360/12c63 or a C series 325?

Vintage, Modern, V & C Series, Signature & Special Editions

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Re: 360/12c63 or a C series 325?

Postby (Ontario_RIC_fan) » Tue Jun 06, 2017 11:49 am

Russ:

With all due respect, I think what you are getting confused by, is what IS and what IS NOT a Rickenbacker.

By definition, a Rickenbacker is an instrument constructed on Main Street in Santa Anna California by the RIC corporation, or pre-1984 by the Electro Strings Corporation on Kilson drive in Santa Anna, or pre 1964 on Western Drive in Los Angeles. IF you have a guitar made in any of those places then you have an actual real life authentic one.

Unlike their major competitors, the company trademarked all of their designs, and they quite strictly enforce their IP. A copy - (90% of which come out of China ("CHyna!" lol)) is and always will be a copy - a fake - or as we call them around here kindling!! :mrgreen:

So basically what you are telling us is that you want to turn a real RIC into a fake. No matter how well the builder does it, even if he once worked for RIC and knows exactly how it was done - it is still NOT a Rickenbacker. Even if it has RIC parts on it.

If you stay here long enough - and I sincerely hope that you do - I trust you will learn to appreciate this distinction.

And - preemptively - before I hear the "who does this hurt if I do what I want?" argument. You are hurting the Hall family, and their business. And again that won't earn you many friends around here.

Just my two cents - which being Canadian means they are worth about 1 cent US.
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Re: 360/12c63 or a C series 325?

Postby (ayoungmusiciandude) » Tue Jun 06, 2017 1:43 pm

Ontario_RIC_fan wrote: You are hurting the Hall family, and their business. And again that won't earn you many friends around here.


And that should bother me? C'mon dude, don't be snob.

I wouldn't have to go to such lengths if the company still considered producing the c58. I'm sure one person customizing their instrument to replicate one they wanted in the first place won't effect RICs financial standing. If Mr. Hall is so appalled he can message me himself, but he probably couldn't care less.

Once a guitar is in the ownership of the one who purchased it then it's theirs, no one can tell them what to do. I already paid the company for their deed, it's not like I'm building one from complete scratch. It still is a Rickenbacker and as much as you geezers will gang up you can get blue in the face you'll keel over before you convince me it's somehow "morally wrong"

You wanna say it makes it fake? Alright good for you. Do you think when I show others who aren't as uptight they say the same? probably not. Still a Rickenbacker, the various stamps, receipts, papers and case should say enough. In fact I've archived some of this and showed some other guitar gear heads and enthusiasts. They said you all turned to children and were just a bunch of know it snobs who can't grow. Pretty sad.

All I did was share my project in hopes I'd get advice, even if it was constructive criticism. but what I got were a bunch of middle aged men who acted as if I cursed their mothers graves! I outta customize it just for spite at this point! See how many of you get heart attacks!

In fact...

I already started :lol:
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Re: 360/12c63 or a C series 325?

Postby (12stringbassist) » Tue Jun 06, 2017 2:08 pm

I don't think there's a need for all this conflict and for any ridicule.

The original poster has bought and paid for the guitar and so he can do whatever he likes with his own property..... and it's all good, as long as he gets a result he's personally happy with.

It may very well be that the guitar will not convert precisely from one model to another, but 100% accuracy is maybe not what all of this is about. I would hope that the general attitude on here is not that guitars should be left as made and never ever modded, as there have been some great results that way, like 4 to 5 string bass conversions etc.

My own suggestion was to get a replica made (and keep the original guitar in its original state).
I'm as interested as anyone else in what the end result turns out to be.
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Re: 360/12c63 or a C series 325?

Postby (tcsmit29) » Tue Jun 06, 2017 2:13 pm

Wow, there’s a lot going on here to address. The first post in this thread you are asking for advice between two models, 325c64 and 360/12c63. You received many responses giving good advice. About a week later, you announce that you decided on the 325c64. You say that it is awesome and fills your needs. Good for you!

ayoungmusiciandude wrote:“After really playing and getting use to my 325c64 I love the thing!”


