New Gibson Hollow Body

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Bob77
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New Gibson Hollow Body

Postby Bob77 » Sat Dec 16, 2017 2:27 pm

I know there's some Gibson haters on this forum but here we go anyway :mrgreen:

Well, truth is that I don't care much for Gibson's solid bodies. Some les pauls are cool, but I can live without them and don't own one for that very reason. Their semi-hollow and fully hollow guitars, on the other hand, are fantastic instruments IMHO.

Got a 1959 Historic Reissue Gibson ES 330 from the Gibson Custom shop. One of only 50 ever made left handed. As a point of reference, this guitar is similar to an Epiphone Casino, which many people are familiar with because of the Beatles. This one is essentially Gibson's original version of the Casino, originally made in 1959, and made for a few years after that with some changes as well.

It has the shape of an ES 335 but it is a completely different instrument due to the fully hollow body, P90 pickups, different bridge, etc. It also has a super mega thin finish, which really makes the wood laminate vibrate like crazy. The vintage tone is insane. Lots of "air" with each note you play. It is also about 6.25lbs only...crazy light weight for such a big instrument! Gotta love fully hollow thinline electrics.
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Re: New Gibson Hollow Body

Postby Casual Madman » Sat Dec 16, 2017 2:49 pm

That's a beauty. Bet you can get some serious jangle when you want, along with the smooooth mellows.

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Re: New Gibson Hollow Body

Postby Bob77 » Sat Dec 16, 2017 3:11 pm

It works really well for pretty any style, but its strongest element is vintage tones for sure.

Of course, this is not the right instrument for metal or anything excessively loud :laughhard: Very sensitive to feedback a high volumes.

Can also be used for jazz all day long. Though the body is super thin, because it is fully hollow you can totally fool some ears into believing your are playing a jazz box.
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Re: New Gibson Hollow Body

Postby Doctor Turn » Sat Dec 16, 2017 4:42 pm

That is sweeeeeeet...
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Re: New Gibson Hollow Body

Postby Greg Emm » Sat Dec 16, 2017 5:08 pm

Dream guitar.

One of the guys in Graveyard plays those through Orange amps. They sound phenomenal.

Congratulations!

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Re: New Gibson Hollow Body

Postby skully13a » Sat Dec 16, 2017 5:31 pm

There's some good ones out there, huh? It's a golden age in guitars.
That's beautiful. 8) 8) I dig it. Classic teardrop burst, too. :ninja:
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Re: New Gibson Hollow Body

Postby Naked Ape » Sun Dec 17, 2017 1:41 am

That is a nice guitar!!!!!! Theres something about the Trapeze Tail Piece that I just love. Congrats, and Congrats again. That's gotta be great with the P-90's.
Still on my list , is a Hollow or Semi-Hollow with P-90's. I keep getting distracted though. I guess I'm just waiting for the right 'ONE'. My latest distraction is on it's way, which will start to fill my Tele distraction. :wink:
Enjoy that one.......I know you will! :applause:

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Re: New Gibson Hollow Body

Postby Bob77 » Sun Dec 17, 2017 8:51 am

Naked Ape wrote:That is a nice guitar!!!!!! Theres something about the Trapeze Tail Piece that I just love. Congrats, and Congrats again. That's gotta be great with the P-90's.
Still on my list , is a Hollow or Semi-Hollow with P-90's. I keep getting distracted though. I guess I'm just waiting for the right 'ONE'. My latest distraction is on it's way, which will start to fill my Tele distraction. :wink:
Enjoy that one.......I know you will! :applause:


I hear you about the "distractions" haha! I think it happens to all of us :mrgreen: But this was the "right one" for me especially since it was a limited run of only 50. And yea....trapeze bridges are cool. All hardware parts and the clear coat are "aged", but the process was done very tastefully and subtly. It is no heavily reliced like some other guitars in which it so overdone that it tends to look borderline ridiculous.

There's something really sweet about an electric semi-hollow or hollow guitar with P90s. Granted, Gibson
calls these "underwound P90s", basically the wounding is done to mimic the way they sounded back in 1959. Pros = they totally sound vintage. Cons = they are just as noisy as they were back in the day.

Here's some other pics with different lighting. The color is called "vintage burst", but the back and sides are brown like walnut.
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Re: New Gibson Hollow Body

Postby Doctor Turn » Sun Dec 17, 2017 10:52 am

Bob77 wrote:[
There's something really sweet about an electric semi-hollow or hollow guitar with P90s. Granted, Gibson
calls these "underwound P90s", basically the wounding is done to mimic the way they sounded back in 1959. Pros = they totally sound vintage. Cons = they are just as noisy as they were back in the day.

Here's some other pics with different lighting. The color is called "vintage burst", but the back and sides are brown like walnut.


There's something really sweet about a semi hollow guitar in general, period!

