Electromatics

new gretsch g5420

1

Hello, Today i've seen a gorgeous red 5420 with gold hardware. I can't find any picture of this new model. I've seen it in a Paris music store.

2

It's probably the new candy apple red version you spotted, Didier. It is very nice indeed.

4

A friend recently got an Aspen Green one -- very good looking (no one is interested in his strat or Gibsons when he gigs), well playing and good sounding. I had my '58 Streamliner over a few days ago and the Electro compared quite favorably.

5

nice

cheers

– neatone

yes it's this one. i've an orange one and i don't like the pickups

6

Very nice guitar but can someone please explain why the bridge, which is pinned, isn't lined up correctly - perpendicular to the strings?? If it was a bar bridge I can see angling it for a degree of intonation but this is an AOM which of course is fully adjustable for intonation.

7

Very nice guitar but can someone please explain why the bridge, which is pinned, isn't lined up correctly - perpendicular to the strings?? If it was a bar bridge I can see angling it for a degree of intonation but this is an AOM which of course is fully adjustable for intonation.

– Windsordave

That is standard practice. Here is my Epiphone Casino.

8

My previous Gibson Les Paul also came with a slanted bridge.

9

Sorry, standard stupidity in my book. My '76 Super Axe, '98 6120, 71 Super Chet & '98 Gibson Gent all came with an AOM of varying styles and none of them have the bridge/base offset. This can be needed with a bar bridge, devoid of any ability for adjustment as I mentioned, but is completely unnecessary with an AOM that's fully adjustable. And it's not friggin' cute either. Makes me think someone smacked it and moved it off-kilter.

I just reviewed the Gretsch website and the pics show bridge/base alignment all over the map!!! They have AOM's that are both straight (perpendicular to the strings) & slanted and most all bar bridges dead straight! Space controls tend to be straight too and they could be slanted. The factory can't even be consistent! What do they do; flip a coin - heads it's straight, tails it's slanted?

10

I agree with you, Windsordave. For a floating wooden bridge, the base should NOT be tilted relative to the body centerline. In fact, you need to make sure the feet of the base are sanded to match the top of the guitar, and that is much easier if the base is perpendicular to the centerline. The AOM (or TOM) bridge saddles should have enough adjustment to accommodate the compensation required for your chosen string set. I've not have a problem with my 6120N or 6120DSW.

Now if you mount the AOM/TOM directly to the top, as is done with Les Pauls and Casinos, you can align the bridge such that its midline is slanted back about 1/8". This enables the adjustments to be smaller such that each saddle is closer to the bridge midline. This isn't always necessary, however, but may be helpful if you use really heavy strings.

11

A floating bridge that's pinned at an angle = factory second?

12

These are great guitar for not a lot of money. Played the blue, orange and white one at GC the other day. Great tones all around.

13

Very nice guitar but can someone please explain why the bridge, which is pinned, isn't lined up correctly - perpendicular to the strings??

But Dave...I don't consider that correct at all. I consider a location perpendicular to the strings to be wrong as all git-out. There's a particular bridge orientation, with the bass side slightly aft of the treble, which, in the peculiar geometry of the guitar, is blessed by the God of Physics as providing the best possible intonation across all strings when using a straight bridge. It's seen in acoustic guitars going back to yea these ages past, and was sensibly brought forward into the age of jazz guitars, and then early electrics.

It was the only possible position for the straight-line bridges of the time (as is seen in the saddle position of every acoustic guitar made), and it - not coincidentally - provides the maximum usable fore-and-aft movement of individual saddles on adjustable bridges.

Gibson - and all those countless brands and offshoots which have taken their cues (and designs) from Gibson - sensibly places their FIXED STUDS (as well as floating bases) at that ages-honored position - even when those guitars are Tunamatic-equipt from the factory. This gives the customer the opportunity to use any kind of bridge he wants without undue pain and suffering, and with the most accurate intonation. (Naturally, at the slight compromise a straight line imposes, usually on the G-string.)

Gretsch has followed suit on most models, most of the time. Please show me a Gretsch with FIXED posts into the top which are NOT at the slight offset. An argument that any guitar with a floating base came with it positioned perpendicular to the strings is weak: anything might have been done by a shop or later owner/seller.

To my recollection, every new Gretsch I've bought with a floating bridge has been set up with the angle - certainly those with straight-line (rocking bar or Space Control) bridges (as necessary for intonation), but the Melita and Adjusta models as well. This applies particularly to pro-series Gretschs with pinned bases: they are, properly, at what is essentially the industry-standard biased position. (I can't swear this is a factory or design rule; it's just been my experience.)

Again, that makes sense: that angled line provides the best straight-line intonation.

Some Gretsch models vary from that practice: notably the fixed-bridge Electromatic Jets and CVT (where the bassward offset is too extreme), and the 5400 Secured-Bridge models, where - for whatever reason - bases are affixed to the top in the perpendicular position. (Korean centerblock Electromatics, on the other hand, use the same offset as pro series instruments.)


I'll acknowledge that it's no one's problem but mine that I try to provide aftermarket bridges to fit (and intonate properly on) any Gretsch. We've had to develop specific Tru-Arc models for those two series of guitars in order to provide accurate intonation along with the other benefits (if you see it that way) of a one-piece, radius-friendly bar bridge. It's made them more expensive than they would otherwise have to be (and complicated my inventory and shipping situation as well).

