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G&L First Impressions

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  • #122271
    Jeff Preston
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    Hello good G&L peoples!
    <p style=”text-align: left;”>JP from Ohio. I’m one of the new folks on the forum. Learned about it from Army over at TB. </p>
    <p style=”text-align: left;”>So, I recently acquired my first G&L. It’s a beautiful option order USA JB that I found on Reverb for a decent price. It looked nearly new at first blush. 
    </p>
    I’ve been a Music Man SR5 player for nearly 30 years. Had carpal tunnel surgery last October and my hands aren’t the same. Decided to go back to a four with a J-bass neck. Was really looking for an Elite Jazz, but didn’t get enough out of my SR5 to cover it. Enter the G&L JB!

    I hadn’t really considered G&L as I was really set on a Fender. But, when I saw the Old School Tobacco Sunburst option order JB pop up on Reverb, I couldn’t resist!

    I promptly made an offer that I assumed would be countered. To my surprise, he accepted. Payment made, item shipped, anticipation skyrockets!

    I was amazed at the build and finish quality. Those single coils growl and bite like no other! I do wonder though, are they all so noisy? I added shielding to the control and pickup cavities and did the bridge ground mod, but still they are super noisy! If I can’t tame the noise, I’ll have to replace them.

    Another thing I noticed was a strange rattle while I was playing. Did a little search on TB and learned of the loose tuning keys. This is when I met the man, Memo Romero!

     I emailed the Repair department at G&L to see if there was a fix for the keys. I let Memo know I wasn’t the original owner and just wanted to know if there was a fix or if I had to replace the tuners. He sent me a new tuner gratis!

    So, since I had to replace a tuner, I figured I’d add a Hipshot D-tuner, new XL170’s and a fresh setup while I was at it. This is where the wheels fell off of the wagon!

    When I tried to adjust the truss rod, I found that the previous owner had nearly rounded out the hex nut on the truss rod and the rod seemed like it might be seized up. Joy was replaced with sadness when I learned the nut was welded onto the rod (it’s a 2017 with the dual action truss rod) and couldn’t be replaced.

    Another e-mail to Memo. His initial reply was I could have a luthier replace the truss rod or they would replace the neck for $300.  I asked if the cost would be different since it was an option order neck (#8 neck, rosewood board with face dot delete and 7 1/2” radius). He then replied that he thought he already replied to tell me they would replace the neck under warranty all I had to do was ship it to them. Floored once again! Joy renewed!

    So, Old Skool is on its way back to its birthplace for some TLC. Gonna be a looooooong ten weeks or so!

    I hope to meet Memo one day and shake his hand. If this old dude ever buys another new bass, it’ll be an option order Kiloton with a bound and blocked ebony neck, not that I’ve thought much about it…

    JP

     

    JP
    G&L USA JB, FrankenJazzuar, Hartke 210 Combo, Darkglass B7K Ultra, Boss GT-1B, SansAmp Programmable BDDI, EBS Fuzzmo

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    #122277
    ituobrey
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    Welcome Jeff! Congrats on the new G and L!

    "Calmly, Powdered Toast Man...ASSESSES THE SITUATION!" -Gary Owens

    #122285
    Andyman001
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    Welcome Jeff! Congrats on the new G and L!

    What he said

    Playing bass for 35 years, taking time out for meals, of course

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    #122287
    Still4strings
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    Welcome! Beautiful bass, and I’m glad G&L is taking care of you!

    Causing trouble in the sctmmc since November 13th, 2018.

    "Punk rock changed our lives." - D. Boon

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    #122295
    fcleff69
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    Welcome, Jeff! That’s a beautiful bass. You’re sure getting more love on your NBD than I ever do, and I just bought 2 El Tookays (I was hanging with Stewart at the time of purchase so it was an unintended consequence of being his friend). No one seems to be very happy about my basses around here and I think it’s because I’m a moderator. This place suxcks.

    The Coberator. My other car is a Rocinante.

    #122318
    Jeff Preston
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    <p style=”text-align: left;”>Well, I wish I had the disposable income to own several of these beauties, but for now, I’ll have to be happy with my JB. Might be able to swing a Tribby at some point, but I’ll probably just wait until I can get an option order or Custom Shop model.</p>

    JP
    G&L USA JB, FrankenJazzuar, Hartke 210 Combo, Darkglass B7K Ultra, Boss GT-1B, SansAmp Programmable BDDI, EBS Fuzzmo

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    #122319
    Jeff Preston
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    Welcome! Beautiful bass, and I’m glad G&L is taking care of you!

