Poll: just for looks, or a purpose
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View poll results: just for looks, or a purpose
Just for looks, looks good on some guitars
28 41%
It is to prevent scratching, but It doesnt seem to matter
35 51%
My pickguard has saved my guitar from scratches countless times
1 1%
Just for looks, but always looks terrible
5 7%
Voters: 69.
#1
So I've picked out a new guitar. After 10 minutes of oggling at it and drooling, I realized there is no pickguard. Since it is a Les Paul style guitar you'd think I would've picked up on it sooner...then I started wondering; do I really even need one?

On my fender accoustic guitar I there is a glued on black pickguard, it adds a bit to the look, but for as long as I have been playing I dont recall ever striking it with the pick. But if there wasnt even a pickguard on their it would look uglier then it does already. But what about les pausl or strats...what do you guys think:

Do you really need a pickguard, or is it just for looks on guitars that are somewhat plain, such as single color les pauls.
#2
I think the idea is that if you play in style that picguard gets some scratches, it's cheaper to replace than re-doing the finish.


But no, personally I never found any but cosmetic reasons to have one.
#3
Well on some guitars (like my strat copy) it is mainly there to secure the wiring. The pickups are also screwed onto it. I recently changed it from white to mother of pearl, just for the looks. So you could say it's for looks, or for securing the wiring
#4
On fender guitars the pups are routed from the front of the guitar and all the electronics are installed from the front, the pickguard holds the electronics in place and covers up the horrible look of the cavity routing. On cheap guitars they use something called a 'swimming pool route' which is just a big hole in the middle of your guitar really.

On Gibsons and Ibanezs the pup is routed from the front, and the control cavity is routed from the back, and the two are joined together meaning you get a classy look on the front of your guitar and a cover is required for the cavity that holds the electronics on the back of the guitar.


Some guitars have the electronics rear routed like LPs and Ibys but also add a scratch plate for looks, this is really stupid and tacky to me, as I associate a pickguard with a 'cheaper and easier' way of making a guitar.




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#5
pick guard. the name obviously says it all. could be cool to have scratches and eventually stripped paint on that area of the guitar tho. up to you.
#6
i dont think i would hit the pick guard on my les paul copy if it wasnt raised, but im afraid it is so i do hit it sometimes, but rarely
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#8
tbh, i'm not really sure.

It seems that the "older" brands (fender, gibson) have them, while "newer" (schecter, esp) do not. Or maybe it has something to do with schecter and esp being "metal" guitars?
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#9
i think a pickguard adds to the looks in the les paul case, but if i was playing death metal id probably lose the pickguard.
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#10
is my pick just super floppy or are your picks just super hard?
My guitar has no pick guard, and there are no scratches, hell i dont even know if i could hit the guitar if i tried :s
#11
I never play in the style where I'd hit the guitar. It usually looks terrible to me on electric guitars.
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#12
I think that people who take them off are dumb, because they leave gaping holes in the guitar. LP's made without pickguards look OK.
#14
As much as it doesn't seem it, any guitar I've had which has a pickguard, ends up with countless amounts of pick scratches on the pickguard, and my few without pickguard have slight scratches on the body finish. But with Fenders (Strats and Teles mainly) and the Pickguarded Ibanez' (like the JEMs and the RG550) they're used to hold the electronics.
#15
I took mine off my Les Paul to se what it looked like, and i liked it much more. I never stum widely so i dont really need it. I prefer guitars without scratchplates tbh, looks less crowded on the front.
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#16
It looks good on some guitars, but to be honest, I play like a madman when playing rhythm, there's very little scratching on my pickguard on my strat or the body of my PRS copy. If you liked it, just get it, pickguards are really just for looks and to cover electronics sometimes IMO.
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#17
I would find it hard to hit an LP with my pick seeing as the top begins to curve away from the strings... Where as on flat top guitars I could see a need for it... my strat pickguard has a few streaks along it along with my acoustic, but my LP has nothing, so recently I have taken it off
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#18
Quote by Absent Mind
On fender guitars the pups are routed from the front of the guitar and all the electronics are installed from the front, the pickguard holds the electronics in place and covers up the horrible look of the cavity routing. On cheap guitars they use something called a 'swimming pool route' which is just a big hole in the middle of your guitar really.

On Gibsons and Ibanezs the pup is routed from the front, and the control cavity is routed from the back, and the two are joined together meaning you get a classy look on the front of your guitar and a cover is required for the cavity that holds the electronics on the back of the guitar.


Some guitars have the electronics rear routed like LPs and Ibys but also add a scratch plate for looks, this is really stupid and tacky to me, as I associate a pickguard with a 'cheaper and easier' way of making a guitar.

this. +1