I don't know if you were around the board to catch the posts when I got it, but I grabbed a vintage (1975) blonde natural birch Swedish made Hagstrom Viking, the seventies incarnation with the Custom 58 buckers and the Jimmy D'Aquisto headstock. The thing was mint with the original case/toolkit/complimentary pick. When clean it's like holding a jar of honey in my hand, when crunching it screams.

Image
Like you guys mention, the trapezoid tailpiece is a huge component of that semi hollow thinline sound, especially versus those with just a typical stopbar tailpiece. On my guitar it's almost an instrument into itself. The trapezoid vibrates and resonates over the whole bottom quadrant of the axe and creates a sort of natural reverb though the hollow zones.

I played lots of semi hollows before settling on this vintage guitar, and can tell you.. when you get a good one (which you CLEARLY have), the sound is so completely different versus the rest of a solid body arsenal, and totally essential. I could go on and on. You could just give my that semi hollow, plus my 150, or maybe my Les Paul Special (or the Northen Super Swede), and I could easily jettison the rest of my collection, as unique as each one is. I'd be fine.

As for P90s, the fact that they sound so good on a semi hollow is the reason I think Kiesel is crazy to not develop this pickup. Aside from adding that single coil beefy savagery to their solid body line, they would reinvigorate the entire line of semi hollows.

Congrats again on a total beaut.
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Re: New Gibson Hollow Body

Postby ElfDude » Sun Dec 17, 2017 4:15 pm

That is such a cool guitar! Congrats on the purchase!
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Re: New Gibson Hollow Body

Postby Bob77 » Sun Dec 17, 2017 6:35 pm

Doctor Turn wrote:
Bob77 wrote:[
There's something really sweet about an electric semi-hollow or hollow guitar with P90s. Granted, Gibson
calls these "underwound P90s", basically the wounding is done to mimic the way they sounded back in 1959. Pros = they totally sound vintage. Cons = they are just as noisy as they were back in the day.

Here's some other pics with different lighting. The color is called "vintage burst", but the back and sides are brown like walnut.


There's something really sweet about a semi hollow guitar in general, period!

I don't know if you were around the board to catch the posts when I got it, but I grabbed a vintage (1975) blonde natural birch Swedish made Hagstrom Viking, the seventies incarnation with the Custom 58 buckers and the Jimmy D'Aquisto headstock. The thing was mint with the original case/toolkit/complimentary pick. When clean it's like holding a jar of honey in my hand, when crunching it screams.

Image
Like you guys mention, the trapezoid tailpiece is a huge component of that semi hollow thinline sound, especially versus those with just a typical stopbar tailpiece. On my guitar it's almost an instrument into itself. The trapezoid vibrates and resonates over the whole bottom quadrant of the axe and creates a sort of natural reverb though the hollow zones.

I played lots of semi hollows before settling on this vintage guitar, and can tell you.. when you get a good one (which you CLEARLY have), the sound is so completely different versus the rest of a solid body arsenal, and totally essential. I could go on and on. You could just give my that semi hollow, plus my 150, or maybe my Les Paul Special (or the Northen Super Swede), and I could easily jettison the rest of my collection, as unique as each one is. I'd be fine.

As for P90s, the fact that they sound so good on a semi hollow is the reason I think Kiesel is crazy to not develop this pickup. Aside from adding that single coil beefy savagery to their solid body line, they would reinvigorate the entire line of semi hollows.

Congrats again on a total beaut.


Duuuuude! You are so darn lucky! Those vintage Hagstrom are insanely awesome. And you scored big time on that one; it looks practically brand new. What a beautiful guitar. You right handed people are so lucky haha. I bet it has an incredible vintage tone.

Everything you described about semi-hollow/fully hollow electric guitars is true. Whole different experience; hard to go back to playing anything else after that. In fact, I have gotten to the point in which I do not play my solid body electric guitars anymore.
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Re: New Gibson Hollow Body

Postby Naked Ape » Mon Dec 18, 2017 5:40 am

You guys are killing me! (Doc and Bob).....In a good way. :wink:
I'm ready to move a couple of my solids, which means I have to replace them with something......Hollow or Semi Hollow. You guys both have some amazing examples.
I had an offer to trade an E/2 Explorer I had, for a Custom shop ES-339. I passed. It just wasn't the right one for me. Too small maybe.?? :think:
I have a feeling something will come my way soon. Can't wait. :D
In the mean time.....You guys enjoy those beauties, and crank it up and get some angry feedback!!!! Nugent style.(the loudest rock show ever) :lol:

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Re: New Gibson Hollow Body

Postby Bob77 » Mon Dec 18, 2017 8:02 am

Naked Ape wrote:You guys are killing me! (Doc and Bob).....In a good way. :wink:
I'm ready to move a couple of my solids, which means I have to replace them with something......Hollow or Semi Hollow. You guys both have some amazing examples.
I had an offer to trade an E/2 Explorer I had, for a Custom shop ES-339. I passed. It just wasn't the right one for me. Too small maybe.?? :think:
I have a feeling something will come my way soon. Can't wait. :D
In the mean time.....You guys enjoy those beauties, and crank it up and get some angry feedback!!!! Nugent style.(the loudest rock show ever) :lol:


Gotta do it man! Get yourself a good semi-hollo/fully hollow Haha!

