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Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?

Related thread:
extension nut (6)


Mr Happy 16 Nov 04 - 07:55 PM
number 6 17 Nov 04 - 12:32 AM
GUEST,Sosngster Bob 17 Nov 04 - 01:27 AM
GUEST,Bluesmike 17 Nov 04 - 01:30 AM
GUEST,bluesmike 17 Nov 04 - 01:38 AM
Roger the Skiffler 17 Nov 04 - 03:25 AM
Davetnova 17 Nov 04 - 03:41 AM
ThreeSheds 17 Nov 04 - 04:16 AM
Bee-dubya-ell 17 Nov 04 - 05:01 AM
The Fooles Troupe 17 Nov 04 - 08:45 AM
GUEST,reggie miles 17 Nov 04 - 08:51 AM
Bobert 17 Nov 04 - 08:53 AM
The Fooles Troupe 17 Nov 04 - 09:21 AM
GUEST,Paranoid Android 17 Nov 04 - 09:40 AM
Davetnova 17 Nov 04 - 10:00 AM
GUEST,punkfolkrocker 17 Nov 04 - 11:03 AM
GUEST,reggie miles 18 Nov 04 - 04:59 AM
PennyBlack 18 Nov 04 - 06:20 AM
Cluin 18 Nov 04 - 06:29 AM
GUEST,Dave Kyle 18 Nov 04 - 07:05 AM
Mr Happy 18 Nov 04 - 08:57 AM
Bee-dubya-ell 18 Nov 04 - 10:12 AM
GUEST,reggie miles 18 Nov 04 - 11:37 AM
GUEST,Les B 18 Nov 04 - 01:55 PM
GUEST,Les B 18 Nov 04 - 02:00 PM
Bee-dubya-ell 18 Nov 04 - 02:25 PM
PennyBlack 18 Nov 04 - 03:27 PM
Mr Happy 18 Nov 04 - 07:14 PM
Mr Happy 18 Nov 04 - 07:21 PM
Mr Happy 18 Nov 04 - 09:11 PM
Cluin 18 Nov 04 - 10:22 PM
Mr Happy 07 Dec 04 - 08:56 PM
GUEST,Claymore 08 Dec 04 - 06:56 PM
GUEST,Mr Happy 14 Apr 05 - 09:52 AM
Mr Happy 14 Apr 05 - 06:41 PM
GUEST,wvsp13@hotmail.com 18 Oct 05 - 11:41 PM
GUEST,leeneia 19 Oct 05 - 12:15 PM
GUEST,DasGroover 07 Nov 06 - 10:31 AM
GUEST,chris 08 Nov 06 - 03:42 AM
DoctorJug 08 Nov 06 - 03:45 AM
ThreeSheds 08 Nov 06 - 04:28 AM
Mr Happy 08 Nov 06 - 11:09 AM
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Subject: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: Mr Happy
Date: 16 Nov 04 - 07:55 PM

A chap in a local session was playing a Taylor acoustic with a gadget attached to the top of the neck.

He said it was a kind of resonator & made the instrument sound louder.

Anyone know about these things?


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: number 6
Date: 17 Nov 04 - 12:32 AM

No I haven't. But I would certainly like to hear about this also

I own a Taylor 310 and a modified Johnson roundneck (modified with a Quarterman cone, Grover tuners)

Number 6


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: GUEST,Sosngster Bob
Date: 17 Nov 04 - 01:27 AM

Top of the neck? A resonator? Do you feel a tug on your leg? I don't see how anything that would "resonate" would be attached to the neck. What do you mean, "top?" -- above the fingerboard, or on the peghead? I've seen a resonated mandolin, that had a wider back than the sides and top, so that you had sound holes around the circumference, and it was a loud little thing, I'll tell you. And resonated guitars, with metal cones instead of wooden tops, but I don't think that's what you're after. Gibson once made a guitar with two sides, one inside the other and a space between, so that it had extra soundholes -- "f" holes -- around the circumference, but it sounded like, well, kaka, if you must know.

I don't know of anyone who's built a resonator like banjos have, but for guitars. I suppose it might work. A dulicmer maker in Galax, VA, used a double bottom as a kind of resonator for that instrument, so it might work.

Hmmm... I've got some maple arched guitar backs/tops (interchangeable in jazz guitars) that might be rigged behind a regular guitar. I'll try an experiment and let you know how it turns out.

Later, folks.

