Every once and a while, there is a DIY project that just doesn’t make the cut. This was one of those.
The customer redid all of the electronics from scratch, from the pickup swap to the re-wire. And did a fine job at that, with the exception of trusting the advice of the internet and utilizing a problematic “vintage” style wire.
The problem with this wire, was each strand included a cloth/wax coated lead wire, surrounded by a thin layer of bare shielding. Seems legit, right?
The problem was, no matter how delicate, how careful he was (and me for that matter) the shielding wires were always severed when stripping the wires for soldering. They were simply too thin. And on the grand scheme, it only takes a single time removing and reinstalling the electronics of a semi-hollow guitar to realize how much of a pain in the ass the process is.
The thought of vintage style wiring in your guitar is a romantic on indeed, but make no mistake, it’s never the wires that give you the “vintage” tone. The wires are there to carry electric current – not voice it
To make a long short short, all the blue wires pictured were replaced with a fine and dandy 16 gauge stranded copper wire. Just the right kind to fulfill its duty and this guitar wired up perfectly to sing another day.
Another fun project at South Austin Guitar Repair. This Ibanez RG is absolutely stunning. figured quilt top in my personal favorite translucent green finish. An all, around beauty. And yet, this slice of perfection had grown a nasty problem.
The owner of this guitar switched tunings frequently enough to have worn the plastic nut so far down, playing an open string in standard tuning would fret out at the first fret. It was decided that a brass nut would be the most dense material able to stand the abrasion of the strings tightening and loosening over and over and last for years to come.
After obtaining the right brass stock at a local metal stock yard, it only took a little sawing, rasping and sanding to get the nut to shape take and some quick measurements for the proper height and string spacing and viola! Brass Nuts!