im the New Girl in the neighborhood

Discussion in 'New Member Intros' started by Desert Rose, Sep 8, 2020.

  1. Desert Rose

    Desert Rose Electromatic

    Sep 8, 2020
    Hi, Every one my name is Salma 25yo Aka "Desert Rose" aka "Tijuana rose " etc... surf/rockabilly/ garage rock guitarrist... anyway

    I recently purchased my first gretsch a G5128 (mid 2000s), a very cute goldtop whit "Dyna Sonic" Dearmon 2k pickups , looks nice and makes me look cool xD
    however for some reason it is a bit quiet and noisy when I put some distortion, let alone use a fuzz, I am used to fender singlecoils like jazzmaster, jaguar and muistang etc ... and I never had that problem, is this noise normal on this model or is there something wrong with mine? I think it is not well grounded idk.


    I also have a couple of questions, what is the factory setting for this guitar.

    Polepices Heigth
    string height
  2. calebaaron666

    calebaaron666 Friend of Fred

    Aug 15, 2018
    Portland, Maine
    Hello and welcome to GT!
    I had the same guitar and while I liked the sound of those pickups, they weren’t strong enough for me so I replaced them with TV Jones Classic filtertrons in the dyna shape so they were a drop in replacement.
    It was such a boss looking guitar that it was worth the upgrade.
    The Filtertrons are humbucking so there was less noise.

    You may want to bring it to a guitar tech to set it up and figure it out. The pickups could maybe be raised which can be challenging because those risers only bring it up so far. They are kind of stuck where the factory put them. You could mess around with pole heights.

    Hopefully someone else here will be more helpful.
    DannyB, gtttrrr, Desert Rose and 2 others like this.
  3. sgarnett

    sgarnett Gretschie

    Apr 14, 2020
    Welcome, Salma!

    I have no experience with Dynas, so I can’t help you there.

    For the string height, I’d suggest that you trust your fingers. The bridge height is very easy to adjust. I would partially loosen the strings (4 to 6 full turns of the tuning keys) before changing the bridge height though. Set it where is feels good to you, then play it some more and go from there.
    Desert Rose likes this.
  4. thunder58

    thunder58 Super Moderator Staff Member

    Dec 23, 2010
    tappan ny
    Desert Rose likes this.
  5. mister rain

    mister rain Gretschie

    Apr 23, 2020
    new orleans
    my experience with dynas is limited to a set of recent japanese issue, and the only thing i had a problem with was the color. (i’m so not a gold guy.) handled fuzz and overdrive quite well.

    i replaced those - and a set of hs filtertrons in my falcon - with tvj t-armonds. incredibly happy with them.

    but i second the advice about having it looked at before you mod. might just be a simple wiring issue.

    (the 5125, or the black version of your guitar, is about the only one that could tempt me into trying to play a shorter scale guitar ever again. sweet axe.)
    Desert Rose likes this.
  6. larryr

    larryr Gretschie

    Mar 6, 2012
    Camarillo, Ca.
    Desert Rose likes this.
  7. RomanS

    RomanS Gretschie

    May 26, 2010
    Vienna, Austria
    Those DeArmond pickups are great - I think, in a G5128 they should be DeArmond 2000, not 2k ones (NOT the same thing!)
    While, being single coils, they are noisier than humbuckers, especially if you are using fistortion or fuzz, they shouldn't be noisier than the Fender single coils you are used to on your other guitars; and they should be perfect for the music styles you describe.
    If they are a lot noisier than your other guitars, maybe there's something wrong with the string grounding? Do you have a multimeter? Can you check if there's continuity between the strings and the ground (ring) on your output jack? Or con you provisionally connect your strings and the ground with a piece of wire? The pickup casings (the metal surrounds) should also be grounded.
    As for string height - well, that's a matter of personal taste, just set it like on your other guitars...
    Pickup height: the distance between the polepieces and the strings should be about the same as with typical Fender single coils - a bit more than with humbuckers or P90s; I'd say about 2.5-3mm for the low E, 2-2.5mm for the high E. Then adjust the individual polepieces so all strings are balanced.
    BTW, with Dynasonic-style pickups like these, you can tweak the tone a bit: set the whole pickup closer to the strings (using shims), and lower the individual poles - and you will get fuller, punchier tones; lower the whole pickup as much as possible (remove shims), and raise the polepieces - and you will get more snap and twang.
    Personally, I like to set Dynasonic types slightly slanted: put some plastic/rubber washers under the mounting screws on the high E-side, so the whole pickup sits higher there, but mount it directly to the body on the low E side - then raise the polepieces on the low E side, and lower those on the high E side; that way you will have snap and twang on the low strings, and no ice-pick, but more body on the high strings!
  8. Dana Rudd

