The Vintage Charvel Overhaul Project

Once people learn I build my own guitars, they usually ask what I’d do to trick out their guitar. It’s always fun to talk shop and make suggestions. But recently my best friend Darren from high school offered me his prized early 80s San Dimas pointy-head Strat. Only the second pointy headstock Charvel to make it…

Hot Rod Guitars Of A Bygone Age

The 1980s are a difficult era. On one hand this era was awful: tight lycra pants, big hair, the rise of the synthesizer… One the other hand, the 1980s were amazing! Iron Maiden’s Seventh Son of a Seventh Son, Winger’s debut album, Metallica’s first string of albums, Megadeth’s first few albums, Dire Straits’ Brothers in Arms… Timeless bands and albums, written and recorded in the 1980s. I am sure I missed a ‘few’ amazing 1980s acts and albums! The impact the 1980s had on us, guitar players and guitar lovers, is unmistakable and undeniable. Not in the least due to the amazing guitars the 1980s spawned unto the world! In this article I wish to take a look at some common traits of the best 1980s ‘shredstick’ guitars, as well as some neat wiring tricks those guitars had!

Look Who’s Using Seymour Duncan Pickups

Since there are so many guitar builders out there it could be a daunting task to find out who is using Seymour Duncan pickups. To ease the effort we compiled an extensive, albeit far from complete, list of builders who use our pickups. Gibson Guitars Gibson is one of the biggest guitar companies in the…

Cage Match: Few Controls vs. Many

Guitars can be made many ways these days. Some provide one or two sounds from the guitar itself, with nothing more than a pickup and a volume knob. Some players like a huge palate of sounds available at all times, covering the face of their guitar with switches and knobs. This article will explain both schools of thought as well as some ways to achieve those sounds without all those holes on your purty guitar’s top. Finally, I will explain what I like (and need) in a guitar’s control layout, and how I make it work for me.

Ola Strandberg, The Genius Behind The Ergonomic Guitar System

A couple of years ago I was looking for a replacement tremolo system to fit a Floyd Rose route. I stumbled on the tremolo system designed and build by Ola Strandberg. Even though my guitar and the tremolo system weren’t compatible after all (at least, I wasn’t willing to do the necessary, though minor, modifications),…

Guitars, Guitars, Guitars @ Winter NAMM 2013

Namm, the National Association of Music Merchants, is almost a musicians Walhalla. Stocked to the brim with amazing new gear, innovation and ‘guitar heroes’. Companies, big and small, compete for the attention of the consumer. It’s only logical that sometimes the small companies can be a bit swamped by the ‘Big Ones’. In this article,…

The Kramer Chronicles, Volume I: The ’59 Set

When I was a kid first starting out on guitar, there was no widespread “DIY” market to speak of. That was just beginning. You basically took what you could get at your local music store, and liked it. Unless you were daring enough to try the also embryonic mail-order market and run with something you…

History of The Electric Guitar

The field of development concerning electric guitars is still in motion. Some innovations that were once hailed as the be-all-end-all of electric guitars were replaced by newer technologies whilst others are still being used extensively to this day. This timeline doesn’t claim to be complete by any means. There are many more companies that have…

You Want Meaty? The Duncan Custom

Imagine the best PAF sound you could think of, juiced up and in the midst of a meltdown (and I mean this in the best possible sense of the term): more powerful and aggressive, with an added vibe of wild unpredictability – it might go nuts on you, but you’re pretty sure you’d like it -and you have the mighty Seymour Duncan Custom.

The Re-Ampinator: aka “D.I. Baby D.I.”

Lately I’ve become a huge fan of recording DI (direct-injection) guitar tracks in Pro Tools 10. This is done by plugging directly into the recording interface (in my case an Mbox II), and allows the ability to change amp emulations on the fly once you’ve recorded a performance you’re satisfied with – allowing insane amounts of tonal flexibility.

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