Ask Terry McInturff anything that you want to...right here

dbeeman

Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
6,106
Terry

Can you explain the operation of the new TerryTone circuit? AKA TCM Mini-Q tone filters
 
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soli528

Look, my first gold medal.
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
6,296
Why, so the guys in Pavement can have ready-made scrambled eggs waiting for them when they do a Phoenix show in August!

HA! a most excellent answer! we'll need to see some pix of that, though...


ml
Not scrambled, though...
pavement_sunny-side-up_f.jpg
 

Terry McInturff

45th Anniversary of guitar building!
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
7,458
Terry, why do you hate KI$$?

I very, very seldom use the "hate" and a musician/band would never ever warrant the use of that word by me.

I never cared for Kiss, but Im surprised that you know that. I can dig where they are coming from, and understand why folks like them. They are extremely good at what they set out to accomplish.

I'm 57, and they are just a shade younger in terms of the multitudes of rock generations. When I was young, stuff like Live At Leeds was on the local radio. I grew up with Jimi Hendrix, Peter Townshend, the Stones, Yardbirds, Syd Barrett, and The Beatles. My tastes are FAR from limited to those basic building blocks.

By the time Kiss came along I'd already worn out a couple Stooges records and was likely listening to "Raw Power" amongst many other things, of all kinds. Listened to the first Mountain record, and everything that Procol Harum did.

They (Kiss) simply dont move me. The songwriting isnt to my taste. I do not diss them, and Ive never said that they arent any good. I'd never make plain a distaste for a band here so...how did you know?

I will say that I prefer a couple of their role models, Alice Cooper and The New York Dolls.

Bless all Kiss fans! If it sounds good..it IS good.
 
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Kiwi

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
4,114
Terry, does the material of pickup rings (for humbuckers) or the pickguard (for Strat pickups) make a difference in sound, in your experience?

Seems like the vehicle that holds the pickups to the body wood would have some effect, but perhaps not. Is this something you've explored?

=K
 

Terry McInturff

45th Anniversary of guitar building!
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
7,458
Terry, does the material of pickup rings (for humbuckers) or the pickguard (for Strat pickups) make a difference in sound, in your experience?

Seems like the vehicle that holds the pickups to the body wood would have some effect, but perhaps not. Is this something you've explored?

=K

It's a very good Q, and one which is seldom addressed it seems; I may be wrong. Let's take a quick look at the two that you mention...the humbucker's mounting ring (aka, pickup ring, pickup surround, mounting bezel, etc.) and a Stratocaster pickguard.

In either case, the ultimate effect of these pup mounting materials (as well as any method of mounting the pickups) will also involve how "microphonic" the pickups themselves are; are the pickups rather loosely wound, and apt to be sensitive to mechanical vibrations, or are they rather tightly wound and "potted", making them less sensitive to mechanical vibrations?

1) The humbucker's trad-style Gibson ring has very little effect upon the amplified sound. It is, of course, a rather small rectangle of material that is screwed down at all four corners; and in addition the pickup is suspended by springs. The ring is too small and too tightly fastened to have a resonant character that even a very microphonic pup would sense.

Provided that the ring material is of a non-ferrous material, these rings will bring no important contribution to the sound of the guitar.

2) The Stratocaster's pickguard is a bit of a different matter. This of course a rather large vibrating plate that is secured only around it's edge. It can create probs, in the form of, say, a metal pickguard+microphonic pups=annoying rattles or microphonic feedback. Overall, this sitch is very dependent upon how microphonic the pups are; in all cases the pups are suspended via springs or rubber tubing which dampens the effect of the pickguard material.

There may be minute differences as regards a thin single-ply as opposed to a stiffer multi-ply 'guard. In all cases tho, IMO any differences will probably be rendered insignificant with the very first downbeat of the drummer.

It is not an aspect to which I have paid a significant amount of attention to; back in the "fad days" of the metal pickguards on Strats I did, if only to eliminate the probs at the mechanical end of things.

In closing I will say this...anything which changes the acoustical nature of the electric guitar will also affect it's amplified sound....even if you play metal with loads of gain at the amplifier.

As always I'd love to hear from other builders about things like this.
 

Deed_Poll

Member
Messages
3,088
As always I'd love to hear from other builders about things like this.

This is a really interesting subject!

Whilst I'm not a builder by any stretch of the imagination (I've assembled a handful of partscasters) this is something I've often wondered about - if the pickup electromagnetically senses a vibrating string, supposing you hold the string still and vibrate the pickup, would you still hear a sound?

I guess my question is, if the pickup is mounted rigid into the body of the guitar and the body of the guitar is resonating, wouldn't the signal from the pickup be the oscillation of the string 'minus' the vibration of the body to any significant degree?

