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Author Topic: Larry Cartlon style pups for my 335  (Read 12900 times)

Fourth Feline

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Larry Cartlon style pups for my 335
« Reply #30 on: May 09, 2008, 10:16:32 AM »
I agree that the Yamaha 335 copy that 38th Beatle recommended is indeed beautiful, and if I had more cash - would be sorely tempted.

The situation with the Tanglewood ( which just happens to be the same colour, Grover machine heads  - but without the bound neck edges and prestigious 'Yamaha'  name / Japanese provenance ) - is that I am being offered it at the 140 mark, frets stoned,  set up thoroughly but second hand with a slight ( repaired ) chip in the headstock. I took the liberty of trying out a new one at a city centre music shop as a guide, and it felt substantial, was nicely finished, with pleasantly rich acoutic qualities. As I already have a 'spare' set of Alnico II Stormy Mondays and a full Gibson 335 wiring kit in the house, all I really wanted was a well adjusted / good neck, attached to some reasonably good wood !

As I am not bringing home a wage just now, the 400 + difference ( for a man who is also not currently gigging ) - represents a lot of groceries and domestic bills e.t.c.  The same principle applied to any Tokai I also saw.

If I had I the cash, I would have of course been sorely tempted by the Yamaha.  I have been planning to sell my 1976 Gibson S.G. Standard to raise money, but there is a lot of quality in the S.G. and emotional attachment. Such is life ...

I will however report back on the ' Tanglewood project' - to see if there is anything that meets the needs of forum members at different price levels. I just felt that at 140, ( subject to examination ) - the 'gamble' was worth the money, especially as I need a renovation 'project' just now, in addition to actually playing my beloved guitars.

Johnny Mac

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Larry Cartlon style pups for my 335
« Reply #31 on: May 09, 2008, 04:23:55 PM »
For that price and with a pro set up you can't go wrong, sounds like a great project to me!  :D
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elavd

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Larry Cartlon style pups for my 335
« Reply #32 on: May 10, 2008, 08:41:33 PM »
This is a clip that I've just uploaded to YouTube.

This is me playing my Gibson ES335 on a Tech21 Trademark 30 amp ;)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dWqNwUu8rRU
> How many guitars are enough?
> One MORE!!!

Twinfan

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Larry Cartlon style pups for my 335
« Reply #33 on: May 10, 2008, 10:07:12 PM »
Great tone and playing!

Reminded me a lot of this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=djRAF_ph3TQ

Philly Q

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Larry Cartlon style pups for my 335
« Reply #34 on: May 11, 2008, 04:34:32 PM »
Quote from: Twinfan
Great tone and playing!

Reminded me a lot of this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=djRAF_ph3TQ

+1

I wish Mr C would use Gibsons more often!
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BKPs I Had:  RY+Abraxas, Crawlers, BD+SM

elavd

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Larry Cartlon style pups for my 335
« Reply #35 on: May 11, 2008, 04:35:20 PM »
Thank you very much!!!
> How many guitars are enough?
> One MORE!!!

Ratrod

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Larry Cartlon style pups for my 335
« Reply #36 on: May 12, 2008, 10:58:12 AM »
All this talk about 335's makes me want one.

I think I found a nice one. I'll have to save up for it but I'm thinking about Mississippi Queens for it.
BKP user since 2004: early 7K Blackguard 50

Philly Q

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Larry Cartlon style pups for my 335
« Reply #37 on: May 12, 2008, 11:27:26 AM »
Quote from: Ratrod
All this talk about 335's makes me want one.

I'm pretty much immune to 335 GAS, they're beautiful guitars but I'm happy to just look at them.

I've tried a couple and the body is just way too big for me.
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Fourth Feline

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Larry Cartlon style pups for my 335
« Reply #38 on: May 12, 2008, 11:35:30 AM »
Hiya folks,

A quick interim update on the Tanglewood TH502 '335' copy.

Tanglewood claim to be a U.K. owned brand entity, overseeing the production of these guitars in the far east. My impressions are very positive so far. Their U.K. office / customer support certainly respond quickly and accurately to enquiries.

