Anyone own a Rickenbacker?

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timiscott
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Anyone own a Rickenbacker?

Post by timiscott » Tue May 26, 2020 4:35 am

I'm thinking of getting a six string Ric 330 or 360 and was wondering what experiences people have had with them. Obviously, I can't get out to try one out at the minute so can anyone help?

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Re: Anyone own a Rickenbacker?

Post by Larry Mal » Tue May 26, 2020 4:44 am

I did own one, it was very nice. It made me play my guitar differently than I played other guitars. You've probably read things about the neck being all narrow, but I measured mine, the nut was as wide as vintage Fenders. It did not widen much as it travelled to the body, though.

Very good guitars.
Back in those days, everyone knew that if you were talking about Destiny's Child, you were talking about Beyonce, LaTavia, LeToya, and Larry.

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Re: Anyone own a Rickenbacker?

Post by jasonpetzold » Tue May 26, 2020 4:50 am

I have a 620 and have nothing but positive things to say about it. Plays great, sounds great. Love it.

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Re: Anyone own a Rickenbacker?

Post by cestlamort » Tue May 26, 2020 5:10 am

Larry Mal wrote:
Tue May 26, 2020 4:44 am
I did own one, it was very nice. It made me play my guitar differently than I played other guitars. You've probably read things about the neck being all narrow, but I measured mine, the nut was as wide as vintage Fenders. It did not widen much as it travelled to the body, though.

Very good guitars.
Agreed.
I’ve been using a 360 or 330 as my main guitar for years now. Very much in the same sound family/ecological niche as a Jazzmaster, but seemingly from a different continent (if that makes sense). Odd voicings and open drone strings feel right somehow. The attack is different though. It chimes and jangles and swirls more than rocks.

I’ve found the feel and workmanship (with some exceptions and quirks) to be outstanding, making a USA fender seem like a cheaper assembly line guitar. (Then a bridge screw falls into the carpet as if on cue).

Especially as Fender offsets are getting more expensive by the day (used AVRIs are now $1500?), a used 330/360 seems like a bargain, just be prepared for an adjustment period.

Note that they have been consistent in quality and there are no real good or bad eras. There might be some variations in headstock shapes (big from 80s to 2009) and inlays but that’s about it.

That said, I’m always surprised at how “easy” it is to play my wife’s JM jaguar...

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Re: Anyone own a Rickenbacker?

Post by sookwinder » Tue May 26, 2020 5:31 am

About 20 years back I bought (new) a 360, black, perfect and I was hoping to get some 60s (beatle et al) inspiration.

What I got was a guitar that is one trick pony, with a narrow nut that is ridiculous in these times, uninspiring and has sat in my gtr room hardly ever being played. (the US Flag sticker that is on the guard when you buy them new is still there looking in mint condition)

In 20 years it's been used on one recording and you can't even tell that it's a rick.
I won't sell it, but shouldn't have bought it.
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Re: Anyone own a Rickenbacker?

Post by Larry Mal » Tue May 26, 2020 5:33 am

I will say that I did not love the Hi-Gain pickups.
Back in those days, everyone knew that if you were talking about Destiny's Child, you were talking about Beyonce, LaTavia, LeToya, and Larry.

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Re: Anyone own a Rickenbacker?

Post by timiscott » Tue May 26, 2020 6:06 am

Can you say what's up with the pickups?

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Re: Anyone own a Rickenbacker?

Post by Jonesie » Tue May 26, 2020 8:29 am

From my experience using a 360 at the studio I worked at for a bit, they're really fun guitars and they do a thing. That thing just isn't very versatile, but if you're into that thing it does it's amazing. It's almost like a Jag in that regard.
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Re: Anyone own a Rickenbacker?

Post by electric12 » Tue May 26, 2020 8:46 am

Jonesie wrote:
Tue May 26, 2020 8:29 am
From my experience using a 360 at the studio I worked at for a bit, they're really fun guitars and they do a thing. That thing just isn't very versatile, but if you're into that thing it does it's amazing. It's almost like a Jag in that regard.
I disagree completely!
I have a 360-6 (and a 360-12 as well, but that's a different thing) and I have used it for loads of different things. They can do choppy, funky rhythm, gnarly grind, heavy distorted leads, jazz, jangle-pop etc., etc.
The frets are quite small so BIG bends aren't easy and the glossy fingerboard can put people off as well, but tonally it is anything but a one-trick pony.
timiscott wrote:
Tue May 26, 2020 6:06 am
Can you say what's up with the pickups?
The pickups are (as the name implies) rather hot. When I first got my 12-string I was a bit disappointed that it didn't jangle like McGuinn's!
There is limited scope for adjustment (though the more modern ones have adjustable slugs) but it's possible to balance the pickups to get three different tones from the three selector positions. They don't sound like 60's toasters though once you get your head round them they are very flexible (see above!).