    Thanks! Yeah, I’m beyond ecstatic that they are going to build a whole new neck for me. Has to be the best customer service around.

    JP
    G&L USA JB, FrankenJazzuar, Hartke 210 Combo, Darkglass B7K Ultra, Boss GT-1B, SansAmp Programmable BDDI, EBS Fuzzmo

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    #122346
    Armyadarkness
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    Welcome, Jeff! That’s a beautiful bass. You’re sure getting more love on your NBD than I ever do, and I just bought 2 El Tookays (I was hanging with Stewart at the time of purchase so it was an unintended consequence of being his friend). No one seems to be very happy about my basses around here and I think it’s because I’m a moderator. This place suxcks.

    You’re such a ray of sunshine

    First, whack the driver, then, off the passengers. I want everyone in the car whacked off.
    ... Al Capone

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    #122348
    Armyadarkness
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    Welcome! Beautiful bass, and I’m glad G&L is taking care of you!

    Thanks! Yeah, I’m beyond ecstatic that they are going to build a whole new neck for me. Has to be the best customer service around.

    There’s a lot to touch on in your posts Jeff. First and foremost, welcome to the forum! I’m very happy that you finally made it in, got involved, and even started your first thread. Although we do occasionally “break balls” for comedy, there’s nothing here but strong community and brotherhood, so you should always feel free to speak your mind, about whatever you choose, and without any fear.

    We respect each other, even if and when our opinions don’t match.

    As for your technical issues with noisy pups and tweaking, you’ll find the answers here to whatever questions you have, about most anything from microwave ovens to pottery… and especially G&L.

    As you may have read, G&L is going through some changes, and many G&L users are quite frustrated about G&L’s disorganization while they adapt to the new market. However, we here all adore G&L, and of course we started this place to honor them, and to help each other get the most from the G&L experience.

    Hearing how proud you are about your G&L, reminds me of why I’m here, how I got here, and how grateful I am that made me part of this family! But regardless of what you own or what you play, we’re happy to have you.

    Meme, Ron, and most of the dealers have all helped us out at one time or another, and I’m glad that you’re experience was terrific.

    As I recall, you had some technical questions that you needed help with, so ask away. Whether it’s preserving an historic G&L or Hotrodding the balls off it, this is where you start!

    First, whack the driver, then, off the passengers. I want everyone in the car whacked off.
    ... Al Capone

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    #122375
    bonin in the boneyard
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    Welcome to the forum!

    Absolute beauty of a bass.  Very close to what I have in mind for my next build.

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    #122378
    fcleff69
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    You’re such a ray of sunshine

    The Coberator. My other car is a Rocinante.

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    #122389
    Jeff Preston
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    @armyadarkness (and all of the others) Thanks for the warm welcome! I truly am excited about owning my first G&L. Just wish it wasn’t such a rocky beginning… It’s gonna be a long ten-ish (per Memo) week wait to get my JB back. I’m not so patient at times, but I’ll do my best!

    As far as questions goes, most of them have been answered either by Memo himself (rattling tuners and neck woes) or from some of my searches done at TB or bassesbyleo.

    The biggest remaining issue/question I have at this point is the noisy pups. Are all of their single coils super noisy? I mean, these are the most microphonic, hissy, hummy pups I’ve ever heard! But, they just sound incredible when I have my fingers on the strings. Growly, barky, grindy but yet, articulate. I added shielding to the control and pup cavities and did the bridge ground mod and nothing changed. Maybe I didn’t do it right since I’m no electrical guru. I just really don’t want to have to replace the pups for something less noisy. Thoughts or ideas?

    As far as sarcasm goes, I mean, I’m told it’s my second language, so I should fit in pretty well here  😛

    JP
    G&L USA JB, FrankenJazzuar, Hartke 210 Combo, Darkglass B7K Ultra, Boss GT-1B, SansAmp Programmable BDDI, EBS Fuzzmo

    #122394
    fcleff69
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    But, they just sound incredible when I have my fingers on

    Growly, barky, grindy but yet, articulate.

    That’s what she said.

    The Coberator. My other car is a Rocinante.

