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Thread: What is it with these new Carvin Kiesels and sustain?

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    Mojo's Minions Ascension's Avatar
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    Default What is it with these new Carvin Kiesels and sustain?

    Going through both the 17 Kiesel and the 15 Carvin I have both with SS Jumbo frets and maple necks. These 2 guitars sustain for freekin EVER!! Can't count how many guitars I have owed over the years and NOTHING and I mean sustains like these 2.
    Wonder is it the stainless frets or what? Both have floyds and both unplugged are just alive never ever seen anything like these 2. No Les Paul I have ever picked up no Yamaha double cut Ibanez Artist nothing i have ever played is even close so??
    Knew they were good but blown away tonight by just how good these 2 are.
    Any of you other Carvin Kiesel guys seen this? Been playing these guitars since the very early 90's never seen not one but 2 that sustained like these though.
    The 17 Kiesel I like the thinner neck profile on but it's the 15 ST 300 with the thicker neck that is really a monster tone and sustain wise. Unplugged this thing rings like crazy and sustains forever!!
    Last edited by Ascension; 04-12-2019 at 07:16 PM.
    Guitars
    Kiesel DC 135, Carvin ST 300, DC 400, DC 127 KOA, X220C, PRS Custom 24, Fender 99 Mex modded Strat, Washburn USA MG 104, MG 122 proto , MG 102, MG 120, Taylor 115
    Amps PRS MT 15, Mesa Subway Rocket, DC-5, Carvin X50B Hot Rod Mod head, Zinky 25watt Blue Velvet combo.

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    Mojo's Minions
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    Default Re: What is it with these new Carvin Kiesels and sustain?

    Some guitars just have 'it'. That almost magical combination of structural elements that work in harmony.
    Other guitars fight against themselves, no matter how good the setup is.

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    Mojo's Minions dave74's Avatar
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    Default Re: What is it with these new Carvin Kiesels and sustain?

    Mine are like that too, especially the tung-oiled st300fr full-maple w/ebony/stainless. That thing does unplugged metal just fine!

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    Super Simonologist JOLLY's Avatar
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    Default Re: What is it with these new Carvin Kiesels and sustain?

    Probably because they are neck thru.

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    Super Toneologist DavidRavenMoon's Avatar
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    Default Re: What is it with these new Carvin Kiesels and sustain?

    Sustain is mostly a product of a rigid neck. If you neck can flex it will vibrate in sympathy to the strings. That robs energy from the strings, and they stop vibrating.

    That’s why this stuff you read about certain hardware “transferring vibrations” to the body is nonsense! The body and neck absorb energy. They don’t create it. You plucking the string is putting energy into the system.

    And that’s also why we have solid bodies. Very little acoustic output, so the energy stays in the strings.

    Like a lot of modern builders Kiesel uses carbon fiber rods in their necks. Besides making the neck stiffer (more sustain) they also shift the resonant frequency of the neck higher, out of the range of the fundamental pitches. So you avoid those dead notes like you find on some Fender necks. This also equates to more sustain.

    Kiesel also uses a modern over/under dual action truss rod. One benefit I find with those is the rod is never slack. This helps with the neck stiffness which helps with sustain.

    Gibson and Fender are still using plain steel rods in a curved slot. Gibson invented and patented that type of truss rod in 1923.

    The body also factors into this, but its mass is much higher, and the neck is a long, fairly thin, unsuspended piece of wood. So it has the biggest impact.

    Fret material can alter the tone, but I’ve never seen it improve sustain.

    On the guitars I build I use two carbon fiber rods and a dual action truss rod.


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    Mojo's Minions RorySquier's Avatar
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    Default Re: What is it with these new Carvin Kiesels and sustain?

    It seems like they are just well-built guitars. I've watched videos on Carvin/Kiessel guitars and they are made to perfection. If a guitar is well-built and put together right then you'll have a guitar that is resonant and sustains for a very long time. It doesn't matter the woods in general as long as everything on the guitar is all well-connected.



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    Ultimate Tone Slacker AniML's Avatar
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    Default Re: What is it with these new Carvin Kiesels and sustain?

