#1
Hello,

After many years of playing on a Strat, I switched to a Music Man JP6 last year, and love it. I'm considering buying a 7-string guitar to complement it.

I really appreciate the JP6's setup, with a floating bridge and locking tuners but no locking nut. I can push and pull the whammy bar to extremes without any tuning stability problem, and replacing the strings is a breeze.

I'd like to find a 7-string guitar with a similar system (and avoid the hassle of a Floyd Rose). Of course, there's the JP7, but it's expensive and will obviously be very similar to my current guitar. I also found some Vigier Excalibur with locking tuners, but the bridge is a Kahler that can only go up (dive bombs) and not down.

Any other model you'd know about? It's mostly to play metal, my budget is still undefined but above $2000 / 2000€. If all else fails, I'll fall back to a Floyd Rose-equipped model. Thanks.
Guitars: Music Man JP7 2009 (piezo) and JP6 2013, Fender Stratocaster US 1991
Last edited by Yuka66 at Mar 1, 2015,
#2
The problem is most (I'd guess 90% or higher) 7 strings with a trem are Floyds. If you like the setup you have now, I see no reason you wouldn't just get the JP7. If you like something, why change?

In that budget you could also go custom (Carvin would be your best bet) but they use Floyds or Hipshots for their standard bridge options.
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#3
Thanks for your answer. I may indeed end up getting a JP7, it I can find one not too expensive (like I got my JP6, at a lower price probably because of the release of the Majesty series).

As for a custom guitar, I'll consider it (I already toyed with websites like Halo Guitars) but I'm not familiar enough with some of the constitutive elements of a guitar. That's why, at least for now, I'm just looking for a regular guitar.
Guitars: Music Man JP7 2009 (piezo) and JP6 2013, Fender Stratocaster US 1991
Last edited by Yuka66 at Mar 1, 2015,
#4
Quote by Yuka66
I also found some Vigier Excalibur with locking tuners, but the bridge is a Kahler that can only go up (dive bombs) and not down.

I'm not sure what you're trying to say here... Does the Kahler only raise the pitch and not lower it? Because I'm pretty sure no such bridge exists. As far as I know all Kahler trems are floating. I'm also reasonably sure Vigier use their own trems, not Kahlers...
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#5
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'm not sure what you're trying to say here... Does the Kahler only raise the pitch and not lower it? Because I'm pretty sure no such bridge exists. As far as I know all Kahler trems are floating. I'm also reasonably sure Vigier use their own trems, not Kahlers...


I don't have first-hand experience about this, but I read that the floating bridge can only go up because the guitar's body isn't hollowed below the bridge and, in the resting position, the bridge touches the body.

And thanks for the correction about the brand of the bridge, I must have confused it with something else.
Guitars: Music Man JP7 2009 (piezo) and JP6 2013, Fender Stratocaster US 1991
#6
Quote by Yuka66
I don't have first-hand experience about this, but I read that the floating bridge can only go up because the guitar's body isn't hollowed below the bridge and, in the resting position, the bridge touches the body.

And thanks for the correction about the brand of the bridge, I must have confused it with something else.


Floating bridges are just that, floating. The physical bridge isn't connected/screwed to the guitar in any way. A Floyd is a floating bridge. It makes contact with two support pegs that are attached to the guitar. The string tension and spring tension keep the bridge level against the pegs and the pegs are the pivot point. A floyd can go up (pull up on the trem bar, the pitch raises) and down (push the bar into the body, pitch goes down.) A Kahler is also floating. The bridge sits on a barrel spring, which also acts as a pivot point. The Barrel spring is on a bracket/plate that attaches to the guitar. You can go up and down on a Kahler as well (listen to Kerry King). I think Vigier uses a similar system to a Floyd but it doen't have a locking nut or fine tuners.
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#7
Quote by Yuka66
I don't have first-hand experience about this, but I read that the floating bridge can only go up because the guitar's body isn't hollowed below the bridge and, in the resting position, the bridge touches the body.

And thanks for the correction about the brand of the bridge, I must have confused it with something else.

Oh, that makes sense. I thought you meant up in pitch, rather than physically. From looking at them the Vigier trems do indeed appear to be non-floating in which case you won't be able to raise the pitch with it. So yeah if that's not what you want that's out.

For what it's worth, like Strat trems you should be able to set them up slightly away from the body to get a small upward range, which some people dig.
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Last edited by K33nbl4d3 at Mar 1, 2015,
#9
Quote by kingjames123
Get Agile guitars. End of discussion.


Except Agiles top out around $1000, and once you get above $600-700 they don't really get any better as far as quality. He'd be much better off with a EBMM or Carvin.
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#10
Quote by TheStig1214
Floating bridges are just that, floating. The physical bridge isn't connected/screwed to the guitar in any way. A Floyd is a floating bridge. It makes contact with two support pegs that are attached to the guitar. The string tension and spring tension keep the bridge level against the pegs and the pegs are the pivot point. A floyd can go up (pull up on the trem bar, the pitch raises) and down (push the bar into the body, pitch goes down.) A Kahler is also floating. The bridge sits on a barrel spring, which also acts as a pivot point. The Barrel spring is on a bracket/plate that attaches to the guitar. You can go up and down on a Kahler as well (listen to Kerry King). I think Vigier uses a similar system to a Floyd but it doen't have a locking nut or fine tuners.