    Dana Rudd Synchromatic

    Nov 26, 2019
    Greybull, WY
    Welcome to the forum Salma. Good luck on getting the sound your looking for. Lots of replacement pickups if the originals can't be sorted out.
    Desert Rose likes this.
  9. calebaaron666

    calebaaron666 Friend of Fred

    Aug 15, 2018
    Portland, Maine
    Most hollowbody Gretsch guitars come with the string height set with both E strings around 1.5mm at the 12th fret. That’s a great place to start.
    I wouldn’t loosen the strings to adjust it.
    Desert Rose and Scott like this.
  10. thunder58

    thunder58 Super Moderator Staff Member

    Dec 23, 2010
    tappan ny
    Admin Post
    The TV Jones web sight has a great illustration of this , check it out
    Desert Rose likes this.
  11. Teledriver

    Teledriver Gretschie

    Feb 12, 2011
    Iowa City, IA
    You say it’s quiet but noisy, especially with dust/fuzz? Almost sounds like a ground wire is soldered to a live rung and a live to a ground rung. My guess is the toggle or the jack is wired backwards. Just a guess of course. In all my years of tinkering with guitars it seems I kinda remember doing something like this with the same result as your guitar. Yes a multimeter to check continuity would be a great tool to have.
    Keep us posted!
    Desert Rose likes this.
  12. Trash Kidd

    Trash Kidd Country Gent

    Dec 14, 2015
    London U.K.
  13. Fredo

    Fredo Synchromatic

    Jan 18, 2010
    Georgia, USA
    I could never balance the string volumes on my 5129. The G was much louder than the D, no matter how I adjusted the pole pieces. After I sold it, I realized I should have tried a wound G. Trust your ears over diagrams. My T-Armonds came with strict instructions not to adjust the pole pieces. I had to adjust the heck out of them.
    Jon Newquist and Desert Rose like this.
  14. Ricochet

    Ricochet I Bleed Orange

    Nov 13, 2009
    Monkey Island
    Welcome to Gretschville!
    Desert Rose likes this.
  15. speedicut

    speedicut Friend of Fred

    Jun 5, 2012
    Welcome to the forum!
    Desert Rose likes this.
  16. CatTones

    CatTones Gretschie

    Jul 28, 2017
    Hello Desert Rose, we are glad to have you, One thing as you can already see from the above posts, is you are in the right place for any questions Gretsch !! or beyond.
    Desert Rose likes this.
  17. thunder58

    thunder58 Super Moderator Staff Member

    Dec 23, 2010
    tappan ny
    Admin Post
    @Desert Rose , here's whatI was referring too :
    Screen Shot 2020-09-08 at 2.35.07 PM.png
    Jon Newquist and Desert Rose like this.
  18. JeffreyLeePierre

    JeffreyLeePierre Country Gent

    Welcome to Gretsch-Talk and congratulations on your new G5128.

    I have the same DeArmond 2000 pickups on my G3140, built around the same years as yours.

    Gretsch G3140 Historic Series800.jpg

    I don't have any noise problem but I never use overdrive, distortion nor fuzz. There's possibly something wrong in your guitar's wiring. If you can't check by yourself, have somebody doing it.
    Desert Rose and wabash slim like this.
  19. JC higgy

    JC higgy Friend of Fred

    Jun 6, 2008
    Belfast Norn Iron
    Welcome to the nut house Salma!:)

    Cool wee geet that ,congrats.
    Desert Rose likes this.
  20. section2

    section2 Country Gent

    Dec 21, 2016
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