Chet's Paul McGill resonator

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Re: Chet's Paul McGill resonator

Postby Dean Peterson » Wed May 15, 2013 11:33 am

That would be great Bill, thanks.
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Re: Chet's Paul McGill resonator

Postby bill raymond » Wed May 15, 2013 7:11 pm

Dean: Here you are--
Image

This is a quick sketch I drew up and when finished, I realized I had overlooked that there was a bit of land between the annular Vee groove in the underside of the "biscuit" (which engages the cone) and the hollowing out in the center. I also notice that the right hand side of my drawing goes off the edge of the computer screen. My note here reads "hole thru ctr. (for lathe mtg.?)". I hope this helps.

Bill
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Re: Chet's Paul McGill resonator

Postby Dean Peterson » Thu May 16, 2013 1:01 pm

Thanks Bill.

I thought the biscuit sat on the flat part in the center of the cone. Are you saying is sits in a groove on the biscuit on the rim of the center of the cone as below?
Delvecchio Biscuit1.JPG


Dean
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Re: Chet's Paul McGill resonator

Postby bill raymond » Thu May 16, 2013 4:40 pm

Yes, Dean, that's correct. As I mentioned, my sketch omitted a small flat space between the Vee groove and the center hollowing, as were it made as shown there would be a great likelihood that the sharp ridge would break out where it was cut cross grain (the biscuit at the flat is about 2mm. thicker than at its periphery). I also omitted the narrow white plastic inlay ring on the top side of the biscuit--it's just a bit of decoration. I should note, too, that the grain of the wood biscuit runs parallel to that of the guitar top and the top of the biscuit isn't entirely flat, but is very slightly convex.
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Re: Chet's Paul McGill resonator

Postby guitarchuck » Thu May 16, 2013 4:52 pm

I could be wrong, but I don't think the ring on the bottom of my biscuit is v shaped. I'm pretty sure mine has a flat surface ring that makes contact with the flat area in the center of the cone. I'm curious about the biscuits that Dan measured. How are they made Dan?
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Re: Chet's Paul McGill resonator

Postby conecaster » Thu May 16, 2013 6:00 pm

bill raymond wrote:I doubt a slight bend in the tailpiece would do anything to change the downpressure on the bridge: The strings will angle down towards the hinge where the tailpiece is anchored at the butt of the guitar whatever the shape of the tailpiece rods. In order to increase the downpressure, one would have to rig something to pull the tailpiece closer to the guitar or lower its attachment closer to the table. To decrease the pressure, you would need to shim the tailpiece up or raise its point of attachment.



Bill,

Believe it or not bending the tail piece arms downward does increase the holding power of the strings on the saddle. The tension splits the difference of the bend between the two points it is crossing.

It can be bent great enough that the tie block will actuall touch the cover plate, its a strange cabling phenomenon but it does help. The angle over the saddle on a 12 fret DV is not great.

Later I designed a 14 fret model, I beveled the body below the cover plate and increased the angle, I made Chet a Brazilian Rosewood , sap wood, guitar this way but he said he got lost looking for the 12th fret and he asked me to make him another 12 fret guitar like the koa guitar shown here. That last guitar was the one used on ALMOST ALONE, and is pictured in his ME AND MY GUITARS BOOK. Of all of his guitars its one of the only ones still in possesion of the family. His Grand son Jonathan requested it.

I have made many modification over the years to these guitars. I retro fit the older ones with the up dated cone baskets and increase their power.

The resonator sound is all about the setup, the basket construction and balancing of the Biscuit to the guitar. If the biscuit is to light the sound is louder, but harsh and it can have many dead or uneven notes, if the biscuit is to heavy the sound is fundimental and power is lost, even if the guitar is perfectly even. Amplitude is in the basket design.

Chet was so engaged with these guitars, I find most of his fans do not understand his exploitation of this sound, they don't understand it. Chet used these guitars and bent with his left hand as much as he played electrics and used a Bigsby. It is a delicate design and requires greater skills to master. A touch I found beyond most players skill.

In the 60's Chet discovered Nato Lima and he wanted that reso sound, Nato sold him a short scale DV which Nato had made for him by DV, he goes way back with DV into the 40's and he used short scaled guitars tuned high with Los Indios. This is the only short scaled DV Chet had other than mine. The cone was damaged on it so his brother found a guy in PA who spun him cones for it. This guitar had smaller cones than the larger DV. The difference in sound between my guitar and most of the DV recordings he did was the size of the cone. Mine have the larger size cones.

When I started building these guitars it was a request from Earl Klugh. Chet gave him a DV, but Earl had played the small one and wanted one like it. Chet came to my shop and brought me the little DV to look at, it has a 57 cm scale, it had the typically, unplayable, low action Chet's guitars always had, touch them and they buzzed for all but him.

That guitar has a very penetrating sound, it was Chet's recorded sound and is all over recordings he made from the late 60's on, including STANDARD BRANDS. After seeing the 57 cm scale I told Earl it might be good to make it a bit longer, I decided on 60 CM. When Chet realize I was building these guitars it was reported to me that he said I was going to steal his sound, that is how much he coveted the reso sound.

I know of many great sounding recordings done with my Resonators, Nato made many recordings with my guitars, I also think Jim Stafford is a very under rated guitarist, I made him one 20 years ago and he made 2 recordings with it, GUITAR GOLD and GOSPEL GUITAR, the sound he got was probably the best I've heard on my reso guitars. Jim is one of the most talented people you'll ever meet, including his guitar playing. But he's very humble about it. He wanted that sound Nato brought to Chet's attention and he got it like very few have.

I recommend anyone look for these recordings of my reso guitar to hear it at its best.

