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Post new topic Palm levers on a 2X4 lap steel
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Author Topic:  Palm levers on a 2X4 lap steel
Dave Begalka


From:
Minnesota, USA
Post Posted 23 Jan 2012 9:37 am     Reply with quote

I thought some of you experimenters might get a kick out of this setup. After giving up on my '73 Emmons GS10 due to incompatibility with 6'7" height and size 15 feet, I found I still wanted that sound in the country songs my band plays. But, I didn't want to go the expensive store-bought route (Hipshot or Duesenberg). Probably can't get much cheaper than scrap wood, a plywood fingerboard with blue marker lines, and nails for position dots. The rest is made of scrap aluminum and leftover parts.
I took an aluminum door hinge and modified it to work as a bender tailpiece. The B and D strings go through the plate of the hinge and under the curved knuckle so that when you push the levers down the pitches are raised. The other screws limit the travel of the plate so that the B goes up to a C and the D up to an E. It works surprisingly well, stays in tune, and doesn't break strings any more often than a pedal steel. The tuning is G D G B D G low to high.
The worst part is explaining to curious folks at gigs why I'm playing old country on a souped up 2X4.







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Peter Jacobs


From:
Northern Virginia
Post Posted 23 Jan 2012 10:10 am     Reply with quote

That is insane! I love it -- great solution to your problem, and you can't beat the DIY aesthetics. I especially like that you left the stamps on the wood next to the bender. So, how's it sound?
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Peter
---------
www.splinterville.com
YouTube: https://goo.gl/tbM7Zo
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Tom Pettingill


From:
California, USA (deceased)
Post Posted 23 Jan 2012 10:19 am     Reply with quote

Hell of an idea for the bender Dave!
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Some misc pics of my hand crafted steels
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Thomas Temple


From:
Florida, USA
Post Posted 23 Jan 2012 10:44 am     Way to go Reply with quote

Dave, A great big tip of the hat to you for your ingenuity!! Would love to hear it.
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Thomas Temple


From:
Florida, USA
Post Posted 23 Jan 2012 10:45 am     Way to go Reply with quote

Dave, A great big tip of the hat to you for your ingenuity!! Would love to hear it.
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Dave Begalka


From:
Minnesota, USA
Post Posted 23 Jan 2012 11:16 am     Reply with quote

Peter Jacobs wrote:
That is insane! I love it -- great solution to your problem, and you can't beat the DIY aesthetics. I especially like that you left the stamps on the wood next to the bender. So, how's it sound?

Thanks, Peter. I was wishing there was even more of those stamps left on it.
Overall, it sounds quite good. Not quite as much sustain as most of my steels but still ok. The Bill Lawrence pickup is strong and bright--most convincing pedal steel sound is with the coils in parallel.
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Dave Begalka


From:
Minnesota, USA
Post Posted 23 Jan 2012 1:31 pm     Link to audio demo Reply with quote

Here is a link to a short audio clip. As you can hear, I'm still crawling my way up the learning curve.


http://soundcloud.com/dbegalka/01-track-1
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Thomas Temple


From:
Florida, USA
Post Posted 23 Jan 2012 7:26 pm     Reply with quote

You may be crawling up the learning curve, but you have a good grip and I wouldn't doubt home made cleats!!
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HowardR


From:
N.Y.C. & Fire Island
Post Posted 23 Jan 2012 8:17 pm     Reply with quote

I love it all!..... Very Happy
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Bill Garrett


From:
California, USA
Post Posted 23 Jan 2012 9:27 pm     Re: Link to audio demo Reply with quote

Way cool!!! I'm thinking' roller nut & bridge? Maybe a maple or mohogany deck? Great idea any way you you make it!
Dave Begalka wrote:
Here is a link to a short audio clip. As you can hear, I'm still crawling my way up the learning curve.


http://soundcloud.com/dbegalka/01-track-1
Very Happy
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Dave Begalka


From:
Minnesota, USA
Post Posted 24 Jan 2012 7:12 am     Logical place for a 2X4 Reply with quote

Thanks for all the kind words, gents.
The only excuse I have for myself is that long Minnesota winters can put strange ideas in a guy's head.
Best part about working in the 2X4 medium is there is absolutely no hesitation in bolting another piece on. Thank goodness my bandmates (and SGF brothers) have a sense of humor about my contraptions.