Then you announce that you want to convert it to be more like a c58. As pointed out by previous posters, you are destroying the value of a collectible guitar. People here aren’t going to be cool about that sort of thing. You reply with:


ayoungmusiciandude wrote:“I heard Ric enthusiasts were stuck up snobs from various people but I was hoping it wasn't true.”

The Rickenbacker community is fairly small and devoted. At least compared to the giants like Fender and Gibson. Rickenbacker guitars are a niche kind of instrument, however they have been associated with some of the best artists of the Rock world. As has been stated before in this thread, people here generally love Rickenbackers for what they are. They appreciate the history. They don’t really look at them as a palette for customization. Does that make them snobs….? There are probably people here who would frown upon having a Rick refinished. Much less the overhaul that you are proposing. After you finish this project, what will you end up with? In your own words,

ayoungmusiciandude wrote:“I've already seen the list of changes, modifications and tweaks, it'll be grueling and tedious but in the end the only difference will be the woods of the body and neck!”

So you are destroying the value of this guitar so that in the end the only difference will be the woods of the body and neck. I think many people are thinking, “then why do this then?”

ayoungmusiciandude wrote: “I've wanted a replica of Lennon's first 325 since childhood but it eluded me as by the time I joined the work force it was 2010 and the guitar was discontinued.”

Really? Cause it seems like you got the hankering for a c58 after playing one that you mention here.

ayoungmusiciandude wrote:“Hey guys! I actually got the 325c64. With the proper amplification and pedals it can elicit any sounds! Great playability! However I just got to try a c58 for the first time. Currently looking to trade my c64 for a c58.”

You attempt to justify your mods by;
ayoungmusiciandude wrote:“Guitars are works of art for the user to do with it what they see fit and the 325 itself is like a canvas for many.”
“Fun fact one of the biggest Rickenbacker players of all time altered his or are you forgetting? “
“Lennon took a blonde 325 and no one here curses him for painting it black, snipping wires and changing bridges and knobs.”

I guarantee you that John Lennon didn’t make these changes to his guitar because he considered it a work of art. Everything I’ve ever read leads me to believe that Lennon simply looked at his guitar as a tool. It was a means to an end. It wasn’t the end itself. As has been pointed out already in this thread, the Kaufman to Bigsby mod is a sensible one because the Kaufmans are ****. I’m sure it didn’t take Lennon long to figure that out. The snipping wires probably happened because he was a complete amateur and didn’t know what he was doing. I thought the knobs got changed because he kept losing them. I may be wrong about that.
ayoungmusiciandude wrote:“With mark ups to 6000 dollars on some it's pretty easy to see why I'm doing this.”

Yeah, I see them on ebay and reverb for this price too. But also notice that they aren’t selling. Why? Because they aren’t worth $6000. If you really want a c58 shop around. You can still find them at reasonable prices. It may take a while, but it can happen. I bought a v59 a few months ago for $2500. Look for guitars that aren’t selling. You see them relisted for months on end. Make an offer, they just may take it. That happened in my case.
ayoungmusiciandude wrote: “the all wise brainiacs at Rickenbacker decide to discontinue”

I can understand you feeling this way. Most people here probably have a wish list of models that they wished Rickenbacker still made. I would love to have a c58 also. But I bought the v59 instead and haven’t looked back. Should Rickenbacker ever make these again, I might get one.
The reality of the matter is that Rickenbacker had to make some tough decisions in order to reduce a huge backlog. Discontinuing some models was a business decision. I am glad they chose to do this as opposed to compromising on principles. I think that has worked out pretty well for the company and I hope it continues to do so. In the future, they may make limited runs of some of these instruments again.
Ultimately, you nailed it. This is your guitar and you can do whatever you like with it. Pete Townsend used to smash Rickenbackers at the end of a set. They were his and he could do whatever he wanted with them. However, that doesn’t stop me from thinking that he was an idiot for doing so. You came here on the pretense of wanting advice. But you don’t like the advice you got. It seems to me that you didn’t really want advice as much as you wanted validation for doing what most people here think is a crazy idea.

