Traditional or Rickenbacker 12 string setup

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Re: Traditional or Rickenbacker 12 string setup

Postby (jwilli) » Sat Apr 02, 2011 10:40 pm

Why would "reverse stringing" void the RIC warranty? I mean, what harm could it cause? Nothing is my guess. I don't know why anyone would do it though. I like the traditional Rickenbacker style. I've even thought about buying other 12 strings and reversing the strings..... :D
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Re: Traditional or Rickenbacker 12 string setup

Postby (teb) » Sun Apr 03, 2011 2:38 am

I'd still like to hear clips (if anyone actually has any) that show that it makes a noticable difference in the sound - as I certainly haven't heard one yet. Considering that the Rickenbacker factory setup, electronics, etc. produce a twelve string that does an awfully good job of sounding just like a Rickenbacker (surprise, surprise) the only reason I can think of to reverse the strings would be if it made the guitar sound different from a Rickenbacker. I don't believe that's going to happen to any really noticable extent. My gut tells me that it would likely be a very subtle change - especially compared to the changes that you can make to the sound simply by playing with the pickup selector and balance, string types, tone controls, amp settings or by adding stomp boxes or other effects. There are certainly sound changes to be had - the difference between a set of factory compressed rounds and a set of TI flats, for example. Both are great sounds, but they are somewhat different and I suspect that sort of change would have a much more drastic effect on the sound than stringing up or stringing down. Maybe it's my contrary nature, but whenever I see one of these auctions where some dude is explaining the supposed added value of having his Rickenbacker strung octaves up, my B.S. detector tends to spike.
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Re: Traditional or Rickenbacker 12 string setup

Postby (iiipopes) » Sun Apr 03, 2011 4:59 am

Some years ago, what was left of the Beach Boys, after Carl died, played the Welk Theatre in Branson. I played guitar in the opening band, then hung around to hear them. Setting aside the fact that what was left sounded no better than a good garage band version of what used to be inimitable greatness, I was particularly appalled by the hired gun who played the 12-string part on their rendition of "California Dreamin'." He played a Hamer with its uber-Les Paul Special construction of mahogany/maple, and reversed strings. It was so mid-heavy that not only did it not jangle, I had to look again to make sure he was actually playing a 12-string instead of a 6-string with processing. Thanks, but no thanks. I'll stick with RIC, especially since it was McGuinn himself who added the part to the Beach Boys version.
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Re: Traditional or Rickenbacker 12 string setup

Postby (Folkie) » Sun Apr 03, 2011 2:26 pm

Todd,

I've played a Rickenbacker 330/12 with the octaves reversed, and the difference in sound was very dramatic. But the question remains as to why someone would want to mess with a good thing, especially since there are other ways (flatwound strings, for instance) of getting the same or better treble and chime. The broad consensus seems to be that the factory low/high configuration is the way to go. But even the purists here need to be careful not to pass judgement on those who do things differently. Each of us has a different set of ears, and there should be no stigma to setting up a guitar in an unorthodox way.

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Re: Traditional or Rickenbacker 12 string setup

Postby (paologregorio) » Sun Apr 03, 2011 3:00 pm

I had a Vox Teardrop 12 first, before I ever had a Rick 12. When I bought the 381/12, I did not realize at first that the string order was different, but when I did, I switched the Rick to the "traditional" stringing, because I had been used to that, but then I switched it back; I like the Rick style p-attern. I've even considered changing the string order on the Vox teardrop to Rickenbacker style, but I doubt I'll do it. I have one electric 12 with each type of stringing, and adjust my picking/strumming according to whether I want to hit the root or harmony string first.
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Re: Traditional or Rickenbacker 12 string setup

Postby (jimk) » Sun Apr 03, 2011 7:39 pm

I had the opportunity to play some one else's acoustic 12 string guitar at the local song writers' circle last night. It was of course, traditionally strung. And to my surprise, I had a bit of a difficult time adjusting. I played it in my now customary hybrid picking style, flat pick + 2 metal finger picks. I came to the tentative conclusion that if I ever get an acoustic 12 string, I may want to have it switched around to Rickenbacker style stringing. Of course that could change, too. I suppose it would depend on the guitar itself.
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Re: Traditional or Rickenbacker 12 string setup

Postby (Folkie) » Mon Apr 04, 2011 5:57 pm

JimK,

I'm sure you know that Rickenbacker makes great acoustics, so you might invest in one of those rather than modifying a conventionally-strung 12. I prefer to have my Ricks strung factory stock (but with TI flatwounds rather than compressed roundwounds) and my acoustics set up so that those octaves are hit first on downstrokes. I find I have to change my picking attack depending on the order of those octaves. There are advantages to both methods, and it is possible to have it both ways.

