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View Full Version : what happens if you lose/route out wood from your guitar.


fyan
01-06-2011, 08:50 PM
i've seen people doin their own muse manson guitar replica. but i notice that that there is alot of wood routed out just to have the built in effects. i wonder does all the routing affect the guitar sound? isit similar to a chambered guitar body? what does it lose/gain?

cheers for the help guys?

pcovers
01-07-2011, 02:21 AM
You lose a few ounces. I would not be concerned about any minor impact on tone.

lkft
01-07-2011, 05:23 AM
Hold on now...I read a recent article in Guitar Legends mag where EVH who has always been notorious for modding his guitars started cutting wood off of an Ibanez Destroyer (looks like an Flying V) from the treble side bout and he said that the tone of the git went from fat to thin sounding so I does affect the tone. A little routing for electronics however would prob be ok though.

IAE
01-07-2011, 07:06 AM
It does effect tone and is detrimental IMO...for my style of music anyways.
Chambered is completely different than just routing out a body as its encapsulated by good solid wood, not plastic.

I wont buy guitars that have too much routing as they sound like shit.

The best sounding guitars are the SG, Melody Maker and LP variations as they have the most wood remaining. this is one reason I like single HB guitars.


Play a guitar with a swimming pool rout and plastic PG then play one with a rout for bridge HB only, you will immediately hear the difference. Whether you think its good or not is a matter of opinion. But it makes a definite difference.

dougk
01-07-2011, 08:12 AM
I wont buy guitars that have too much routing as they sound like shit.


Sound like shit to you. Not to everyone.

Personally I like chambered, semi and hollowed guitars a lot.

Mark Robinson
01-07-2011, 10:03 AM
Being of a certain age when tons of folks routed Strats for various projects of dubious merit, IMHO, what it mainly affects is re-sale value.
Some folks will bark ferociously about it, but to my ears, most routing jobs, are less audible than the difference between a new set of nickle strings and an old set of nickle strings. But don't do it to an old guitar, you'll lose your ass, unless you're so famous, you don't care about halving the value of an instrument.


A buyer will be certain to grind you because it's "such a disaster", but if the guitar works well, sounds well, they'll buy it nonetheless. Curiously, a seller will only occasionally disclose it. :dunno

If the guitar becomes neck heavy, that's a significant outcome too!

I think if it's a common commodity guitar, without collector value, go at it!
Especially if your whittling results in extra creativity.

The world of guitar players is basically up to it's ass in Stratocasters and Les Pauls. A few more hackers won't hurt anybody.

gixxerrock
01-07-2011, 12:10 PM
I have a 20 year old home made guitar. It was a chunky strat shape body made out solid honduras mahogany. A few years ago, reshaped it to round out everything and remove a bunch of material. It did really improve the sound. I imagine, too much and it would not sound good. Not a reversible mod ;)

RichieD
01-07-2011, 01:42 PM
Hold on now...I read a recent article in Guitar Legends mag where EVH who has always been notorious for modding his guitars started cutting wood off of an Ibanez Destroyer (looks like an Flying V) from the treble side bout and he said that the tone of the git went from fat to thin sounding so I does affect the tone.

I read that too. He also admitted, however, that he removed too much wood from the guitar and that he cut it too close to the bridge.

IAE
01-07-2011, 02:32 PM
Sound like shit to you. Not to everyone.

Personally I like chambered, semi and hollowed guitars a lot.
Exactly, to me, just like I said:

It does effect tone and is detrimental IMO...for my style of music anyways.
Chambered is completely different than just routing out a body as its encapsulated by good solid wood, not plastic.

I wont buy guitars that have too much routing as they sound like shit.

The best sounding guitars are the SG, Melody Maker and LP variations as they have the most wood remaining. this is one reason I like single HB guitars.


Play a guitar with a swimming pool rout and plastic PG then play one with a rout for bridge HB only, you will immediately hear the difference. Whether you think its good or not is a matter of opinion. But it makes a definite difference.Like I said, IMO.


And theres a big difference in a guitar thats made chambered, semi hollow or acoustic than one that's just been routed out and covered in plastic.
Chambered LPs happen to be one of my favorite LPs as they have a lot of guts. Jazzmasters with plastic PGs sound like crap IMO but with ano PGs sound great on account of the huge amount of routing they have. Plastic over a large rout just makes guitars sound horrible.

Routing makes a huge difference in guitars sounds and what you cover it with makes an even greater difference, this is not opinion its fact! How you interpret the result, good or bad, is opinion!

Jon Silberman
01-07-2011, 03:56 PM
Sound like shit to you. Not to everyone.

Personally I like chambered, semi and hollowed guitars a lot.
Major +1.

Plus it depends where the wood's removed from on the body.

fyan
01-08-2011, 01:12 PM
@ikft: i see i see. thin sounding. hmm :/ any links to that?

