Baritone Teles - wonderful!

KirkDahnke

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Love my CV baritone! It came with .14 gauge strings, but the shop threw in a set of .13s which I haven't tried yet. Anyone switch to .13s? What's your opinion on them? I'm not going to try them til the stock .14 strings are beat.

View attachment 1099503

Nice! I threw a one ply matte black on mine. Looks so much better than the white. In fact, that's the reason I got the black was to change the pickguard.
 

String Tree

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With a slight nod towards Brownface. But Blackface areabout as good. I've heard that the Two Rock Matt Scofield Sig. amp has the greates sounding trem of all time. Never tried one, but i didi have on loan from a friend a '67 BF Princeton and that was one great sounding amp! Didn't want to give it back.
I am set in my ways but, it's working for me.
I haven't heard a Pedal that does what nice Fender does.
Brown face, can't go wrong with one of those.
NOPE!!!
 

W.L.Weller

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Bigger picture question--is there any good reason not to throw some fatter strings on a standard guitar and tune down to B standard?
As you've already discovered, no, there's almost no downside. If you decide you like the tuning enough, either adjust the nut yourself or have a pro do it.

Open string pitch, scale length and string gauge are the variables that affect string tension. I find individual string tensions under 14 lbs. to be very "floppy" and over 21 lbs. to be uncomfortably "tight". But my goal when matching strings to a tuning is having the overall tensions within a pound or 2 of each other, to reduce the chances of twisting/warping the guitar's neck. Here's a calculator you can use to "dial it in"


(there are other calculators online, and true perverts can build their own in their preferred spreadsheet program/programming language)

A set like this is close to balanced: https://www.musiciansfriend.com/acc...lectric-guitar-strings--gauge/l56958000001000

I might choose a .014 high B and a .060 low B, but if you throw those gauges and the tuning into the calculator ("baritone" low B is a B2, standard guitar low E is an E2, bass guitar low E is an E1, higher numbers are the next octave up), you'll see it's "close enough".
 

DHart

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Bigger picture question--is there any good reason not to throw some fatter strings on a standard guitar and tune down to B standard? I just did that with an un-loved Strat and need to intonate it better, but seems like it will work fine.
It can be ok, depending on your tolerance for floppy strings. With a longer scale length, you can achieve lower tuning with a nice amount of string "tension".

I did detune one of my Teles down to D Standard, with a set of .011's, and it was not bad!

But the sweetest set-up for a deep tuning, down to B standard, is with a longer scale length and a set of either .013's or .014'.

Fender's Baritone conversion neck will convert any Fender-spec Tele to baritone with ease! And not very expensive, either. Helps if you have an extra Tele body on hand that you can apply to the project. ;)
 
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DHart

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Well folks... it's didn't take long. MEET MY NEW (sort of) Baritone Tele:
52765465714_93244147af_h.jpg


Not really "new", however. I swapped my Fender Baritone conversion neck over to a different Tele body.

Often, it takes some time with a particular combination of neck and body for me to fully evaluate the pairing, and possibly make a change.

I loved the tone of this neck on my blonde Nashville Tele (pick in first post, above) but I decided that I would prefer a standard neck/set-up on that blonde Nashville and I felt that the baritone conversion neck would be a great match with my Cherry burst ASH Tele body (which had a maple neck on it previously, and I had not been it playing much.)

Voila:
52765621400_dc1cf40d87_h.jpg


All of a sudden, I am super stoked about this ash Tele, once again. When I did the neck change, I switched to a set of .013 baritone strings (D'Addario EXL 158). To my great pleasure, the conversion went perfectly and I found that the change to slightly lighter strings is one that I really like.

The sound of this baritone Tele is superb. And with the lighter strings, it plays much more like a standard guitar does. I think from here on in, my baritone guitars will be wearing EXL158s (light-gauge baritone string set).

Today's group photo, with the Squier Paranormal Cabronita Baritone, in Oxblood finish, on the left.

I really love the deep, rich colors!

52765621265_643faa5018_h.jpg


52765697903_229a458310_h.jpg
 
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DHart

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For my playing... the baritone guitars live large around progressions using open E and Em variants, Bb/F, open G, open A and Am variants, and C & C/G - making great use of those low, deep tones on the low E-string and A-string.

Of course, a baritone guitar can do so much more than that, but it's focusing on those rich, low tones that really puts a smile on my face!

I often like to combine that with brighter settings (using increased volume pot resistance and a No-Load tone pot) and playing with neck & bridge pickups combined, and bridge alone, to keep the deep tones from sounding muddy.

The world is your oyster, as they say.
 
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tfarny

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Bigger picture question--is there any good reason not to throw some fatter strings on a standard guitar and tune down to B standard? I just did that with an un-loved Strat and need to intonate it better, but seems like it will work fine.
It will definitely work - I would start with some 12s and C standard and see if you like it, you might have to work on your nut slots to go lower and fatter stringed.
At some point it will get harder to intonate on the low strings, for sure. But you're not buying a Bari to go wheedly wheedly on anyhow.
 

DHart

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I might choose a .014 high B and a .060 low B, but if you throw those gauges and the tuning into the calculator ("baritone" low B is a B2, standard guitar low E is an E2, bass guitar low E is an E1, higher numbers are the next octave up), you'll see it's "close enough".
WLW... I think you probably had a typo there. Baritone low B is a B1, 5 semi-tones (2 1/2 steps) below guitar standard low E, which is, as you noted, E2.
 
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DHart

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Report back with your impressions!
Update on my impressions of the .013 set and .014 set of baritone strings from D'Addarrio.

