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  #31  
Old 07-09-2023, 07:47 PM
s11141827 s11141827 is offline
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Default Figured it out

If you really light gauge strings on the resonator guitar (like 10s or thinner), you'll need to get a new bridge that's specifically compensated for them. A zero glide nut should help em slide more smoothly. I actually raise the bridge up Higher so that there's more break angle for the strings to help them seat better & thus drive the cone better.

Last edited by s11141827; 07-10-2023 at 06:26 AM. Reason: Fine Tuning needed
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  #32  
Old 07-10-2023, 07:51 AM
s11141827 s11141827 is offline
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Default Another interesting idea

If you use lighter gauge strings on a resonator guitar (like 10s and thinner), you could simply just raise the height of the bridge to allow for more break angle. The resonator mandolins have a longer 15 inch scale length (basically a small Mandola scale) so that they can be strung w/ Lighter Gauge strings for easier playability. What if resonator Guitars had a longer scale length to allow for lighter strings? A Longer scale length increases the tension so if we extended the scale length of a Round Neck resonator from 25.5 inches to 28 inches & went to 9-46 Gauge Magma Ultra-Light Acoustic Strings for E Standard Tuning, it would be loud.
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  #33  
Old 07-12-2023, 11:06 AM
s11141827 s11141827 is offline
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Default Figured it out

I've since put Magma 80/20 Bronze Wound Ultra-Light Acoustic Strings on my Resonator Guitar & I switched over to a Wegan 3.5 mm Gauge Pick so I can get the same amount of Volume as I would w/ heavier gauge strings w/o having to strum as hard. I also had to replace the Stock bridge w/ one that's compensated for these really light gauge strings.
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  #34  
Old 08-15-2023, 05:20 PM
s11141827 s11141827 is offline
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Default Figured it out

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Originally Posted by MC5C View Post
Any discussion of string gauges on a reso is kind of pointless without tuning and playing technique set out at the very top of the list. If you are playing fingerstyle, in E-E standard tuning, doing a lot of bending and blues styling and play up the neck a lot, extra-light strings might be your choice. A spider reso sounds just fine with minimal pressure on the bridge and cone, I had mine set up for around 30 lbs of pressure (yes, you can calculate it easily) for years, and Paul Beard played it and told me it was just fine when I had some work done on it at his shop. It's when you get into dropped tunings, Dobro G tunings, lap steel tunings like C6, and you play with a bar lap style or a lot of bottleneck that you need to fuss with string gauges. Most people seem to get good bar/steel/slide tone with around 25 lbs tension on each string, so if you know your tuning you can come up with gauges using available resources from places like D'Addario. I play lap style now, my tuning is EGDGBD, and use a mixed set of mediums and lights, and substitute a .016 on the high D. Or I just throw a set of lights on and get on with it!
How about Ultra-Lights for E-E like a Regular Guitar (Such as Magma GA100PB)? Spider Cones act essentially like Banjo Heads because you don't need such heavy gauge strings for E Standard Tuning, you can just bump the gauges down for easier playability & more volume. Also we have a Mag Slide so you can use lighter strings for slide too.
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  #35  
Old 08-15-2023, 08:22 PM
rockabilly69 rockabilly69 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by s11141827 View Post
If you really light gauge strings on the resonator guitar (like 10s or thinner), you'll need to get a new bridge that's specifically compensated for them. A zero glide nut should help em slide more smoothly. I actually raise the bridge up Higher so that there's more break angle for the strings to help them seat better & thus drive the cone better.
Let's see a picture of your setup with the new bridge, and an audio clip would be really cool!
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  #36  
Old 08-16-2023, 05:11 AM
Howard Emerson Howard Emerson is offline
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Originally Posted by rockabilly69 View Post
This is exactly how I feel Mr Moustache. I think a lot of recommendations are from things that work almost all the time, but some of the most unique sounds come from people that push up against the grain so to say. And Chris Whitley... he liked to push, from the light strings, to the foot percussion he used live, to the Barcus Berry pickups he taped to his resos, he was striving for his own sound, and I loved that. I saw him play live 4 times, twice solo, and twice with a band. The solo shows were by far the best, because you could hear his unique chord voicing the best, and he just seemed more comfortable solo.

