This is almost like my Steinberger GM4S looked
before my deliberate and ruthless annihilation of its guitar body started.
Mine was candy apple red without the flame maple top and had a coil tap mini switch additionally.
All the photos from my original guitar were stolen in 1995 out of my car trunk
(together with everything else I possesed) in Hollywood.
I still love America!
Once in a while.
Am I the inventor of bound pickup routings?
I have never seen this before
... and I fucked up applying it.
I cut that original Steinberger body in three pieces and sanded away most of the candy apple red finish.
Then I took the middle piece with al the crucial routings (trem, neck pocket, pickups), glued new wood on it and designed a new body shape.
In order to hide the three-piece-desaster I glued an expensive flame maple top on it.
I always felt that the Steinberger guitars with the bigger wooden bodies weren`t good looking.
Check out these "buttocks" on both sides of the whammy and the pointy horns.
(no insult intended, of course this is a matter of personal taste.)
It wasn`t Ned Steinberger himself
but English luthier Roger Giffin who custom designed this shape exclusively for Mike Rutherford, a giant from a little Progrock band called "Genesis" who felt that the paddle Steinbergers just looked ridiculouly small on him. True.
I have to admit that the Steinberger GM body kind of works okay as a guitar body... But still I am disappointed in that it looks "too normal", too boring, not as radical as the small Steinberger paddle models.
So I decided to "improve" the body shape and find THE one and only modern looking new solution that Steinberger, Giffin and Rutherford had missed out.
Travelling around California and Nevada in 1995 I went to dozens of guitar shops searching for ANY Steinberger guitar. No one had one, no one was interested. Steinbergers were totally out!
The only Steinberger guitar I got to see was found at "Guitar Trader" in San Diego. The high E-string was missing but the guys in the shop didn`t bother to order a replacement string (It requires these special strings with ball ends on both sides).
In short: No one gave a shit about Steinberger at that time, only ten years after Steinberger`s world wide success mainly with their radical all-composite one piece bass guitars like the L2 that I own.
So I bought this unsuccessfull US-made oddment for 800 $.
It is a GM4S model with the carbon neck (without truss rod) and a maple body.
It has the second best Steinberger trem, the S-model and EMG pickups, of course.
The trem has ball bearings and works pretty well, apart from the fact that it carries the tuners as well.
The EMGs are ...well, ... they are ..., well, they are good proof for the fact that
Ned Steinberger himself is no guitar player.
He listened to the wrong people and probably to the wrong kind of music, too.
The next problem: Guitars don`t work like bass guitars.
in the 80s a bass guitar was fine if it had a very balanced and powerfull HiFi sound.
A sound like a synthesizer.
But guitars don`t work like that: If the sound is too balanced, if they sound like a synthesizer, then they suck.
Play a composite-neck Steinberger guitar without any amp for thirty seconds and you will immediately understand that there is something wrong with this guitar.
In German we say: "Dead trousers" when we mean:
There is NOTHING going on!
The guitar does not resonate, is very quiet, faint, dull.
Maybe if you want to play 80`s rock through 10`000 effect processors and if you want the most clean or clinical HiFi-sound ever... clean, even with a lot of distorion ...
Always trouble with Steinberger?
A WHAMMY WITH TUNERS?
As you can see I didn`t get to grips well with the Steinberger Trem.
The whammy itself is pretty cool and suffers only fro the usual disease: That the handle keeps getting loose and wobbles about in its thread all the time. Not enough grip.
(If you don`t want that, get a Duesenberg whammy on your guitar.)
There is a screw that fastens the handle but that doesn`t last long.
But up- and downbends are wide and nice and tuning stability is outstanding.
The tuners are the parts that I have trouble with!
They are small, short and fat and crammed very closely together on the back of the moving part of the whammy bridge.
My fingers are too fat. When I tuned the D-string my fingers also touched the tunig wheels of the A- and G-string on both sides ...
So while tuning one string I detuned an other one...
I also keep tuning the wrong gears all the time beause you can`t see the tuning wheels very well. They are sunk underneath the body surface.
(call me an idiot if you want - I will accept it)
In order to tune the guitar you have to lock the bridge, of course. There is a short handle on the back to do that.
But it doesn`t lock 100%! The thing keeps moving around a little bit as you fumble on one of the 6 darned tuning wheels...
And since it is simply impossible not to use a tiny amount of pressure in your fingers while you are tuning the strings you will push the whole bridge a little bit down... As soon as you let go, the bridge will move slightly upwards again and thus change the tuning a tiny little bit.
It drives me crazy.
1. The tuners are too close to each other. Tuning my Steinberger is a terrible pain in the butt to me.
2. Mounting tuners on a guitar part that is slack and moves around proves to be a bad idea.
The Steinberger whammy itself would be pretty good if only the tuners were somewhere else
(on the headstock? ... What headstock?)
this sounds like a
Why don`t we invent a guitar
with a ... shall we call it:
where you could
... it could be done lieke this: