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Duane Allman "HOT LANTA" Story

Ed A

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Jul 16, 2001
Messages
4,670
Hi Big Al, hope all is well with you and yours!....

My double-white bridge pup, the one that Tim and Rolph base their Ed A wind on, has an inside slug coil of 4.4k and on outside coil of 3.9k for a total of 8.3k.... I think its the randomness that makes each PAF distinctive.

I too cant imagine anyone at Gibby taking the time back then to check readings. They much more likely grabbed them from a box and threw them in. So then the law of averages would tell you that about 50% of the guitars would have a hotter reading in the neck and 50% would be hotter in the bridge. The only way to prove that Gibson INTENDED to have hotter PAFs in the neck is to check as many original LPs as possible that we know for fact have not had solder joints broken and see if its not 50/50. So all you guys with virgin bursts, start bringing them by my place and Ill gladly do a study!
 

plaintop

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Jul 15, 2001
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Nobody has yet to explain why there aren't more "similar" readings. It really should be in thirds. 1/3 of hot neck, low bridge...1/3 low neck and hot bridge, and finally 1/3 the same(similar) readings. I still maintain my postion that it was much more caculated, at least initially. Why have different readings in the first place? As time went on, probably not so much.
 

lespauljr

Les Paul Froum Member
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Nov 12, 2001
Messages
324
I too wish that Kurt would get some of this great stuff in writing. He and company have certainly had their share of some very high profile guitars. I'm wondering if anyone knows where the 1st of the 2 1957 ish (Ford) pink Strats are. This would be the one alleged to be given to Billy Gibbons by Jimi Hendrix. The last I had heard was it had been sold in Ca. for big dollars and was pending a lawsuit? because, neither had been given to Billy by Hendrix. The 2nd one is right here in Fairfield, Ct. It was purchased from Elliot Mechanic in 1992 or 1993 and had refinished by Kurt in 1955, (or 56), Ford pink in the Rev's garage circa early 1970's. It was sold to us as having been owned by Billy, but Kurt said that it had gotten passed around a bit and he didn't remember if he or Billy or both were the actual owners. We paid $3K for it which was a lot then, but we peeled because of the playability and sound. Interestingly enough the overall cosmetic condition, (by guitar dealer standard), is roughly a 3 to 4. 1/2 the finish is missing off the body and none, I repeat none, is left on the fingerboard. It has a couple of other distinquishing items that I won't discuss openly in a forum to protect someone producing a bogus copy.
FWIW Kurts name has only one "F" in it.
 

55Custom

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Sep 5, 2003
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6,251
Couple of questions about the PAF's

If you have a box full of brand new PAF's in front of you at the factory (just imagine that for a moment :eek) then what are the odds of picking out 2 that have the same DC resistance?

If they range from 7.2K to 8.7K, with multiples of each one, that range would look like this:
7.2, 7.3, 7.4, 7.5, 7.6, 7.7, 7.8, 7.9, 8.0, 8.1, 8.2, 8.3, 8.4, 8.5, 8.6, 8.7

That's 16 variables. It's 1 out of 16 that you'd select a 7.7K pickup for the first pickup. What are the odds of selecting another 7.7K pickup?
Isn't it 1 x 16 x 16? Or 1 in 256 chances that they are the same?

The other question I have is: IF you were making these PAF's and measuring their DC resistance, wouldn't you have to label that pickup with the results so that you keep them straight?
Is there a single virgin Burst with a PAF that has a pencil mark? an ink mark? a label with a number? a piece of masking tape?

Okay, let's say instead of marking them, you segregated the pickups after you measured them, by puting all of the 7.2K pickups on IT'S own box on your work bench. Same goes for all the other pickups up to 8.7 in this example.
You would have at least 16 boxes on front of you to categorize these measured pickups.
Okay now, the next guy comes over to take a set of PAF's to install in a Burst.
No matter which two boxes he takes them from, how is he going to keep it straight as to which is which without markings or labels by the time he goes back to his work bench to install them? Wouldn't that seem just a bit inefficient?
 

frisco

Formerly greeny
Joined
Jun 21, 2002
Messages
801
MrBeano said:
Kurt had the guitar for a couple months before delivery.
During this time he switched the PickUps. The Rhythm PickUp
was switched to the Bridge position. And the Bridge to Rhythm.
This was common practice among the early Burst connoisseurs.


