Carbon fiber biscuit - before/after

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Carbon fiber biscuit - before/after

Postby zhyla » Sun May 07, 2006 4:46 am

Someone asked that I post before/after clips for my Rogue brass reso that I put a carbon fiber biscuit in. I just put it in today, here you go:

http://www.soundclick.com/bands/pagemus ... dID=538074

The tone is quite a bit different and there's a bit more sustain. I'm kind of undecided about whether it sounds better than the old biscuit or not, I think it sounds fine in both cases. If you guys have some opinions I would find them interesting.

Some procedure notes for anyone considering this:

- Carbon fiber (CF) is tough but sands easily. I did the rough shaping with a sanding attachment on a dremel tool. A belt sander was recommended but this did the trick. Then I finished with sandpaper on a table top to get the thing flat.

- CF dust isn't something you want in your eyes or lungs. I did this on a balcony with a fan blowing across. Some kind of respiratory protection is a good idea. Also sharp edges and splinters are bad news too.

- The saddle part is trapezoidal and flares out quite a bit. This wouldn't fit thru the cover plate so I dremelled off the "wings". I assume Forbidden Fruit builds them wide like this for their 12 string resos.

- I slotted it with a set of uke nut files from UHS. These were cheap ($5 for the set), soft files designed to chew thru wood. Instead they get chewed up when you use them on CF. It took a while and the slots really should be deeper. But they're smooth and round and the strings don't bind in them, works for me.

Took me a couple hours but if you had good files and a belt sander I think this is about a 20 minute job. The guy who makes them was great and gave me a ton of instructions by email. He must be a really nice guy because he can't be making much profit off these things. Might as well put the URL here:

http://forbiddenguitars.com/carbonFiber ... ridge.html
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RE: Carbon fiber biscuit - before/after

Postby crowduck » Sun May 07, 2006 6:30 am

Well, you asked so, in my opinion the 'before' clip sounds best.
And this is interesting to me because I bought one of those CF biscuit/saddles, but have not installed it on anything yet. I have serious 'second thoughts' now. Thanks for posting those clips. Mine may appear on eBay in the future.

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RE: Carbon fiber biscuit - before/after

Postby allanlummox » Sun May 07, 2006 11:41 am

I'm curiious about those, but my question would be - how is the actual volume?

You might need an acomplice - someone who can listen from a distance - since a resonator guitar is a very directional sound source
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RE: Carbon fiber biscuit - before/after

Postby bluzeluvr » Sun May 07, 2006 11:53 am

I like the carbon fiber better. It has provided a much more metallic sound -- exactly what I like about metal-bodied resos compared to their wood counterparts. If that is what you were after, you succeeded.
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RE: Carbon fiber biscuit - before/after

Postby dabluz » Sun May 07, 2006 12:47 pm

thanks for being the guinea pig on this one. i've picked up two of those to have in the shop. i have one question regarding the before after. did you install new strings when re assembling the guitar after putting in the bridge. and if so were they the same manufacturer and size. i only ask this for a reference. thanks again for being our test subject, i've been reluctant to install one of these


[http://www.soundclick.com/pappad]
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RE: Carbon fiber biscuit - before/after

Postby songdog » Sun May 07, 2006 1:47 pm

Hey ZHYLA

Very interesting difference. The carbon fiber seems to give the tone a more 'bell' like quality. It's kinda hard to tell from the short clip but it sounds like maybe some fullness in the sound is sacrificed. Do you notice much difference in the bottom-end?
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RE: Carbon fiber biscuit - before/after

Postby zhyla » Sun May 07, 2006 3:30 pm

> Well, you asked so, in my opinion the 'before' clip sounds best.

Crow, that really hurts man :). You should try yours out and give us a second data point.

> I'm curiious about those, but my question would be - how is the actual volume?

It's louder, no doubt about it.

> i have one question regarding the before after. did you install new strings

I kept the same strings for this very reason. These are Ernie Ball lights and they've got 3 months of hard playing on them.

> Do you notice much difference in the bottom-end?

The lows seem more pronounced but that's something that doesn't really come thru the recordings well. My recording setup is a $15 computer mic headset, it's got filters in it that are tuned to voice frequency ranges.

One other thing, for those of you that also have Rogue's. The biscuit that came with mine looks like it put together by monkeys. The screw hole is 1/8" off center and breaks thru one side of the saddle. The intonation has always been a little off, now it's dead on.
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RE: Carbon fiber biscuit - before/after

Postby ricochet » Sun May 07, 2006 7:26 pm

It's physically pretty hard to lose lows. When something's done to enhance the highs, though, some people will perceive it as "lost lows," or "thin sound."

"A cheerful heart is good medicine."
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RE: Carbon fiber biscuit - before/after

Postby slickcat » Sun May 07, 2006 9:28 pm

Zhyla..
I agree with CrowDuck. I liked the original better. Having said that, tone is so subjective. also it could have something to do with recording level ...mike placement. It seems to have a more balanced but thinner tone to me. I also have a Rogue brass body. So far I like the tone...I have been tempted to try a national cone and biscuit but I kinda like the tone I have now.
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RE: Carbon fiber biscuit - before/after

Postby crowduck » Sun May 07, 2006 10:06 pm

You know, it's really tempting to 'play around' with modifying these reso's. Kind of like 'tinkering' with a car or motorcycle engine to make it run better, faster, smoother, etc. Unlike regular flatop acoustics, reso's have a 'bunch of parts', and are easy to 'take apart', modify, and 'put together'. Sometimes it works, sometimes not. For anyone who's mechanically savvy, like with engines and such, I think it's a good idea to disassemble their own reso, just to see 'what's in there', and how it works.........unless you've got a $2K National, then don't. It's not 'rocket science'. I've read many accounts of finding all sorts bad assembly, and poor workmanship inside these Asian reso's. I have an Epi reso that had the biscuit attached to the cone by 3 screws going through the cone into the biscuit bottom.

OTOH, sometimes they're best left 'as is'. I got an older(4 yrs) Johnson 996 painted brass body off eBay. It 'appears to have' the old asian cone w/o the embossed spirals like the newer european Continental cones, but 'who knows'. For whatever reasons, this one 'booms', and puts my other reso's, Regal, Rogue, other Johnson, to shame. So, though tempted to 'open it up', I'm leaving that one alone.

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