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Re: Anyone own a Rickenbacker?

Post by fuzzjunkie » Tue May 26, 2020 9:03 am

I have had 3 Rickenbackers, and the vintage toasters are where it’s at. The modern toasters (Which are basically hi-gains without the mushroom poles) are between the hi-gain and vintage. The hi-gains are not bad pickups, they’re just not the classic Rickenbacker sound. Like a Gretsch with modern Gretsch ‘buckers instead of Filtertron pickups.

My current Rickenbacker is a ‘90s 360-6v64 and it plays like the ‘80s 360-6 that I had years ago. The neck feels the same and both were well built. The difference in sound is due to the pickups, hi-gain vs modern toaster, and the top, carved vs double bound semi hollow. The carved top is heavier and has more sustain. The other has more jangle.

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Re: Anyone own a Rickenbacker?

Post by somanytoys » Tue May 26, 2020 9:30 am

I’ve only owned a Ric bass. It was pretty much the same as everyone describes about their guitars here - different (cool) sounds, different feel and approach to playing it, all of that. But it was very well made, and I wish I had never let it go.

One day I may get another one, but I don’t need one when they’re about 2 grand+ for one that I’d like. I think I’d have to sell most or all 4 of my electric basses to have the money to buy one, and that’s never happening, although I may sell 2 of them. I’ve always wanted an Alembic, too, and those may be in the same price range.

Then there are a couple of guitars that I’d like to get...it just never ends.
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Re: Anyone own a Rickenbacker?

Post by cestlamort » Tue May 26, 2020 9:45 am

fuzzjunkie wrote:
Tue May 26, 2020 9:03 am
I have had 3 Rickenbackers, and the vintage toasters are where it’s at. The modern toasters (Which are basically hi-gains without the mushroom poles) are between the hi-gain and vintage. The hi-gains are not bad pickups, they’re just not the classic Rickenbacker sound. Like a Gretsch with modern Gretsch ‘buckers instead of Filtertron pickups.

My current Rickenbacker is a ‘90s 360-6v64 and it plays like the ‘80s 360-6 that I had years ago. The neck feels the same and both were well built. The difference in sound is due to the pickups, hi-gain vs modern toaster, and the top, carved vs double bound semi hollow. The carved top is heavier and has more sustain. The other has more jangle.
Quick pickup rundown:
Hi gains = REM, early Smiths, Smithereens
Vintage (and current “scatter wound”) toasters = Petty, Classic 12 String jangle etc
Late 80s/90s toasters = basically hi gains (such as on the McGuinn model, ironically) (actually pretty sought after)
Note: 90s hi gains can be really hot (14k even!)
Adjustable pole pieces in 2009 or so (?)

CNC started in 1983 or so.

The bigger headstocks didn’t bug me... until they did and I can’t unsee them now.

If you think you may want a 12 string in the future, you can take off 6 strings of a 12 string and just play it that way. (After set up of course).

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Re: Anyone own a Rickenbacker?

Post by Gordon » Tue May 26, 2020 10:55 am

Had a 330... Beautiful guitar. But I hated it: the thick glossy finish on the fretboard was very annoying, and I never bonded with the pickups. :-/
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Re: Anyone own a Rickenbacker?

Post by Larry Mal » Tue May 26, 2020 11:17 am

timiscott wrote:
Tue May 26, 2020 6:06 am
Can you say what's up with the pickups?
I found the Hi-Gain pickups to be dull, lacking in high end and indistinct. I planned to get some low-wind toasters.
Back in those days, everyone knew that if you were talking about Destiny's Child, you were talking about Beyonce, LaTavia, LeToya, and Larry.

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Re: Anyone own a Rickenbacker?

Post by Maggieo » Tue May 26, 2020 11:42 am

Rickenbacker's construction and finish remind me of fine furniture.
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