    Now I want one. I did a build of the DC in satin white pearl

    Ive never played a Carvin/Kiesel before.. questions:

    Any meaningful differences between the DC127 and DC600 or just older / newer model ?
    How are the pickup offerings?
    How is the Hipshot / kiesel trem compared to a floyd?

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    Administrator Mincer's Avatar
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    Default Re: What is it with these new Carvin Kiesels and sustain?

    I dig all the pics they put up on social media. Some of that wood looks fantastic. However, I've never been able to connect to a Carvin/Kiesel that I've played. I try many of the fancy guitars at NAMM when I go, and they never really grab me.
    Dave, Ambassador/Writer/Artist for Seymour Duncan

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    Mojo's Minions
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    Default Re: What is it with these new Carvin Kiesels and sustain?

    Good maple is cheap and plentiful, if somebody actually bothers to sort thru it and pick worthy pieces
    "New stuff always sucks" -Me

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    Mojo's Minions Ascension's Avatar
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    Default Re: What is it with these new Carvin Kiesels and sustain?

    Quote Originally Posted by AniML View Post
    Now I want one. I did a build of the DC in satin white pearl

    Ive never played a Carvin/Kiesel before.. questions:

    Any meaningful differences between the DC127 and DC600 or just older / newer model ?
    How are the pickup offerings?
    How is the Hipshot / kiesel trem compared to a floyd?
    On the 600 and 127 mostly placement of controls and the 5 way vs 3 way toggle. A little on the cosmetics but overall almost identical.
    On the pickups never used the new Kiesle pickups but absolutely love the AP-11 singles. Other wise find them lacking.
    Never owned one with the Hipshot but have 3 with Floyds 2 with the lock nut one with out absolutely no difference in tuning stability between the 3.
    One thing with Carvin Kiesels on the road is they are the absolutely the most stable guitars on the planet. I have owned maybe 30 of them over the years have 5 now and can not remember the last time I touched a truss rod in one .
    Last edited by Ascension; 04-14-2019 at 07:52 PM.
    Guitars
    Kiesel DC 135, Carvin ST 300, DC 400, DC 127 KOA, X220C, PRS Custom 24, Fender 99 Mex modded Strat, Washburn USA MG 104, MG 122 proto , MG 102, MG 120, Taylor 115
    Amps PRS MT 15, Mesa Subway Rocket, DC-5, Carvin X50B Hot Rod Mod head, Zinky 25watt Blue Velvet combo.

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    Mojo's Minions Ascension's Avatar
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    Default Re: What is it with these new Carvin Kiesels and sustain?

    Quote Originally Posted by DavidRavenMoon View Post
    Like a lot of modern builders Kiesel uses carbon fiber rods in their necks. Besides making the neck stiffer (more sustain) they also shift the resonant frequency of the neck higher, out of the range of the fundamental pitches. So you avoid those dead notes like you find on some Fender necks. This also equates to more sustain.

    Kiesel also uses a modern over/under dual action truss rod. One benefit I find with those is the rod is never slack. This helps with the neck stiffness which helps with sustain.
    Fret material can alter the tone, but I’ve never seen it improve sustain.
    David do you know if they are doing some thing different over the last few years? In the past I have felt the carbon rods have actually hurt the tone on Carvins. This is from one who has owned so many Carvins I have lost count. The 2 I picked up over the last year in a 2015 ST 300 and the 2017 Kiesel are just different. Both sustain like mad and have the most even response across the necks of anything I have ever had in my hands. Something is different with these 2 and the only thing that is obvious is the SS jumbo frets.
    Guitars
    Kiesel DC 135, Carvin ST 300, DC 400, DC 127 KOA, X220C, PRS Custom 24, Fender 99 Mex modded Strat, Washburn USA MG 104, MG 122 proto , MG 102, MG 120, Taylor 115
    Amps PRS MT 15, Mesa Subway Rocket, DC-5, Carvin X50B Hot Rod Mod head, Zinky 25watt Blue Velvet combo.

