General rules to adhere to when top wrapping?

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zepp76zepp76 Frets: 426
Are there any rules to adhere to when top wrapping please? Should the tailpiece be screwed down to the body? Is there anything I should be aware of or is it as simple as just top wrapping and getting on with it? Thank you for your time.
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  • meltedbuzzboxmeltedbuzzbox Frets: 7660
    just top wrap and get on with it. 
    Just ignore all the other jazz mate, you can floor the tail piece if you wish, it shouldn't cause any issues. 
    The Bigsby was the first successful design of what is now called a whammy bar or tremolo arm, although vibrato is the technically correct term for the musical effect it produces. In standard usage, tremolo is a rapid fluctuation of the volume of a note, while vibrato is a fluctuation in pitch. The origin of this nonstandard usage of the term by electric guitarists is attributed to Leo Fender, who also used the term “vibrato” to refer to what is really a tremolo effect.
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  • koss59koss59 Frets: 543
    I tried it on an R8 I used to own ( still have an R7 ) and even with the tailpiece right down it didn’t have enough break angle and the strings popped out of the saddle grooves easily.
    I think it works on standards where the neck angle is greater but didn’t work for me on the historic.
    I know certain famous people did it on bursts.
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  • fretfinderfretfinder Frets: 2108
    The key general rule is don’t do it!   ;)

    YMMV of course.  :)
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  • stuagustuagu Frets: 307
    I screw the tailpiece all the way down and away you go. Iv done it on every r8/r9 ive had and not had any problems . Some like it some dont. :) 
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  • normula1normula1 Frets: 260
    My 339 came top wrapped and unlike any of my other Gibson style guitars it does seem to play better that way.
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  • FunkfingersFunkfingers Frets: 3327
    zepp76 said:
    Are there any rules to adhere to when top wrapping please?
    Sacrifice a chicken, read your horoscope, throw a pinch of salt over your left shoulder, swear allegiance to the leprechauns and kiss an effigy of Joe Bonnamassa.
    "It's no wonder the Pacific Ocean is blue."
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  • ICBMICBM Frets: 32827
    zepp76 said:

    Are there any rules to adhere to when top wrapping please?
    Yes...

    Is your guitar a Junior, Special or other with a wraparound bridge/tailpiece and no separate bridge?

    Yes: top-wrap.

    No: don't top-wrap.
    "Take these three items, some WD-40, a vise grip, and a roll of duct tape. Any man worth his salt can fix almost any problem with this stuff alone."
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  • richardhomerrichardhomer Frets: 18886
    ICBM said:
    zepp76 said:

    Are there any rules to adhere to when top wrapping please?
    Are you Joe Bonamassa?

    Yes: top-wrap.

    No: don't top-wrap.
    FTFY
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  • stonevibestonevibe Frets: 2926
    Put all the good weed, in the end, and light up first. 

     ;) 
    How much does it weigh? & Does it play like butter?

    You can now read my insane guitar ramblings daily here http://www.gearnews.com
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  • underdogunderdog Frets: 5623
    edited June 13
    ICBM said:
    zepp76 said:

    Are there any rules to adhere to when top wrapping please?
    Yes...

    Is your guitar a Junior, Special or other with a wraparound bridge/tailpiece and no separate bridge?

    Yes: top-wrap.

    No: don't top-wrap.

    Sums it up perfectly, anything that isn't dsigned to be stop wrapped, looks wrong top wrapped. Ok so you may feel there's benefits to top wrapping your Les Paul but the negative is it looks crap, and you didn't become a guitarist to look crap did you? Just say no kids to top wrapping kids.
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  • meltedbuzzboxmeltedbuzzbox Frets: 7660
    underdog said:
    ICBM said:
    zepp76 said:

    Are there any rules to adhere to when top wrapping please?
    Yes...

    Is your guitar a Junior, Special or other with a wraparound bridge/tailpiece and no separate bridge?

    Yes: top-wrap.

    No: don't top-wrap.