Again - who cares about my problem. I readily admit I'm not neutral in this discussion. I have a dog in the fight. I have a bias - for bridge bases set at the proper bias. I don't think my position is entirely subjective or self-interested, however: I think it's an objectively defensible position that a guitar's design and specification ought to honor the inherent physics governing string length for accurate tuning, and at the same time afford the buyer the greatest possible latitude to conveniently change an essential component of the instrument.

In a market steeped in tradition, the time-honored offset position of the bridge is one element (among others) that, it seems to me, has earned its keep. That applies whether or not I make bridges.

The first time in then-38 years of fooling around with electric guitars (6 of them doing setups and tech work in a music store) that I ever saw the notion floated that bridges should be positioned at a perfect right angle to the strings (rather than the angle that lets the guitar play in tune) was here on the GDP, by a now-departed member who thought it "looked better that way" (and so, to him, was obviously correct).

Either that perspective seems to have been adopted by a surprising proportion of the Gretsch community - or I was just blind and stupid for 38 (now 47) years. (That's a prospect I'm willing to entertain. Someone set me straight.)


In fact, you need to make sure the feet of the base are sanded to match the top of the guitar, and that is much easier if the base is perpendicular to the centerline.

I respectfully differ. You're sanding a piece of wood; its rotational position on the top seems irrelevant to the ease of the operation.


I just reviewed the Gretsch website and the pics show bridge/base alignment all over the map!!! They have AOM's that are both straight (perpendicular to the strings) & slanted and most all bar bridges dead straight! Space controls tend to be straight too and they could be slanted. The factory can't even be consistent! What do they do; flip a coin - heads it's straight, tails it's slanted?

Dave, Dave. Methinks you exaggerate a wee bit. Whatever might be done for photo sessions (where, who knows, someone may think straight-across just naturally looks better), let's not blame the factory. Bar bridges and Space Controls obviously have to be angled slightly to provide adequate intonation, as indeed they are on all properly set-up Gretschs I've seen.

And yeah, some AOMs are slanted too far - and some are straight across - as per my diatribe above. I do find those problematic. But, again again, I've yet to see an AOM on a Pro-Series Gretsch which is misplaced in either of those ways. They adhere to the widespread (and logical) industry practice: a slight angle.

Bolting a base down perpendicular to the strings condemns a guitar to a lifetime of adjustable bridges - or the need for compensation profiles designed expressly for that (heretofore unusual) position.

14

A friend recently got an Aspen Green one -- very good looking (no one is interested in his strat or Gibsons when he gigs), well playing and good sounding. I had my '58 Streamliner over a few days ago and the Electro compared quite favorably.

– lx

it's my second G5420T the first one was aspen green look great but sound poor. I've trade it with a stratocaster. Few months ago i've buy another 5420 (ridiculous price) but the sound is the same, flat, lack of power, no twang.

15

I need to the pull trigger on a 5420. I love the tone and especially on just the neck pup. Awesome guitar, quality and reasonably priced!

16

it's my second G5420T the first one was aspen green look great but sound poor. I've trade it with a stratocaster. Few months ago i've buy another 5420 (ridiculous price) but the sound is the same, flat, lack of power, no twang.

– DIDIER D

What amp are you running the 5420 through?

17

it's my second G5420T the first one was aspen green look great but sound poor. I've trade it with a stratocaster. Few months ago i've buy another 5420 (ridiculous price) but the sound is the same, flat, lack of power, no twang.

– DIDIER D

Swap them pickups for some single coils for twang.

18

What amp are you running the 5420 through?

– Baiff

Fender Blues junior or Fender Blues Deluxe

19

Swap them pickups for some single coils for twang.

– BuddyHollywood

i've a pair of DeArmond 2000 but it's not easy to put it in the space of the original black filtertron

20

nice

cheers

– neatone

Purty. I've sorta been eyeballing a 5422 in the amber stain. I think it would look awesome with this gold hardware, but I've never seen one so attired.

21

Hello, Today i've seen a gorgeous red 5420 with gold hardware. I can't find any picture of this new model. I've seen it in a Paris music store.

– DIDIER D

These new 5420's are nice, I upgraded mine, I think the pickups are ok, but they can vary from guitar to guitar, my fairlane blue one sounds good on them. Changing to a USA B6C was an improvement and also a roller bridge by Vanson.

22

Very nice guitar but can someone please explain why the bridge, which is pinned, isn't lined up correctly - perpendicular to the strings?? If it was a bar bridge I can see angling it for a degree of intonation but this is an AOM which of course is fully adjustable for intonation.

– Windsordave

There isn't enough adjustment on the bridge elements to cover the range required for perpendicular mounting. It's also a good idea to average out the mounting pins to minimize any tendency for the bridge to tilt one way or the other.

Lee

23

I just sprung for a 5420t CAR earlier today. Bought it from Joel@ Shanghai.... played a black one at GC and really liked the feel and sound. My new Gretsch should get here a week from tomorrow....the waiting is the hardest part.

Next will be an amplifier...I'm thinking 65 PRRI with 12" Eminence Cannabis Rex speaker...Sweetwater exclusive.


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