I guess there is a silver lining here, at least you didn’t buy a c58 and convert it to a c64.
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Re: 360/12c63 or a C series 325?

Postby (collin) » Tue Jun 06, 2017 2:34 pm

Russ, we're probably in the same age bracket. Don't jump to conclusions,..

Sounds like you have your mind made up and know everything you need to know. So go for it - grab some tools and start hacking away. Prove us all wrong..


...but before you do I highly recommend seeking out a c58 and holding it next to your c64. Any luthier worth his salt wouldn't look at those two and say it's even possible cutting up a c64 to match a c58. The actuals body/neck specs are entirely different in every respect. Honestly, fire your luthier. The guy has NO idea what he's talking about.

You aren't the first person to waltz into the RRF with some really unrealistic ideas and getting offended when more experienced people give you practical advice.
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Re: 360/12c63 or a C series 325?

Postby (jdogric12) » Tue Jun 06, 2017 2:48 pm

At the end of the day, OP, I hope you stick around. This is one of the more entertaining threads we've had lately, and I'm curious to see how this plays out. Lighten up (everyone!) and let's see where this goes.
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Re: 360/12c63 or a C series 325?

Postby (maxwell) » Tue Jun 06, 2017 3:48 pm

The advice and responses to the OP here leave me without anything meaningful to add; all are quite elegant. Yes, I'll also be waiting to see photos of the end product, accompanied by notes regarding the success of the project and some retrospective thoughts about the endeavor.
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Re: 360/12c63 or a C series 325?

Postby (ayoungmusiciandude) » Wed Jun 07, 2017 12:19 pm

To those that backed up, swallowed their pride and approached me again in more mature calm manors without insult I thank you. You guys know who you are. :mrgreen:

After getting your stable and well spoken words I do believe I'm gonna take a step back for more research on the major changes such as adding depth, re-carving the headstock and neck as well as reach out to more luthiers for their analysis.

In the mean time though I gotta say the very minor cosmetic changes I made last night actually started to seethe my c58 envy. :lol:

I took off the upper guard not just to appear closer to a basic one layer scratch plate. The upper part wasn't very economic for me. I like to do some really theatrical strums occasionally for that powerful Pete Townsend tone, maybe I just need practice but I'd click that upper layer a lot and be a little frustrated. Needless to say less is more when it comes to that!

I also installed 3 (lost the 4th) silver knobs that bare a resemblance to burns knobs as a test and really like it!

My quandary is how much would it cost to buy all the Lennon modifications on their own and if I should attempt to install them myself?

Having a skilled craftsman put it together as well as the monster modification really add up. I figure I'm capable of doing many things myself and I could stand to learn anyway so I needn't have to bring my guitar in the shop and wait around until it's done for a hefty fee at times. Maybe having some supervision by one of my tech friends would ensure I'm not drilling in the wrong spot but I feel it's a straightforward change if done correctly.

I guess I'll just start there and see if that is satisfactory. :P
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Re: 360/12c63 or a C series 325?

Postby (jdogric12) » Wed Jun 07, 2017 12:32 pm

I think that's wise. For a start, you can set the 5th knob exactly where you like it, and just tape it down inside the cavity when you change to a 4-knob-hole pickguard (cheap and easy). Just make sure you send the original to Pickguardian so he can match the screw-holes.

Putting the long jackplate seems kind of pointless to me... it's not even on the top, so it's not very visible and serves no function. I'd skip that.

The Bigsby and bridge should be simple. Remove your baseplate, put the Bigsby bridge on - it just sits there IIRC, but cut some little nonreactive foam pieces to keep it from scratching your finish.

The bowtie might be harder to find - don't know, I never tried Lennon mods and don't really know.

Getting the black paint off the B5 should be no big deal.

Tuners... not sure if the posts match and holes line up. If yes, boom! If not, meh, I'd probably leave them alone. But you do you. Small holes on the back of a headstock aren't the end of the world.

