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Two Questions for Comversion Lovers

jrock1

Member
Joined
Jul 3, 2004
Messages
438
Wondering what your thoughts are on these two questions:

1. Would you rather buy, let's say, a '52 conversion with the top refin'd or the back and neck refin'd - and which would affect tone more? (my thoughts are that I like the feel of a worn neck and would rather have that not redone than the top - but I do wonder whch one, if any, would affect the tone more - body and neck refin'd or top)

2. All else being equal, would an 8lb '52 conversion sound better than a 9lb conversion? (I know better is subjective - but lets just use Bluesforstevies tone as the control tone - just one of the best sounding on this board in my opinion - both the 56 and the 52 conversion).
 

johnnyslim

Active member
Joined
Oct 4, 2001
Messages
1,129
Okay, I'll bite. Slow in the office at this time and I am solo. The only light is the PC monitor.

My 1952/59 conversion does have a back refin and a veneer top. The back of the original '52 was not really worn down to the bare mahogany when I got it. I have only played two 52/59 conversions and both were exceptional guitars. Could be because both were expertly converted by the master, Scott Lentz.

Regarding weight and tone. I do not subscribe to the school of thought that a lighter guitar will sound better. Good/great tone is a very personal thing and you know it when you hear it. Sometimes it is not so much the guitar but the player that makes it sound good/great. My conversion weighs in around 7 1/2 pounds and it sounds incredible. Great woody, almost saxaphone-ish tones. The veneer top does not impact the weight or tone of the guitar. If it does cause it to weigh more then I guess I have an under 7 1/2 pound Les Paul. One thing for sure, the PAF's really impact the tone.
 

CDaughtry

Les Paul Forum Co-Owner and Moderator
Joined
Jul 16, 2001
Messages
12,644
Jrock...I suspect that Dan(Bluesforstevie) can make any guitar sound that good....he's that good of a player. :worship
I don't think you can generalize at all about the weight. My favorite burst weighs 8lbs. 13oz. My conversion weighs 8lbs even. They both sound great. I don't even think that you can generalize that a heavier one has more bottom end. It all depends on a confluence of the entire guitar(ie how the PAFs work with the wood).
I personally would rather a back refin than a top one...just because I like old beat to shit Goldtops.... :salude
 

zorglub!

Burst Detective!
Joined
Aug 13, 2003
Messages
5,230
CDaughtry said:
I personally would rather a back refin than a top one...just because I like old beat to shit Goldtops.... :salude
And you know how happy I am about that... :biggrin:

Regarding your question I think it depends on how does the top look now. Ed A conversion or Charlie´s The Mutt look awesome, but some others do not look that good. I am absolutely happy with my conversion (top, back and neck refin'd) but I guess it is due to the fact that it is a very good refin. So in case you finally decide to refin it, make sure you go for the best! Regarding the weight, mine stays at 8 lbs and it sounds fantastic!
 

bluesforstevie

New member
Joined
Jun 20, 2002
Messages
12,771
jrock1 said:
Wondering what your thoughts are on these two questions:

1. Would you rather buy, let's say, a '52 conversion with the top refin'd or the back and neck refin'd - and which would affect tone more? (my thoughts are that I like the feel of a worn neck and would rather have that not redone than the top - but I do wonder whch one, if any, would affect the tone more - body and neck refin'd or top)

2. All else being equal, would an 8lb '52 conversion sound better than a 9lb conversion? (I know better is subjective - but lets just use Bluesforstevies tone as the control tone - just one of the best sounding on this board in my opinion - both the 56 and the 52 conversion).

Thanks for the nice words fellas. Both my guitars are very light. The 52/7 has a real loud and open tone with a definite push on the top three strings. The 56 isn't as loud acoustically, and has a woodier tone...with more honk and push in the lower midrange...the top end is a little more subtle. So it's obvious that there are very few generalizations that can be made about weight and tone.

But for the record it has been my experience that featherweight and lighter LP's tend to have a more open tone, are a little more lively and tend not to be as chunky sounding. This suits my style better, because I dont play a lot of barre chords or real rocking types of rhythms. As the guitar gets heavier the mids tend to get a little more compressed, the bottom thickens a little and as you get to 9lbs the top can be a little more bright and biting. It have also noticed that thicker necks do have an affect on tone IMHO..and fatter neck LP's tend to have a woodier and rounder tone..with more rumble, fatter sounding, more pronounced chords. My necks are probably more like 59 necks than 58 necks...and the notes are bell like, with a lot of definition a lot of chirp and clarity.

By no means however is to be interpreted as anything but my own limited experience. I think that if I had a bunch of LP's (old wood) I could choose from and play my perception and the apparent correlations I've drawn would get fuzzier.

I'd think a perfect weight for me would be on the lighter side and not more than 8lbs 10 oz or about 8.6lbs.
 
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