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Re: Traditional or Rickenbacker 12 string setup

Postby (jimk) » Mon Apr 04, 2011 11:17 pm

At the moment, a Rick 12 string acoustic is only a dream. Also it's pretty low on my list of priorities. I'm currently not doing enough solo acoustic shows to warrant such a guitar, even a good Martin 12, or other well known acoustic model. A 330/6 in fireglo tops the current must have guitar list 8)
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Re: Traditional or Rickenbacker 12 string setup

Postby (Folkie) » Tue Apr 05, 2011 8:22 am

Hey, Jim, I only remember seeing one clip of your playing on this forum. Could you post some more of your live footage?

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Re: Traditional or Rickenbacker 12 string setup

Postby (JakeK) » Tue Apr 05, 2011 12:32 pm

kennyhowes wrote:Ric-style. It's the only way that makes any freaking sense.


+1 Thank you, Kenny, I'm with you.

I believe it was Collin W that said "Traditional makes an entirely different sound", and it's true.
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Re: Traditional or Rickenbacker 12 string setup

Postby (iiipopes) » Tue Feb 18, 2020 12:33 am

FOLKS!!! It is not a matter of "Like"! Remember that Rickenbacker experimented with stringing as well as everything else to determine what their 12-string would be all about. Suzi Arden's 12-string, the #1, was originally strung in the acoustic 12 manner, and the 660 that Tom Petty had may have originally also been strung that way as well. Look closely at the nut. It appears to be original. It was with George Harrison's that the Rick style of stringing was established. Debate is still out there whether George's came #2 or Tom Petty's. http://www.rickresource.com/rrp/raritiesarden.html
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Re: Traditional or Rickenbacker 12 string setup

Postby (admin) » Tue Feb 18, 2020 8:46 am

A great comment Scott. I believe the stringing would ultimately be based on Harrison's guitar. I had several acoustic and electric 12 strings with conventional stringing prior to my Rickenbacker 12. I certainly prefer the sound with Rickenbacker 12 stringing. The pick seems to roll over the strings more easily for me picking or strumming with the bass string before the octave string. It is quiet a different sound, to my ear, as well.
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Re: Traditional or Rickenbacker 12 string setup

Postby (Tubwompus) » Wed Feb 19, 2020 1:35 pm

My own take is the Rick string order is part of a Rick being a Rick.
I have 3 of their 12’s along with a Gretsch, which is strung traditionally, and 12/string flattop.
For the many obvious reasons, the Gretsch sounds different from the Ricks and having the options from one to the next are extremely useful to me. I WILL say that the Gretsch and flattop are a bit of challenge to pay if I’ve only been playing my Ricks for a time.
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Re: Traditional or Rickenbacker 12 string setup

Postby (iiipopes) » Wed Feb 19, 2020 2:15 pm

jwilli wrote:Why would "reverse stringing" void the RIC warranty? I mean, what harm could it cause? Nothing is my guess. I don't know why anyone would do it though. I like the traditional Rickenbacker style. I've even thought about buying other 12 strings and reversing the strings..... :D

Three reasons:
1) if the strings are reversed without changing the nut and bridge, it will cause improper wear to both not covered under warranty;
2) if the strings are reversed and the nut and bridge are changed to accommodate, that constitutes unauthorized alterations to the instrument, voiding the warranty;
3) and because RIC says so.
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Re: Traditional or Rickenbacker 12 string setup

Postby (admin) » Fri Feb 21, 2020 4:18 pm

Folkie wrote:Todd,

I've played a Rickenbacker 330/12 with the octaves reversed, and the difference in sound was very dramatic. But the question remains as to why someone would want to mess with a good thing, especially since there are other ways (flatwound strings, for instance) of getting the same or better treble and chime. The broad consensus seems to be that the factory low/high configuration is the way to go. But even the purists here need to be careful not to pass judgement on those who do things differently. Each of us has a different set of ears, and there should be no stigma to setting up a guitar in an unorthodox way.

Robert


Sage advice, Robert. Surely there are new tones to be coaxed out of the 330/12 yet by introducing "yet to be explored changes" in the upcoming years.
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