guys it was kurt who switched pafs not gibson
 

lespauljr

Les Paul Froum Member
Joined
Nov 12, 2001
Messages
324
Does anyone really know how the pickups were checked for continuity? They could have been rung on a homemade bell box for all we know. Do people realize that the DCR of copper coils float about 10 to 15% depending on ambient temp? The DW bridge pickup in my 58 read 8.96 K ohms in August now reads just about 8.5K, (Jan). There wasn't a lot of accurate, (and cheap) test equipment like a fluke 77 around in the 50's. They probably used a 1950's Simpsom VOM on times 1000 scale. Variables such as zeroing, meter leads, and the state of the battery's charge would throw these readings way off. Was it set up center scale? This was a freakin factory with your mother or grandmother making these things, not Albert Enstein. The only test equipment accurate enough back then was a very large and expensive VTVM. To set up and use this properly would be costly and time consuming and for what end? You can make a pickup read high by overtensioning the wire and stretching it's coil windings changing it's Circular Mils, this would change it's row, (resistivity) and lower it's output. Again why would Gibson take the trouble? DCR alone has little to do with output when you are talking about a couple of hundred ohms, coil tightness would certainly have a much bigger effect. One of the loudest PAF's I have ever owned read under 7K ohms. It had an open coil that was repaired by removing several hundred windings to expose good wire. It was in a 3 PU Custom I had in the bridge position and it buried the other two 8K ohm P.U.s
 

Big Al

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Apr 24, 2002
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14,411
Well I was at Gibson, in Kalamazoo in the 70's with Seymor Duncan. Long, long time forum bros will remember my early posts about that experience.

We talked alot with Seth Lover,(a Duncan Fan), and old employees that made these things in the late 50's.

There were Two types of PAF Humbuckers made.
Regular and a smaller, narrow version for ES350T's and Byrdlands.

The coils were wound on a less than perfect machine. Coil's could vary abit as ED A has demonstrated. This is also the very reason why Burstbuckers were introduced.

I have seen PAF's with readings as low as 6.7K and as high as a whopping 9K!!

There are even more variables than 55Custom laid out as there is a plethora of coil combinations in those ranges.

It would not be prudent or econamical to have some poor bastard measuring and sorting coils, then sending them to be assembled, then remeasuring and sorting.

Seth Lover told me personaly that that was not done as did everyone we questioned. As long as the pickup worked and fell into a rather wide range of acceptable measurments they were used.

There is absolutely no evidence to the notion that they were sorted and placed into posistion by resistance readings.

Pet theories aside, no matter how much one may want to believe in them, or how logical they may seem to be based on todays assumptions, I'm telling you that they are only cool sounding myths and romance. Makes a neat tale, adds a certain gloss, but I believe the primary sources I have consulted, and the evidence of the existing stock examples.
 

kthesheep

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Aug 5, 2004
Messages
2,218
guitarjoe said:
Wow. that guy really should write a book. Or maybe you should write it for him Mr Beano either way I'd buy it.
Me too!

Thanks Beano for that great info on Duane's Paul loved it
 

Zeppelinguy85

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Dec 1, 2002
Messages
422
Big Al said:
Well I was at Gibson, in Kalamazoo in the 70's with Seymor Duncan. Long, long time forum bros will remember my early posts about that experience.

We talked alot with Seth Lover,(a Duncan Fan), and old employees that made these things in the late 50's.

There were Two types of PAF Humbuckers made.
Regular and a smaller, narrow version for ES350T's and Byrdlands.

The coils were wound on a less than perfect machine. Coil's could vary abit as ED A has demonstrated. This is also the very reason why Burstbuckers were introduced.

I have seen PAF's with readings as low as 6.7K and as high as a whopping 9K!!

There are even more variables than 55Custom laid out as there is a plethora of coil combinations in those ranges.

It would not be prudent or econamical to have some poor bastard measuring and sorting coils, then sending them to be assembled, then remeasuring and sorting.

Seth Lover told me personaly that that was not done as did everyone we questioned. As long as the pickup worked and fell into a rather wide range of acceptable measurments they were used.

There is absolutely no evidence to the notion that they were sorted and placed into posistion by resistance readings.

Pet theories aside, no matter how much one may want to believe in them, or how logical they may seem to be based on todays assumptions, I'm telling you that they are only cool sounding myths and romance. Makes a neat tale, adds a certain gloss, but I believe the primary sources I have consulted, and the evidence of the existing stock examples.

I have to agree with this. I am not an expert by any means but from what I have read, the Les Paul wasn't really a high end model back then in the 50's. So I really don't think that when they are banging out 35 of these at a time, they are going to take the time to measure to make sure the pickups are level. Also, weren't all P.A.F.s were spec'd to be 7.5? So they weren't even designed to have one stronger than another. So I don't think that there was any thought put into what pups went in there. Just my .02
 

Big Al

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Apr 24, 2002
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Well it isn't just Les Pauls. If, and that is hypothetical IF, this type of sorting went on for Les Pauls, it would have been noted and used in all the sale hyperbole of the time. I am positive it was not a spec for Les Pauls only and certainly wasn't used in the rest of the line. If it were it would be novel enough that Gibson would have touted it. There would be lots of cataloge and sales ads listing this feature, along with the other well documented features, that made up the Gibson hyperbole of the time.

In fact there is none, not a spec of documentation that this was ever considered, much less practiced.

