Streamliner Jr Recommendations

Discussion in 'Streamliner Gretsch Forum' started by Chuckie, Jun 4, 2018.

  1. Chuckie

    Chuckie Electromatic

    16
    Jun 3, 2018
    maine
    Just picked up a Gretsch Streamliner Jr for $$. Better workmanship than the 6120 I sold recently. Only problem is the pickups are "dull" sounding. I raised the pickup height and that helped. Any recommendations on replacement pickups that are direct replacements(no modifications required)? I play through a Supro Titan amp. I also want to replace the controls with speed knobs or Gretsch logo chrome knobs, how do I remove the current plastic knobs?
     
    MarkyMac and Davis Sharp like this.
  2. BorderRadio

    BorderRadio Country Gent

    Mar 6, 2014
    Phoenix, AZ
    Welcome!
    I find it hard to believe about the 6120, but hey you scored well if so :)

    TV Classics with Gibson rings are direct drop in as they come, and knobs, well you just pop those suckers off, pulling straight up. I have a tool for that, but a cotton rag wrapped around and underneath the knob works just as well. Where’s the pics???
     
    Davis Sharp likes this.
  3. audept

    audept I Bleed Orange

    Age:
    70
    Dec 1, 2010
    Sydney, Australia
    Welcome to the forum, Chuckie!
    lobster-welcome-doormat.jpg
     
  4. Davis Sharp

    Davis Sharp Electromatic

    85
    Apr 25, 2016
    Maryland, USA
    Welcome. Some photos will help us admire your guitar.

    Sorry, can't help on the pickup suggestion, I put FilterTrons in mine which required a bit of work. The cotton rag tool works, although the knobs on my CBJr were really tight.
     
  5. MarkyMac

    MarkyMac Gretschie

    Congrats! I have the G2655t and love it.
    This may be obvious, (and therefore possibly dumb on my part sorry) but the cheap 'POS' single tone control pot on the guitar makes an awesome tone 'muffler'.
    I used to accidentally brush mine and wind it to 'bass' and the sound went instantly like it was wrapped in a thick towel playing through a duffle bag.
    I now have it set all the way to 'treble' permanently and it's fine.
    I'm sure you've checked it, but just a crazy thought before you go spending $$$$
    Enjoy the new Geet. For the $$$$ they are simply awesome.
    Cheers - Mark
     
    Flouswa likes this.
  6. TNO1

    TNO1 Electromatic

    41
    Apr 17, 2018
    North Carolina
  7. Chuckie

    Chuckie Electromatic

    16
    Jun 3, 2018
    maine
    For the time being I'm sticking with the Broadtron pups, I've adjusted the height to the point that they sound acceptable. A P90 replacement would be a good choice! I have a Les Paul with P90s and it sounds delicious! The P90s are the only pups that challenge the units in my Ric 330 and 350.

    I've ordered 4 chrome replacement knobs, they should be here next week. The oem knobs do not want to come off.

    Any Bigsby advice, every time I use it the tuning goes seriously out of whack. Never ever seen one with such low tolerance for use.

    Any ideas on where to get a hard case?
     
  8. section2

    section2 Gretschie

    406
    Dec 21, 2016
    Toronto
    I had a devil of a time getting the stock knobs off of my G2655, but they eventually came off when I wrapped a dishcloth around them and pulled up steadily and slowwwwwwly with far more force than I would have thought necessary. Keep at it; you'll get there.

    As for the Bigsby: on B5/B50s, the culprit is often the tension roller bar. If the break angle is too sharp, it can put too much tension on the roller, causing it to bind and preventing it from coming back into tune when you finish a bend. I've heard that some people have had good results with Brick's Biggs Fix. I had the same tuning problem on my Hagstrom, which has a vibrato similar to a B5, and I eventually solved it by just restringing the guitar and bypassing the tension roller altogether. You might want to try that before shelling out for the Brick's. If you can get enough of a break angle to keep the strings in the saddles without using the tension roller, you should find that your tuning stability has improved. The other thing I'd do is check the nut to ensure that the strings aren't binding there.

    Good luck!
     
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  9. section2

    section2 Gretschie

    406
    Dec 21, 2016
    Toronto
    One more thing: I've been experimenting to try to improve the dull sound of the pickups on my Streamliner, and I came across another post on the forum that suggested modding the bridge pickup by removing the pole pieces for the E, A, & D strings from the row closest to the bridge, removing the pole pieces for the G, B, & high E strings from the row closest to the neck, lowering the body of the pickup, and increasing the height of the remaining pole pieces. I tried it out today and found that the bridge pickup had a LOT more life and snap in it. It's not quite where I want it yet, but I've got a newfound hope that some further tweaking will get it there. You may find that it's worth playing with the pickup and pole piece heights before buying new pickups.
     
    Davis Sharp likes this.
  10. Notscott

    Notscott Electromatic

    58
    Jan 29, 2012
    Florida
    I had a Stremliner Jr briefly before I had to return it due to a faulty truss rod. Yeah, compared to a typical Gretsch, it is dark sounding. However, what really impressed me about the guitar is that it makes a killer blues machine as is.

    I also had problems with the Bigsby staying in tune. I tried all the tricks I knew and it was always hit or miss if it would return to pitch.

    Regardless, I liked how mine sounded and played.
     
  11. Davis Sharp

    Davis Sharp Electromatic

    85
    Apr 25, 2016
    Maryland, USA
    P90s aren't the same size as humbuckers and won't drop in. You could try P94s (humbucker-sized P90s), but I've read that they sound a little different because of the size difference.

    Maybe try warming the knobs with a hair dryer before pulling them up. I'm paranoid, so I would protect the finish with a cloth.

    The G2655 (non-Bigsby) fits in an Epiphone ES-339 case. There is a little wiggle room between the lid and the guitar, but I'm not sure if it's enough to close properly with a Bigsby.

    [​IMG]
     
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  12. Rock Lajoint

    Rock Lajoint Gretschie

    348
    Nov 16, 2014
    Sussex, England
    I took the knobs off my G2420T with a store loyalty card and 2 guitar picks (green Tortex ones were thick enough). I used a loyalty card rather than other type because it's not embossed.

    Lay the card in the guitar top under the knob.
    Put one of the picks on top of it with the long edge towards the knob and push that under too.
    Push the pointy end of the second pick between the card and the first pick. Push it in far enough and the knob should pop off. Mine did.
     
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  13. Chuckie

    Chuckie Electromatic

    16
    Jun 3, 2018
    maine
    The old card and picks trick!
    Didn't work.
    Got tired of fighting the damn things. Stuck my very thick AAA member card under the knob and used a very small screw driver to lift the knobs off. It took two hefty heaves on each knob to completely remove it. The guys at the factory must be very proudof those knobs because it doesn't seem like they anticipated anyone ever wanting to remove them.
     
    section2 likes this.
  14. Chuckie

    Chuckie Electromatic

    16
    Jun 3, 2018
    maine
    In the spirit of experimentation I just purchased a set of humbucker sized P 90s for my 2655T. I've never swapped pups before, always completely thrilled with the units in my Rickenbackers. I am planning to remove the Broadtrons which I suspect have no resale value(anyone want a pair of Broadtrons and four plastic control knobs?) Any insight or advice on removing the pups? I plan to cut the wires and solder the leads and then use electricians tape on the new connection. Hopefully the new pups fit and no alterations are required to the guitar. I also order a chrome jackplate for $2.70. Feel free to jump in with advice!
     
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  15. Davis Sharp

    Davis Sharp Electromatic

    85
    Apr 25, 2016
    Maryland, USA
    Cutting the leads is practical. Otherwise, you will have to disembowel the entire guitar to get to the vol pot and switch. Just leave enough wire so that there's something to solder to if you ever want to re-use them or sell them.

    On @BorderRadio's recommendation, I used D-pin connectors on my pups instead of soldering. Think about that if you're just experimenting and may go back to the BTs or try other HBs.
    http://www.gretsch-talk.com/threads...reamliner-centerblock-jr.173524/#post-1049286

    EDIT: you may have to fill the pickup mounting holes and drill new ones.
     
    BorderRadio likes this.
  16. Chuckie

    Chuckie Electromatic

    16
    Jun 3, 2018
    maine
    The P94s just arrived. Looks like I am expected to reuse the existing surround rings. I haven't started to remove the Broadtrons yet so I do not know if the new pups fit in the existing cavity. Fingers crossed.

    What is a D pin connector? I planned on twist splicing and wire nutting the hot leads with a wrap of electricians tape to make sure I maintain continuity over time. I suspect that the tiny ground wires will have to be twist spliced and taped. When I am wiring commercial and residential jobs most connections under 100 A are wire nutted. These connections are a fraction of an amp.

    It's hard to believe that I've never done this in 50+ years of playing, in fact, the only soldering I've ever done on a guitar is fixing a loose wire to a pot on my sons Ibanez. I probably could have salvaged several Epiphones that never sounded right...or I could have burned down the house.
     
  17. Chuckie

    Chuckie Electromatic

    16
    Jun 3, 2018
    maine
    I've always know those as "crimp connectors". The Gretsch wire is too light of a gauge to work and the replacement pickup wires were even lighter.

    The replacement P94s(humbucker sized P90s)have been installed. The wires are so light weight that soldering would have been difficult. The ground wire were even worse. Getting twisted connections was not easy.

    I'll go on the record and say that the inexpensive p94s($25 for the pair) are an improvement over the Broadtrons. It would have been interesting to see if amore expensive pair would have made an even greater difference. I still need to adjust the height, P90s are an ancient design and very low output so string clearance is very important.

    Fortunately, the replacement pups fit in the Gretsch rings and NO modifications what so ever were required. The complete exercise took about 90 minutes.

    Once the chrome jack plate arrives(takes many weeks to get here from Hong Kong) I will have spent $48 on Gretsch control knobs, P94 pups and a jack plate. I'm guessing that Gretsch could have done it for no real noticeable cost. The pickups are personal preference, some people seem to like the Broadtrons and jack plate is a questionable need(my Rickenbacker 330 and 350 and Les Paul have them, my Heritage 555 does not). Not a collector, just a player they were all purchased with broken necks at bargain basement prices. Easy repairs. Also have several Martins that were purchased with holes in the sides and tops.

    I'll post photos when I'm done.
     
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  18. MarkyMac

    MarkyMac Gretschie

    Sounds like you're all over it.
    Looking fwd to the pics mate.
     
  19. Chuckie

    Chuckie Electromatic

    16
    Jun 3, 2018
    maine
    I'm Asking for Help!
    I just repaired a les paul with a snapped neck. Guitar plays fine but I am not fond of the split coil humbuckers. I really like the inexpensive p94s I put in my 26655 centerblock jr. Sound extraordinary and fit perfectly.If I try to swap a pair of p94s will I have problems due to the wiring from the current split coils?