Bob Clayton


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: GUEST,Bluesmike
Date: 17 Nov 04 - 01:30 AM


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: GUEST,bluesmike
Date: 17 Nov 04 - 01:38 AM

I play a reso- I can say with 99% certainty that nothing at the top of the neck could help resonate the thing- only thing I can think of to make the thing sound louder at the top of the neck could be some kinda pickup installed by someone on acid.
Funny thing songster Bob- I took a turn around Jacksons in Annandale the other day and there were a whole bunch of reso mandolins. if anyone is interested I play a HD28 Martin, a G&L Telecaster and the Massey Ferguson- er sorry - the reso.
regards to all
Micko


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: Roger the Skiffler
Date: 17 Nov 04 - 03:25 AM

Not the Rick Fielding Instant Dobro (bottom of the neck) attachment? (or something similar?)

RtS


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: Davetnova
Date: 17 Nov 04 - 03:41 AM

I have a friend who has what he calls a resonator fitted to his Ibanez. It is a black box about 4inches long that is attached just behind the bridge. Inside is some kind of arrangement of spings. He claims it makes it louder but I've never heard the guitar without it. Seems to work on the same principle as a spring reverb( but all acoustic coupling)


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: ThreeSheds
Date: 17 Nov 04 - 04:16 AM

I was came across a 30s 40s dance band arch top that had a double skinned back and was strung with tug boat hawsers it might have been a Grimshaw but I'm not at all certain on that


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: Bee-dubya-ell
Date: 17 Nov 04 - 05:01 AM

The guy used the wrong term. It's not a "resonator". It's a "resuscitator". It doesn't make the guitar louder. It wakes the guitar player up after he's taken a nap while the same idjit who has sung an unaccompanied version of "Suil a Ruin" at every session for the last three years does it yet again. The guitar-mounted resuscitator works on the same basic principle as the infamous space alien anal probe, and may be purchased at any Krispy Kreme donut shop.


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 17 Nov 04 - 08:45 AM

I seem to remember some Asian or Indian stringed instruments have something at the top of the neck, that may be a resonator style gadget. And there is the US Indian 'resonator bow'...


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: GUEST,reggie miles
Date: 17 Nov 04 - 08:51 AM

From what I understand, and granted that ain't much, the more mass at the headstock of an instrument the better it's resonant characteristics. Now, of course, folks are not going to rush right out and nail, glue or screw massive weights to the headstocks of their finely crafted instruments. There's balance to consider, and ease of handling the dern thing with such additions and don't forget, how are you gonna fit it back in it's case to transport it.

Perhaps Mr. Happy is referring to a harp guitar. A hundred years ago or so, a local instrument maker, Knutsen, became well known for his radical looking appendages that spanned from the upper bout of the bodies of ukes, mandolins, and guitars. These body additions were mostly hollow resonant chambers as the bodies were and almost always met at the headstock. Some had their own sound holes as well. In the case of the harp type instuments additional acoustic bass strings were added and therefore, where the two headstocks met there were also tuning pegs on the added appendage for the bass strings. Likewise, there was an additonal bridge to accommodate the other ends of the added strings. I should mention, not all of the instruments Mr. Knutsen made were of this harp variety. Some had the extended appendages but without any added strings, kind of a faux- harp instrument.

Perhaps it was a contemporary version of one of these that Mr. Happy saw. I've seen examples of these in a catalog. They're being made in Mexico. Some of the piuctures showed a guitar with not just one faux appendage but two extending from both sides of the upper bout and arching around to almost, but not quite, meet the headstock. Weird huh? Yep, those guy down there must be smokin' some whacky stuff. It looked like a guitar on acid. I also bumped into another contemporary local maker of harp guitars and mandolins. Some of his first attempts were rather crude, but no doubt, by now, his craftsmanship must be much better.

I don't know why someone would wish to resurrect the idea of playing such acoustic monstrosities, but I'm glad to know that someone has taken on the challenge of building them. These strangely misshapen harp instruments were, no doubt, early attempts to create additional cousins to the stringed instrument family that could do more than just play within their given tonal range. Perhaps the faux harp examples by Knutsen were experimenting with the possibilities of increasing the volume output. Who can say for certain?

I own a Knutsen lap guitar. The body's upper bout tapers to the width of the neck of this guitar and ends at about the fifth fret. Again, this seems to be an example of Knutsen trying to capture more of the resonant qualities of the more massive neck. The sound quality produced by this design has a beautiful resonance. I suppose that part of the reason for it's wonerful tone could be that it is set up as a lap style guitar. With higher action because of the raised nut there's more tension on the strings and therefore more vibration being applied to the top. Or perhaps even it's age may play a role.


