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Post new topic Aluminum Weissenborn, Just finished
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Author Topic:  Aluminum Weissenborn, Just finished
W. Johnson


From:
Oregon, USA
Post  Posted 15 Jul 2019 6:06 pm    
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Just finished this one: Aluminum Weissenborn, 22 1/2" scale C6 tuning.










Wayne
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I build custom non-pedal steel guitars, from aluminum.
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Erv Niehaus


From:
Litchfield, MN, USA
Post  Posted 16 Jul 2019 7:27 am    
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I'd sure like to hear what that sounds like. Very Happy
Erv
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Jack Hanson


From:
San Luis Valley, USA
Post  Posted 16 Jul 2019 7:48 am    
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Erv Niehaus wrote:
I'd sure like to hear what that sounds like.

Me too. One question: Why the slanted bridge saddle?
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Bill Groner


From:
QUAKERTOWN, PA
Post  Posted 16 Jul 2019 8:41 am    
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Warren, your builds get better each time! NICE!
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W. Johnson


From:
Oregon, USA
Post  Posted 16 Jul 2019 9:54 am    
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Jack Hanson wrote:
Erv Niehaus wrote:
I'd sure like to hear what that sounds like.

Me too. One question: Why the slanted bridge saddle?


Others might be better able to answer the question. Anway.......

Here is a short answer I clipped from elsewhere:

The angle is there to improve the intonation. If you've ever set the intonation on an electric guitar with individually-adjustable saddles, you'd see that the bass strings are slightly longer than the treble strings. This is due to the gauge of the strings: heavier strings need to be slightly longer than lighter-gauge strings.

I do not always angle the saddle (compensated saddle), especially on regular lap steels. I think we are visual at the fret and also use our ear. If it's off a few pennies one way or the other we compensate with the bar.

Wayne
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W. Johnson


From:
Oregon, USA
Post  Posted 16 Jul 2019 10:02 am    
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Erv Niehaus wrote:
I'd sure like to hear what that sounds like. Very Happy
Erv


Here is a sound clip, an acoustic recording, of another aluminum Weissenborn guitar I built, which was about the same (same scale, same tuning, same fingerboard), and sounds identical to this one:

http://elektrolumens.com/Innovativeguitars/MusicFilesMP3/AL-Weissenborn-JR-Acoustic-3.MP3

When I build a longer scale, 24" or 25", and tuning is open G or open D, with a wood fingerboard, tone is very mellow, very different from the C6 tuning.

Generally speaking, many, or most, Weissenborn lap steels are limited on what tuning you can use, do to string tension issues. C6 is a tuning not normally used on a Weissenborn, as it may damage the guitar.

Wayne
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Erv Niehaus


From:
Litchfield, MN, USA
Post  Posted 16 Jul 2019 10:48 am    
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It really doesn't sound like a regular Weissenborn, I like it though, good sustain. Very Happy
Erv
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W. Johnson


From:
Oregon, USA
Post  Posted 16 Jul 2019 2:37 pm    
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Erv Niehaus wrote:
It really doesn't sound like a regular Weissenborn, I like it though, good sustain. Very Happy
Erv
No, doesn't sound like a Weissenborn, at all, especially C6 tuning. A few musicians who have purchased one told me they are looking for a unique sound. Yes, it does have very good sustain.

I am wondering what a brass Weissenborn will sound like?

Wayne
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Jeff Highland


From:
New South Wales, Australia
Post  Posted 16 Jul 2019 4:15 pm    
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W. Johnson wrote:
Erv Niehaus wrote:
I'd sure like to hear what that sounds like. Very Happy
Erv




Generally speaking, many, or most, Weissenborn lap steels are limited on what tuning you can use, do to string tension issues. C6 is a tuning not normally used on a Weissenborn, as it may damage the guitar.

Wayne


Having built a few timber Weissenborns, I would see this as a common misconception. Generally a standard 25" scale Weissenborn will be able to handle any normal lap tuning as long as the appropriate string guage is selected. The Guitar does not care what the open notes are, it is affected by the tension in the strings.
Putting on a set of strings designed for a short scale electric lap in C6 may certainly be detrimental, but drop the guages down and you are fine.
And certainly don't try to tune up the open D set of 56-16 to C6 (that set is too much even for open D on Most)
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W. Johnson


From:
Oregon, USA
Post  Posted 16 Jul 2019 5:06 pm    
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Jeff Highland wrote:
W. Johnson wrote:
Erv Niehaus wrote:
I'd sure like to hear what that sounds like. Very Happy
Erv




Generally speaking, many, or most, Weissenborn lap steels are limited on what tuning you can use, do to string tension issues. C6 is a tuning not normally used on a Weissenborn, as it may damage the guitar.