There are significant differences in the way these guitars are constructed:

330 = fully hollow body made of very thin wood laminates bent into shape with added bracing for stability.

335 = similar body to a 330 but has an added piece of solid wood in the center. Still has tons of room for air to flow.

336 = here you start getting into the solid body territory. This guitar is basically the same as Kiesel's SH550. Meaning, the body and top are carved out from solid pieces of wood. This is basically like playing a solid body electric guitar. Also, the body is much smaller. Does not have the right shape for the classic "mickey mouse ears."

339 = Similar to a 336 but the top is made of wood laminate bent into shape. The body is still carved from a solid piece of wood like the 336. Does not have the right shape for the classic "mickey mouse ears."

ES Les Paul = who are they trying to fool? this is basically a les paul with f-holes and some wood removed inside. Does not give a real semi hollow tone IMHO.

Personally, if looking for classic semi-hollow tones, I would skip the 336, 339 or anything that is made out of carved solid wood with a small body. For classic tones you certainly want a big body made of thin wood laminates. The are other models going in both directions. Ones get you closer to basically having a solid body electric, others take you all the way to a jazz box.

I also have an ES 335 :mrgreen: I really like it a lot too, but for totally different reasons. In combination with the 330, these two guitars are really able to produce tones from pretty much every electric guitar ever designed.
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Re: New Gibson Hollow Body

Postby ElfDude » Mon Dec 18, 2017 9:42 am

This post had me looking at Epiphone Casinos on reverb.com last night.
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Re: New Gibson Hollow Body

Postby Bob77 » Mon Dec 18, 2017 10:13 am

ElfDude wrote:This post had me looking at Epiphone Casinos on reverb.com last night.


Those are great guitars!

The vintage Casinos are highly collectable. If you can find one be ready to put down some serious $$.

The modern/re-issue ones are really good too, but from what I've read the ones made in Korea are preferable over the ones made in China; something to do with the fretwork and shape of the of the back of the neck being better on the Korean ones.

Electronics can always be swapped with what Gibson uses in the custom shop.
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Re: New Gibson Hollow Body

Postby Doctor Turn » Mon Dec 18, 2017 11:23 am

Thanks for the kind words on the Viking. It's got such a beautiful rich sound, it brings a ton of vintage mojo to my arsenal, and to have found a clear natural finish example in such amazing condition was just breathtaking. To get one in that shape alone is rare.. to get one with the original blue velvet case totally intact far rarer.. to get the tool kit and the pick is unimaginable. The guys down in the Kentucky Guitar Center had no clue what they had.

When you get your hands on one of those vintage Casinos you instantly recognize that sound from so many classic post Pepper Beatles records. They have a"poppy warmth" that's unique to a guitar constructed just like that. They're snappy but still very warm. You get an instant response from the body of the axe because of the fast response of the single coils and no center block, so the guitar just reacts immediately. Of course the downside of that is they start to shiver and feed back much earlier than a semi hollow.

As mentioned in the semi hollows, the floating trapeze tail piece adds so much sustain and resonance to the body of the guitar. I forget how they're anchored on the Gibsons, but on the Hagstrom, across the entire top of the guitar, they're floating and don't make contact with the body at all until just beyond the right angle drop to the sides and down by the strap peg. (The ebony bridge mount helps a great deal too along w the old Brazilian rosewood board).

But those old style casinos/your Gibson 330, it's a very distinctive sound separate from a thinline ES semi or something like a Viking or Ibanez. A little bit of dirt on it, just organic dirt from a good tube amp preamp, and you immediately hear the tone from so many classic recordings. They had a mid sixties casino in great condition in the back room with the locked instruments in one of the GC's here in the city and I'd pop in and enjoy playing it every here and there (back when I was on a Firebird kick and they had one of the triple mini humbucker models from the sixties which drew me back there.)

One of my favorite guitar reviewers (no longer w the channel it seems, alas) w a mid sixties beauty:

https://youtu.be/qAOAchU9UtA
Carvin Weaponry:
1985 DC150K (koa) Stereo, M22N/M22SD w/black hardware.
1985 100 Watt X Amp 2 x 12 combo (XV212) upgraded w/ 2 Vintage 30's
...and other gear.

https://soundcloud.com/the_heavy_clouds

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Re: New Gibson Hollow Body

Postby Bob77 » Mon Dec 18, 2017 5:21 pm

Doctor Turn wrote:Thanks for the kind words on the Viking. It's got such a beautiful rich sound, it brings a ton of vintage mojo to my arsenal, and to have found a clear natural finish example in such amazing condition was just breathtaking. To get one in that shape alone is rare.. to get one with the original blue velvet case totally intact far rarer.. to get the tool kit and the pick is unimaginable. The guys down in the Kentucky Guitar Center had no clue what they had.

