Hi guys, I'm really a true newb to guitars, and i got my first guitar last week. It's an Ebony Epiphone SG special, nothing fancy, but it was relatively inexpensive and it's good for what I need right now. 2 things are bugging me about this guitar from the get go.

First, I tuned it, and it tuned up really nicely and stays in tune pretty well, but the strings buzz a bit. My cousin, who is a semi-professional player said that he wouldn't touch the bridge, but that maybe some thicker strings where in order. He said that something in the .09 gauge ballpark would be fine. I just wanted a second opinion before I jet off to guitar center to make a purchase.

Second, this guitar doesn't have a pickguard. It's not that big of a deal, but I want one because black is hard enough to keep looking decent to start off with, let alone without a guard. now, i've found a few aftermarked guards that look nice enough, but I'm apprehensive to drill holes in my brand new guitar. I'm pretty handy and know how to operate all the tools I'd need, but I just wanted to know was this mod feasible before I ordered parts?

Finally, I know that this is a low end guitar, but are there any relatively affordable ($50> things that I should invest in for the guitar that would make my time with it more enjoyable? hopefully in 18 months or so, I can upgrade to a real nice piece, but for right now it's me and the SG.

thanks in advance
Last edited by ATLstang at Mar 24, 2009,
I dont think you need to upgrade anything on your guitar.As for string buzz, you could take it to someone to have it fixed, but if its not that bad dont bother.I have no idea about pickgaurds, but I say dont bother.If you want to get a nice guitar in about a year and a quarter, dont bother tricking out your $150 guitar.
$180 dollar guitar thank you, haha. It's not so much that I want to trick it out as I don't want it to look like crap in a year no matter how cheap it cost.

I figure the string buzz can be fixed with a turn of a screw somewhere. There are several repair shops around Atlanta, but the closest/biggest is Guitar Center. How is their service? Does anybody know about how much it might cost to get them to set it up?
if your using something lower than .009's right now that probably would be the reason for your buzz. I like .010's, they just feel better to me, i can't stand how much .009's bend.

the pickguard is really just there to cover up the front side routing of certain guitars like fenders, where the electronics are put in the front not the back, and adds a little aesthetic value. with a guitar like yours (where the electronics are routed in the back) you don't need a pick guard, just don't bang your guitar around.

yeah, don't do anything to an epiphone, especially a low end one. just save your money for a better amp or a new guitar.

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Yah dont worry about any of the upgrade stuff, its really not worth your time. I have the same guitar only the cherry red. I picked it up at GC for $100 because it had a nick in the headstock. I know what you mean about the buzzing, i noticed it when i first played when i got home, but i put some Super Slinkys on it and i havent had a problem since then.
You guys are really quick. Thanks for the responses. I think i'm gonna pick up both a set of .09 and .10 strings and try both out and see how I like them.
If it has string buzz, it may need a set up. Just take it in to someone local you trust and have it set up.
The first place I would take it to locally is Guitar Center. I know each GC differs from store to store, but generally, how is their service?
No idea. I get my guitar set up by a supertrained professional that I would trust with a vintage 1959 Les Paul or a Martin from the 30's
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I gotcha. I think guitar center will be fine on my little Epi.

Thanks a ton for the help guys. I'm quickly finding out that I really know nothing about guitars.
If you bought the guitar new it should have been properly setup which means unless you are playing it very hard or not fretting the strings properly you will get very, very little if any buzz. Just take it back and let them sort it out. I got all my guitars properly setup from a good shop and they are really good to play on.

Good luck with yours.
im not spamming but i actually do describe how to fix that in my blog. and if you live in the phx area i can do it for you for cheap.

check out my diy guitar repair blog here
Last edited by aporter at Mar 25, 2009,