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    #122402
    Jim C
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    RF Shielding – I did this for a living for many years. Copper tape is best unless you really want to spend money on good conductive paint. PuP cavities and control plate cavity must be lined.  OTOH, paint is much easier and isn’t that much worse. Have a bit of tape extend over the finish of the bass to ground to the metal JB control plate (or paint). Tie both pup cavities, control cavity, and under bridge plate as a common ground plane. I like using a thin piece of stranded wire and solder to the copper foil (with flux) (or under the head of a tiny wood screw through the paint) and let the bridge sit on top of a bare section of the strands. Tie all of this to the ground of the pups (or sleeve of the jack). Will this make it silent; hell no but it will be the best you can do without reinventing the wheel.  Both pups full on should be dead silent without shielding. It’s one you roll off the bridge pup a tiny bit (for the magic) is where you get hum.  Plenty of good hum bucking pups out there although I haven’t found any that sounds EXACTLY like single coils.  Oh and nice looking bass; there is one on Reverb that is similar that I would have bought although I don’t enjoy 3 sets with a 9 pounder.  You look young so probably not an issue!  Please report back when you get a minute, this work can be done without the neck on the bass although maybe you get to keep the old one?

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    #122434
    Jeff Preston
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    RF Shielding – I did this for a living for many years. Copper tape is best unless you really want to spend money on good conductive paint. PuP cavities and control plate cavity must be lined. OTOH, paint is much easier and isn’t that much worse. Have a bit of tape extend over the finish of the bass to ground to the metal JB control plate (or paint). Tie both pup cavities, control cavity, and under bridge plate as a common ground plane. I like using a thin piece of stranded wire and solder to the copper foil (with flux) (or under the head of a tiny wood screw through the paint) and let the bridge sit on top of a bare section of the strands. Tie all of this to the ground of the pups (or sleeve of the jack). Will this make it silent; hell no but it will be the best you can do without reinventing the wheel. Both pups full on should be dead silent without shielding. It’s one you roll off the bridge pup a tiny bit (for the magic) is where you get hum. Plenty of good hum bucking pups out there although I haven’t found any that sounds EXACTLY like single coils. Oh and nice looking bass; there is one on Reverb that is similar that I would have bought although I don’t enjoy 3 sets with a 9 pounder. You look young so probably not an issue! Please report back when you get a minute, this work can be done without the neck on the bass although maybe you get to keep the old one?

    I did the copper tape shielding, but I think I had to have done something wrong. Not sure how to tie it all together as you were saying.

    Unfortunately, the noise persists even with both pups dimed.

    Memo wanted the whole bass so it’s all in transit back to the mothership right now.

    JP
    G&L USA JB, FrankenJazzuar, Hartke 210 Combo, Darkglass B7K Ultra, Boss GT-1B, SansAmp Programmable BDDI, EBS Fuzzmo

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    #122435
    Jeff Preston
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    Oh yeah, I’m not that young, either… 😉

    JP
    G&L USA JB, FrankenJazzuar, Hartke 210 Combo, Darkglass B7K Ultra, Boss GT-1B, SansAmp Programmable BDDI, EBS Fuzzmo

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    #122438
    bonin in the boneyard
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    I did the copper tape shielding, but I think I had to have done something wrong. Not sure how to tie it all together as you were saying.

    You should make sure the copper tape is all soldered together, and properly connected to the grounds in the electronics.  Solder wires from the copper (generally from an areas in the middle of the pickup and control cavities) and solder them to the pot closest to the jack.

    IMG_0231-small

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    #122449
    Jim C
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    3M makes 1″ & 2″ copper shielding tape with a conductive adhesive (in their embossed line) but I don’t think it’s worth it.  Bonin’ did an awesome job but overkill for our needs IMO.  I’ve spent years evaluation RF shielding and materials from 1kHz (magnetic field)  through 10 gHz up to 100 dB attenuation. I’d have to look at my notes but the difference in an overlap connection (non-conductive adhesive) with solid foil was not nearly as great as we anticipated.   Some of the chemical coatings are pretty lame.  We did test a coating that had a fair amount of silver in it but that stuff was hundreds of dollars for an ounce or so.  The nickel enriched stuff was the bang for the buck but still spendy.

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    #122496
    Jeff Preston
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    Looks like imma have ta learn how to solder…

    JP
    G&L USA JB, FrankenJazzuar, Hartke 210 Combo, Darkglass B7K Ultra, Boss GT-1B, SansAmp Programmable BDDI, EBS Fuzzmo

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    #122497
    fcleff69
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    Looks like imma have ta learn how to solder…

    Let me know if you need any help or advice.

    The Coberator. My other car is a Rocinante.

    6 users thanked author for this post.
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