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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I'm selling my Gibson EDS 1275 and Ibanez RG550 20th anniversery to fund a Carvin DC127. I have 3 questions that you guys can hopefully answer.
1) What's the difference between their "matte satin" and "tung oil" finishes?
2) Since the guitar is neck-thru, will having a maple neck make it sound like it has a maple body on any other guitar? The pickups are sitting right on top of maple, so I don't know....
3) How are their Wilkinson trems, and are they floating?

Just for fun, here's my specs so far:
Mahogany OR Alder body with gloss clear quilted maple top.
Mahogany/maple 5-peice neck with tung oil finish, 12" fretboard.
Rosewood fretboard, medium-jumbo stainless steel frets and abalone dot inlays.
Quilted maple headstock overlay.
No-show neck, rounded body sides, dunlop strapolocks.
Stock C22B and C22J pickups, black coils and bezel.
Black hardware, wilkinson trem.

This thing is gonna rule!
And by the way, someone buy my Gibson! ;)
smitty
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Ok, one more question.
Is a multi-peice neck necessary to resist warping if the neck already has steel rods in it?
smitty
 

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No nitro finishes from Carvin. I like the tung oiled necks from Carvin so much that I wouldn't get any other neck from them. I would get a finish on the body, though. Because Tung oil isn't really a solid finish like poly or nitro, most people feel multiple piece necks are the way to go with tung oil for added stability. I have the tung oiled two piece mahogany neck on my 727, it is amazing, just amazing. So, in order
1. Tung oil rules, matte satin is okay, but typically a bit sticky. The satin is not nearly as nice as the oil, or a painted neck from PRS or EBMM either.
2. hmmmmm...the maple neck through does make for a bright guitar. I would suggest skipping the maple and going with something else personally. Like mahogany :D , or walnut, And definitely tung oiled
3. Don't know, sorry. they do not come with top locks for their floyds, however, because they come with Sperzel locking tuners. You need to order top locks along with the floyd if you go floyd.
4. No nitro finishes from Carvin at all
5. a multi piece neck is more resistant to warping than a single piece neck, so I'd say go multile piece and get the oiled neck.

Get the stainless frets as well, they rule. If you want a sick top, ask for one. they put the craziest stuff aside because some people return guitars with over the top tops. They have "tops" in all sorts of wood as well, so ask. They also have multiple neck radii available, so ask for the one you want (I believe 14" is what they use right now, but it changes often)

jim
 

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I have a Wilkinson/Gotoh trem and Sperzel locking tuners on the latest project, and it does NOT go out of tune! They are a lovely bridge - the best non-locking trem around in my lil' humble opinion! There really shouldn't be any problem at all setting one up as a floating trem.
 

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As a resident Carvin owner, below are my attempts to answer your question and suade you to purchase a Carvin.

1 - I think the easiest way to sum up the difference is that satin is a no gloss finish, whereas tung oil is more of a treatment. Satin will buff into a gloss finish after time and rubbing up against your arm, whereas tung oil stays matte forever.

I have tung oil on the necks of my two Carvins and wouldn't ever get another neck without it. It's really an incredible feel. The wood feels like wood rather than like a sticky or painted finish. It's really amazing.

2 - A maple neck-through will sound a little bright. I'd go with a mahogany neck with alder to smooth it out. It'll also depend on your pickup choices...a maple neck and M22SD pickup will redefine the word "shrill." A maple neck with the C22B will sound a little brighter than the average guitar, but still sound great. Personally, I'd go with a mahogany neck, alder sides, a flame maple top (with the 'no show neck' option) and a C22B.

3 - The Wilkinson trem Carvin uses is great - comparable to the EBMM JP. It does float, but not at radically as the JP, but you can pull up on it and do flutters. If you plan on doing wacky trem stuff, I'd definitely go Floyd and definitely get the locking nut. The locking nut doesn't come standard on Carvins - they come with Sperzel locking tuners (even if you order the Floyd).

I hope this helps, and I definitely encourage you to get a Carvin. You may want to swap out the pickups because I feel there a little more "classic" sounding than "modern" or "aggressive" sounding, but they're still great pickups.

I'd suggest taking a gander over at the Carvin forum (carvinbbs.com) for more insight - the guys over there are pretty helpful.