When you get your hands on one of those vintage Casinos you instantly recognize that sound from so many classic post Pepper Beatles records. They have a"poppy warmth" that's unique to a guitar constructed just like that. They're snappy but still very warm. You get an instant response from the body of the axe because of the fast response of the single coils and no center block, so the guitar just reacts immediately. Of course the downside of that is they start to shiver and feed back much earlier than a semi hollow.

As mentioned in the semi hollows, the floating trapeze tail piece adds so much sustain and resonance to the body of the guitar. I forget how they're anchored on the Gibsons, but on the Hagstrom, across the entire top of the guitar, they're floating and don't make contact with the body at all until just beyond the right angle drop to the sides and down by the strap peg. (The ebony bridge mount helps a great deal too along w the old Brazilian rosewood board).

But those old style casinos/your Gibson 330, it's a very distinctive sound separate from a thinline ES semi or something like a Viking or Ibanez. A little bit of dirt on it, just organic dirt from a good tube amp preamp, and you immediately hear the tone from so many classic recordings. They had a mid sixties casino in great condition in the back room with the locked instruments in one of the GC's here in the city and I'd pop in and enjoy playing it every here and there (back when I was on a Firebird kick and they had one of the triple mini humbucker models from the sixties which drew me back there.)

One of my favorite guitar reviewers (no longer w the channel it seems, alas) w a mid sixties beauty:

https://youtu.be/qAOAchU9UtA


Dude....GC really had no clue! I would love to have one of those vintage Vikings. Not even sure they were even available left handed but I can only dream :mrgreen: You got some good retirement money with that one.

The trapeze on the 330 floats all the way to the bottom of the guitar where it attaches to a metal base right where the guitar strap pin is. Definitely adds to the sustain and resonance. However...I really wished it had a wooden bridge like your Viking and like most jazz boxes.

Your description of the Casinos/330s is spot on. And that video really captures the tone quite vividly. Those P90s have a very unique tone both clean and with distortion.
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Re: New Gibson Hollow Body

Postby Doctor Turn » Mon Dec 18, 2017 6:23 pm

These trapeze tails let out a nice "thwnnnnnnnnng" even on their own. Like a wild percussive instrument. Nothing like it in the solidbody world.

Image

Dude....GC really had no clue! I would love to have one of those vintage Vikings. Not even sure they were even available left handed but I can only dream :mrgreen: You got some good retirement money with that one.


You are free to dream, because the original Euro-made vintage Hags were made left handed (in both the 60's Elvis/Zappa P90 version, like so..
Image

this one is actually on sale on eBay right now for 2 grand:--

Image

Link: https://reverb.com/item/5356507-hagstro ... _BwE&pla=1

Thing is in near MINT condition too!

As well as the bucker 70's "1N" versions, though the latter are a lot harder to find, in lefty especially. There's a beautiful red Viking 1N (righty, humbucker) on eBay right now for $950 ("buy it now" button.. https://www.ebay.com/itm/HAGSTROM-Vikin ... SwOA1aNbY6 ).

Anyhow, unintentional hijack over. Back to the Gib/Epi hollowbodies.
Carvin Weaponry:
1985 DC150K (koa) Stereo, M22N/M22SD w/black hardware.
1985 100 Watt X Amp 2 x 12 combo (XV212) upgraded w/ 2 Vintage 30's
...and other gear.

https://soundcloud.com/the_heavy_clouds

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Re: New Gibson Hollow Body

Postby Don » Tue Dec 19, 2017 9:29 am

That's a beauty! I bought an ES-335 a month or two ago. Gibson's building some decent guitars these days! I have a '59 ES-225TD for my fully hollow thinline tones but would love a Casino or ES-330 (believe it or not, the upper fret access is worse on the ES-225!).

I can get a good amount of crunch going with the 225 before it feedsback too much. It's a lot of fun to control.

Regarding smaller bodied and carved body thinlines, I have a Carvin SH645 that I love, but it's a completely different sound than the ES-335.

I love 'em all!

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Re: New Gibson Hollow Body

Postby ElfDude » Tue Dec 19, 2017 10:34 am

Don wrote:
Regarding smaller bodied and carved body thinlines, I have a Carvin SH645 that I love, but it's a completely different sound than the ES-335.

I love 'em all!


Oh yes. My SH445, SH225, and AE185 are all different animals.
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