@IAE: sounds like shit? haha. from your experience, what lacks from a guitar with a swimming pool route?

@Mark Robinson: yeap. i agree that that it affects the re-sale value. but i plan to keep the guitar for a long time. hehehe. neck heavy? is that suppose to be a good or bad thing? :O

@gixxerrock: improve sound? in what sense? what difference did you hear?

ohh btw. just to let ya all know some details about my guitar for a more detailed picture/info. my guitar has an ash body. bolt on neck joint. maple neck. rosewood fretboard. H-H configuration.

thanks! :D

GuitslingerTim
01-08-2011, 01:16 PM
EVH took a chainsaw to the korina Ibanez destroyer that sounds so killer on You Really Got Me and ruined the tone.

IAE
01-08-2011, 03:40 PM
@IAE: sounds like shit? haha. from your experience, what lacks from a guitar with a swimming pool route?


thanks! :D
Yes, IMO, it does!

What lacks? Balls!*

*When compared to a version that has only the essential routing and no more.

pcovers
01-08-2011, 04:51 PM
It does effect tone and is detrimental IMO...for my style of music anyways.
Chambered is completely different than just routing out a body as its encapsulated by good solid wood, not plastic.


Some really great sounding strats have a big ol' route on the back to accommodate the trem and it is covered with plastic, with tops that have boat routs covered with plastic. I've heard some really great ones.

IAE
01-08-2011, 05:56 PM
I always took the plastic vibrato springs cover off mine as it sounded better...a lot of players do the same.

telelion
01-08-2011, 06:25 PM
I have a Parsons/White B Bender which takes a chunk out of the guitar. It's still a good Tele and I'm pleased with it's sound but I have better sounding ones. I would say that it does take away something and adding that much metal I don't think is ideally beneficial either. Hard to describe but I hear it. But it's worth it.

I have read some luthiers say one reason an old Martin is so great and tough to equal in some ways is that they do not have a trussrod. Extra wood and no metal. I don't think "Mythbusters" could disprove that but still I'll go with a trussrod as most old Martins have had necksets and a trussrod is obviously pretty essential. Classicals don't have them but they use nylon strings, equalling way less pressure.

Also I have heard that the double trussrods like Warmoth makes for some guitars gives the guitar a less than desirable sound compared to one rod. I've never heard one but I couldn't see ordering one as half the neck would be metal.

pcovers
01-09-2011, 05:08 AM
I always took the plastic vibrato springs cover off mine as it sounded better...a lot of players do the same.

While some may do this, it does not resolve that many, many do not and a bunch of those essentially gutted out (as in not chambered) strats sound great.

Consider that there are many guitars with quite small bodies that sound great and guitars with quite large bodies that sound great. Since the guitar - being inanimate - has no idea how big its body is, there is no reason a large solid bodied guitar could not be cut down to a smaller size and still sound just as good. The wood slab has no idea or expectation that it was destined to be a great guitar body but only in one size. The neck was not bolted on with a pre match to the size of the body. A guitar that is a big square Bo Diddly like slab may sound great, then if cut down to a tele shape may continue to sound great. It may sound different, but I don't see any physics based reason it could not sound as good or possibly better.

IAE
01-09-2011, 06:21 AM
No point with this back and forth as its just subjective opinion, mine AND everyone else's! That's why I continue to use "IMO", unlike others.

Good and bad are 100% subjective, there is absolutely zero objectivity involved whatsoever!

And if wood size, shape, density, type etc etc, all the variables there are don't matter as wood doesn't "have an idea what its destined to be" or whatever, lets all play these (in the video) and not historics and boutique gear everyone on here is so wrapped up in!:

hFyQXy74xz4

HoboMan
01-09-2011, 07:13 AM
I have a Joan Jett Melody Maker with a single bridge humbucker.
I so badly want to route & installl a neck PU but I'm afraid of what it might do the the structural integrity of the neck/body joint.

IAE
01-09-2011, 02:53 PM
I have one of those too, its black, its brilliant, its got balls, its 100% symmetrical (which I like in DCs) it sounds exactly like a '61 SG, it has a dark ebony fret board, a one piece body, quarter sawn neck it came with a case, its 1 of only 1,000 made (black ones only), and it wasn't expensive! What more can I say...Its fantastic and has been my number one guitar since the day I bought it! The fact that it has no grain filler isnt an issue, not a bad one anyways. I like how its guitar that's painted black yet I can still see the beautiful grain in mine.


Joan routed hers out for a neck HB, as did a guy on MLP (neck single). I cant see it making a huge difference structurally so long as you don't remove all the tenon. Meaning, not too close to the neck and not too deep. Only what's necessary.
The SGs tenon it routed, no problems there.

I wouldn't do it as I like mine as it is, its perfect!


Do a "topic title" search on MLP (or is it LPF ?!?!?!, but I think MLP, maybe both) for "melody makers" and you'll find the thread easily.

