Ordering a new Kiesel? Tips from a Geezer

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BlueDude
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Ordering a new Kiesel? Tips from a Geezer

Postby BlueDude » Sat May 27, 2017 2:21 pm

Here's some Food For Thought from a an Old Geezer (me) who's been playing his beloved 1978 Carvin CM130 for 40 years now:

If you're ordering or buying a new Kiesel (or any) guitar, I recommend:

(1) No Active pickups. Passive pickups are better (no battery, no preamp). I had an AE185 with active pickups and didn't like the loud "POP!" when plugging it into the amp. If you have to have MIDI and all that on-board electronic stuff, then you must go active. Less is more in my view.

(2) No tremolo, whammy bar, etc. I had a tremolo on a 1960 Fender Jazzmaster. It was OK (I rarely used it) but always a pain to keep in tune. A hardtail is a lot easier and always stays in tune. Think about all the missing-whammy-bar guitars you've seen over the years. Must be a reason. Again, less is more.

(3) Don't order too-tall of frets (Medium Jumbo is tallest you should order). If you're a Gorilla-Gripper the really tall frets will always throw you out of tune.

(4) A 14" neck radius is about right. I really like that the Vader Headless has a 20" (Holdsworth) radius.

I really like the Headless Vader and Holdsworth series (RIP Sir Alan ). That is what I'd buy today. I like the now very rare "0th fret" that both of these guitars provide. Gee... just like my '78 Carvin CM130.

All are welcome to comment on or refute my opinions.

BlueDude

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spudmunkey
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Re: Ordering a new Kiesel? Tips from a Geezer

Postby spudmunkey » Sat May 27, 2017 3:01 pm

A killer collection for sure.

I might suggest a few notes.

First, I think know these tips might be better summarized as, "Newith to guitar ND ordering your first custom? Here's some tips to help you avoid polarizing get specs the you may not enjoy if you don't already ki da know what you want".

1) a technicality, but note that active pickups aren't the same as an active preamp for passive pickups. And even when the only way to get a piezo was to pair it with the active preamp (no longer the case), there was no MIDI/synth capabilities. Now, you can get the newer, streamlined piezo system that still needs a battery like any acoustic/electric, but there's no action preamp for the magnetic pickups.

2) I'm no trem fan, myself, but you've basically said that your experience with the Jag trem, which has a reputation as one of the worst trems in terms of tuning stability, means no one should trust a Floyd, or etc. So because I had a crappy Oldsmobile in the 90s, I shouldn't buy cars with engines? :stir: :mrgreen:

Expect comments from the Jumbo and the "I wish kiesel used Super Jumbo frets like I have on my other guitars" crowds. :laughhard:

Someone correct me if im wrong but i believe the zero fret is no longer available on either model except MAYBE if you agree to waive the 10-day trial.

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amon
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Re: Ordering a new Kiesel? Tips from a Geezer

Postby amon » Sat May 27, 2017 3:17 pm

BlueDude wrote:I had an AE185 with active pickups and didn't like the loud "POP!" when plugging it into the amp.

Turn the amp's volume to zero before plugging in. Even passive pickups will give unpleasant noises if you're plugging in with the amp at playing volume. I don't like batteries, either, but your reasoning is a non-issue.


BlueDude wrote:A hardtail is a lot easier and always stays in tune.

A butted-down trem is just as easy to keep in tune as a hardtail. Kiesel doesn't offer an "up rout delete" for the Hipshot Contour yet, but hopefully they will someday.


BlueDude wrote:If you're a Gorilla-Gripper the really tall frets will always throw you out of tune.

On this point, I agree.


BlueDude wrote: A 14" neck radius is about right. I really like that the Vader Headless has a 20" (Holdsworth) radius.

You must have spindly little alien fingers, then. In my opinion, the 10" radius is about right.


BlueDude wrote:I like the now very rare "0th fret" that both of these guitars provide.

All the headless models have a nut now, not a zero fret. The zero fret is prone to notching from wear, which causes a clicking sound when bending a string, as the string pops in and out of the worn notch.