Cheers,
Dann
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks alot guys!
I emailed Carvin for the Qs, but you guys helped me out more.
Jim, is the multi radii neck 10-14"? That would make sense, and that sounds great. I'm a fan of 12" radius's, but 10-14" sounds awesome!
I'm also a fan of very warm sounds, so I'm goin mahogany/maple multi-peice (I think it's 5) neck, rosewood fretboard, and probably a mahogany, but maybe alder. That sounds like a better idea, now that I think about it. Warm and clear, with a smidge of bite from the 2 maple peices in the neck. And of course, a quilted maple top. I plan on putting a Steve's Special and an Air Norton in there, so that sounds like it'll balance out perfectly.
And I'm definitly goin Wilkinson! I've had enough of FR's forever, so yeah, Wilkinson is the way to go.
Is the black chrome hardware actually shiney though? I'm not sure which would look better...chrome or black chrome on quilted maple. Either will be awesome, and the Wilkinson and Sperzels are satin chrome, so that would look even better...It just depends on whether or not the black chrome is shiney or satiny.
So Jim, I remember you saying somewhere that you wished you had gotten a matte satin finish instead of a gloss finish on your 7 string because it's too thick and you think it "clogs" the tone? Elaborate. Because the matte satin finish sounds quite nice, especially how it changes a bit over time. And Satin always seems to resonate better to me.
Thanks again!
smitty
 

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They have different radii as options - 10, 12 (standard), 14, 20. But the compound radius is no longer offered. I have one; it was 12-15", and is awesome. Wish they still offered it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
They have different radii as options - 10, 12 (standard), 14, 20. But the compound radius is no longer offered. I have one; it was 12-15", and is awesome. Wish they still offered it.
Ah...damn.
I'm pretty used to my old JS's neck, which is about a 10", but I'm wantin something slightly flatter. Goin for the stock 12"! I would hate to try 20". Ugh...SO FLAT!! ;(
smitty
 

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hey Smitty, those sperzels in satin are not what you're really thinking....
If you ever look at a piece of plastic painted silver, that's close to a satin finish on a sperzel tuning key. Sperzel does make the tuning machines in serveral colors, so you might want to ask Carvin if they can special order them for you. Check out some of the pictures in here:

http://www.tkinstruments.com/id75.htm

Jimmy:smile:
 

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Thanks alot guys!
So Jim, I remember you saying somewhere that you wished you had gotten a matte satin finish instead of a gloss finish on your 7 string because it's too thick and you think it "clogs" the tone? Elaborate. Because the matte satin finish sounds quite nice, especially how it changes a bit over time. And Satin always seems to resonate better to me.
Thanks again!
smitty
That was kmanick. I'm actually very happy with mine as is. I've got the two piece mahogany neck, with mahogany sides and the quilt top.

jim
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
That was kmanick. I'm actually very happy with mine as is. I've got the two piece mahogany neck, with mahogany sides and the quilt top.

jim
Ah, gotcha. I think I'm gonna go with just regular clear gloss.
So is the full mahogany construction pretty dark? I love a very warm tone, but I also need clear...ness. :D Alder sounds like a good idea with the mahogany and maple neck, but whatever. How does it work out for you?
And thanks a ton dudes, this is really helping.
smitty
 

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No, it's not dark at all. Carvins tend to be overly bright anyway, and the maple neck/alder wings combo is nearly unbearable (to my ears anyway). It kills a 727 completely. I would get as much mahogany as possible and then just swap out the pickups. I wouldn't stay away from swamp ash or koa or walnut either, but I would ABSOLUTELY avoid the maple neck/alder wings combo. The real must haves are the stainless frets (I like medium jumbo, but they have plain jumbo as well), the tung oiled neck, and the extra quilty top. Order over the phone, not through the website. Ask for the most over the top wood they have if you like that, because they keep it aside. They also make the triple step stains available for all their guitars, but only the C6 gets mentioned in the catalog as having those available. They look great ;) My triple step blue 727 looks like a swimming pool, very 3D.
You may be able to get the Wilkinson with the piezos as well, if you are interested in that. That might be relegated to only certain models though, so ask on the phone. Don't bother with the active electronics, but the single taps are cool to have. The plastic cases are really tough as well, so there's no need for the tweed unless you want that particular look.
 

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Go for black hardware! If / when I get my DC727 I'll be going with cherry sunburst on a quilt top plus black hardware. It looks almost edible!
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Right on. I think I'll do triple step tigereye...always loved that finish...
that means chrome hardware then.
And what about mahogany neck and alder wings? That might be nice, like someone said. But I am a big mahogany guy. Thanks!
smitty
 
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