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Jonathan Lam


From:
Brooklyn, NY
Post Posted 24 Jan 2012 3:25 pm     Reply with quote

Awesome.
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Carl McLaughlin


From:
New Brunswick, Canada
Post Posted 24 Jan 2012 7:08 pm     Benders on 2x4 Reply with quote

Awsome,well done,for a 2x24 sounds not too shabby.I have Tom making me a new one w/ multibender,Play on..Cheers...Carl Very Happy
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Now have a Pettingill 6strg Southernbelle w benders. Tele plus telecaster, Larivee acoustic.
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Carl McLaughlin


From:
New Brunswick, Canada
Post Posted 24 Jan 2012 7:14 pm     2x4 bender Reply with quote

Where can i get one of those good looking guitar stands.LOL Carl Laughing
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Now have a Pettingill 6strg Southernbelle w benders. Tele plus telecaster, Larivee acoustic.
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Jim Davies


From:
Virginia, USA
Post Posted 25 Jan 2012 2:21 pm     Reply with quote

This is the coolest thing I've seen and heard in a long time.
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Bud Angelotti


From:
Larryville, NJ, USA
Post Posted 25 Jan 2012 7:11 pm     Reply with quote

This is awesome !
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Michael Maddex


From:
Northern New Mexico, USA
Post Posted 25 Jan 2012 8:28 pm     Reply with quote

Dave, very cool! I like it.
Cool
Two questions: What is the scale length? And what does the sticker on the headstock say?
Keep up the good work! Do Less With Less!
_________________
"For every expert, there is an equal and opposite expert." -- Arthur C. Clarke
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Peter Jacobs


From:
Northern Virginia
Post Posted 26 Jan 2012 6:35 am     Reply with quote

One more question, Dave - how'd you join the sides to the main piece -- just glue, dowels, biscuits, rebar?
_________________
Peter
---------
www.splinterville.com
YouTube: https://goo.gl/tbM7Zo
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Dave Begalka


From:
Minnesota, USA
Post Posted 26 Jan 2012 7:07 am     Reply with quote

Michael Maddex wrote:
Dave, very cool! I like it.
Cool
Two questions: What is the scale length? And what does the sticker on the headstock say?
Keep up the good work! Do Less With Less!

Thanks again, friends. Michael, the scale length is 25.5" though I bet shorter (with less tension) would be better for bending.
The sticker says Lapro. That's a brand name that was using on some lap steels with wood resonator cones I built a couple years ago. Still have remnants of that project laying around...


Just saw your post, Peter. Wish I would have thought to go with rebar but it's actually just pocket-screws. (Kreg jig)
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Michael Maddex


From:
Northern New Mexico, USA
Post Posted 26 Jan 2012 7:45 am     Reply with quote

Dave Begalka wrote:
. . . The sticker says Lapro. That's a brand name that was using on some lap steels with wood resonator cones I built a couple years ago. . . .

Thanks for the info,Dave. I thought that I recognized the 'salad bowl reso' in your avatar. Cool
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"For every expert, there is an equal and opposite expert." -- Arthur C. Clarke
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Eric Watts


From:
Indiana, USA
Post Posted 25 Nov 2016 7:46 am     Reply with quote

Dave, are you still using your 2x4 lap steel? And have you got any pictures of your "Hingebender" to see how you routed the string under the pin..
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David M Brown


From:
California, USA
Post Posted 25 Nov 2016 8:04 am     Reply with quote

Nice work - very cool to see such a DIY instrument.

that's quite a stand, too.
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Erv Niehaus


From:
Litchfield, MN, USA
Post Posted 25 Nov 2016 8:43 am     Reply with quote

If Menards doesn't have it, you don't need it! Laughing Laughing
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Bill OCallaghan


From:
Trenton, NJ USA
Post Posted 26 Nov 2016 6:22 pm     Reply with quote

That is really awesome Dave.
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Carter S-10
Morrell Little Roy Wiggins 8 string
1938? Kalamazoo KEH-150 lap steel
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