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Re: Ordering a new Kiesel? Tips from a Geezer

Postby freakofnature » Wed May 31, 2017 1:34 pm

I don't want to come off as rude.... but... No... Just No.... :wall: :D

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Re: Ordering a new Kiesel? Tips from a Geezer

Postby spudmunkey » Wed May 31, 2017 1:43 pm

1) why get any thing but primer gray or clear?

2) nobody should ever need more that 5 strings. I'll finally be satisfied when Kiesel releases a banjo.

3) what's all this talk about pickups? What's an "amp-lip-higher" y'all keep talking about? You make it sound like there's some magic alchemist pixies in the wall turning sound into metal.

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Re: Ordering a new Kiesel? Tips from a Geezer

Postby EL_SUPER_BEASTO » Wed May 31, 2017 4:53 pm

BlueDude wrote:Here's some Food For Thought from a an Old Geezer (me) who's been playing his beloved 1978 Carvin CM130 for 40 years now:

If you're ordering or buying a new Kiesel (or any) guitar, I recommend:

(1) No Active pickups. Passive pickups are better (no battery, no preamp). I had an AE185 with active pickups and didn't like the loud "POP!" when plugging it into the amp. If you have to have MIDI and all that on-board electronic stuff, then you must go active. Less is more in my view.


Have them install whatever pickups you want.

BlueDude wrote:(2) No tremolo, whammy bar, etc. I had a tremolo on a 1960 Fender Jazzmaster. It was OK (I rarely used it) but always a pain to keep in tune. A hardtail is a lot easier and always stays in tune. Think about all the missing-whammy-bar guitars you've seen over the years. Must be a reason. Again, less is more.


I bought a whammy guitar. It's totally worth learning how to deal with. I had to give consideration to the trem and locking nut altering the tone when I selected woods, which when it comes down to it is the most constant and glaring difference between a trem and fixed bridge guitar in my opinion. If you want to do some full on wankery, then yea, you might want to scale up your expectations on how much teching you'll have to do, but if you just want some tremolo here and there I suggest getting one. If you take care of it then it will take care of you, but you have to get a good one. Most entry level guitars have trem systems which are total garbage, or maybe they are a nice guitar and just use an outdated vintage design trem, which can be an intense headache and most people don't keep those for very long. There's also the tremol-no which works on most modern systems and lets you lock it up entirely, make it dive only, or free it up entirely— all with the turn of a few thumbscrews.

I've just finished adjusting my Floyd Original guitar to my liking and it's stayed in tune perfectly, within 2 cents of perfect at least, for the last 48 hours (without playing) or so and it's only been about three weeks since Kiesel even shipped to me. I've had some absolute nightmares with low-end trem systems from LTD and Ibanez that put me off them for years, I totally sympathize with wanting to throw it into a woodchipper because of a crappy trem, but they're a whole different beasty. I will not touch a trem system unless it's a Floyd Original, and I enjoy the heck out of mine.

BlueDude wrote:(3) Don't order too-tall of frets (Medium Jumbo is tallest you should order). If you're a Gorilla-Gripper the really tall frets will always throw you out of tune.


Good tip, but I prefer Jumbo's to avoid touching the string to the fretboard when I was a gorilla gripper. It added a lot of noise to vibrato and bends, but I could've used thicker strings probably too.

BlueDude wrote:(4) A 14" neck radius is about right. I really like that the Vader Headless has a 20" (Holdsworth) radius.

BlueDude


Rock on, I like 14" as well.

Bonus round: Triple check your specs and triple check the specs they quote you in your invoice. I didn't have a problem, but when changing a lot from the base model and asking about this and that, and if you have this then I'd like that if available...it gets really confusing. Just make sure your final order is spec'd out once and for all, because if it's not then you might be a bit let down and be kicking yourself over it in the end.
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Re: Ordering a new Kiesel? Tips from a Geezer

Postby God of War » Sun Jun 11, 2017 3:47 pm

DIsagree on the frets, I don't have a weak grip or hands, but definitely not "Gorilla grip" as you put it, jumbo's have been on every guitar I've ever owned, not taking a chance on disliking Med. on a 2K guitar build.

But, half agree when it comes to the Floyd, I like having them, but after I get a JB200 and a custom Aries, I'm staying away from them for good.

