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  #1  
Old 11-14-2016, 07:30 AM
jpbat jpbat is offline
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Default Gretsch Alligator resonator

I use a few resonator guitars in my music, as some may already know.
Since a few years, I practice GAS on non-expensive guitars.
And I modify significantly the guitars I own.

Knowing that, may I present to you the "hacked Gretsch Alligator" ?

The Alligator is biscuit cone reso, around 450 $, part of a series of wood or metal bodies, and spider or biscuit cones, based on a Gretsch 30's body style.
Excellent quality for the price.

Sound is what it is, not exactly subtle, but highly precise and crunchy.

With those mods I obtain what I want :
- visually, a great look (to my taste, YMMV)
- and sonically, the three distinct parts I look for, bass, rhythm, and lead, like if there were three different instruments.

It's presently my busking weapon of choice, in places where you need to cut thru the noise. No sustain to speak of, but you'll be heard.
And with the movable mute, even less sustain, but precision in spade. Very nice with bossa-nova style BTW...

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Last edited by Kerbie; 11-14-2016 at 08:55 AM. Reason: Spelling
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Old 11-14-2016, 07:52 AM
jpbat jpbat is offline
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Oops, I goofed on the thread title : GRETSCH, not GR─TSCH...
(how did I do that I don't know, but there it is...)
Can a mod correct the mistake, please ?
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Old 11-14-2016, 04:04 PM
blue blue is offline
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The banjo tuners make that narrow headstock look amazing! You had described the magnetic hand-strap system before but I couldn't picture it in my mind, so I appreciate seeing it. Is the foam a new trick?

Your playing is as always spot on, and you have definitely elevated that guitar.
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Old 11-14-2016, 07:55 PM
jpbat jpbat is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blue View Post
The banjo tuners make that narrow headstock look amazing!
Yes, the curved-mother-of-toilet headstock is an acquired taste, and I found it ugly with protruding tuners buttons (I'm not a fan of paddles headstocks anyway, but this particular one was appalling). Banjo tuners give a slick look that I like. I did the same for the Boxcar model (spider cone)


Quote:
Originally Posted by blue View Post
You had described the magnetic hand-strap system before but I couldn't picture it in my mind, so I appreciate seeing it. Is the foam a new trick?
The foam has been part of the design from the beginning. It makes a nice mute system, you can totally control the intensity of the mute, and better yet, you can have more or less on the bass or high side. Highly convenient. A little more difficult on spider poinsettia cover plates, where you have to cut the handrest and make a removable one. This is what I did for the Boxcar.

Quote:
Originally Posted by blue View Post
Your playing is as always spot on, and you have definitely elevated that guitar.
Thanks, blue.
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Old 11-19-2016, 05:23 AM
joe paul joe paul is offline
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Good work !
I wouldn't have thought of changing the tuners like that, but it definitely looks good, better than the original style, same goes for the cover-plate.
Sounds good for your style too.
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  #6  
Old 11-19-2016, 04:12 PM
jpd jpd is offline
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Default biscuit......

JPBat........it no longer has that resonator "jangle"
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Old 11-19-2016, 10:46 PM
MCDEMO1 MCDEMO1 is offline
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Nice jobs on the mods. The banjo tuners fit the look.
And you sound great.

I have a Boxcar. They are great guitars for the money. I wouldn't turn down a wood bodied National, but I am no longer actively looking to buy one.

Mark
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  #8  
Old 11-20-2016, 08:16 AM
roylor4 roylor4 is offline
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Nice mods and great tone Jean-Paul.

I wish you lived in my neck of the woods, I'd be begging you to be my new guitar tech. Crafty stuff.
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  #9  
Old 11-20-2016, 12:08 PM
jpbat jpbat is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jpd View Post
JPBat........it no longer has that resonator "jangle"
What is "jangle" ?
None of the mods have changed the tone in any way.
I tried a National Hot Rod cone on that guitar during a few days -now this is a mod that change the tone- but put back the original cone.
National cones are very good, but for some reason, didn't fit that Alligator.
But I agree that the music played has nothing to do with blues.

Quote:
Nice jobs on the mods. The banjo tuners fit the look.
And you sound great.

I have a Boxcar. They are great guitars for the money. I wouldn't turn down a wood bodied National, but I am no longer actively looking to buy one.

Mark
Quote:
Nice mods and great tone Jean-Paul.

I wish you lived in my neck of the woods, I'd be begging you to be my new guitar tech. Crafty stuff.
Thanks guys.

I have a Boxcar too, and made the same sort of mods on it.
Since I have a heavy tendency to make mods on all my guitars, with some spectacular fails along the way, I'd better not have any National or Mule or similar.
A cheap fail is better than an expensive one.

Sometimes I wonder becoming guitar tech when getting old, but things are not going this way.
Although I will move in a new house in a few weeks and plan to install a proper shop, in order to not hack the kitchen table as usual.
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Last edited by jpbat; 11-20-2016 at 12:15 PM.
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  #10  
Old 03-28-2019, 09:12 AM
RJVB RJVB is offline
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I have an Alligator that's hacked in a different way: I had an extra nut and bridge+saddle made that I can swap myself to use either nylon or metal strings. Have been using it with classical strings ever since because it sounds so much nicer and becomes a really versatile little instrument. Incredibly resonant.

The use of magnets with the palm rest is very clever, I should have thought of that! I've been looking for a way to "fix" it in such a way that I can remove it for playing and put it back easily for protection in the soft-shell case I have. This should do the trick!
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