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Rick's friend, rock star jewelry maker, Armand Serra of Crazy Pig Designs is branching out. Not only does he design jewelry for the likes of Keith Richards, Slash, and Billy Gibbons, but now he's created a solution for the 1952 Les Paul trapeze bridge playability problem.
Armand is not only a jeweler but also a guitar player and collector. His frustration with '52 Les Pauls led him to design this highly functional solution, and it's cool, really cool. Rick being "a", or maybe, "the", vintage guitar enthusiast really wanted to show us this innovation/solution.
As you probably know, the 1952 and early 1953 Les Paul goldtop models are difficult to play due to the shallow neck angle and under wrapping of the strings. The original design was to loop the strings over the tailpiece but the flaw in the neck angle made this impossible; the strings action would be much too high. Gibson's "on the fly" solution was to wrap the strings under, making them inaccessible for muting. The other challenge of the bar bridge is that the intonation is very difficult if not impossible to set.
Armand's Trapeaze Solution solves both problems allowing strings to wrap over the bridge and ensuring accurate intonation. What's great about this design is that it requires NO MODIFICATIONS to the guitar, but makes it absolutely playable.
If you own a '52 that you actually want to play, you have to check this thing out, Rick Nielsen and Billy Gibbons have. We have a prototype here and Armand is offering them directly via his website: http://www.1952lespaul-trapeaze.com/.
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