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: Bobert
Date: 17 Nov 04 - 08:53 AM

I'll have to agree with the others who have their doubts. The only thing that is 'sposed to be on "top of the neck" are frets. The body of the guitar is in charge of doing the resonatin'...

And, yes, I am primarialy a resonator guitar player and own three, including a rare 30's Dobro tenor (4 string)...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 17 Nov 04 - 09:21 AM

I found a Knutsen Guitar web page once...


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: GUEST,Paranoid Android
Date: 17 Nov 04 - 09:40 AM

I reckon the guy han an Intellitouch tuner wich clips on to the top of the guitar. Mr. Happy may have misunderstood when the guy said it makes the guitar play "louder". It would certainly help to make the guitar play "better" as it enables speedy and accurate tuning of the guitar. It picks up the string sounds through "resonation" in the guitar "head" and is not effected by other sounds in the vicinity.


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: Davetnova
Date: 17 Nov 04 - 10:00 AM

The one I referred to is an Aspri non electric reverb unit. apparently they were made in Canada


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: GUEST,punkfolkrocker
Date: 17 Nov 04 - 11:03 AM

is it this device..
from this thread..

"Review: In Praise of Fat Fingers"

btw UK hayman electric guitars from the 70's were built
with hollow internal chambers containing springs
..supposedly to improve sustain..
and possibly inspired by the 'reverb'effect'
perceived as a by-product of the tremelo springs
in stratocasters


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: GUEST,reggie miles
Date: 18 Nov 04 - 04:59 AM

There was a gentleman in New Orleans, when I was last there, who did some rather unusual repair jobs on some of my friend's guitars. The fellow was from one of the Germanic countries and still had a heavy accent from his country of origin and an "old country" name to boot. As a repairman for instruments he was quite good and came well recommended. He had this kind of spooky shop, that was dimly lit, with violins hulks hanging from the rafters everywhere and it made me wonder just what kind of voodoo this guy performed when he wasn't fixin' instruments. My friend showed me the job that the guy had done to his guitar. Inside the soundhole was a strange kind of homemade contraption mounted to the back. It consisted of a balanced kind of teeter taughter gizmo made of metal that was meant to increase the volume or resonance but I'm not certain if it actually accomplished anything at all except to look very odd. I had the guy fix up an old violin that I had bought at an auction while I was there. He did a wonderful job of getting it in playable shape, but I don't think I would've trusted his repairs on my guitar. He was experimenting with some very other-worldly radical ideas.


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: PennyBlack
Date: 18 Nov 04 - 06:20 AM

Groove Tube Fat Finger Guitar Sustain Enhancer

There are several variations on Volume/sustain enhancers - above is one.

If you want to try the effect attach a "C" clamp to the headstock of your guitar (pad it first!)and record with and without, you should hear a difference.

Some guitar builders have actually inset lead weights into the headstock to improve the sound.


PB


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: Cluin
Date: 18 Nov 04 - 06:29 AM

That's common in basses, right. Also brass plates, etc.


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: GUEST,Dave Kyle
Date: 18 Nov 04 - 07:05 AM

Well, you seem to have no shortage of "experts" on the subject! I wrote for Vintage Guitar magazine for years & have seen & played almost everything there is. Though I have not seen or heard the device you mention, it is entirely possible that it exists. The same people who doubt it would have probably shunned electricity, the horseless carriage and the electric guitar as fads. I DO know that a wider, larger maple neck makes a difference in tone on an electric - that is, if the critics listening know what tone IS! Anything is possible so don't give up your search. You may not find what you're looking for but something better. Not everyone can afford a late '30s National Duolian. Besides, if your critics spent half the time thinking of better licks instead of deriding someone asking a legitimate question, they might know the answer - or have a better one. Keep looking my friend. Dave Kyle www.geocities.com/dkyle21


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: Mr Happy
Date: 18 Nov 04 - 08:57 AM

PennyBlack,

That's the one!! Thanks a lot.

I think my friend Frank who uses one told me it was a sort of 'resonator' - but its actually a volume/sustain enhancer, as you mention above.

Cheers once more,

Mr H


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: Bee-dubya-ell
Date: 18 Nov 04 - 10:12 AM

Well, I guess GUEST Dave Kyle told us, huh?

