Let’s talk Guitars!


My all time favorite pickups in general are Bill Lawrence, specifically L500XL in bridge position (big dimebag fan)

For non metal I really like lindy fralin ones, and lace sensors


Tough call.
Off the cuff I’d have to go with the JB by Seymour Duncan.


The original Lace Sensors were incredible! But things dropped a few notches when they redesigned them.

Speaking of Fender though, the original Texas Specials were bad asses! And then they took them to being custom shop only…

I’ve always heard nothing but great things about Fralin. Never had the chance to own any though.


Sensors I’m talking about are from 1982-ish. I think it’s before the redesign

Texas specials are also great. I have one strat-a-like that has a fender body and peavey neck, and H-S-H pickup combo with seymour duncan pearly gates in neck and bridge, and a texas special in the middle.

On the other hand, pickups started losing their value nowdays. You can take literally any guitar, plug it into a Kemper, and get any sound you want


Some of the amps I’ve owned…
(from meh, to decent, to really good, to “really fucking sweet!” lol)


Next one is not bad, but not my style.

Had a very creative circuit that could blend between both the clean and dirty channel though which I haven’t seen since.

The Next is Peavey’s rendition of a JCM800. And honestly, it could accomplish it pretty damned well!! (Really Good)

I actually hated getting rid of this one (as they aren’t seen often), but as is frequent among musicians, it was one of those “need the money” situations.

Mean as you wanted to make it! (short of death metal etc).

Mmmm tuuuuuuuubes…

Now for some REALLY nice tone machines…

First up, the Fender Bassman 50 (AA371 circuit, that had been recapped to be more inline with a 60’s BF), with original matching dual 15" cabinet, casters, and mating “piggyback” hardware.

This thing just saaaaaang. Dripped with tone, and was just an ever-loving JOY to play.
Selling this one just about ripped me apart.

Next is IMO the modern “Mother of all 70’s Rock” creations. Nails The Doobie Brothers and MUCH much more…

I love many of Mesa’s creations.


I’ll see about getting some guitars up later… :wink:


My take on these- some very nice things and a couple of ‘nopes.’

Crate…won’t even work on one let alone use one.

pro 185… absurd

Peavey… IMO Hartley was as innovative as anyone ever has been. Some of the amps sound really great and have stood the test of time particularly among the pedal steel and slide players. But to me there is always a big “why did he do that” in many of the models? While I’m certain that he “nailed it” with this amp, his use of the hum balance leaves me scratching my head. Nonetheless I have always felt that many of those amps were far underrated. Service of some is a nightmare, particularly with ‘fold up’ circuit boards where you have to remove the whole assembly off the main board to get to anything. But as I’m certain you know, that old Western Electric telephone amp begat the 5F6 Bassman, which begat Marshall, which begat this amp and tons of others…all of which are fuckin killer sounding guitar amps.

The Bassman 50 is one of my personal favorites but IMO hype overrides common sense. If something is truly collectable then it should not be used as a gigging amp. But the truth is that Fender continuously tweaked the same production models so you don’t know what you are going to find. I prefer the Bandmaster-Bassman- etc. sound over the tweed era amps for my personal sounds and love the ease of how easily they can be modded/tailored to just fuckin SING. As a side note, IMO dual bias pots are essential with these. There are many other things that can be solved with a little rerouting and some shielded cable etc but for the collector, they are 'sacrilege."

Mesa. I have a dislike for some of the modern Mesa equipment. But as I revealed earlier, my favorite piece of gear is the Mesa Studio Preamp. My normal setup is into various stages of what is a modified Fender Twin Reverb but in most cases I go directly into the phase inverter. I never played metal or much of any 80’s type sounds so I’m not knocking Mesa, it’s just that most is not my personal cup of tea. This particular amp you have/had is killer. I have made many speaker cabs cloned from Mesa’s design.



What do you guys think of Kemper?

I’m thinking about getting one, and ditching the two amps I have right now.

The amp that I actually use nowdays is a line6 spider 75, and I also have a slightly modded fender blues junior. All the ‘big’ gear I had was sold after i stopped playing in bands, and going to gigs.

I used to have an old Ampeg SVT, with the legendary Ampeg 8x10 cabinet that was my main rig for almost 15 years of playing bass in an actual band.

For guitar I had a self-assembled ceriatone JCM800 2204 50w clone, and a Marshal 1960A box. I sold both a few years ago. No point powering those up in the apartment without an attenuator (never liked those) and They do take up too much room :slight_smile:


I use two Hartke’s. A 250 at home and a kilo at work. Simple devices. The tone comes from my fingers.


Hartke are great amplifiers. Fingers can do a lot, but a good amplifier does add a bit :slight_smile:

But with the bass I never used any effects. Bass direct to amp, and just a slight boost on bass and treble, and a little cut on the mids


I’ll use a little eq to match the speaker characteristics but that’s it. I don’t use pedals either. I do cut over 2k on fretted basses. I may never bond with the sound of metal strings against metal frets.


My short answer- I don’t know. I have read the claims and watched some video’s but have never played through one. But like Line Six “modeling,” the “profiling” thing gives me a headache when I think of all the reasons why this causes me to raise an eyebrow.

Just the other day a long time customer/good friend of mine ridiculed them and I trust his opinion. He is a pro player with tons of recording credits and can play circles around me but he relies exclusively on me for his sounds and equipment.