(I put the word 'minus' in bunny ears because we all know summations of waves can phase cancel or amplify!)

Thanks!
 

Terry McInturff

45th Anniversary of guitar building!
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
7,458
If the string was stationary but the pickup moved instead, the magnetic field would be interrupted and yes...a current produced.
 

Kiwi

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
4,114
Thank you, Terry, for your observations on pickup rings and pickguards. Sounds reasonable, and of course, you do this for a living! =K
 

JKjr

Member
Messages
1,055
Why does my Royal sound so good, and why does it sound better when you play it?

PS: I kinda like the lack of binding on my Carolina Standard. Understated and elegant.
 

Terry McInturff

45th Anniversary of guitar building!
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
7,458
Are you ever going to bring back a slab body similar to the Polaris?

I would love to do so and I'd have fun doing so. But there is a challenge as follows.

I brought out the Polaris back in 1996 because I felt that I needed some sort of "entry level" TCM model. Like every TM ever made, these guitars were made in-house from raw lumber. And so, the neckwork was the same time/$$ as any TCM (sans binding) and the finishwork took the same amount of time, or maybe 1/2 hour less.

And so, at a retail of $1,500.00....if everything went right...we netted a whopping $45.00 (forty five) dollars profit per guitar! Cut the nut wrong and there goes the profit.

The trouble is that folks expect to pay a lot less for a slab bodied guitar. But if you are building from scratch in the USA, without jobbing-out anything...it is expensive.

I'd LOVE to offer a modern version of the Polaris...if I could make a profit by doing so.
 

Paul Rhoney

Member
Messages
229
I brought out the Polaris back in 1996 because I felt that I needed some sort of "entry level" TCM model. Like every TM ever made, these guitars were made in-house from raw lumber. And so, the neckwork was the same time/$$ as any TCM (sans binding) and the finishwork took the same amount of time, or maybe 1/2 hour less.

This statement is something that for me is great to read, because it shows that other guitar makers face the same problems I do.
 

Terry McInturff

45th Anniversary of guitar building!
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
7,458
This statement is something that for me is great to read, because it shows that other guitar makers face the same problems I do.

It's only a problem if you underprice the product as badly as I was back in those days. In addition I had 8 employess plus me and the wife, good salaries and a great benefits package. Lease north of 6K/month.

These are hard lessons learned. I will never again undervalue my work and in fact compared to my direct competitors some of my work is too low even now. Products seriously comparable to the Carolina Custom, for instance, can be as much as 4K retail more.
 

JKjr

Member
Messages
1,055
To me one of the best things about the Polaris was the wiring scheme because every position was a different but very usable sound, and it covered a lot of bases. Do you offer the same wiring on any other models?
 

buddyboy69

Member
Messages
5,074
Hey terry. A couple of questions. Ive been repairing and restoring guitars for 20 plus years and i have recently started building from scratch. (Past 3-4 years) My problem is that i am horrible with paperwork and keeping records . Any suggestions about what is important to document durring a build and what type of notebook to use?

I also put my signature on the back or front of the headstock like you, but unlike you i have made waterslide decals instead of actually writing it. What type of pen do you use that can take a clearcoat.
 

Terry McInturff

45th Anniversary of guitar building!
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
7,458
My first bit of advice is to store your records safely and in 2 locations. All of the TCM records for 2000+ guitars were lost in a flood. Use whatever notebook appeals to you, I suppose!

As for the pen...a common-variety fine-tip metallic works well. Dont go heavy on the 1st coat on top of it, as they will smear; a mist coat first=no probs.
 

jjkuz

Member
Messages
310
Terry,
There has been a lot of questions lately about ABR1 vs Nashville TOM bridges, so....

1) Do you hear difference in tone or sustain between the two bridges? I know you use the ABR1 on my Carolina Custom, is there a difninte reason for this...tone, aesthetics, sustain?

2) There has been a lot of internet chatter about converting a Nashville bridge to a ABR1 convertion bridge so I put a Nashville to ABR1 conversion bridge on one of my other LP-style guitar and the new ABR1 conversion bridge took away a lot of the mids, sustain, and the saddles rattled. Obviously, I converted it back to the Nashville bridge, but do you see any positives in convertiving a Nashville to an ABR1 when the Nashvile studs have already been drilled into the guitar (the guitar was shipped with a Nashville bridge originally).

Thanks,

John
 

bilbal

Member
Messages
8,485
Terry,

Have you spoken to our mutual buddy and all around great guy Seth Yacavone lately? I haven't gotten to see him since a show we did a few years ago. I try to drop him at least a hello once in awhile but it's been quite some time since I've heard from him. I hope he is well. Not only is he an incredibly talented musician, he's just the nicest dude. He has always had nothing but the nicest things to say about you as well.
 




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