Okay, gang, you heard the man. No more speculatin'. No more pokin' fun at each other. No more of the kinds of behavior that can make threads like this fun to read. Admission to guitar geek threads will hereafter be limited to those who wear name tags plainly stating their qualifications to participate.


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: GUEST,reggie miles
Date: 18 Nov 04 - 11:37 AM

Foolestroupe, here's a link to some Knutsen instruments. The Hawaiian guitar displayed there is similar to mine except mine is just a six string and doesn't have the appendage to accommodate extra strings. Mine also looks to be all koa wood. Mine doesn't have that pick guard or the fancy trim wood on the tappered upper bout either. I think my guitar was made later than the model shown too but I don't think there is any sort of serial number system that dates it.

While writing this and perusing the first link I found several others including this one called The Knutsen Archives. There are some wonderful old photos there and lots of pages of additional information including his patent designs. I love this. What an inventive mind he had.


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: GUEST,Les B
Date: 18 Nov 04 - 01:55 PM


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: GUEST,Les B
Date: 18 Nov 04 - 02:00 PM

Sorry, fat finger error on that empty space above!

What I wanted to say is: if weighting the headstock works, then keeping your Kyser capo and Intellitouch tuner clipped to the head stock while they're not in use make sense.

Personally I think seeing the Intelli-tuner clamped to the head makes your instrument look like a martian landing module. I've had people sitting next to me at a concert wondering if the player was watching a ball game on mini-TV?!


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: Bee-dubya-ell
Date: 18 Nov 04 - 02:25 PM

I remember reading something on some website a couple of years ago about headstock mass, but I can't find it again. It specifically talked about how extra headstock mass is desirable for archtop jazz guitars. That's why so many archtops have large headstocks and why they use heavy tuning machines like Grover Imperials. Whether the tonal characteristics that extra mass imparts to that type of instrument would be desirable on an acoustic flat-top is another matter entirely. I'm sure that if extra headstock mass would improve the sound of a Collings OM, Bill Collings would be building 'em that way. I would imagine the Fat Finger device is of more interest to electric guitarists than acoustic players.


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: PennyBlack
Date: 18 Nov 04 - 03:27 PM

an article some may find interesting on this topic:-

THE HEAVIER HEADSTOCK MYTH
By Greigg Fraser

I'd like to talk about a very important discovery I made a couple of years ago. It deals with how increasing your guitar's headstock mass can increase your sustain. I'd always regarded this theory as a bit of a myth - until I experienced it first hand!

I was ordering some tools and parts out of the Stewart MacDonald catalogue when I came across an interesting item. It was a set of ebony replacement tuner buttons made to replace the standard chrome style ones found on Schaller tuners. I thought they'd look great on my Paul Reed Smith Custom and included them in my order.

When they arrived I was eager to put them on and to say the least, they looked wonderful! However, when I played my guitar I noticed a distinct lack of tone and resonance - almost as if the guitar was water bogged or something. That singing woody sustain was gone - and then I remembered the "Heavier Heastock Myth".

I quickly retrieved my discarded chrome tuner buttons and noticed that just one of them weighed much more than all six of the ebony ones put together. I changed them back right away and presto - my guitar's sound was back!

I recall a product from several years ago called "Fat Head" which was a sheet of bell brass cut out to fit the shape and style of a guitar's headstock, and when installed was said to greatly increase the sustain of your instrument. I now believe it!

So, if anyone out there is interested in increased sustain, I'd strongly suggest finding some way of adding mass to your headstock - it really works!

By Greigg Fraser
Curly Maple Music

----PB----


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: Mr Happy
Date: 18 Nov 04 - 07:14 PM

Pish-tush & tosh to all doubters!- this device really works!

[Don't kno how tho??]

However, as someone earlier pointed out, it may be possible to achieve similar effects[affects?] with a 'G' clamp- so I'm gonna try one out at me next gig.

BTW- re my orig query, does anyone use a 'Groove Tube Fat Finger Guitar Sustain Enhancer'?

p.s. they DO work on non-electric acoustics!


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: Mr Happy
Date: 18 Nov 04 - 07:21 PM

Dave Kyle,

Thanx for your comments-tried your link-it don't work- come back I'd lke kno more/
.