His statements are in line with Ogre’s. Tone is in your touch. We can play though the same guitar and same amp and same everything and have distinctly different sounds.

But like Ogre and I, he is also an ole skool player. These things may be fabulous for players that cut their teeth on purely electronic sounds- primarily stompboxes. So I don’t know. It is what works for you and sets your playing apart from everyone else’s, if that’s the goal.


Lol, you got that right. I started out on cat gut and wood.


i forgot to add that i’m a shit player to begin with :slight_smile:


I kind of doubt that but its a big club, so welcome.:beers:


LMAO! Sounds like an old friend I used to work with (fellow repair tech). We had a standing agreement. I worked on all the Crate, and he’d do all the Peavey (for just the reasons you cited lol)!

I couldn’t stand (still can’t) the clusterfuck way they tended to route wires/bundles. Their stupid choice of molex connectors. The penchant they had for stacking PCB’s (and again, the connectors).

I’m with you on some Mesa’s… The Mark IV was an absolute clusterfuck to work on (and I expect the V is the same, if not worse). They just crammed entirely TOO MUCH shit into too small a space. The Express 5:50 is a diamond though. As are the MK I’s, II’s, and II’s. Love the Studio pre, and the Studio Quad pre. Among a few others (the Lone Star comes to mind as well).

Absolutely!! :thumbsup:

Totally agree here as well.
Give me a Bassman (non-master volume) over any tweed! But then again, I’ll take an old Vibrolux over any of the other Fenders. :drooling_face:
I had the pleasure (luxury) of playing through two of these that customers brought in (bone stock) to have retubed and biased, and I was just dumbfounded. Seriously, completely blown away. The most insanely full tone, combined with an enveloping, rich and thick vibe… Just wow.

I still have a MK III Simul-class (my favorite Mesa, yes even over the MK IIc+) that I love because of the hybrid of EL34’s and 6L6’s. That amp (and the custom OT) just meets my personal style. It can pull a lot of different sounds with the right tubes in the right slots, though many hate it because it’s a PITA to dial in. Plus, because of the architecture, you honestly can only use two of the three channels (at a time) without having to make changes to the dials. At least that’s my opinion. But I could get anything from Eric Clapton to Iron Maiden/Testament out of it.
And it worked great with the EV-12L (original equipment “Black Shadow”) or into a 1960A Marshall (with my other favorites, Celestion G12T-75’s).

Thanks for the commentary! :smiley:


Just bought a french carbon fiber composite and horse hair bow. Mine has no hair left, lol. Wish me luck. It’s always a crap shoot on bows unless you spend 5G and that is just not in the master plan.


Carbon comp is the future. It has wonderful strength/mass /density properties resulting in great tonal properties for musical instruments. While I have not used or experimented with it, I have read of other Guild members (Guild of American Luthiers) having great results with guitars and violin soundboards. I deal in exotic woods so I would possibly shoot myself in the foot by using it. But a very big part of the art is voicing each acoustic guitar top because of numerous differences in soundboards, even split from the same billet (tree). The consistency of carbon comp can be accurately calculated to exacting standards and I am told that tones are rich and the guitars project room filling sounds.

5G’s is nuts for a bow but some get it. Sounds like a wise purchase. Let me know when you get it and have time to check it out.


I surely will. It is advertised to exhibit a number of the qualities you mention but in terms of transferring the vibration to the hand rather than sound to an audience. Per the consistency you mentioned it is also said to have excellent balance. I’m excited to try it. It’s another dimension we want to add to our shows. The upright has been well received by audiences and we have a number of songs that have “orchestral” passages. We’ll see what happens.


That will be just too cool; bass viol with a rock and roll band. I’d say it’s bound to go over good and turn plenty of heads. Besides, the concept of making the bow as described is to me brilliant.

I about went into some science in an earlier post about why certain instruments produce characteristic tones unique to their design and makers. Basically what I thought about delving into were scale lengths and the associated fundamental notes and the resultant mathematically even and odd order multiples (notes). In essence, these factors are what produces tonal differences while all are playing the same fundamental. For example, the high e string on a 6 string guitar produces a 329.6 fundamental yet say a PRS uses a 25 inch scale length where a Fender uses 25.5. The tension and resultant overtones are different in intensity. They can not produce the same tones while producing the same fundamental notes: A 440 for example = E string 5th fret. So tone is in your fingers but the instrument has its own. This is likely why you may never get used to frets. LOL

That’s a long way around the barn but I have told people for many, many years that even with electric guitars to set down and play them unplugged; to listen and FEEL the instrument vibrate. If they don’t like it unplugged there is nothing in the way of electronics that will change that.

So this bow incorporates all the right idea’s and if the designer has used the combination of art/craftsmanship and technology to transmit these vibrations to your hands, then you will be a happy camper. All “names” and magical properties of unobtainium woods are just to often nothing but more “fluff.”


I would love to see you dive into that. I’m pretty sure you are just the person to make something happen. Funny, I guess, but the main reason I don’t buy a lot of basses is because I sense that spending time with one instrument gives far better results. I do “feel” what I play in my fingers and associate those subtle differences to tonal qualities and intonation, of course along with my ears. And yes, frets block a lot of that feedback although some still transmits through the neck.