Hey Tele Thinline users...

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by sstweed, Jan 28, 2008.

  1. sstweed

    sstweed Supporting Member

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    I know this might belong in the guitar forum, but I am more interested in how it sounds through pedals and amps, than the guitar itself. I have never really looked at Thinlines before. As a "real" tele fan, I always just played the "classic" single coil tele (and lots of them!).

    But I have been jonesing for something outside the Fender single coil realm of late. Something with humbuckers and NOT a Les Paul. I just happened to look at a new thinline at GC yesterday. It was on the floor on a guitar stand and caught my wifes eye, "F" hole, two Fender humbuckers, and that ugly pickguard, the whole she-bang. Holy cow, the guitar felt like it weighed about an ounce compared to a "real" tele! I could get into that, but I have no experience with those big Fender humbuckers (or the semi-hollow tele body), despite the fact that both me and Tele thinlines have been around for decades! Anyone have opinions about them one way or the other? Thanks
     
  2. bluesmain

    bluesmain Member

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    I have had mine for 3 years or so. It's a contrast in tone from my strats and very sweet sounding thru a jtm45ish amp. It also sounds great with my mark lll combo.
     
  3. thefacelessnate

    thefacelessnate Member

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    I have an American Thinline Semi Hollow and love it. I play it through an Orange Rockerverb 50 and typically run it through a Keeley Comp, Keeley Katana, Timmy and/or BD-2 Modded... I love it... such a different sound than a single coil. And when its delayed its a beaut... Definitely not a single coil sounding guitar. I definitely recommend the american over the mexican, mainly for the neck. Have fun!
     
  4. dk_ace

    dk_ace Member

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    I just traded one off. They have ceramic pickups which always got on my nerves. The guitar sounded muddy stock with crappy note definition. This is mainly due to the 250K pots they come stock with. I had those replaced with 500K pots, and I quickly discovered that they used the 250K pots to disguise the problems with the cheap ceramic pups.

    The guitar sounds better with the 500K pots, but the pickups have an inherent piercing ice-picky sound that is hard to dial out without getting into muddy territory. I had the guitar for two years and was never able to use it live because it didn't sound good in a mix.

    Rio Grande is the only company making replacement pickups for the WR pups in the thinline, and there is very little info to be had about them. If you can find a pair of the original WR pups, you'll have to pay big money for them. You would have to get a new pickgaurd cut to use standard size pups, and that is a lot of money to spend on a guitar unless it is exactly what you want.

    If you want something with buckers that is different than the typical LP sounds, I would say you would be much happier with a Gretsch (my personal favorite is the duo jet). I traded the thinline for a duo jet, and I couldn't be happier. These guitars are in a class of their own, and you owe it to yourself to at least give one a try. They can be bought used between 400 and 800 pretty easily, which is a steal considering many of them sold for 2000+ when they came out.

    For what you want from the guitar, I think you can find much better choices for your money, but it's my opinion and YMMV.

    D
     
  5. GuitarDude

    GuitarDude Member

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    i second the grestch idea. but where in the world do you find duo jets for under a grand...much less 400? am i missing something?
     
  6. sstweed

    sstweed Supporting Member

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    There had to be a reason more people weren't using these. Thanks. The search goes on.

    Gretsch is in fact one of my favorite guitars. Don't know if that sound is what I am looking for with this particular case of gas, but any day spent playing a Gretsch is a good one.
     
  7. dk_ace

    dk_ace Member

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    400 is the low side of the market, very low and hard to find, but those deals are out there. The one I just got was listed on Craigslist for $600, and I actually ended up trading the tele that I didn't like for it. If you watch ebay, there are good deals on duojets pretty frequently.

    Mapleneck, make sure you try a duojet (with TV Jones pickups if at all possible) in your search. It might be just what you're looking for. The PRS SE guitars are also really cool for the money. I'm not a big fan of their sound, but the Schecter guitars also have a following for a reason. HB guitars that don't copy the LP are getting more common, and their are some really cool ones out there. Good luck, and I hope you find what you're looking for.

    D
     
  8. ptdesign

    ptdesign Handmade sonic art

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    Not to mension the crap 3 bolt neck. I have a ash 69 RI that I love to death. I use Duncan Vin rails at the neck and hot tele stack at the bridge. So I get the Humbucking with pretty legit although fatter tele tones with my vol backed a hair.
     
  9. drbob1

    drbob1 Silver Supporting Member

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    Let's jump in the way-back machine. The Thinline Teles with humbuckers came out at a very strange time. Les Pauls were coming back for rock and teles weren't super popular in that context. Fender hired Seth Lover to create some magic and the whole "teles with humbuckers" thing started (including the Deluxe, the Custom and the Thinline) as well as the ES335 killer Starcaster. Didn't work, but that's another story. The pickups were very close to the original PAFs in spec-fairly low output, unpotted, sensitive to pick attack (which gives the PAF equipped guitars their vocal character) and somewhat treble heavy. A Gretsch with humbuckers, a Thinline and an ES335 all share a somewhat similar tone (at least the vintage ones do). The Gretsch will be the most responsive (feedback prone, but in a musical way) and the Thinline the least. OTOH, the Thinline will have the best sustain and the best intonation (strings thru body, and intonation adjustable bridge). I love and own all three flavors. That said, my very favorite "semi-hollowbody" is an original Jet Firebird Gretsch that's simply the most alive guitar I own. I can turn towards a totally clean AC30, pick up feedback on a fretted string and just let it ring as long as I want. Turn away and it dies out. Magic! The problem is that the Duojet reissue just isn't as responsive as the vintage one. I have to go to a larger semi-hollow reissue (White Falcon) to get the same willingness to feedback that I get from the smaller vintage guitar. Since a new reissue Duojet will cost you the same as a vintage Thinline in players shape, I'd go with the vintage guitar if you can find a good one. For reissues, I'd got with the larger Gretsch.
     
  10. dk_ace

    dk_ace Member

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    None of my comments about the thinline were referring to the vintage ones. The re-issues are the ones that suck. The originals are magic IMO, but good luck finding one.

    Again, the reissue Gretsch guitars are not going for much on the used market. I can buy them considerably under a grand all day long. Mine was listed at $600. You can't get a vintage thinline anywhere near that.

    D
     
  11. Lolaviola

    Lolaviola Member

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    FWIW:
    The reissue tele "wide range humbuckers" are constructed differently than the originals.
    Also (FWIW) the 3-bolt Fender connections are not the problem, the problem is with the gaps in the neck pockets and misalligned bridges.
    GO VINTAGE!
     
  12. GuitarDude

    GuitarDude Member

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    so there's hope!!! awesome. thanks man!
     
  13. JimmyR

    JimmyR Member

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    I really don't know if I would go vintage on a Thinline Tele. I had one about twenty years ago and I don't miss it at all! It was poo-brown, played badly and sounded awful. The pickups were average to say the least. I think the new Gretsches are way better than that old Tele was. I don't really understand why 70s Fenders are sought after. Most of the 70s Fenders I remember sucked!
     
  14. The Whiz

    The Whiz Member

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    I've got a japanese 72 thinline reissue. I have a custom pickguard for it (parchment/black/parchment) because I hated the mother of pearl look after a while and I wanted to be able to fit standard PAF size buckers in it. Currently, however, I have a pair of vintage vibe humbucker size P90's in it. Not bad, but I'm going to put a pair of Seymour Duncan Seth Lovers I have in it and move the Vintage Vibes into my Les Paul.

    I like the Thinline RI's, or at least my japanese one from the mid 90's.
     

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