#1
Thinking of buying a Gibson flying V, but I haven't had the opportunity to try one. Anyone with experience playing one have or know about any particular downsides to it? By that I mean in reference to how the V shape may affect its playability and balance as opposed to the standard sg or lp shape.

I'm asking because I bought a Thunderbird bass not too long ago because I thought the unique shape was awesome, like I do with the flying V, but I didn't take into account how bad the neck dive was because of the poor balance and how annoying it became to play even sitting down.

The nearest store where I can try one is over an hour by car from my house so I'd like to get some preliminary advice before going on the long trip to try it.

thanks
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#3
Well do you play sitting down? Cause that's really the only time you'll run into much problem. Most people tend to play classical style when seated because V's tend to be uncomfortable if you try to play it in a traditional fashion. Standing up, you won't have any issues IMO.


I've owned a few flying Vs in my time and I have not had a single problem with neck dive. YMMV though.
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#4
I found my Flying V the most comfortable to play guitar. I have been on the look out for another V ever since (going to buy the new Hinds Epi). Playing the guitar standing felt just fine and comfortable, but it should be noted that if you play sitting down you will want to hold it in classical position for best comfort.
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#5
I think I'm in the minority because I can't play any guitar sitting down; I always have to stand to play. I have a Dean V that's pretty comfortable to play standing up and the balance is good (no neck dive or anything like that). I have noticed two small things. 1. the lower wing feels a little weird pressing on my right leg since none of my other guitars have anything that hangs that low. Not a problem, but it feels funny for a bit after not playing the V for a while. 2. I learned to be careful when turning since I was always watching out for the neck possibly hitting something (like any other guitar), but often missed the bottom wings running into something nearby. Not enough to damage the guitar, but I learned to be even more vigilant before turning if I have the V on.
#6
I played one of the new Gibson 2016 Flying V's at my local store a few months ago. I have no issues playing with it in a classical position, in fact I'm considering playing that way regularly. With my explorer, the body shape is comfortable when resting on my right leg but I find my right shoulder get's fatigued picking because of the position. In the classical position my shoulders are more relaxed and that might benefit my technique. So with a V I'd have no choice but to play that way. I have however seen people like Zakk Wylde put what looks like some sort of black strip on the guitar perhaps to play in the causal position?

Either way, I am also getting a Hinds Flying V as I'm a huge Mastodon fan. Should be here this Friday or next Monday at the latest hopefully. I just shipped out my Explorer to Epiphone for repair so I'm stuck with my acoustic until one of the two arrives.
#7
no issues standing, sitting crunched up for a long period of time might bunch your man parts (if so equipped).

og gibsons used to have a silly ribbed rubber strip on the bottom edge. like they thought that would do some good. not really.

they are at their best when standing. 99% fretboard access (my rrxmg at least), pointy edges keep stage divers at range, total freedom for high-risk stage moves, and your hands go to where they need to be with nothing in the way.
Last edited by ad_works at Apr 21, 2016,
#8
Thanks for the positive feedback this is what I was really hoping for. I have no problem playing in classical position, I actually prefer it to standard so if people have no problem playing it sitting down that's great. It might feel a little different to play standing up but that's not a problem either, I just thought the odd shape would give it a major neckdive.

I still have to try it before buying it but I guess from the comments it's worth a shot, though I'm still open to hearing any negative aspects it may have that I should consider.

Thanks for the current replies
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#9
Quote by ad_works at #33937117
no issues standing, sitting crunched up for a long period of time might bunch your man parts (if so equipped).

og gibsons used to have a silly ribbed rubber strip on the bottom edge. like they thought that would do some good. not really.

they are at their best when standing. 99% fretboard access (my rrxmg at least), pointy edges keep stage divers at range, total freedom for high-risk stage moves, etc..



Are you talking about the knee rest strip on the 50s style Vs? Yeah those things are useless.


