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Knob Placement


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Has anyone here tried this yet? Why do we limit ourselves like we do? Just because the knobs have always been put on the front of the body pointing up, is that the only place they can be? Ned Steinberger pretty much gave the guitar design traditionalists a swift kind in the sack in the mid 80's. We're still trying to catch up. It seems the radical re-designers stay hidden for way too long.

I'm getting really inspired to buy some tools and make a whacked-out body. Maybe next year... around tax time.

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I have seen several examples done that way, except hidden from the front. David Myka executed it a bit differently on several guitars. Check out his website. And ErikBojerik hid his controls on the side as well in his current guitar of the month entry. Check out the thread, he's got an entire 'manual' in PDF format on that build, which is brilliant, and that shows how he did it. I'm contemplating something like this to hide the controls on the back/side of the guitar for the bass build that I am currently planning.

Edited by mattharris75
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I'm having visions here. Incorporate the knob placement elements of Gander Guitars with the almost headless neck and tuning gear placement of Scott French. I'm thinking to have the tuners along the butt end of the body on some kind of shelf or lip. French has them in a recessed cavity.

Now, I know I just made an empassioned plea to think outside the box. Before anyone jumps on my case, I'll admit that I'm just not the guy for the job. I really don't have an original bone in my body. The best I can do is take an existing idea and incorporate into something else. That being said, this concept would be really cool to see!

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I have seen several examples done that way, except hidden from the front. David Myka executed it a bit differently on several guitars. Check out his website. And ErikBojerik hid his controls on the side as well in his current guitar of the month entry. Check out the thread, he's got an entire 'manual' in PDF format on that build, which is brilliant, and that shows how he did it. I'm contemplating something like this to hide the controls on the back/side of the guitar for the bass build that I am currently planning.

Dude! Myka is just sick & wrong. Ya gotta love his work, but hate him out of principle. Really inspiring stuff.

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Yah I dunno, I like them more on the top side than I do tucked away on the bottom like that. A guitarist on stage would have to fight to change their settings and I think that would put a lot of people off from buying it.

The craftsmanship of this guitar is excellent but just not very practical in a real world setting. Building unique shapes requires a delicate balance of form and function and with them tucked away like that I don’t think the function is balanced.

The reason most guitars have the knobs on the face is because that’s the most functional place to put them and still keep everything looking nice. I like knobs on the face of a guitar, just like I like the bridge and pickups.

Now, why hasn’t someone invented remote control tone and volume adjustments for a guitar that are controllable by little switches on the guitar pick? You could use a Pezo bridge and have the rest of the guitar clean!

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backtuners.jpg

Here's a thought. Run the strings through the body and have them go into the tuners on the back of the body. The knobs would be on the top & easily accessable. Would that create issues with the strings gong over hard angles twice as they pass through the body & the edge of the feurrels?

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Without knowing for sure, my first response is, "possibly!" lol

Seriously, though, there's a reason why that question occurred to you. It seems intuitive to imagine that there will be friction issues and strings getting all bound up, not to mention tuning problems. It's not literally the angle itself, but rather the friction that is created.

There's only one way to know for sure, which is to test. But with limited time and resources, my temptation would be to avoid the risk by going through that part of the body at more of an angle. It's true that you'd never know either way whether the method in your diagram would work or not, but you'd probably have more peace of mind that you're building in what is "probably" the safer way.

That said, it occurs to me that you could test in some small way without actually needing to build much at all. Take some scrap of the right thickness, make the hole, install some ferrules, and even just use your hands to guestimate the angles from your diagram. It'll probably be enough to satisfy your curiousity, no?

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backtuners.jpg

Here's a thought. Run the strings through the body and have them go into the tuners on the back of the body. The knobs would be on the top & easily accessable. Would that create issues with the strings gong over hard angles twice as they pass through the body & the edge of the feurrels?

I can only see problems with that, even if you drilled a hole at an angle. You're adding possibly two more points of contact for the string, as well as possibly a length of surface if the string decides to run right along the tunnel you drill for it.

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The question is not how well it will work. It would work fine, especially if you used a roller bridge.

The major concern would be your ability to get all of the dimensions correct, so the tuner and its mounting bushing are both sitting on flat surfaces, as well as your ability to anticipate and appropriately machine the area that the string goes through the top. Another thing to take into account would be dead string length, since that would increase string "floppiness." It's possible it would increase it by much, since you'd lose all of the dead length at the headstock, but avoiding a shorter scale length, like a gibson scale length, would be a good way to avoid that alltogether.

peace,

russ

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