how we'd all like to avoid cutting a carved top guitar - -but like I said, these days, a 1952 L-7 blonde acoustic cutaway is worth no more than a similar year s/b, non-cut, laminate like an ES150 or even L-50 ......So it's not like I'd be modifying a priceless work of art and making it worthless.....

    It'll just be that now, while this L-7 is still worth the same as an ES 150 with a P-90, this L-7 will have a humbucker or similar p/u - and for half of what I'd have to pay for one of these other guitars.

    ???


    Thanks.
    Your entire concept of "worth" here is defined entirely on market dollars.
    You display no concept of value beyond that.

    Seems like you started out intent on disfiguring this old gal and now you've got it all rationalized.

    You've figured out how to turn a silk purse into a sow's ear.

    Brilliant!

  35. #34

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dennis D View Post

    I mean I understand completely how we'd all like to avoid cutting a carved top guitar - -but like I said, these days, a 1952 L-7 blonde acoustic cutaway is worth no more than a similar year s/b, non-cut, laminate like an ES150 or even L-50 ......So it's not like I'd be modifying a priceless work of art and making it worthless.....

    It'll just be that now, while this L-7 is still worth the same as an ES 150 with a P-90, this L-7 will have a humbucker or similar p/u - and for half of what I'd have to pay for one of these other guitars.
    .
    I havent seen any $2,000 L-7s.
    Am I missing something?

  36. #35

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    Seems like you're pretty sure of what you want to do, but you might also consider.....

    Dealers will usually pay "wholesale" prices for trades or purchases so they have room to mark them up for retail.
    So the $2000 trade value offers you received from those dealers is just how they do business. They will want to double that at retail.

    So if you were to offer your nice L-7c blonde at retail for $3000-3500 in a private sale, it would actually be a price that some might like.
    I would if I didn't already have two nice L-7's.

    Joe V at archtop.com could probably get you at least that much after he takes his cut, but likely more if you put it on consignment there.
    He seems to do well selling blonde L-7c's.....

    Either way you'd have more than enough to buy a post-war ES-150 or possibly an ES-300 with the proceeds and have a bunch left over.

    But if you decide you're going to go ahead have a hole cut in the top to mount a pickup....
    ....keep in mind that the top braces will likely need to be cut or notched and whittled away at that location.

    I've seen other such L-7 P-90 conversions where that's what was done....some not so nice.
    So some thought of reinforcing the braces might something be to keep in mind for your luthier.
    Last edited by zizala; 09-14-2020 at 10:29 AM.

  37. #36

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    Just another point to address, if it has not already been. *If* you want to maintain the originality in the long run, don't cut out the original pickguard for the pickup. Have another one made to do that to. Not much $.

  38. #37

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    Quote Originally Posted by Woody Sound View Post
    Just another point to address, if it has not already been. *If* you want to maintain the originality in the long run, don't cut out the original pickguard for the pickup. Have another one made to do that to. Not much $.
    Thx WS - this p/g is a replacement - -the original was a McCarty, which I removed.

  39. #38

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    Quote Originally Posted by DMgolf66 View Post
    I havent seen any $2,000 L-7s.
    Am I missing something?
    I just went looking for clean 150's and other laminated Gibsons with P-90''s......$2000 won't buy any of them.... There's a decent solid top L-48 f/s in town for $2400. - -except it too needs a p/u.

    As I said I was offered $2700. for a trade on this guitar. They would probably have offered it for sale for $3500. -maybe $3700. Check out Reverb sold prices - -there's lots of L-7 asking prices over $4500, and more - - -but they end up actually selling for $3000--$3500. tops.

  40. #39

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    Wait, the OP also has a WesMo?

    It always seems to me that whenever this topic arises, the owner misunderstands the purpose of an acoustic archtop.

    An L5CES WesMo is an ELECTRIC guitar. It's NOT an acoustic guitar with a pickup jammed in the top. It's a hollowbody, yes, but they're constructed in a way to optimize the electric sound. The top and back are more rigid or even laminate to resist feedback.

    The only similarity between an acoustic L7 and a L5CES is the appearance. Never judge a book by its cover.

    Sent from my SGH-I337M using Tapatalk

  41. #40

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    Quote Originally Posted by rabbit View Post
    Your entire concept of "worth" here is defined entirely on market dollars.
    You display no concept of value beyond that.

    Seems like you started out intent on disfiguring this old gal and now you've got it all rationalized.

    You've figured out how to turn a silk purse into a sow's ear.

    Brilliant!
    Of course, I beg to differ.

    The market comes into play if I have to go into it and buy an electric replacement for this L-7. And then it'll also come into play if I have to sell this one or trade it in.
    I've already taken a hit on what I paid for this vs. its current market value. But if I can't get an electric one as clean as this - -which I probably can't - and it isn't worth even close to what I paid for it - -which it isn't - -then modifying this seems to be the way to go.
    But mod'ed or not, from now on, this guitar will always be lucky to bring $3500.
    So seeing as I alone have taken the loss, then it'd be my call as to what mod's if any get done..

    Now if there are any donations accepted to fund this work, then of course we can always take a vote as to how to proceed.
    Last edited by Dennis D; 09-14-2020 at 01:27 PM.

  42. #41

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    Krivo Micro Manouche sounds pretty acoustic and works with acoustic strings

  43. #42

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dennis D View Post
    I just went to their site and those look pretty wide......

    I just bought and tried out a clip-on mic p/u, and at low volume - - before the feedback starts, the reproduction isn't bad.....I would bet the mic portions of most of these floaters are pretty comparable.......That technology seems ok..