    Sums it up perfectly, anything that isn't dsigned to be stop wrapped, looks wrong top wrapped. Ok so you may feel there's benefits to top wrapping your Les Paul but the negative is it looks crap, and you didn't become a guitarist to look crap did you? Just say no kids to top wrapping kids.
    If you do it to look cool in the eyes of the members on this forum it's instantly uncool.
    Too wrap for the win
    The Bigsby was the first successful design of what is now called a whammy bar or tremolo arm, although vibrato is the technically correct term for the musical effect it produces. In standard usage, tremolo is a rapid fluctuation of the volume of a note, while vibrato is a fluctuation in pitch. The origin of this nonstandard usage of the term by electric guitarists is attributed to Leo Fender, who also used the term “vibrato” to refer to what is really a tremolo effect.
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  • NeilNeil Frets: 2317
    underdog said:
    ICBM said:
    zepp76 said:

    Are there any rules to adhere to when top wrapping please?
    Yes...

    Is your guitar a Junior, Special or other with a wraparound bridge/tailpiece and no separate bridge?

    Yes: top-wrap.

    No: don't top-wrap.

    Sums it up perfectly, anything that isn't dsigned to be stop wrapped, looks wrong top wrapped. Ok so you may feel there's benefits to top wrapping your Les Paul but the negative is it looks crap, and you didn't become a guitarist to look crap did you? Just say no kids to top wrapping kids.
    If you want to get the stop bar right down without a ridiculously sharp break angle top wrapping is the way on some Les Paul Standards. 

    I don't think mine looks particularly crap personally. 

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  • mburekengemburekenge Frets: 585
    Play really rapid, Eric johnson style pentatonics in patterns of 5
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  • impmannimpmann Frets: 7394
    The general flow diagram should be:

    1) Does your Gibson play OK? If yes, leave it well alone, if no move onto 2.
    2) Do not top wrap as it looks crap, ruins the plating on the tailpiece and isn't needed.
    Never Ever Bloody Anything Ever.

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  • meltedbuzzboxmeltedbuzzbox Frets: 7660
    impmann said:
    The general flow diagram should be:

    1) Does your Gibson play OK? If yes, leave it well alone, if no move onto 2.
    2) Do not top wrap as it looks crap, ruins the plating on the tailpiece and isn't needed.
    sssssshhhh you PRS playing dentist wannabe :-P
    The Bigsby was the first successful design of what is now called a whammy bar or tremolo arm, although vibrato is the technically correct term for the musical effect it produces. In standard usage, tremolo is a rapid fluctuation of the volume of a note, while vibrato is a fluctuation in pitch. The origin of this nonstandard usage of the term by electric guitarists is attributed to Leo Fender, who also used the term “vibrato” to refer to what is really a tremolo effect.
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  • zepp76zepp76 Frets: 426
    I had to ask as I'm just trying to make the guitar the best player that I can but if there are no benefits to doing it then I'll pass. I really couldn't give two hoots what it looks like as long as it plays well.
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  • johnljohnl Frets: 310
    It's worth trying, certainly in my experience it gives a slinkier playing feel. It does often feel like everyone on this forum hates absolutely everything...
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  • mburekengemburekenge Frets: 585
    I liked it until I swapped for a tonepros abr1... then the whole thing rattled like crazy so switched back to standard stringing 
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  • robertyroberty Frets: 536
    As stated it effs your tailpiece up so be prepared for that.  Otherwise screw the bastard right down and you're good to go.  I prefer it personally
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  • DefaultMDefaultM Frets: 1928
    Try it and see what you think. I've done it and it changes the feel, making the strings a bit slinkier and easier to bend. I didn't really like that, but if I did like it I certainly wouldn't stop just because of how it looks.
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  • stuagustuagu Frets: 307
    zepp76 said:
    I had to ask as I'm just trying to make the guitar the best player that I can but if there are no benefits to doing it then I'll pass. I really couldn't give two hoots what it looks like as long as it plays well.
    Just give it a  try it bud, takes five minutes to put back if it doesnt work. And its cost the price of a set of strings. :) as others have said it can mark the tp ( esp if its chrome rather than nickel) so dont do it if that bothers you. 
    people have been top wrapping for years (even before mr bonamassa !) i think billy gibbons was the first i saw and that was decades ago but im sure he wasnt the first. Ive not found a 335 where it works well, whereas on my lps,it works very well... one of our clever guys on her maybe will know . Let us know how it goes :) 
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  • ICBMICBM Frets: 32827
    There have always been a few players who did it - the first I can think of seeing pictures of were Marc Bolan and Duane Allman - but for some reason it’s now become quite a fashion.
    "Take these three items, some WD-40, a vise grip, and a roll of duct tape. Any man worth his salt can fix almost any problem with this stuff alone."
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  • KeefyKeefy Frets: 123
    After reading columns in Guitarist mag extolling the wonders of top-wrapping, I laid a straight edge across the screwed-down tailpiece and bridge saddles of my CR8. I immediately concluded that top-wrapping would result in a pitiful break angle, and that was the end of that.

