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 Gretsch Differences

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BluesSinger212

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PostSubject: Gretsch Differences   Tue Aug 05, 2008 12:54 am

Ok, so we know that Brian's axe was '59 Gretsch 6120, but what's the difference between the 5120, 5127, and the 5129 Electromatics, besides the back and sides of the 5127 and 5129 being black? Mind you I am a guitar novice of sorts...I know the basics and who played what and how, and sometimes I can pick out what guitar is which (ie a Strat vs a Tele, or pickout a B.B. King song before he even sings), however I couldn't play worth a damn Embarassed I know that a lot of folks here fix up the 5120's to play and look like Brian's, but is it really the guitar itself or more of the hardware? Be gentle in your answers Laughing

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PS: Pardon my ignorance, but what is meant by "Electromatic"? scratch
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JonGill



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PostSubject: Re: Gretsch Differences   Tue Aug 05, 2008 1:46 am

electromatic is just there name for the run of the mill base models basically.. electromatics just that cool 50's scifi kind of a name and since pickups are about magnets..... might have something to do with it..... just guessin though!

hard ware is going to have some to do with though without a doubt. i've noticed the electromatics dont hold tune very well when your usin that bigsby but the higher end models do a great job of stayin in shape. and also its all about pickups to Smile they have there differences but they all deliver that "great gretsch sound" tv jones though...... godly pickups.
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radioclash



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PostSubject: Re: Gretsch Differences   Tue Aug 05, 2008 1:56 pm

BluesSinger212 wrote:
Ok, so we know that Brian's axe was '59 Gretsch 6120, but what's the difference between the 5120, 5127, and the 5129 Electromatics, besides the back and sides of the 5127 and 5129 being black? Mind you I am a guitar novice of sorts...I know the basics and who played what and how, and sometimes I can pick out what guitar is which (ie a Strat vs a Tele, or pickout a B.B. King song before he even sings), however I couldn't play worth a damn Embarassed I know that a lot of folks here fix up the 5120's to play and look like Brian's, but is it really the guitar itself or more of the hardware? Be gentle in your answers Laughing

Wink

PS: Pardon my ignorance, but what is meant by "Electromatic"? scratch

Electromatic series is basically the Gretsch budget line, much like Gibson has its Epiphone line.

The quality in build is vastly different from a Gretsch "Pro" series instrument.

A 5120 isn't even constructed in the same manner as Brian's '59. Inner bracing is entirely different..

And the difference between the 5120 and the 5127/5129 models is that the 5120 has Gretsch humbucking pickups, while the 5127/29 uses Dynasonic single coil pickups.

Differences between an actual Setzer 6120 and the Elctromatic 5120 parts-wise is like night and day. Top wiring, components, and hardware in the Setzer, and budget gear in the Electromatic.
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BluesSinger212

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PostSubject: Re: Gretsch Differences   Tue Aug 05, 2008 6:37 pm

One of the reasons I asked was because I found a 5127 on an auctionsite for $31.00 Shocked . It's light blue...almost like a powder blue, but I assumed that it could be "fixed up" to something like Brian's. So am I correct to assume that the 5120 is to the 6120 as Squire is to Fender scratch ?

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Eddie Lee

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PostSubject: Re: Gretsch Differences   Tue Aug 05, 2008 8:34 pm

I have a red 5129. Yes, they are the "affordable" line of Gretsch guitars and shortcuts have to be made in order to achieve the price. The bridge, pickups and tuning machines are all "economy" versions as well as the switches and potentiometers. Mine plays well but I have installed Planet Waves locking machines, and I replaced the bridge with a roller style. This cured the dreadful bigsby tuning problems of this particular guitar, although the nut may get replaced soon also. The DeArmond (single-coil) pickups are ok but as sc pups, they are very noisy unless the middle selector switch position is used. I plan on replacing them with TV Jones pups, wiring and pots. Probably in the Hot Rod circuit variation.
The interior bracing is different as well. The neck on mine is right-on and plays very well. I did have to adjust the truss rod for a wee bit more relief in order to get rid of some middle-fret buzzing. No biggie.
All in all, I would rather play this guitar with Mr. Setzer's ability than to play a 6120 with mine, but, well, there you go! Remember: He would scorch the earth on the cheapest POS axe available! Shocked
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