Paul McGill
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Re: Chet's Paul McGill resonator

Postby guitarchuck » Thu May 16, 2013 6:44 pm

Paul,
Thank you so much for your insight. I have a few questions now:

In the 60's Chet discovered Nato Lima and he wanted that reso sound, Nato sold him a short scale DV which Nato had made for him by DV, he goes way back with DV into the 40's and he used short scaled guitars tuned high with Los Indios. This is the only short scaled DV Chet had other than mine.


Was Chet's short scale DV the one that have the "V" sound hole covers?

I have made many modification over the years to these guitars. I retro fit the older ones with the up dated cone baskets and increase their power.


Are you talking about the up-dated baskets being the metal baskets as opposed to the wooden baskets? Did Chet's short scale DV have a wooden basket?

Chet came to my shop and brought me the little DV to look at, it has a 57 cm scale, it had the typically, unplayable, low action Chet's guitars always had, touch them and they buzzed for all but him.


I don't want to start another war here on the Chetboard about Chet's action, which there has been much debate about here. But, from your statement, which of Chet's guitar did you come in contact with that were set up this way? His Del Vecchios & Classicals perhaps?
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Re: Chet's Paul McGill resonator

Postby guitarchuck » Thu May 16, 2013 7:00 pm

guitarchuck wrote:I could be wrong, but I don't think the ring on the bottom of my biscuit is v shaped. I'm pretty sure mine has a flat surface ring that makes contact with the flat area in the center of the cone. I'm curious about the biscuits that Dan measured. How are they made Dan?


Bill,
Wow was I ever wrong! Mine is just like you described, a "V" channel all the way around the edge that fits on the rim around the top edge of the cone. I never realized that! I just took mine off and examined it. Mine don't have the white inlaid trim ring in the top, but it does have a routed ring (no inlay).
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Re: Chet's Paul McGill resonator

Postby conecaster » Thu May 16, 2013 7:25 pm

guitarchuck wrote:Paul,
Thank you so much for your insight. I have a few questions now:

In the 60's Chet discovered Nato Lima and he wanted that reso sound, Nato sold him a short scale DV which Nato had made for him by DV, he goes way back with DV into the 40's and he used short scaled guitars tuned high with Los Indios. This is the only short scaled DV Chet had other than mine.


Was Chet's short scale DV the one that have the "V" sound hole covers? It had V's in the sound hole cloth, but many did. Its not the edfining detail.
I have made many modification over the years to these guitars. I retro fit the older ones with the up dated cone baskets and increase their power.


Are you talking about the up-dated baskets being the metal baskets as opposed to the wooden baskets? Did Chet's short scale DV have a wooden basket? None of my guitars had metal baskets nor did any of Chet's, they sound awful.
Chet came to my shop and brought me the little DV to look at, it has a 57 cm scale, it had the typically, unplayable, low action Chet's guitars always had, touch them and they buzzed for all but him.


I don't want to start another war here on the Chetboard about Chet's action, which there has been much debate about here. But, from your statement, which of Chet's guitar did you come in contact with that were set up this way? His Del Vecchios & Classicals perhaps?


I can only tell you what I saw an did for him. His classicals where set so low no classical player would be able to get a clean sound out of them, and I worked on steel strings as well as resos for him. It was always the same. I'd set them up and sit back and watch him not only play them but play them loudly. He had the great sensativity for the rotation of a string I have ever seen in any guitarist I've have known. There are other I've seen try to pull it off, but they don't do what he did with a string, I could not play a guitar setup like the ones I did for him. today we have PLEK machines that provide precision in the rate of relief under a string. Chet did not like relief, he played then straight as an arrow and did not not need the added relief to be clean. When you hear him recorded, the technique to me is his greatest attribute as a pure guitariost, the musicianship not to be confused for it.

He was a great guy and a real friend to so many. I was lucky to have known him.

P
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Re: Chet's Paul McGill resonator

Postby DAN SAGE » Thu May 16, 2013 7:55 pm

Thank you, Mr. McGill, from a lifelong fan. May I second your comment on Mr. Stafford. He also used your guitar on at least one more CD "SOMEWHERE IN TIME". It includes a version of Maria Elena on your guitar, that in my humble opinion, is better (more beautiful), than the original, and may never be surpassed. I bought all three of his instrumental CD's from his website.

If you expound anymore on this topic, may I ask you, if you know anyway to increase the sustain on your magnificent instruments, so that it is a little longer? Does the depth of the guitar's soundbox (body/volume), or its construction have anything to do with the length of the sustain?

I thought my guitar, that was made by you, might be misadjusted, until I took it over to Mr. Standefer's house, and he played it, and a miracle happened. In his hands, it sounded just as good, as the one you made for him. (I think, it also might have helped to be directly in front of it, instead of attempting to play it, and listen to it at an angle).

As for the biscuits I measured, they are all made by Del Vecchio, at about the same time. They are spares, that I extorted from them (with help). I was WRONG!!! I got the bicuits and a cone out, and they do indeed appear to fit the top of the cone, like a hat. The OUTER ring on the bottom of the biscuit does indeed appear to contact the ANGELED surface of the top of the cone outside of the flat part on the top of the cone. It may compress enough with the downward pressure exerted by the strings, so, that the inner flat ring on the bottom of the biscuit, also contacts the flat spot on top of the cone???. The dimension/width of this flat ring is the difference, between the second and third measurements I listed in the second set of measurements. This would seem to raise all sorts of questions about the preciseness of the biscuit's machining, and if a bad sounding DVR might be immensely improved by a biscuit that fits properly. The bottom of the biscuit's inner wooden ring is essentially level with the bottom of the outer v shaped ring on the outside of the biscuit. Who knew? Definitely, not me!

As always, I could be wrong on anything I express, except maybe about the quality and the presence (cutting sound) of Mr. McGill's guitars.

Dan Sage
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