The access is my favorite part about Vs. You literally just play and you don't have to think about it when you get up to 17 (unlike my LP)
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#10
In regards to the Thunderbird neck dive. I've found that relocating the strap button on my explorers to the neck heel instead of the upper bout tends to correct this. HAs anyone tried it on a Bird?
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#11
I've never had any glaring issues with Vs. The only uncomfortable thing i find with them is they are slightly heavy and my arm rests awkwardly on the edge of the body (used to strats and super strats or at least tapered upper bodies) and gets uncomfortable for me after a while of playing them. Other than that, they're terrific.
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#12
Quote by arvarna
Thanks for the positive feedback this is what I was really hoping for. I have no problem playing in classical position, I actually prefer it to standard so if people have no problem playing it sitting down that's great. It might feel a little different to play standing up but that's not a problem either, I just thought the odd shape would give it a major neckdive.

I still have to try it before buying it but I guess from the comments it's worth a shot, though I'm still open to hearing any negative aspects it may have that I should consider.

Thanks for the current replies


i find that on a rhoads stye with asymmetrical wings, the guitar can lean forward a bit (due to the shorter lower wing) and i have to do some adjusting of the strap only because i use a super wide, fat bass strap. also leaning back a bit farther keeps that in check and my public informs me (through opinion polls) that i look more awesome that way.

they are actually very comfortable to play standing.

symmetrical wings like on the king v and gibsons (and others) won't have this issue.
Last edited by ad_works at Apr 21, 2016,
#13
If you're not man enough to handle how bad-ass you'll look with a V, you might have a problem!

Nah, just kidding. The only "problem" I've ever had with Vs are sitting with them. Playing in the classical position or getting a decent strap fixes that issue.
#14
I had some neck dive on my v but it was an Epi so who knows.
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#15
My Gibson '68 V is the most nicely balanced and comfortable guitar I own standing up. Zero neck dive, very light.

Playing with it sitting down is something I've never had a problem with and it puzzles me how so many other people struggle with it.
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#16
Maybe we have bigger luggage to sit it on


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#17
This dude has a great ad on CL right now:

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#18
There are no downsides. Buy one NOW!!!

All kidding aside, they are perfectly comfortable to play sitting down, but you must use the classical position (which is more ergonomically comfortable anyway). I've never got along with the "standard" position of playing sitting down anyway -- it's so unlike the way I play when standing up. When I finally bought a V, for the first time ever I was able to play sitting down. I still prefer standing up though.
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#19
I think they are more comfy than LPs
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#20
Quote by ryanbwags
In regards to the Thunderbird neck dive. I've found that relocating the strap button on my explorers to the neck heel instead of the upper bout tends to correct this. HAs anyone tried it on a Bird?


OP has a Thunderbird BASS. Longer scale, longer neck and no hope for salvation by moving the strap button. It's just a bad design for a guitar and an idiot design for a bass.
#21
Quote by H4T3BR33D3R

The access is my favorite part about Vs. You literally just play and you don't have to think about it when you get up to 17 (unlike my LP)


I got *very* tired of getting my palm poked by the 90 degree point of the LP's body and the clunky way you had to grip the guitar (the neck has disappeared completely by the 16th fret) in order to use the upper frets. I also have issues with the width of the cutaway and the interior of the horn because I've got XXL hands. Those issues went away with a couple of Agile's AL-series guitars (the AL 3200 has a seriously shaved neck heel, a tummy cut, and a sort of stubby cutaway point, and the old AL 2000 Floyd had a "tilted" neck/body join that worked as well as the Gibson Axcess AND it had a 24-fret neck). I also rediscovered the '70's Gibson L6S, which has a very thin body (about the same as an SG), almost no noticeable transition from neck to body, and a wider cutaway AND Gibson's first-ever 24-fret neck.

Back on topic:

I've avoided standard Gibson/Epi Flying V's. There are better ideas on the market.

One, for example, is the 24-fret neck-through 24-fret Carvin V (below photo is old; these are rapidly becoming "Kiesel-ized"): http://www.kieselguitars.com/guitargallery/ultrav :



The neck heel on is really nice...



My most-used V is a '70's Moonstone neck-through with Tom Anderson pickups:



Last edited by dspellman at Apr 22, 2016,
#22
I am a big fan of V shape and it's varients, no issues just straddle your leg with the V when sitting like in the pic that slapsy posted, I have several guitars that vary in shape it's good to learn to adapt.
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