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    Mojo's Minions Ascension's Avatar
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    Default Re: What is it with these new Carvin Kiesels and sustain?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mincer View Post
    I dig all the pics they put up on social media. Some of that wood looks fantastic. However, I've never been able to connect to a Carvin/Kiesel that I've played. I try many of the fancy guitars at NAMM when I go, and they never really grab me.
    One thing for me is I seem to connect with the more basic guitars from a play/tone standpoint. Have had some real Carvin showstoppers over the years but the best players and tones were the basic maple neck alder or poplar body guitars with out the crazy figured tops.
    My 17 Kiesel is a work of art it's just perfection but in the end is a basic maple neck alder body guitar.
    Name:  17 Keisel DC 135 1.jpg
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    Last edited by Ascension; 04-14-2019 at 07:45 PM.
    Guitars
    Kiesel DC 135, Carvin ST 300, DC 400, DC 127 KOA, X220C, PRS Custom 24, Fender 99 Mex modded Strat, Washburn USA MG 104, MG 122 proto , MG 102, MG 120, Taylor 115
    Amps PRS MT 15, Mesa Subway Rocket, DC-5, Carvin X50B Hot Rod Mod head, Zinky 25watt Blue Velvet combo.

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    Administrator Mincer's Avatar
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    Default Re: What is it with these new Carvin Kiesels and sustain?

    There is their semi hollow, the SH550, and I couldn't wait to try one. What I found is that it didn't sound like a 335, like I thought, but more like a meh LP. I tried 5 of them. I guess it is the design. The guitar itself is beautiful.
    Dave, Ambassador/Writer/Artist for Seymour Duncan

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    Super Toneologist DavidRavenMoon's Avatar
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    Default Re: What is it with these new Carvin Kiesels and sustain?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ascension View Post
    David do you know if they are doing some thing different over the last few years? In the past I have felt the carbon rods have actually hurt the tone on Carvins. This is from one who has owned so many Carvins I have lost count. The 2 I picked up over the last year in a 2015 ST 300 and the 2017 Kiesel are just different. Both sustain like mad and have the most even response across the necks of anything I have ever had in my hands. Something is different with these 2 and the only thing that is obvious is the SS jumbo frets.
    They used to use steel bars instead of carbon.

    I’ve never played a newer one, but I used to own a DC150.

    Stainless steel frets certain sound a feel a little different.


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    Tone Member SAguitar's Avatar
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    Default Re: What is it with these new Carvin Kiesels and sustain?

    I haven't tried any of the new Keisels, but can speak to a few older Carvins. I have a DC 135 and a DC 400 that sustain like they were meant to. I'm sure they have the old steel truss rods and don't have stainless steel frets. But every note on the necks ring true, loud and proud. Of course, they are neck-through design, but I also have an old Bolt-T and it sustains like a mother bear also. I think it has a lot to do with quality materials and production. My biggest, and only quibble with Carvin is their humbucking pickups. I just haven't found any that really inspire me.
    "Live by the Groove, Die by the Groove."

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    Mojo's Minions Ascension's Avatar
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    Default Re: What is it with these new Carvin Kiesels and sustain?

    Quote Originally Posted by SAguitar View Post
    I haven't tried any of the new Keisels, but can speak to a few older Carvins. I have a DC 135 and a DC 400 that sustain like they were meant to. I'm sure they have the old steel truss rods and don't have stainless steel frets. But every note on the necks ring true, loud and proud. Of course, they are neck-through design, but I also have an old Bolt-T and it sustains like a mother bear also. I think it has a lot to do with quality materials and production. My biggest, and only quibble with Carvin is their humbucking pickups. I just haven't found any that really inspire me.
    Like the AP11 singles a LOT in my Kiesel DC 135 but like you are not a huge fan of their humbuckers.
    Agree on the Carvin's have a very even response across the neck it's one of the things I have always loved about them. However have owned 25 to 30 Carvins over the years many rescued from local pawn shops or Craig list but none ever sustained like these last 2. Don't know what it is but both these 2 new ones ring like a freekin BELL!!
    Guitars
    Kiesel DC 135, Carvin ST 300, DC 400, DC 127 KOA, X220C, PRS Custom 24, Fender 99 Mex modded Strat, Washburn USA MG 104, MG 122 proto , MG 102, MG 120, Taylor 115
    Amps PRS MT 15, Mesa Subway Rocket, DC-5, Carvin X50B Hot Rod Mod head, Zinky 25watt Blue Velvet combo.

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