 Firstly, I need not have bothered ordering the Gibson / CTS wiring kit, as they already have full size, smooth, 500k 'alpha' pots in there, fully screened wiring -and nice caps. Add to that ,  firm switching and solid input jack.   The neck / action adjusts as straight and low as my U.S.A Gibson Les Paul - and the sustain /  rich tone is evident even unplugged. There is apparently more mahogany involved in it's composition - and combined with the slightly extra thickness of body shell ( as with Jonesy's 335 copy ) - it makes it a bit more mellow ( but not dull )and less 'twangy' - ideal for me . Even the stock humbuckers sounded quite nice !  The machine heads are marker Grovers.

It does of course betray it's cheaper provenance in certain ways, such as the fact that the Grovers are a bit too chrome plated , quite short shafted - and so do not take more than about 3 wraps of string.  The truss rod ( whilst fully funtional ) does not have that 'tight' feel that my Gibsons have. The nut is a cheaper ( abeit reasonably  hard ) plastic.

At 140 ( only slightly marked / second hand ) - I sit in wonderment at it.

I have not yet have a chance to turn up the Stormy Monday's in it, as I want the neighbours to be out to try a selection of amps without inhibition e.t.c.

I am now in the process of "playing it in " - as with my Fender Baja before it, it initially feels a bit 'stiff' . I also gather  from the Gear Page, that 335 types do feel different , even with a lovely low action. The fret board certainly feels wider, longer and altogether more spacious than my Les Paul or S.G.

Further observations / sonic conclusions to follow, but if like me , you get a chance to try one of these set up at under the 200 mark,   I recommend you at least give it a spin.


( * EDIT - I just realised that in many ways, this entry should be in the ' Guitars & Amps ' section ? . If so - appologies to the forum moderators, I will move it if you require . It will eventually conclude with a 'Stromy Monday comparison / review / confirmation however  * )

Johnny Mac

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Larry Cartlon style pups for my 335
« Reply #39 on: May 12, 2008, 08:25:58 PM »
Sounds an amazing guitar for 140 quid! I had a look on some sites at them and they do sound great value.
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Johnny Mac

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Larry Cartlon style pups for my 335
« Reply #40 on: May 12, 2008, 08:30:11 PM »
Quote from: elavd
This is a clip that I've just uploaded to YouTube.

This is me playing my Gibson ES335 on a Tech21 Trademark 30 amp ;)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dWqNwUu8rRU


That guitar sure sounds nice, you play really well  too, some great technique in there!
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Twinfan

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Larry Cartlon style pups for my 335
« Reply #41 on: May 12, 2008, 09:07:28 PM »
Quote from: Philly Q
I'm pretty much immune to 335 GAS, they're beautiful guitars but I'm happy to just look at them.

I've tried a couple and the body is just way too big for me.


+1

Glad your 335 worked out OK for you Derek - maybe I'll be able to check it out one day  ;)

Fourth Feline

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Larry Cartlon style pups for my 335
« Reply #42 on: May 13, 2008, 12:32:53 AM »
Quote from: Twinfan
Quote from: Philly Q
I'm pretty much immune to 335 GAS, they're beautiful guitars but I'm happy to just look at them.

I've tried a couple and the body is just way too big for me.


+1

Glad your 335 worked out OK for you Derek - maybe I'll be able to check it out one day  ;)


Sure thing Dave, if you are in the neighbourhood, do feel free check out this item of furniture ... :D

38thBeatle

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Larry Cartlon style pups for my 335
« Reply #43 on: May 13, 2008, 07:33:43 AM »
I am interested to hear of your thoughts FF. That sounds like an incredible bargain. That Yam is out of my league too right now.
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Fourth Feline

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Larry Cartlon style pups for my 335
« Reply #44 on: May 13, 2008, 04:26:38 PM »
Quote from: 38thBeatle
I am interested to hear of your thoughts FF. That sounds like an incredible bargain. That Yam is out of my league too right now.


Hello !

After 2- 3 days of setting up and playing in, I can without a doubt recommend  a Tanglewood TH502 or ( insert name of a Gibson /  copy of your choice ) and a pair of Stormy Mondays as a match made in heaven.

I will detail my thoughts here, as opposed to starting another ' Stormy Mondays are great' thread.