I am an experimenter so I'm always trying new things, and always keep an open mind. I don't know if you saw when I replied to a guy on this board who said that nylon strings would sound/work good on resonators. I called his bluff and ordered a set of high tension nylons and put them on my M2 which is very tolerant of light gauge strings. The results were comical, at least to me anyway

https://www.acousticguitarforum.com/...ings+resonator
Hey Dan,
Hope all is well with you!

Regarding the nylon strings on a resonator I'll bet whoever was thinking about the resonator from Brazil that Chet Atkins was known to favor, the Del Vecchio, but in general nylon on a reso is a no-go.

When I was doing music retail in the 1990's, we had a National dealership, and I quickly figured out that I could get much more sustain, or carry, with lighter nickel wound string sets. They tend to load the cone less, so there's a bit less pop, but a more cohesive blend of notes as you'd get on a flat top guitar.

Here's an old practice video of my Resolectric Jr, played acoustically, tuned to open C, or what I call C'Vestapol, capo 2. It's actually strung with .052-.012 nickel wound D'Addario strings.



Not bad for a solid body resonator, eh?

Best,
Howard Emerson
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  #37  
Old 08-16-2023, 01:13 PM
rockabilly69 rockabilly69 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Howard Emerson View Post
Hey Dan,
Hope all is well with you!

Regarding the nylon strings on a resonator I'll bet whoever was thinking about the resonator from Brazil that Chet Atkins was known to favor, the Del Vecchio, but in general nylon on a reso is a no-go.

When I was doing music retail in the 1990's, we had a National dealership, and I quickly figured out that I could get much more sustain, or carry, with lighter nickel wound string sets. They tend to load the cone less, so there's a bit less pop, but a more cohesive blend of notes as you'd get on a flat top guitar.

Here's an old practice video of my Resolectric Jr, played acoustically, tuned to open C, or what I call C'Vestapol, capo 2. It's actually strung with .052-.012 nickel wound D'Addario strings.



Not bad for a solid body resonator, eh?

Best,
Howard Emerson
Hey Howard, not bad at all, that reso sounds great! Love the tuning and the midrangey tone. I could easily sing to that sound. All of my resos, except for the spider cone National Western D are currently strung with .012 gauge sets.

Hey I may be coming to Long Island for a visit to my family in Montauk. And while I'm there, I may be playing a house concert closer to you. I will let you know if that happens. I'm thinking middle of October. And I would bringing along my duet partner Ryan...

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  #38  
Old 08-23-2023, 10:06 AM
s11141827 s11141827 is offline
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Originally Posted by rockabilly69 View Post
Let's see a picture of your setup with the new bridge, and an audio clip would be really cool!
I actually re compensated the bridge by filling in all the slots & re-cutting it to look more like a classical guitar bridge saddle.
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  #39  
Old 08-24-2023, 07:34 AM
Howard Emerson Howard Emerson is offline
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I made my own compensated bone saddle for the Resolectric. Here's are some pictures of the basic steps involved. First I needed to cut the existing wooden saddle to a stub:



Next step was taking a thick piece of bone and slotting it to fit snuggly on the stub:





Roughed out and set in place for notching, intonating and final shaping:



Basically finished and in place:





The intonated saddle really improved its functionality for being played fingerstyle in open tunings, and was well worth the time & effort.

HE
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  #40  
Old 08-24-2023, 12:03 PM
rockabilly69 rockabilly69 is offline
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Originally Posted by Howard Emerson View Post



The intonated saddle really improved its functionality for being played fingerstyle in open tunings, and was well worth the time & effort.
What's up with that crazy tailpiece?



And is that a microphone poking up through the sound well?

Last edited by rockabilly69; 08-24-2023 at 12:09 PM.
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  #41  
Old 08-24-2023, 02:58 PM
Howard Emerson Howard Emerson is offline
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Originally Posted by rockabilly69 View Post
What's up with that crazy tailpiece?



