Archive for the ‘Gear Geekery’ Category

FOR SALE page added to the website!!

Monday, January 20th, 2014

Hello Everyone. Hope you are all having a fantastic New Year!!!   In that spirit we have added a new page to our website titled: FOR SALE.    You will find listed there various items all dealing with guitar parts, guitar building, and music gear that we are willing to part with (for a price) here in the shop.  If you see anything you are interested in, contact us for more info, any questions or to make an appt to meet and inspect the item.  Hope to hear from you all soon, and check back periodically as new items will be listed monthly.



New Gallery Photos: Suitcase Pedal Board.

Tuesday, March 12th, 2013

Check out the new gallery I have put up on a project that has been lying around my shop for far too long. Finally got the spark to complete it by placing all the pedals in the right order, wiring it all up, and turning on the power. Only had one bad cable, otherwise it went smooth.  The heart of it is the Voodoo Labs Pedalpower and  the Radial Loopbone. The Loopbone lets me route the tuner separately, buffers the input signal, gives two separate loops that allow me to remove pedals from the signal chain and even has a boost function.

here is a photo, check out the gallery for more pics.  Let me know what you think, and if you dig it, head to your thrift store, but a cheap old suitecase and make your own.

New Product Review: TUSQ Guitar Picks

Sunday, April 15th, 2012

This is an unofficial product review of the soon to be released guitar picks made from a material called Tusq.  They are manufactured by Graphtech, and I was able to score one quite randomly at the NAMM show in January.  I happened to be walking by their booth, and they had some samples sitting on this table to take.  I snagged one, put it in my pocket and sort of forgot about it.  About a week or two later I am digging for some change at the coffee shop, and there it was.

Anyway, the pick is really thin, and my taste has always been towards a more stiff, thicker guitar pick. I tried it out anway, and was immediately surprised at how stiff this pick was, even being thinner than I normally use.(Its the A3 size, 0.88mm)  I have being using it now almost exclusively for electric guitar playing the past month and I really like the playability overall.  I am looking forward to ordering more as I keep worrying that I am going to lose this one pick I have.

Being thinner it feels lighter and the stiffness allows fast picking without losing energy with a floppy pick.   Only downside I have noticed is that the edge of the pick seems to be wearing quite quickly. One evening I had to use an emory board to get the edge back without it snagging on the strings.

TUSQ itself is a madmade product that mimicks bone.  Its been used for many years now on guitar string nuts and acoustic guitar saddles as an alternate for standard bone, amongst other items.

Looks like they are ready to ship these out very soon, mid April, so look for them in a store near you or online.  I’d like to try the even thinner .68mm picks when they are available for general sale.

So to wrap it up:

Pros:  much stiffer material allows for a thinner pick, lighter, and faster response to picking.

Cons:  seems to wear quickly and get rough edge that can catch on the strings.

Available: After April 15th

Sizes:  0.68mm, 0.88mm, and 1.0mm

Colors: white, black, cream




History of the Wah Pedal Movie

Monday, March 28th, 2011

A friend of mine in the Drunkdude band just turned me on to this very cool video about one of guitarist’s favorite effects pedals.  If you have about an hour check it out.

Its a real live ’66 Strat

Wednesday, October 27th, 2010

Mark Salazar, drummer for The Goodes and other projects in the San Gabriel valley, brought his 1966 Stratocaster over for a string change and quick check on the setup. I couldnt resist taking a picture of it and sharing with you.  You can even see the original case in the background.   The guitar is in great shape for its age, and just about all original.  Mark tells me that last time he checked with some experts, based on the serial # that it may be a transition guitar, meaning it was made pre-CBS purchase of Fender but shipped afterwards in 1966.

The guitar was originally owned by Mark’s brother, who sadly passed away years ago, but his memory lives on for Mark in that guitar.  Its a treasured family heirloom as well it should be. 

Falling in Love with Ruby

Thursday, October 14th, 2010

I’ve worked on alot of guitars, some cool looking, some great sounding, some funky, some downright junky and everything in between.  So even if a customer brings in a higher end brand like a Gibson, Taylor, Martin, PRS for example,  and its their baby, I hope you can understand its usually just another  day in the shop, no big excitement.   But every so often there is that one guitar which gets the heart beating a little faster, starts the palms sweating like its your first school dance, makes you want to get that repair done a little sooner, so you can take some extra time to test it and really make sure it plays well,  heck, maybe even ask your customer if he wants to sell it….(ok, havent pulled that one yet.) 