Tone_Terrific
01-09-2011, 04:26 PM
I


Joan routed hers out for a neck HB, as did a guy on MLP (neck single). I cant see it making a huge difference structurally so long as you don't remove all the tenon. Meaning, not too close to the neck and not too deep. Only what's necessary.
The SGs tenon it routed, no problems there.

I wouldn't do it as I like mine as it is, its perfect!

.
Look at these.
There may be ways around having to do the big rout.
A channel rout for the wiring and switch would have to be added, though.
It looks possible, to me, but I haven't tried it or obtained the measurements or even have a Melody Maker...but I can dream.

http://store.guitarfetish.com/Neck-Mount-Jazz-Guitar-Pickups_c_96.html
http://store.guitarfetish.com/GFS-NYII-Surface-Mount-Alnico-Pickup-WHITE_c_148.html
http://store.guitarfetish.com/GFS-NYIII-Alnico-3-Surface-Mount-Humbucker-Black_c_102.html

DGTCrazy
01-09-2011, 04:37 PM
Hold on now...I read a recent article in Guitar Legends mag where EVH who has always been notorious for modding his guitars started cutting wood off of an Ibanez Destroyer (looks like an Flying V) from the treble side bout and he said that the tone of the git went from fat to thin sounding so I does affect the tone. A little routing for electronics however would prob be ok though.

Correct. He thought is was because the wood he removed was too close to the Bridge...the area of guitar where resonance is especially important.

RnB
01-09-2011, 04:43 PM
I wont buy guitars that have too much routing as they sound like shit.

Play a guitar with a swimming pool rout and plastic PG then play one with a rout for bridge HB only, you will immediately hear the difference. Whether you think its good or not is a matter of opinion. But it makes a definite difference.

Don't let KBR hear you say that! Nothing lacking in his tone & I've routed-out plenty for him.

IAE
01-09-2011, 05:00 PM
Look at these.
There may be ways around having to do the big rout.
A channel rout for the wiring and switch would have to be added, though.
It looks possible, to me, but I haven't tried it or obtained the measurements or even have a Melody Maker...but I can dream.

http://store.guitarfetish.com/Neck-Mount-Jazz-Guitar-Pickups_c_96.html
http://store.guitarfetish.com/GFS-NYII-Surface-Mount-Alnico-Pickup-WHITE_c_148.html
http://store.guitarfetish.com/GFS-NYIII-Alnico-3-Surface-Mount-Humbucker-Black_c_102.html

I think these ones are too thick for a Melody maker, they would hit the strings.
http://store.guitarfetish.com/thumbnail.asp?file=assets/images/products/gfsnyal3sumo.jpg&maxx=0&maxy=300

Like I said, Joan done hers in the 70's and she still plays it so I don't see a problem TBH. They both (sig model and Joan's) have long tenons.
And Gibson made a 2 pup version anyways.

HoboMan
01-09-2011, 10:20 PM
I have one of those too, its black, its brilliant, its got balls, its 100% symmetrical (which I like in DCs) it sounds exactly like a '61 SG, it has a dark ebony fret board, a one piece body, quarter sawn neck it came with a case, its 1 of only 1,000 made (black ones only), and it wasn't expensive! What more can I say...Its fantastic and has been my number one guitar since the day I bought it! The fact that it has no grain filler isnt an issue, not a bad one anyways. I like how its guitar that's painted black yet I can still see the beautiful grain in mine.


Joan routed hers out for a neck HB, as did a guy on MLP (neck single). I cant see it making a huge difference structurally so long as you don't remove all the tenon. Meaning, not too close to the neck and not too deep. Only what's necessary.
The SGs tenon it routed, no problems there.

I wouldn't do it as I like mine as it is, its perfect!


Do a "topic title" search on MLP (or is it LPF ?!?!?!, but I think MLP, maybe both) for "melody makers" and you'll find the thread easily.

I have seen his thread. He installed a single coil set back from the neck. I'd like to get one as close to the neck as possible.
I really like mine also. It plays so damn nice and sounds so damn good that I would rather install a neck PU than try to find a similar guitar that already has a neck PU. I especially like the Ebony fretboard.

HoboMan
01-09-2011, 10:21 PM
I think these ones are too thick for a Melody maker, they would hit the strings.
http://store.guitarfetish.com/thumbnail.asp?file=assets/images/products/gfsnyal3sumo.jpg&maxx=0&maxy=300

Like I said, Joan done hers in the 70's and she still plays it so I don't see a problem TBH. They both (sig model and Joan's) have long tenons.
And Gibson made a 2 pup version anyways.

I didn't know that Joan had hers routed. I always thought it came stock that way. I'm guessing that Pat Travers probably had his routed also.

stuco
01-09-2011, 10:36 PM
Will it affect tone? Yes

How and to what degree depends on where and how much wood you remove.