And is that a microphone poking up through the sound well?
Hi Dan,
That's an Allen tailpiece Allen Guitars & Luthier Supplies. It's solid brass, but I enameled the 'inlay' sections with OPI nail polish.

That particular microphone no longer inhabits the well. It's been replaced by a much more potent AKG C-562, which is typically installed in the middle of a lectern or conference table, or innocuously in a wall where nobody sees them.

The one in the picture is a Crown CM-30, which are typically hung above choirs, etc. It was good, but then I discovered the AKG C-562, which is a PZM type of microphone.

Here's what it looks like installed. You can see the mini phone jack that the magnetic plugs into, which is much more convenient than dealing with a hard wired jack, etc. The old hole where the CM-30 previously lived has an access wire leading to the new AKG mic:



Here's the mic, suspended in a repurposed 1/2" copper pipe strap:



Here's a shot from the back of the body showing the large nylon grommet housing:



And finally there's the handmade double jack plate that had to be cut in half......I didn't know the pickup and the mic could NOT share a ground! Live and learn!



I run it all through a D-Tar Solstice.

HE
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  #42  
Old 08-24-2023, 11:15 PM
rockabilly69 rockabilly69 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Howard Emerson View Post
Hi Dan,
That's an Allen tailpiece Allen Guitars & Luthier Supplies. It's solid brass, but I enameled the 'inlay' sections with OPI nail polish.

That particular microphone no longer inhabits the well. It's been replaced by a much more potent AKG C-562, which is typically installed in the middle of a lectern or conference table, or innocuously in a wall where nobody sees them.

The one in the picture is a Crown CM-30, which are typically hung above choirs, etc. It was good, but then I discovered the AKG C-562, which is a PZM type of microphone.

I run it all through a D-Tar Solstice.

HE
That is some serious DIY there Howard I'm sure it sounds KILLLER!


I am familiar with Allen tailpieces because I had one on a mandolin, but I didn't know they made guitar tails!

I've also seen the C-562 microphone but never out of the flat Boundary style case.

And I used a Solstice and Equinox in my first dual source rig. But great pieces (other than the thin metal cases that always seem to bend at the lower front edges)!!!

You can see the Solstice here in this old gig pic...

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  #43  
Old 08-25-2023, 06:28 AM
Howard Emerson Howard Emerson is offline
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Originally Posted by rockabilly69 View Post
That is some serious DIY there Howard I'm sure it sounds KILLLER!


I am familiar with Allen tailpieces because I had one on a mandolin, but I didn't know they made guitar tails!

I've also seen the C-562 microphone but never out of the flat Boundary style case.

And I used a Solstice and Equinox in my first dual source rig. But great pieces (other than the thin metal cases that always seem to bend at the lower front edges)!!!

You can see the Solstice here in this old gig pic...

Hi Dan,
This is one of the only videos I made using the National with mic & pickup. My assumption is that it was (at that moment), a Crown GLM-200 and a Bill Lawrence stacked hum bucker (single coil size).

It's a little wet, but a serviceable practice video. You can clearly hear that they were new strings, which I think the mic likes.



HE
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  #44  
Old 09-23-2023, 10:24 AM
RLetson RLetson is offline
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An old thread and even older debate, but I just noticed it--

I've been playing a National M-1 tricone for several years now, and I string it with a very light set--currently GHS Thin Core Phosphor Bronze 11-46s. I went to a light set after the example of Mike Dowling, who, if I recall correctly, strings his National El Trovador similarly. I stay in standard tuning and don't play slide, and the sound I get is fat and sweet with fingers (thumbpick) or flatpick. I haven't had to change the setup since I received the guitar from Elderly.

Preferences will vary, of course, but with this model, at least, I don't see any reason not to string light.
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  #45  
Old 09-23-2023, 01:21 PM
Charlie Bernstein Charlie Bernstein is offline
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Sure! Why not?
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