Well, when this dame, er, guitar came walking through the door with its owner, Matt  who runs The New Moondog Studio’s of West Covina, I knew I was in trouble.  This was one fine looking Les Paul Deluxe; a lighter red wine glossy finish over flame maple, with mini-humbuckers, and clean all around.    Matt introduced us and said her name was Ruby. (Matt names all his guitars).  Ruby was in great shape already, she just needed a new string nut and professional setup.    After some consulation Matt decided he’d really like the look of that Vintage Bone as the string nut material to go along with the tuning pegs. 


Well, when I was finally finished installing the string nut and giving Ruby a good setup, I can say she played as well as she looked, had some great balance and felt solid just like a Les Paul should.   I really hated to see Ruby go out that door, but Matt was smiling from ear to ear knowing that she was coming back home where she belonged.   I guess that made it all worthwhile in the end.   Here is what Matt had to say about the repair job.

“The service is professional, quick and of exceptional quality. Look no farther to find your Los Angeles based luthier. Thank You Mr. Adams”

Ruby with new custom fit vintage bone string nut

Groovy Suitcase Pedal Board Project

Sunday, September 19th, 2010

There is nothing like getting back into a project that is really good idea, but has been gathering dust in the shop.  Then again it helps when you just put a moratorium in ANY new projects until the old ones either get done or get thrown out. 

This is a project I started a while back(3 years ago?  wow…) that has finally worked its way back up to the A-list of projects to complete in 2010 since its been that kind of year.   I got the idea from another website, and found a perfect suitcase for the job, $10 at a local thrift shop.  Talk about old school style.   I have all the pedals I want to use all layed out and even have the input/output cabling all layed out too.  So I am finally making some very good progress!!

Now I have figure out the best way to make the power cables that run to each unit.  Still working on that one since the wire I originally got is just too heavy duty to be able to daisy chain with the 9V power connectors I have. That is pretty much the final step unless something else unforseen comes up.   I will definitely include more updates once this project is complete.  I’ll give more details about the complete build itself, and the pedals I am have in the board.  Here are some pics.  Of course I’ve been putting the necessary stickers on the case the last couple years its been sitting in my shop.

N-Tune On Board Guitar Tuning System

Wednesday, September 1st, 2010

Now here is a really interesting bit of guitar technology that is fairly new.   Check out to see the latest in guitar tuning wizardry, a built in guitar tuner on any of your electric guitars without doing any permanent modifications to your guitar.  If you purchase this system we can install it for you.  (no affiliation with this company otherwise).

The Incredible Folding Guitar Trick

Monday, August 16th, 2010

(Before we start, do not try this at home with your standard acoustic guitar…just drop the circular saw now, Sir.)

Finally got one of these crazy folding acoustic guitars into the shop for a new bone saddle, setup and strings.  There is some great innovation and engineering on this guitar, so I couldnt help but take a few pics and share it with you. 

This guitar is made by a company called Voyage Air, I guess to showcase being able to bring this foldable guitar along in a “voyage” while being in an airplane  in the “air”.  Apparently they are very clever marketers  along with being solid design engineers. 

The guitar that came into our shop was well built, very solid once the neck was bolted to the body, and came with a neat backpack style case.  You have to make sure the strings dont get kinked when the neck is unbolted by tucking them gently into the body of the guitar, but otherwise it seems like a well thought design.  No clue what they cost.  Here is the company website in case you want more info.

Video Series: Guitar Effects and Building a Pedal Board

Thursday, July 1st, 2010

Check out this link for a  series of  videos dealing with all sort of topics concerning guitar effects pedals and building a pedal board.  You know us guitarists just cant stop buying those stomp boxes, and most of us have at least a drawer full of them. Come on admit it… I know I’m not the only one with 8 different distortion pedals, 3 flangers, 2 delays, various chorus pedals, and a few more I’ve probably forgotten. 

I always envied bass players.  They just plug right into the amp, connect amp to wall socket,  hit the power button, and BOOM, ready for the downbeat.