#1
My first guitar (bought by me) is a 1999 Epiphone Explorer 1958 Ebony:



I don't think I'd ever sell it because of sentimental value, so I think I want to replace all the hardware. I'm not a huge fan of the gold so I was thinking about replacing it with all black hardware. If it's too hard to find parts, I would do new gold parts. What do you guys think? Am I ruining it by making it a fake "goth" edition explorer?

I literally have never replaced any hardware ever, other than strap locks. I don't have many tools, so I'm hoping to just unscrew and rescrew in parts. Where do I start, how do I know what to buy?

The main stuff:



Easy Stuff (for me):

  • Bridge Pickup: EMG 81 (Completed)
  • Neck Pickup: EMG 60? (Based on other threads)
  • Pickup selector switch (just buy something that's the right size?)
  • Strap Locks: Easy find. Planning on doing the strap relocation to near the neck (based on other posts).


Here's what's happened to my gold hardware over the years (and why I'm thinking black may last longer?):

Last edited by ryfi at Feb 12, 2017,
#2
Replacing the hardware on a guitar for the most part takes zero effort.

Finding parts that'll fit an Epiphone will take zero effort too. Gotoh make an Epiphone sized-metric TOM bridge.

Replacing the switch with a black switchcraft one might be a bit costly, but you get what you pay for. The SW ones are a lot higher quality.

You can get replacement explorer pickguards on ebay.

To remove the bridge and tailpiece bushings so the colour matches, you'll need to make a special tool.


What do you guys think? Am I ruining it by making it a fake "goth" edition explorer?

Not really. The Goth Explorers have a satin finish, not gloss.
Quote by TheSennaj
And well yes, I'll enjoy the carpal tunnel and tendonitis, because trying to get one is clearly smarter than any word you have spoken thus far.
#3
Thanks for the help T00DEEPBLUE. I started looking for some of the other parts that confused me and it seems less problematic than I thought. I think I just need to make sure the parts either say they will work on this guitar or fit the meaurements, right? I'm assuming there isn't just a generic bridge used on all epiphones/gibsons that I just replace?

Speaking of the pickguard though... I don't know where to find one. The goth explorer pickguards dont fit, nor do the gibsons. I need to find an actual Epiphone Explorer 1958 pickguard. I think I found some diamond plate ones recently, but I don't want diamond plate
#4
Quote by ryfi
Thanks for the help T00DEEPBLUE. I started looking for some of the other parts that confused me and it seems less problematic than I thought. I think I just need to make sure the parts either say they will work on this guitar or fit the meaurements, right? I'm assuming there isn't just a generic bridge used on all epiphones/gibsons that I just replace?

The TOM bridges Epiphone use are all the same from one model to another.
Quote by TheSennaj
And well yes, I'll enjoy the carpal tunnel and tendonitis, because trying to get one is clearly smarter than any word you have spoken thus far.
#5
T00DEEPBLUE I don't see a black Gotoh Epiphone TOM bridge, so my next option is to just google for it and find some random thing on Amazon with no reviews that is almost too cheap: https://www.amazon.ca/KAISH-Electric-Tune-o-matic-Tailpiece-Epiphone/dp/B01J5HHP60/ref=sr_1_2?s=musical-instruments&ie=UTF8&qid=1487096534&sr=1-2&keywords=epiphone+tune-o-matic+bridge+black

Should I look elsewhere for a specific/alternative brand?
Last edited by ryfi at Feb 14, 2017,
#6
Quote by ryfi
T00DEEPBLUE I don't see a black Gotoh Epiphone TOM bridge

Gotoh GE103B-T in black?

They're known to fit Epiphones.
Quote by TheSennaj
And well yes, I'll enjoy the carpal tunnel and tendonitis, because trying to get one is clearly smarter than any word you have spoken thus far.
#7
Thanks T00DEEPBLUE! What about a matching tail piece? Do the Gotoh parts all match or something? (If not, I wish the site would offer me matching tail pieces.)
#8
ryfi Have a look at the GE101A. Dimensionally it'll fit Epiphones.
Quote by TheSennaj
And well yes, I'll enjoy the carpal tunnel and tendonitis, because trying to get one is clearly smarter than any word you have spoken thus far.