At present, I've got the .014's on this one
52726448155_a82dde0a06_b.jpg


and the .013's on this one
52765465714_40151a73c1_b.jpg


I like the .013s, as they play a little more like a standard guitar and are easy to work with.

But then when I switch to playing the guitar with the .014's, I love the somewhat higher tension and beef - the strings are very stable. They do require a little more hand strength than one is likely to be accustomed to.

I'm just going to have to revise my previous statement and say that I will be keeping the .014's on one of them, and keeping the .013's on the other.

I don't clearly prefer one set over the other, so if I had but one baritone guitar, at this point I couldn't say which set of strings I would go with. But possibly, the .014s. Or, maybe the .013s.

If you want a little easier to play, requiring less hand strength... the .013s.

If you want a bit more "beef" and the string positional stability of higher tension... go with the .014s.

It is nice having the two baritones to bounce between the different string sets, depending on the need of the moment.
 
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tubedude

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Nice! I threw a one ply matte black on mine. Looks so much better than the white. In fact, that's the reason I got the black was to change the pickguard.
Sweet Bari's. Is the scale length 27.x inches, or is it longer. Is the neck wider also?
And do you like the P90's or the standard Tele P/U config better? Thanx!
 

DHart

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Sweet Bari's. Is the scale length 27.x inches, or is it longer. Is the neck wider also?
And do you like the P90's or the standard Tele P/U config better? Thanx!
I know your question was directed to Kirk.

But I'll offer an opinion, as well. The baritone "tones" sound great with standard Tele pickups, as with Strat pickups. I've used both.

In my Squier Paranormal, the Squier P90s sounded good enough, for sure - not bad at all.

But I prefer a but more sparkle and high-end definition, so I replaced the Squier neck P90 with a TV Jones T-Armond (single coil with Dearmond pattern design), replaced the Squier P90 bridge pickup with a Duncan Antiquity P90, and I bumped up the volume pot resistance, along with a no-load tone pot. The result is even more pleasing to my ears. Great tones here, too.

They all sound good really, just slightly different from one another..

For my personal preference, I might give a slight nod to the standard Tele pickups - especially with a volume pot a bit higher than 250k (like 350k to 500k) and with a No-Load tone pot. Opening up the extra high end range in the frequency spectrum gives the deep baritone strings some extra sparkle and definition, which helps keep them from sounding muddy. And don't we all hate muddy tone!

The necks are 27" scale length - and when using the Fender Baritone conversion neck on a regular Tele body, there is really very little intonation adjustment required. Nice!

And as I mentioned above, I like the .013's baritone string set for ease of playing, though some players might find them ever-so-slightly "floppy".

The .014's require a little more hand strength for some chording, but their higher tension/stiffness gives a little more stability to resist unintentional pitch shift from finger pressure.

Let your personal preference guide you in all of these choices.
 
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tubedude

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I know your question was directed to Kirk.

But I'll offer an opinion, as well. The baritone "tones" sound great with standard Tele pickups, as with Strat pickups. I've used both.

In my Squier Paranormal, the Squier P90s sounded good enough, for sure - not bad at all.

But I prefer a but more sparkle and high-end definition, so I replaced the Squier neck P90 with a TV Jones T-Armond (single coil with Dearmond pattern design), replaced the Squier P90 bridge pickup with a Duncan Antiquity P90, and I bumped up the volume pot resistance, along with a no-load tone pot. The result is even more pleasing to my ears. Great tones here, too.

They all sound good really, just slightly different from one another..

For my personal preference, I might give a slight nod to the standard Tele pickups - especially with a volume pot a bit higher than 250k (like 350k to 500k) and with a No-Load tone pot. Opening up the extra high end range in the frequency spectrum gives the deep baritone strings some extra sparkle and definition, which helps keep them from sounding muddy. And don't we all hate muddy tone!

The necks are 27" scale length - and when using the Fender Baritone conversion neck on a regular Tele body, there is really very little intonation adjustment required. Nice!

And as I mentioned above, I like the .013's baritone string set for ease of playing, though some players might find them ever-so-slightly "floppy".

The .014's require a little more hand strength for some chording, but their higher tension/stiffness gives a little more stability to resist unintentional pitch shift from finger pressure.

Let your personal preference guide you in all of these choices.
Thanks for your comments. I play 13-56 standard pitch on all my.guitars (gorilla hands with little sensitivity) so it sounds like 14's for me. If there are nothing thicker. I love the.no loads on my Tele and Strat, and like 280k to 300k as is. So I guess it's building time! Oh, are they tunes to B or.A, or something else, normally? Thanx!
 

DHart

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Thanks for your comments. I play 13-56 standard pitch on all my.guitars (gorilla hands with little sensitivity) so it sounds like 14's for me. If there are nothing thicker. I love the.no loads on my Tele and Strat, and like 280k to 300k as is. So I guess it's building time! Oh, are they tunes to B or.A, or something else, normally? Thanx!
tubedude... I'm going to say it sure seems like going with the .014's is the way for you! Even they may feel a little "light" to you, as they are tuned down to B standard (2 1/2 steps below E standard). I think you would find the .013s to be too light and perhaps even a bit "floppy", by your standards.

You can also build your own custom set, which could give you even a little more "beef" than the .014 set. Perhaps build a set with .015 for the high "B" string?


https://stringjoy.com/guitarstrings/strings/electric-guitar-strings/stringjoy-custom-baritone/

Yes indeed on the No-Load tone pots!

Also, many guitar pots are not what their stated nominal spec is. Some "250k" pots measure out down closer to 210-215k. Some "500k" pots measure out closer to 430k-ish.

Best to test/measure each pot, so you know exactly what you are working with.
 
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