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: Mr Happy
Date: 18 Nov 04 - 09:11 PM

Anyone know if they're available in uk? [England,Ireland, Scotland, Wales, et al}

Names of UK stockists? {I've had a look meself but can't locate any]


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: Cluin
Date: 18 Nov 04 - 10:22 PM

Clamp your Kyser to your headstock when not in use on the strings. Ooooooooh, the sustain!    ;)

The disadvantage of a heavier headstock, apart from throwing off the balance, is that it makes the junction of the head to the neck more liable to breakage if the guitar falls or is hit on the head.


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: Mr Happy
Date: 07 Dec 04 - 08:56 PM

Anyone know where I can buy a 'Groove Tube Fat Finger Guitar Sustain Enhancer'in uk ?


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: GUEST,Claymore
Date: 08 Dec 04 - 06:56 PM

Davetnova was right about the Aspri; I have had one for years and it is a hoot to use. It is essentially a black plastic box that contains a metal bridge affair that slips under the guitar's strings just prior to the bridge, and is pulled back to the butt end of the guitar to tension the three springs inside the box. The metal bridge has to be bent some to exactly match a compensated bridge, but once adjusted, it slips on and off with ease.

The sound is like an old Stratocaster playing "Wipeout". When I put it on my 12-string it sounds like a bouzouki on steroids. They stopped making it in the 80's, but if you see one in a pawn shop, pick it up; you can use it on slip jigs like the "Butterfly" and have a ball with the Hammered Dulcimers.


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: GUEST,Mr Happy
Date: 14 Apr 05 - 09:52 AM

At last I've found a UK supplier for the 'Fat Finger' & I'll be saving me pennies to get one soon.

The supplier's site has some favourable comments from other users, and can be seen here:


http://www.stringsdirect.co.uk/Catalogue/ViewProduct.aspx?productId=406


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: Mr Happy
Date: 14 Apr 05 - 06:41 PM

fresh


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: GUEST,wvsp13@hotmail.com
Date: 18 Oct 05 - 11:41 PM

I've had the Aspri reverb unit for several years and use it on a nylon string flamingo Alverez. I does so well I leave it on all the time. It gives a noticeable echo/reverb effect and I want to find another one because I believe the springs are starting to get weak after being left on the guitar all these years. I have five other guitars, Martin HD28, Gibson Heritage Custom, Gretsch Country Gent, Lone Star Dallas and a cheap old Silvertone archtop and a home made banjo and have played for 40 years (since 14). After using it all these years I'm suprised no one else uses them or seem to have heard of them. They were advertised to get you used to the echo effect in a concert hall.


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 19 Oct 05 - 12:15 PM

It's been a long time, but thanks, Bee-dubya-ell, for your post of November 18, 2004 ("Okay, gang, you heard the man. No more speculatin'. No more pokin' fun at each other...")

Somebody needs to deal with today's Great Panjandrums, and you did.
------------
For anybody reading this who is something of a beginner, I would like to say that keeping a guitar tuned to the frequencies it was designed for makes it louder. The first time I used an electronic tuner, my guitar suddenly became twice as loud.

I don't like triangular picks, but when I saw Martin Wyndham Read using a thumb pick for his bass notes, I went out and bought myself one. I am very pleased with the effect this has - makes the bass notes loud and rich. All for fifty cents.


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: GUEST,DasGroover
Date: 07 Nov 06 - 10:31 AM

I LOVE ADORE AND WORSHIP the ASPRI Guitar Resonator
what a fabuslous item - makes a wet cigar box sound like a
mini cathedral - could do without one

I gently broke the seal on the top to expose the springs
as I found they rattled to much against it
after this everything was silent.

I used it on my Martin D16 which I had picked a set of heavy
strings for - 1st=18!! tuned in drop C
well let me say this - everyone within 20 feet of the guitar
there eyes bugged out of their head!! they couldnt believe what their ears where telling them. At the time I was playing
Micheal Hedges Lay Over - the guitar felt explosive
with the Aspri and heavy string combo

Where can I get another one? do you have a
web or land address?

jeanrobertrichard@yahoo.com


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: GUEST,chris
Date: 08 Nov 06 - 03:42 AM

I don't think they would do much for reverb but using metal finger picks and a metal thumb pick does wonders for clarity and volume
chris


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: DoctorJug
Date: 08 Nov 06 - 03:45 AM

See www.redmondotoole.com.


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: ThreeSheds
Date: 08 Nov 06 - 04:28 AM

That an interesting link Scarecrow I'd love to hear one of those guitars


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Subject: RE: Guitar Resonator? Anybody use one?
From: Mr Happy
Date: 08 Nov 06 - 11:09 AM

http://www.redmondotoole.com/


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