The Truss rod I at first thought was " loose but fully functional " - was me having impatiently slackened it off to cure a minor fret buzz at the 7th fret,  when all it need was the action a tiny fraction higher on the bass side. ( I usually have my bass strings hardly much higher than 1/32" at the 12th fret) . A touch more height - hardly measurable with a steel ruler, enabled me to turn the truss rod a bit tighter - and in doing so I realised that it then engaged / gripped and acted just like a Gibson / Fender would.  ( The predudice started I suppose  when I lifted the truss rod cover and found a deeply recessed small allen key adjuster, instead of the expected Gibson 'nut' ) . The fact that the neck was so close to straight without firm truss rod tension seemed like a good sign too.

The Grover 'kidney' machine heads that at I at first did not like the shorter shaft on, did however have proper tightening screws - and tuned to a fine ratio - then held their tuning without problems.

As I have already said, I would leave the smooth, full size , 'Alpha' brand  500k pots and thoroughly screened exisiting electrics ( long job to replace ) - and just lift enough wiring out to affix your B.K.P to the volume pots. You might want to fit orange drops whilst the tone pots are out too, but certainly not essential with this model.

Beware the temptation to fit a switchcraft toggle. The one already fitted is of good quality, and any Switchcraft / Gibson type requires that you take the Dremel to the guitar body and then hide the result, however nicely you do it.
The main thing was that I seemed to get a 'good' one with perfect neck angle, oiled fretboard - and level frets. The neck edges are not bound ( the body is ) - but the fret ends are beautifully finished from the factory.

My next concern was that it was a bit 'stiff' feeling. But like my Baja Telecaster, I just kept going back every day and re- assessing / adjusting the nut slots, bridge height, truss rod, intonation ( my bass saddles where initially on the wrong way round ) - and played those new D'addario 10 - 52 strings  a lot to 'relax' them a bit. The percieved stiffness disappeared a bit more each day as I 'played it in' - plus I realised that it was the nice wide flat fingerboard that made barre chords at the 10th fret and above not curve into the palm / fingers as my 9.5 radius Telecaster did.

Ultimately it has set up better than my U.S.A Les Paul ( that was profesionally done ) - and closer to my 1976 S.G. - which has has been steadily tweaked and played in for 32 years !

The final ( and vital ) tonal clue came from forum member and 'You Tube' star 'ELAVD' - who influenced me to set the Stormys quite close to the pickup rings.  Higher up at the 'usual' 2 - 3 mm mark, the Tanglewood / B.K.P combo sounded very nice, but more Chuck Berry than B.B. King. Keeping the gap really wide ( as I believe forum member 'SUSHI' does as well ) - it was instant B.B. King / Larry Carlton territory ( minus the talent of course  :lol: ).

The stock pickups on the Tanglewood where nice enough to play as they where, not anywhere like B.K.P - but I can imagine that they would have given Epiphone and the Gibson 498R / 490T combo a run for thier money.

The nut is cheap, but hard enough to file accurately and not dampen strings  ( I see the Gibson 2 K + Larry Carlton model has a nut that looks no better ! ) I therefore have left it in.
 

Had I been starting from fresh and employed a professional luthier to  perfect the fret board, it still would have been less than 200 for the guitar, less than 200 for the Stormy Mondays - and shall we say 50- 80 for a bespoke set up ?  The whole lot perhaps coming in completely finshed at less than 450 quid, or - as an existing B.K.P owner and being willing to do the tweaking yourself ( as we usually do anyway ) - 200 for a very nicely playing and sweet sounding version of a 2,000 guitar.

Be warned though ( not meant to sound patronising there ) - I tried an 'Aria' 335 copy at under the 200 mark   - and the neck was terrible. It can still be a minefield out there.

 I would still be interested to hear from others, but there does seem to be something in the spiel that Tanglewood are a U.K. business overseeing a far east production plant. Perhaps, ( because I did not mind a couple of minor blemishes ) - I just happened to get a good one. I do suspect however, that too many things where pleasing about the construction and apparent quality control of this guitar for mine to be merely a 'fluke'.

Now I have tried my Stormys in a Les Paul, an S.G. and a 335 copy, I feel that ( although they performed great in then all ) - Stormy Mondays and 335 / 355 style Semi-acoustics are a match made in heaven. If starting again, I would only change one thing, I would use unpotted Stormys, instead of potted - as I can imagine that would be even more appropriate.  My reasoning being that an un-potted pickup 'breathes' in unison with the way a semi - acoustic 'breathes'.

Cheers !

Happy hunting and modding folks :D