Wayne


Having built a few timber Weissenborns, I would see this as a common misconception. Generally a standard 25" scale Weissenborn will be able to handle any normal lap tuning as long as the appropriate string guage is selected. The Guitar does not care what the open notes are, it is affected by the tension in the strings.
Putting on a set of strings designed for a short scale electric lap in C6 may certainly be detrimental, but drop the guages down and you are fine.
And certainly don't try to tune up the open D set of 56-16 to C6 (that set is too much even for open D on Most)


Thanks for the input.

Using lighter gauge strings on the Weis makes a lot of sense. I'm using .016, .019, .022, .024N, .030N, .038N on this guitar.

I've done the open D and open G with heavy gauge strings, work fine on 25" scales I make.

I've seen an 8 string Weissenborn, which is really what I want myself. I wanted to build a few 6 strings first. I may do a 7 string, then an 8. I also want to do a 12 string Weissenborn. I like the sound of an acoustic 12 string, (octaves on the lower strings, doubling up on the higher), Don't know how it might work out?

I very much like the wood Weissenborn, I did have one and really regret selling it. I may get another one some time.

Wayne
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Erv Niehaus


From:
Litchfield, MN, USA
Post  Posted 17 Jul 2019 6:06 am    
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They're hard to get ahold of, but some years ago I bought a set of strings for my Weissenborn that were supposed to get up to pitch with less tension.
They were specifically design for a lighter built guitar like a Weissenborn.
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Stephen Cowell


From:
Round Rock, Texas, USA
Post  Posted 17 Jul 2019 7:07 am    
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Erv Niehaus wrote:
They're hard to get ahold of, but some years ago I bought a set of strings for my Weissenborn that were supposed to get up to pitch with less tension.
They were specifically design for a lighter built guitar like a Weissenborn.


I tried a set of those... just too loose. It takes a very light touch to play strings that loose. I forget the name.
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W. Johnson


From:
Oregon, USA
Post  Posted 17 Jul 2019 7:54 am    
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Erv Niehaus wrote:
They're hard to get ahold of, but some years ago I bought a set of strings for my Weissenborn that were supposed to get up to pitch with less tension.
They were specifically design for a lighter built guitar like a Weissenborn.


Generally speaking, I think it's best to have good tension on the strings, as much as is reasonably possible, for the scale and the tuning. It makes a difference in tone, sustain, intonation, etc. I am by no means an expert on the subject, but, I have noticed a lap steel, to my ears, sounds better with a fair amount of tension. Strings with low tension just don't sound good to me.

Related to the aluminum Weissenborn, if a person wants to play an acoustic lap steel, and, wants to, there are more tuning opportunities.

Wayne
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I build custom non-pedal steel guitars, from aluminum.
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W. Johnson


From:
Oregon, USA
Post  Posted 17 Jul 2019 7:55 am    
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Erv Niehaus wrote:
It really doesn't sound like a regular Weissenborn, I like it though, good sustain. Very Happy
Erv


One musician who has one of my Aluminum Weissenborn guitars, plays Hawaiian music, and has the same C6 tuning I'm using here, told me that there are some songs he would play this guitar on, other songs it may not be appropriate and he would not use it. Just depends on the song. He has four wood Weissenborn guitars, and 4 or 5 of my aluminum lap steels (I lost count).

Wayne
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W. Johnson


From:
Oregon, USA
Post  Posted 17 Jul 2019 8:02 am    
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Here is a short recording of this Aluminum Weissenborn, in the extreme high register. I never go below fret 15, and some of it is beyond the fingerboard to the center of the sound hole. Just goofing around, but it does show the sustain, and the tone up there. I'm playing through a small 25 watt Squire amp, and recording with a handheld voice recorder.

http://elektrolumens.com/Innovativeguitars/MusicFilesMP3/Extreme-Register-LM.MP3

Wayne
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I build custom non-pedal steel guitars, from aluminum.
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W. Johnson


From:
Oregon, USA
Post  Posted 27 Jul 2019 10:45 am    
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Jack Hanson wrote:
Erv Niehaus wrote:
I'd sure like to hear what that sounds like.

Me too. One question: Why the slanted bridge saddle?


Here is photo of subsequent build, a 24" scale tuned open E, I did not slant the bridge saddle:






And here is a link to a video of the 24" scale:

Aluminum Weissenborn Youtube Video:

https://youtu.be/yvofA-i5LSY

On the 24" open E aluminum Weissenborn, the customer told me that he wants to try open E, as he cannot get this tuning on his wood Weissenborn guitars. String gauges, #6 is .054", #1 string is .016".

Wayne
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Mark Helm


From:
Tennessee, USA
Post  Posted 8 Aug 2019 5:04 pm     Ooooooh, sexy
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I think I would sleep with that guitar Laughing
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