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NGD - leveling way up (Suhr Pete Thorn Sig)

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by djw, Feb 6, 2019.

  1. djw

    djw Member

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    In fairness, this is more like "New Guitar Week-2-ish," since I actually took delivery of this beautiful guitar almost two weeks ago... but this is the first chance I've had to actually sit down and put my impressions down about this monster.

    The back story on this acquisition is in this thread I started a while back (and thanks again, everyone), but long story short, I recently hit a point where I decided it was time for this guy to save some coin for a more indulgent, more modern and more well-crafted instrument. By and by my focus landed on the Suhr lineup, and I'd been lusting after the newer Suhr Standard Plus model, which I still think is just a gorgeous piece of work, but also realized was pretty close to other guitars that I already own and am attached to (i.e., an HSS Strat). What I was really after, if I were going to invest in something at this level, was something that would stand out from my fairly well-rounded stable of standard Gibsons and Fenders. In the end, I realized that the Pete Thorn Signature model was the ticket. So BOOM, I swooped on a used one in almost perfect condition.

    After a couple of weeks, I am happy to report that it has faaaaar surpassed my expectations. This is my first Suhr -- my first anything that isn't a production Gibson/Fender/Gretsch -- and by a decent measure the most expensive instrument that I've ever acquired, so this is a level up in a few respects. I'm still kinda getting used to the idea that I'm in possession of something on this level.

    So we're obviously still in the honeymoon phase, but even so -- I've been playing for about 40 years -- I am actually pretty shocked at how much I have grown attached to it. The thing just feels great (the weight, the neck, the body size), it looks sexier than all hell, and it sounds killer. Just... holy crap. Worth the hype.

    I'm not going to gush any more than that just now. However, a couple of things:

    - Mine has the old standard Gotoh 510 bridge (i.e., not the new Wilkinson with the locking saddles).

    - Does anyone have an opinion about floating vs decking with this sort of thing? I usually float my Strats, but I could see myself wanting to occasionally go to drop-D with this beast... when it arrived, the bridge was almost level, with the lugs just raised a bit and the plate almost parallel to the body, so floating but flat maybe 1.5mm above the body. As it turned out, I had a gig that night and needed to quickly tweak it by putting some heavier wound strings on it (I use 10-52s on my Fenders). Now it's almost where it was, but I'm debating whether to float it at the usual "Fender" angle, or if there's another preferred method with this bridge. Thoughts anyone?

    - I am amazed at how well the controls work, specifically how clear and even the tone remains as I turn the volume down. I'm thinking I could almost just ditch my boost pedals now, and actually use my volume control for real without losing any of the presence and urgency that I feel like I lose when I reduce the levels on my other guitars. Is this simply a treble bleed? Or some other black magic that the electronics are imbued with? (haven't opened up the control cavity yet -- not sure I could tell if there was a treble bleed or not)

    I didn't expect my other beloved guitars to be so jealous, but they are fuming now.

    Here's a pic... haven't had a chance to assemble a properly pornographic set of photos yet. The pics on the Suhr site are better than anything I'd take.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2019
  2. Dig ?

    Dig ? Supporting Member

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    Very nice rig man. Congrats
     
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  3. djw

    djw Member

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    Thanks! It's pretty sick.
     
  4. Bogner

    Bogner Member

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    Congrats! Great guitar! Great color too!! ;)
     
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  5. djw

    djw Member

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    OMG yes. It's like the Stealth Shredder.
     
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  6. plan-x

    plan-x Supporting Member

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  7. CaptainSexy

    CaptainSexy Member

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    Congrats man! I reeeeeally want a Suhr PT.. Now, play the living hell out of it. :D
     
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  8. FiestaRed

    FiestaRed Gold Supporting Member

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    It's that some sort of bizarre Christmas rug?
     
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  9. Old Chomper

    Old Chomper Member

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    One of my dream guitars. Well done.
     
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  10. djw

    djw Member

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    It's my unboxing rug. Religious thing.
     
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  11. djw

    djw Member

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    It's happening! It's pretty crazy how well it plays, it's verrry compelling. Hard to resist.
     
  12. FiestaRed

    FiestaRed Gold Supporting Member

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    What is the neck like? What kind of necks are you used to playing?
     
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  13. rawkguitarist

    rawkguitarist Member

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    Those are really, really cool guitars. I love the black top and wine red back/neck. Super cool! Conrats!
     
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  14. djw

    djw Member

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    The best thing is probably to share the specs (the video there is cool and very informative too) https://www.suhr.com/instruments/pete-thorn/

    In any case, the neck is what they call the "Even C Slim" profile. Now this is literally like the 4th Suhr I've ever laid my hands on, and for me the first and only of this particular model. I'd previously tried a couple of others at the local dealer here (Nut's 'n Saddles in Berkeley) back when I was interested in the Standard Plus model. Those necks were maple (roasted and otherwise) and had a different finish than this one, which is mahogany with a satin finish. As far as shape and thickness goes, I'd be hard pressed to describe much of a difference between those on the Standard models and this one.

    So, similar to how @sinasl1 describes himself in the video, I don't have terribly big hands. However, my tastes vary as far as neck profiles go, depending on the guitar and how I play it. I have a '62 VHR Strat that I really like, which has a pretty beefy neck; likewise my LP Std's neck is pretty honking too. But I have others that are in high rotation that have fairly slim necks (my SG's 60's style neck is pretty shallow), so I am kinda all over the place.*

    I would put the PT neck almost right in the middle -- maybe a hair on the slim side, if I had to call it one way or the other. But it's very comfortable for me, about as close to perfect as I've felt. So far there has been zero hand fatigue, which as much as I love that '62VHR, I do get after hammering away for a while.

    Another thing that I love about the neck is the feel of the finish. I can play it all night and it never gets sticky or grippy, it's got just the right amount of friction to allow me to land without getting stuck. It's pretty remarkable.

    When I was shopping around (see other thread mentioned in the OP), I stopped looking for a while after trying those Charvel DK24s with the caramelized maple necks... they were a clear head-and-shoulders above the rest of the shredders I tried by Ibanez, EBMM, etc. They're slim, which is nice, but the feel of the unfinished maple is really, really appealing. The PT neck feels different from those, and unlike with the DK24s, you can't feel the grain at all -- the satin finish is perfectly smooth, so it's not quite the same thing. However, the effect is indeed similar in how it works in your hands (well, my hands anyway).

    *Note: I'm pretty flexible, but for whatever reason I have never been able to get comfortable with the PRS necks I've tried. Something about them!
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2019
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  15. Tisca

    Tisca Member

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    And I bet it really ties the room together.
     
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  16. freedom's door

    freedom's door Supporting Member

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    First, congrats, that looks great.
    All the Suhrs I've had (with the 510) have come set up with the baseplate parallel to the body, not at the Fender angle.
    @Husky care to chime in on this?
     
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  17. RicardoDiazHimself

    RicardoDiazHimself Member

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    Congrats, man! Personally Ive found out that the tunning stability is much better when angled and lower saddles (but not against the baseplate). Kinda reduces break angle at the block, so also feels slinkier and allows me to use 2 springs with 9-46's so bends feel like butah.
    Thats how ive got my 3 Suhr's setup.
     
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  18. John Hurtt

    John Hurtt Supporting Member

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    Looks great, congrats!
     
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  19. djw

    djw Member

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    Woah!
     
  20. freedom's door

    freedom's door Supporting Member

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    2 springs with 9s?

    The bridge probably flutters if you breathe on it :D
     
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