Souped-Up Classic

Murdock: Upgraded

As I mentioned (in a poorly written post), Rusted Hero’s show at The Bitter End was very satisfying. However, it could have been truly spectacular if it wasn’t for one thing: I had trouble keeping my guitar in tune halfway through the set.

I’ve had my Les Paul since 2005, but the axe was already 30 years old by then. As such, some of the pieces to the guitar were a little worn down and others had become antiquated by newer, better replacements. Anyway, I was fed up with the tuning – it had failed me now at two important gigs (our first show was legendarily bad) – and I was ready to pay to fix this beast.

After looking it over, my guitar tech said the plastic tuners I had were notorious as being the worst in the business. I believed him. Since I was now prepared to completely change the tuners, I decided to also change the nut (mine had been producing heavy buzz on a few strings) AND the pickups. The pickups I had produced extremely treble sounds – my guitar sounded like a laser. While I tend to play mostly treble, this tone was even too much for me. So, to sum up, I was getting a shit load done to my guitar!

Exhaustive list of new parts:

  • Grover tuners (metal)
  • New bone nut
  • Seymour Duncan Alinco II-Pro (neck pickup)
  • Seymour Duncan JB (bridge pickup)

A to-be-undisclosed amount of money later and I’m happy to report my guitar feels like new! The pickups give me a thicker, meatier sound without sacrificing much presence. I have no noticeable fret-buzz thanks to my new nut, and I had absolutely NO TUNING issues at my last gig! Sure, it was a bit of a dent to my wallet, but this was a much needed, once in a lifetime upgrade to my guitars (yes, I had my Strat also dealt with).

Site Updates:

  • Updated blog IDs for November 2007
  • Removed Miles Davis – Birth of the Cool (1950) from Currently Enjoying
  • Removed Sons of Anarchy: Season 1 (2008) from Currently Enjoying
  • Added Robert Palmer – Some People Can Do What They Like (1976) to Currently Enjoying
  • Removed The Limousines – Get Sharp (2010) from Currently Enjoying
  • Added Ximena Sarinana (2011) to Currently Enjoying

Current Mood: Relaxing emoticon Relaxing

  • Shelby
    Monday, September 26th, 2011 at 05:46 | #1

    First, great picture of the ax and the cat. Second, sounds like you made some big changes that are going to make a difference, but I was wondering about what drives the cost of this type of work. I’m guessing the craftsmanship needed to work on a classic antique like your guitar is what make this kind of restoration so expensive. And unlike computers, musical instruments are always worth upgrading vs replacing.

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