Good luck!
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Re: 360/12c63 or a C series 325?

Postby (maxwell) » Wed Jun 07, 2017 3:29 pm

As a "do it yourself" modification, installing the Bigsby trem can be a big move. I'm in (I think) the process of installing one on my Rick/Rose Morris 1996 Reissue. Read up on this on this web site before even buying a Bigsby. I did some research (reading) and it seems that the Bigsby trems available in Great Britain back when Lennon installed his were smaller than the Bigsby B5 models available nowadays. I tried to find one of these old, smaller ones, but had no luck. I really did not care about the authenticity of the trem, but rather, the overall size of the base/footprint. That Bigsby has to sit within the outline/confines of the ramp portion of the guitar body. It's a tight fit with the modern B5, and I wanted the old model to fit in easier/more assuredly. Anyway, this is my recollection; I may be wrong.

I ended up buying a B5 off ebay. When setting the Bigsby in place with the back end of the trem at the back end/edge of the guitar body, the "tab" at the front right end of the trem where one of the screws go is slightly elevated off the guitar body, at the point where the ramp ends and the face of the guitar body flattens out. Some guys ignore this and place the screw as is, some place a small/thin pad/spacer, and some--which will be me--opt to cut/grind off that securing tab (& smooth, polish) and drill a hole in the center of the round portion in which the trem arm spring sits; the screw then goes there. Many think this mod looks better (but not "authentic," of course); probably, but in my mind gets rid of any discrepancy of the fit of the Bigsby base on the guitar body surface.

Anyway, I'd advise researching this, e.g., the exact Bigsby Lennon used, if this detail interests you. Maybe you can find one somewhere (British ebay?)
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Re: 360/12c63 or a C series 325?

Postby (ayoungmusiciandude) » Wed Jun 14, 2017 8:30 am

Can anyone describe for me what a Bigsby B5 will do for changes to my C64? I know it really gives a much needed boost of playability, resonance and tone to most guitars including the C58 but what is it compared to the accent vibrato?

I know I was gung ho to fire away and Lennon customize it but now that I'm taking it slow I'd like to get some source advice from the mature side of this form.

I'm curious about what I'm getting into. :wink:
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Re: 360/12c63 or a C series 325?

Postby (jdogric12) » Wed Jun 14, 2017 9:31 am

On a hollow or semi-hollow, a Bigsby is adding a TON of mass to the guitar's top, and will really darken the tone. I hesitate short of saying "deaden" because it's not really as simple as "bad," it's just different. You really hear the difference on Casinos. I've had a Casino with a Vibrotone for about 20 years, bought it new. When I played a Casino without one for the first time, it sounded like an acoustic guitar in comparison to the one with a hunk of aluminum screwed to the top. So be ready for that. Heck it might help with sustain! You can probably scour YouTube for samples of guys playing them in their bedrooms, shot from the neck down, and get a good idea of what to expect with and without.
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Re: 360/12c63 or a C series 325?

Postby (jps) » Wed Jun 14, 2017 11:50 am

Given that the ramp area is a solid black of wood, does the Bigsby deaden a Rick as much as something like a hollowbody guitar with just the smallest of tail blocks in that area?
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Re: 360/12c63 or a C series 325?

Postby (jdogric12) » Wed Jun 14, 2017 2:22 pm

It probably does not have as significant an impact as it does on a Casino, no.
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Re: 360/12c63 or a C series 325?

Postby (collin) » Wed Jun 14, 2017 2:25 pm

jps wrote:Given that the ramp area is a solid black of wood, does the Bigsby deaden a Rick as much as something like a hollowbody guitar with just the smallest of tail blocks in that area?


That is correct, IMO.

I've installed bolt-down Bigsby units on a semi-hollow and solid GIbson models (ES-335 and Les Paul), both with solid center block and could not tell any difference in tone between the two.

A fully-hollow model (like the Casino) would certainly be affected by a Bigsby because it relies more on the top vibrating that a semi-hollow.
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