    But then come the headaches and / or irritations: - - routing the wires and how to hide them, then the mic attachment process itself - -where and how to clip, glue or fasten the p/u...Then finally the end pin connection......I am guessing you can spend 3 times the cost of the p/u on the labor to attach, connect and then professionally install the pieces. I am perfectly willing to pay my luthier to do this. But after all that, I'd still have a feeding back floater controlled at the amp.

    I mean I understand completely how we'd all like to avoid cutting a carved top guitar - -but like I said, these days, a 1952 L-7 blonde acoustic cutaway is worth no more than a similar year s/b, non-cut, laminate like an ES150 or even L-50 ......So it's not like I'd be modifying a priceless work of art and making it worthless.....

    It'll just be that now, while this L-7 is still worth the same as an ES 150 with a P-90, this L-7 will have a humbucker or similar p/u - and for half of what I'd have to pay for one of these other guitars.

    ???


    Thanks.
    Jason will build you a pickup to a narrower specification if you want

  44. #43

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    I'm sure these have been mentioned, but here are some super low profile floating pickups.

    ac accessories

    There are also Johnny Smith style mini-hums with discrete designs. If the gold/nickel covers are what you're into, these should suit.

    Finally, if he can't find an ES-150 for a good price, he can't have been looking too hard.

    1951 Gibson ES-150

  45. #44

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kirk1701
    Wait, the OP also has a WesMo?

    It always seems to me that whenever this topic arises, the owner misunderstands the purpose of an acoustic archtop.

    An L5CES WesMo is an ELECTRIC guitar. It's NOT an acoustic guitar with a pickup jammed in the top. It's a hollowbody, yes, but they're constructed in a way to optimize the electric sound. The top and back are more rigid or even laminate to resist feedback.

    The only similarity between an acoustic L7 and a L5CES is the appearance. Never judge a book by its cover.

    Sent from my SGH-I337M using Tapatalk
    Yes I have a WesMo and I know it's an electric guitar...The WesMo may however be closer to a Gibson acoustic than an L-5 has ever been. This has to be mostly due to Gibson making L-5 acoustics as they do now - - - meaning 'heavy'. I compared a 2014 all acoustic L-5 with this Wesmo unplugged and there was almost no difference in volume. So it's pretty safe to bet they're overbuilding the acoustics.
    So what I'd also hope to achieve - besides electrifying this L-7 - - is to end up with a lighter (edit) * electric * archtop than a WesMo.

    MHO again FWIW

    Thanks.
    Last edited by Dennis D; 09-14-2020 at 10:34 PM.

  46. #45

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dennis D
    Yes I have a WesMo and I know it's an electric guitar...The WesMo may however be closer to a Gibson acoustic than an L-5 has ever been. This has to be mostly due to Gibson making L-5 acoustics as they do now - - - meaning 'heavy'. I compared a 2014 all acoustic L-5 with this Wesmo unplugged and there was almost no difference in volume. So it's pretty safe to bet they're overbuilding the acoustics.
    So what I'd also hope to achieve - besides electrifying this L-7 - - is to end up with a lighter archtop than a WesMo.

    MHO again FWIW

    Thanks.
    I'm not sure I understand why you want to put a pickup on it.
    Your intended use is at home right?
    Do you need to plug in?
    Why does the look matter?
    You don't like the look of the krivos, or the monkey on a stick. But they are both removable in seconds. The TK Smith also falls into that category. It is just stuck on with putty. Stick it where you want it. Peel it off when you don't want to look at it.

    You can get a Kent Armstrong or vintage vibe/Pete biltof floater attached to your Pickguard. And you can put tone or volume controls on the pick guard. This is not as quickly removable, especially if you have an input jack permanently mounted as opposed to in the strap button.

    When you cut into the guitar you may not loose any $ value, but it loses acoustic value. And to be honest it's probably not an ideal guitar to cut and put a humbucker in. You might not have much of an issue at home levels, but it would very likely feedback easily at stage levels. This is because it's built to vibrate as opposed to a laminated es150 or wesmo.


    Just some thoughts.

  47. #46

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kirk1701

    Finally, if he can't find an ES-150 for a good price, he can't have been looking too hard.

    1951 Gibson ES-150
    Non cut, s/b and all laminate, w/P-90 for $2800. ? Good for them if it brings that - but when carved, natural or s/b , cut away L-7's struggle to bring $3500. what's wrong with this picture ?

  48. #47

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    I just played one of these for a couple minutes. Guy told me it was a '56. He had the Dearmond pickup attached. That was one of the best feeling and sounding archtops I've come across yet. Not sure which p/u he had, but damn it sounded fine.

  49. #48

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dennis D
    Non cut, s/b and all laminate, w/P-90 for $2800. ? Good for them if it brings that - but when carved, natural or s/b , cut away L-7's struggle to bring $3500. what's wrong with this picture ?
    It's the guitar market. Get used to it. If you think this is bad, try violins.



    Sent from my SGH-I337M using Tapatalk

  50. #49

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kirk1701

    It's the guitar market. Get used to it. If you think this is bad, try violins.

    I am probably as familiar with the guitar market as I want to be.

    And violins, no thanks. : )

  51. #50

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    Gibson actually moved away from carved-top acoustics quicker than the other archtop builders. So you may be right that the WesMo is a much livelier guitar than a 53 L7 acoustic. No one was buying acoustic archtops by then.

    Now that we know you actually want a lighter L5CES, you could, if you were so inclined, reframe your approach. You could use that L7 as trade bait for the lighter guitar you seek.

    Or you could definitely mod the L7. Remember in the 70s when everyone replaced the PAFs in their Bursts, etc with Dimarzio Super Distortions? I bet they're all glad they did that now that PAFs can easily fetch 10k. Super bright idea.

    Sent from my SGH-I337M using Tapatalk