8/22/2015

1970s/2015 "Iron City" Modded Korean-made SG Copy




A friend of mine is in a spot and liquidating things at the moment. Among them is this cute old SG copy (Korean-made) that I'd spruced up for him in the past. Since I was sprucing it up for the second time (and this time for sale), I decided to remedy the issues that my original quick fix-up had glossed over: a failing neck pickup, a terrible tremolo unit, a cruddy bridge, and stinky tuners. It's come out of surgery and it's now rockin.

It now has good Kluson-style tuners, a simple 3-way pickup selection switch (neck, out-of-phase, bridge), new P90-in-humbucker-shell for the neck pickup, original humbucking bridge pickup, TOM-style roller-saddle adjustable bridge, and an import-style Jazzmaster tremolo installed. In short: it's hot-rodded! I prefer the neck position (who doesn't like the jazzy mwah of a P90 at the neck?) but the bridge position gives you nice sparkle and clarity with beefy mids. It's only rated at about 5.5k ohms so it has that classic humbucker sound. Playability is excellent, it's strung with 10s, and has a Gibson neck feel with 24 3/4" scale and 1 11/16" nut width.


I'm liking how the mods to this turned-out aesthetically. The body is laminate mahogany, the neck is mahogany, and the board is rosewood.


Cute inlay at the headstock, original truss cover, and new bone nut.


Bound board with shallow radius and pearloid fret markers...


The "Iron City Beer" surround hides the fact that the pickguard originally had two slider switches in this position. It's cut out of an old 70s beer can, of course -- hee hee.


The new roller bridge makes that whammy stay in tune a lot better than it otherwise would. It holds pitch pretty well -- even with brand new strings -- as long as you don't do too-much dive-bombing during performance. For folks that do a bit of "Bigsby swell" -- you'll do perfectly with it. I was thinking about chopping the arm down a bit but will leave that up to the next player.


The import-spec whammy isn't as top-drawer as an American unit but it works just fine -- and about a million times better than the original, shoddy unit that was on here. Ohhh gosh was that awful...




I popped these Kluson-style tuners on because I know that they're good, practical units. I've used them on a lot, lot, lot of guitars with no complaints.



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