I've never owned an actual OFR equipped guitar, so I want to get atleast one guitar with one too give it a try. I've only ever owned budget Ibanez, so I've never actually had any really good experiences with trems. Can't speak about the original Edge or Lo-Pro, but the Edge III has always been sh*t and, the Edge Zero II is decent, but still not good enough imo.

I'm kind of sick of dealing with them and not feeling like I'd have the ability to learn to re-string and set-up my guitar. But I never like the idea of not having atleast a couple of guitars with a trem, just because I like alot of music that utilizes it and they're a ton of fun.

When it comes to the radius, I've felt I can play well on Fender with a 9.5" and then turn around and play well on a 15.75" Ibanez Wizard II, so 14" sounds fine by me.
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EL_SUPER_BEASTO
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Re: Ordering a new Kiesel? Tips from a Geezer

Postby EL_SUPER_BEASTO » Sun Jun 11, 2017 9:11 pm

God of War wrote:I've never owned an actual OFR equipped guitar, so I want to get atleast one guitar with one too give it a try. I've only ever owned budget Ibanez, so I've never actually had any really good experiences with trems. Can't speak about the original Edge or Lo-Pro, but the Edge III has always been sh*t and, the Edge Zero II is decent, but still not good enough imo.

I'm kind of sick of dealing with them and not feeling like I'd have the ability to learn to re-string and set-up my guitar. But I never like the idea of not having atleast a couple of guitars with a trem, just because I like alot of music that utilizes it and they're a ton of fun.


I wouldn't have my trem guitar as my only guitar, but now that I have my own OFR it's waaaay better than the low budget Ibanez and LTD ones that I had around 2005-2012. I can only rationalise in my head having three or so guitars personally, and I wouldn't go full OFR guitars ever. I can get down with two, or even three with an affordable bolt on string through on the side, but they'll never sound like or be as reliable as a fixed bridge.

Not to state the obvious, but Kiesel makes custom guitars, you can get whatever you want. I wouldn't risk it as my first OFR just to test the waters, but if you certainly want an OFR then Kiesel is where it's at.
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Re: Ordering a new Kiesel? Tips from a Geezer

Postby tg1 » Mon Jun 12, 2017 1:05 am

Quick tip: if you want to be able to plug/unplug your instrument without turning down the amp volume, get one of these: http://www.rivercable.com/apx-guitar.asp
:wink:

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Re: Ordering a new Kiesel? Tips from a Geezer

Postby Stevie F » Fri Jan 12, 2018 6:52 pm

BlueDude wrote:Here's some Food For Thought from a an Old Geezer (me) who's been playing his beloved 1978 Carvin CM130 for 40 years now:

If you're ordering or buying a new Kiesel (or any) guitar, I recommend:

(1) No Active pickups. Passive pickups are better (no battery, no preamp). I had an AE185 with active pickups and didn't like the loud "POP!" when plugging it into the amp. If you have to have MIDI and all that on-board electronic stuff, then you must go active. Less is more in my view.

(2) No tremolo, whammy bar, etc. I had a tremolo on a 1960 Fender Jazzmaster. It was OK (I rarely used it) but always a pain to keep in tune. A hardtail is a lot easier and always stays in tune. Think about all the missing-whammy-bar guitars you've seen over the years. Must be a reason. Again, less is more.

(3) Don't order too-tall of frets (Medium Jumbo is tallest you should order). If you're a Gorilla-Gripper the really tall frets will always throw you out of tune.

(4) A 14" neck radius is about right. I really like that the Vader Headless has a 20" (Holdsworth) radius.

I really like the Headless Vader and Holdsworth series (RIP Sir Alan ). That is what I'd buy today. I like the now very rare "0th fret" that both of these guitars provide. Gee... just like my '78 Carvin CM130.

All are welcome to comment on or refute my opinions.

BlueDude


Ref to pickups the lithium k12B &kk12 n every video I listen to appear to bright the other option are the Allen Holds worth are they darker?

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Re: Ordering a new Kiesel? Tips from a Geezer

Postby spudmunkey » Fri Jan 12, 2018 7:08 pm

There will also be one more option available very soon. They have a more vintage and Jazzy voiced pickups available as of today. A demo video is in production and should be released shortly.


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