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Rickenbacker 360/12 Advice Needed! Modular Synthesizers
Old 27th January 2010
  #1
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dannygold's Avatar
 

Rickenbacker 360/12 Advice Needed!

Can you realistically string these both as 6 or 12s? Certainly the neck is narrow enough to work as a 6. What about setup issues? Would it require a setup to make the change do you think? What about neck tension... would I have to use heavier strings when strung as a 6 to match the tension of 12?

I have wanted one of the these for like 20 years and I think I might just have to suck it up and buy one.
Old 27th January 2010
  #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dannygold View Post
Can you realistically string these both as 6 or 12s? Certainly the neck is narrow enough to work as a 6. What about setup issues? Would it require a setup to make the change do you think? What about neck tension... would I have to use heavier strings when strung as a 6 to match the tension of 12?

I have wanted one of the these for like 20 years and I think I might just have to suck it up and buy one.
It will work, you might use a slightly heavier set of 6 strings as you mentioned. To be honest I doubt you will change the configuration from 12 to 6 strings often though.
In the 60's Rickenbacker made 12 strings with a comb like feature which pushes the strings down on the frets to convert it into a regular 6 strings. It was not really successful though.
here:
Vintage Guitars Info - Rickenbacker vintage guitars collecting Rickenbacher
Old 27th January 2010
  #3
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I think you could string it up as a 6 string, it would need the trussrods adjusted though. I was adjusting mine last night, it is a very sensitive adjustment. Having 2 trussrods seems a good idea if your neck warps, but I find a single rod is easier to adjust. Ric designed the neck to be absolutely flat, with no relief. I set my necks this way anyways, but it requires frequent tweaking. I find that you cant get the 2 sides of the neck the same, the bass side always has a little relief when the treble side is perfectly flat, I guess this is from the torque of tightening the rods, all my guitars seem to be like this. I love my 360/12, I just got it in October.
VP
Old 27th January 2010
  #4
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I wouldn't recommend buying one of those thinking you can use it just as well as a 6 string guitar.

They work best as 12 stringers, when you use the 12 saddle bridge; with that bridge and only 6 strings on the guitar, you'll get rattles. And of course the strings aren't spaced quite right on the fingerboard if you're only using 6 of them, unless you're willing to mod the nut, which means losing the 12 string functionality (defeating the purpose of getting that instrument) and then you're carrying around extra tuning machines (which can rattle) or at least looking at extra holes in the headstock.
Old 27th January 2010
  #5
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The neck is kinda' kookie feeling as it is, so why would you want to play one as a 6 string?

I have to say that a Rickenbacker 360 is probably one of the most awkward feeling necks for any "cool" GTR there is.

An interesting story about getting the classic Rick 360 12-string sound:

I once worked with a guy that would go to any length to get the sound he wanted.
The guy had a Neve 8058, all of the best and coolest outboard, a fantastic vintage and boutique mic collection as well as quite a nice vintage guitar and amp collection.
Once we were trying to get the classic Ricky 360 sound and were using mostly his Fender tweeds and other '50s and '60s amps.
Nothing was exactly right sounding until he brought in a '62 Vox AC-30 TD Top Boost he had at his house.
THAT is the magical combination.
We immediately had the Rick 360 12-string sound that you have heard on all of the classic recordings.
That GTR with the "boxey" and "glassy" sound of the AC30 was THE combination.
Old 27th January 2010
  #6
Quote:
Originally Posted by dbbubba View Post
The neck is kinda' kookie feeling as it is, so why would you want to play one as a 6 string?

I have to say that a Rickenbacker 360 is probably one of the most awkward feeling necks for any "cool" GTR there is.

An interesting story about getting the classic Rick 360 12-string sound:

I once worked with a guy that would go to any length to get the sound he wanted.
The guy had a Neve 8058, all of the best and coolest outboard, a fantastic vintage and boutique mic collection as well as quite a nice vintage guitar and amp collection.
Once we were trying to get the classic Ricky 360 sound and were using mostly his Fender tweeds and other '50s and '60s amps.
Nothing was exactly right sounding until he brought in a '62 Vox AC-30 TD Top Boost he had at his house.
THAT is the magical combination.
We immediately had the Rick 360 12-string sound that you have heard on all of the classic recordings.
That GTR with the "boxey" and "glassy" sound of the AC30 was THE combination.
Danny, as usual is spot on. Those necks I can't play. They are wide on the sides to accomidate the dual truss rods creating a bump my hand hits.

I also had a similar recording situation. Local guys were doing Karaoke tracks many years ago and needed a classic Beatle's sound. None of my modified amps cut it until they rented an AC-30 top boost. Instant Beatlemania!

Jim Williams
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