    Hers's a gratuitous picture:



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  • dangriffithsdangriffiths Frets: 232
    Means I can use 11s and it feels almost like 10s so I have it on a couple of guitars. Worth a try to see for yourself if it matters. 
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  • NeilNeil Frets: 2317
    Keefy said:
    After reading columns in Guitarist mag extolling the wonders of top-wrapping, I laid a straight edge across the screwed-down tailpiece and bridge saddles of my CR8. I immediately concluded that top-wrapping would result in a pitiful break angle, and that was the end of that.

    Hers's a gratuitous picture:



    I would guess that your R8 has less of a neck angle than many Standards so not a suitable subject. The angle on my Standard is more pronounced.

    When I got it the set up was really good but the stop bar was pretty high which I didn't like too much.

    Screwing down the bar left the string break angle very acute so I tried top wrapping after reading about  it in Dan Erlewhines book.

    Suits me, and if the bar does eventually get chewed up (it hasn't so far and of course Juniors etc do it as a matter of course) how expensive  it to replace?   ;)
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  • stonevibestonevibe Frets: 2926
    You can also Bottom Wrap, so just putting it out there 'Who here prefers it in the bottom?'
    How much does it weigh? & Does it play like butter?

    You can now read my insane guitar ramblings daily here http://www.gearnews.com
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  • p90foolp90fool Frets: 8546
    I tried it a couple of years ago in a bid to capture some internet hipster points and broke two strings immediately, the issue being that the strings have to bend severely at the point where the ball end wrap finishes. 

    On my Firebird 1 I have no choice, but I've cured the string breakage problem by feeding the plain strings through an old ball end first, to act as a spacer. 

    There really is no point on a bridge/tailpiece setup - the tailpiece is height adjustable for break angle anyway and you can just bung washers under it if you want it bolted down tight. 
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  • ICBMICBM Frets: 32827
    Keefy said:
    After reading columns in Guitarist mag extolling the wonders of top-wrapping, I laid a straight edge across the screwed-down tailpiece and bridge saddles of my CR8. I immediately concluded that top-wrapping would result in a pitiful break angle, and that was the end of that.
    Exactly, because your one was made right.

    Nice guitar :).
    "Take these three items, some WD-40, a vise grip, and a roll of duct tape. Any man worth his salt can fix almost any problem with this stuff alone."
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  • I use this ^

    However, if the neck angle on your guitar isn't bad, maybe it's shouldn't be a priority for you. Mine's a little off, so I do and it works perfectly and plays fantastic. YMMV.
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  • daveyhdaveyh Frets: 442
    I like the idea of screwing the stop bar all the way down, seems more solid with better string vibration transmission into the body so I always do that and top wrapping will follow. But on my 2001 studio I did that, the break angle is fine so I don’t have to top wrap. Win!
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