Just want to point out some guitars with Floyds can only dive, these have no routing for the bridge to pull up.
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#11
Quote by Robbgnarly
Just want to point out some guitars with Floyds can only dive, these have no routing for the bridge to pull up.

I think most are recessed these days, though, right?

Either way the Floyd issue's a moot point yet, since OP said they'd prefer to avoid Floyds and locking nuts unless there wasn't an alternative.
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#12
Quote by Yuka66


I really appreciate the JP6's setup, with a floating bridge and locking tuners but no locking nut. I can push and pull the whammy bar to extremes without any tuning stability problem, and replacing the strings is a breeze.


The trick is to have those locking tuners on the most straight-pull headstock you can find, and a very smooth nut. You want to avoid any cause for the strings to bind. Other than that, almost any guitar body/neck will do.
#13
Quote by TheStig1214
Except Agiles top out around $1000, and once you get above $600-700 they don't really get any better as far as quality. He'd be much better off with a EBMM or Carvin.


Neither the brand nor the quality levels are an issue (I've got seven Carvins and...lessee...four Agiles at the moment). If you have big bucks you have more opportunities. It's really more a case of selecting the design. From $325 to their $1299 top price, Agiles are difficult to beat, but you still have to pick the right design. Most Carvins start above $800 and can easily cruise right up past the $2K mark, and you have the same challenge. You're in good shape either way.
#14
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I think most are recessed these days, though, right?

Either way the Floyd issue's a moot point yet, since OP said they'd prefer to avoid Floyds and locking nuts unless there wasn't an alternative.

Yes most are, but not all
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2013 G&L ASAT Deluxe
2009 Epiphone G-400 (SH-4)
Marshall JCM2000 DSL100
Krank 1980 Jr 20watt
Krank Rev 4x12 (eminence V12)
GFS Greenie/Digitech Bad Monkey
Morley Bad Horsie 2
MXR Smart Gate
#15
Thanks for those answers. I'm not very familiar with some of the brands you suggested, and will find out more about them.

Any further advice is still welcome of course.
Guitars: Music Man JP7 2009 (piezo) and JP6 2013, Fender Stratocaster US 1991
#16
Small update, I spent some time on Carvin's website, they seem to have some models with a Floyd Rose bridge but no locking nut (locking tuners instead). That's a start, thanks again.
Guitars: Music Man JP7 2009 (piezo) and JP6 2013, Fender Stratocaster US 1991
#17
Just a quick follow-up. I wrote on the first post that Vigier floating bridges could only go down, not up.

I was able to play on an Excalibur Supra in a shop a few days ago, and that is in fact incorrect. The bridge can be set up to be a couple of millimeters above the body, which translates into about 1 whole tone, maybe 1 1/2, before it touches the body, since it isn't recessed.

Maybe it'll be my next guitar, maybe not... The neck felt a bit on the thick side, but then again, I'm used to the JP6, which has a paper-thin neck.
Guitars: Music Man JP7 2009 (piezo) and JP6 2013, Fender Stratocaster US 1991
Last edited by Yuka66 at Apr 11, 2015,
#18
I thought I liked thin Ibby Wizard necks, and still do, but once I got my Gibson I realized how comfortable a baseball bat neck is.

Not saying you should look out for a baseball bat neck, but just saying a little thickness isn't a bad thing
Gibson RD Silverburst w/ Lace Dissonant Aggressors (SOLD)
Electra Omega Prime Ceruse
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Amps and the like:
Laney VH100R
Seismic Luke 2x12
Dunlop 105Q Wah
Gojira FX 808
Line 6 M9
#19
Quote by TheStig1214
I thought I liked thin Ibby Wizard necks, and still do, but once I got my Gibson I realized how comfortable a baseball bat neck is.

Not saying you should look out for a baseball bat neck, but just saying a little thickness isn't a bad thing


I played for ten years on a Stratocaster, which (as I understand it) has a very thick neck, so I know about those. I'm really, really more comfortable on a thin neck. Since my guitar teacher makes me work on things like Dream Theater, Haken or Satriani, it's really no surprise.
Guitars: Music Man JP7 2009 (piezo) and JP6 2013, Fender Stratocaster US 1991
#20
Quote by TheStig1214
Except Agiles top out around $1000, and once you get above $600-700 they don't really get any better as far as quality. He'd be much better off with a EBMM or Carvin.


Agile 7-strings are difficult to find at $1000. While you can certainly find an Agile at $1000, it's likely to have more strings than 7, and a trem bridge that's virtually custom (usually a Kahler). Most of the 7-strings will be below $800, and will be excellent quality for the money.

Carvin does 7 and 8-string guitars, and has recently expanded its range in terms of custom features, but the flat guitars start at $1000 (and you can easily customize them well into $1600 and up), while the carved top start a bit above that, and can easily reach $2000.