Remember lots of guitars had PAF's in Gibsons line. Super 400's, L5's, ES295's, ES175's, Flying V's, Explorer's, Doublenecks, ES335, 345 and 355 and some I probably forgot. The thing is they all show the same range and randomness that Les Pauls do.
 

johnabraham

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Sep 30, 2002
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Mr. Beano, can you recall the weight of the hotlanta or have any good guesses. How about that cherryburst he had (Duane's). Thanks, John.
 

JRiggio

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Mar 24, 2015
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7
Cool story. I don't doubt it, except for the above quote. In my experience that was not common practice by Gibson, and of all the many original untouched Bursts and Goldtops I've checked, there was no clear pattern of such a thing existing at all. The same for ANY humbucking Gibson from 57-60, there is no overabundance of guitars with hotter neck PUPs. Some are, some ain't, but not by design, but by happenstance.

Of course as we all learned more, and if it was noticable we would switch a weaker pickup with a stronger one as described, but to say it was a common practice by Gibson to place pickups by resistance readings, I dissagree with.

I picked alot of brains in Kalamazoo when I was there with Seymor Duncan and I asked about this very thing. I got a look of disbelief followed by laughter, "Hell no, Al! We measured each coil when it was wound, that's how we knew it was done, and put 'em together and slapped them into the guitars."

I also think there is alot of evidence that the Les Paul was not designed as a Jazz Guitar, but to compete with Fender as a bright solidbody guitar.

This is absolutely true. I'm the first to admit that we need to be careful when speaking in "absolutes", but this one I know is true. I've measured countless original sets of Gibson pickups and there is no rhyme or reason the the configuration, in regard to impedance.

Also worth mentioning is that impedance alone is not a complete sign of how "hot" a pickup will perform. Magnet strength and material make-up is equally as important.
 
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Doc Sausage

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Nov 21, 2006
Messages
1,676
There is simply no other place like the LPF. The minutiae over tenths of ohms is superfluous for me but I know many enjoy that stuff. I can simply say the joy that The Allmans (Allman Joys!) brought me as a young lad, entertaining young ladies, in my lair with a nice stereo will forever be etched on my mind. Sweet as a Duane solo.

And then as I progressed as a guitarist with a decent ear, I found then, as I do now, playing Duane Allman is like mastering Chinese arithmetic. I will never get the nuances of his phrasing, note selection and command of the blues idiom. Regardless of which pup with what resistance went where! Great stuff. Thanks for posting.
 
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Big Al

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Apr 24, 2002
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There is simply no other place like the LPF. The minutiae over tenths of ohms is superfluous for me but I know many enjoy that stuff. I can simply say the joy that The Allmans (Allman Joys!) brought me as a young lad, entertaining young ladies, in my lair with a nice stereo will forever be etched on my mind. Sweet as a Duane solo.

And then as I progressed as a guitarist with a decent ear, I found then, as I do now, playing Duane Allman is like mastering Chinese arithmetic. I will never get the nuances of his phrasing, note selection and command of the blues idiom. Regardless of which pup with what resistance went where! Great stuff. Thanks for posting.

You know what kills me about this, Doc? That little bastard did all that great playing, hell mastered it, in his early 20's! It has been a source of awe and wonder for me, still.
 

Redhod

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May 2, 2002
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You know what kills me about this, Doc? That little bastard did all that great playing, hell mastered it, in his early 20's! It has been a source of awe and wonder for me, still.

Music is one of those places, like math and chess, that is a ripe playground for the prodigy. And Duane was clearly that. (Although he would have been likely to give credit to all the practice he put in.)
In classical music there are all these astonishing prodigies like Franz Schubert (composing mighty symphonies as a teenager). It's as if music is a different language for these people. Oh, we speak parts of that language, enough to get by on and order a hamburger for lunch and tell some woman we love her, but they're also hearing and speaking Sanskrit, Lithuanian, Burmese and gangster mumbles.

Or maybe, like he said, it was just practice.
 

kevmoe

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Aug 15, 2006
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Are there any recordings of Duane playing the tobacco led paul..I believe must if not all his work with the Allman
Brothers and his work on Layla were done with his cherry les paul ,the pups switched out of the gold top..seems to me that thats the Guitar we should be glorifying..does anyone know what happened to that guitar..
 

chasenblues

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Jul 3, 2006
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Are there any recordings of Duane playing the tobacco led paul..I believe must if not all his work with the Allman
Brothers and his work on Layla were done with his cherry les paul ,the pups switched out of the gold top..seems to me that thats the Guitar we should be glorifying..does anyone know what happened to that guitar..

Layla wasn't recorded with the Cherryburst,The first ABB album was also recorded with the Goldtop.
http://www.duaneallmansgoldtop.com/discography.htm

Allman_Brothers_Baron_Wolman.jpg



He might be using the Tobacco burst on this,Look for live shows after June of 71.
(Don't think the pic in the video is of him at Stony Brook)



DuanesGuitars.jpg
 
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