Travis Bean TB500 Ideas?

Re: Travis Bean TB500 Ideas?

Postby Marlow » Fri Dec 07, 2012 7:34 am

Apart from coldness, expense, and rarity, the tuning issue was another reason I'd prefer to avoid aluminum. I wonder if the stability Jerry found in aluminum necks meant stability in terms of warping, bending etc. There seems no physical way to get around the expansion issue. Some Korean cars used to have a similar problem: steel blocks and aluminum heads means different expansion rates, end eventually a cracked head.

I guess there's nothing for it but to put something together and see what happens.
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Re: Travis Bean TB500 Ideas?

Postby tcsned » Fri Dec 07, 2012 8:14 am

Marlow wrote:Apart from coldness, expense, and rarity, the tuning issue was another reason I'd prefer to avoid aluminum. I wonder if the stability Jerry found in aluminum necks meant stability in terms of warping, bending etc. There seems no physical way to get around the expansion issue. Some Korean cars used to have a similar problem: steel blocks and aluminum heads means different expansion rates, end eventually a cracked head.

I guess there's nothing for it but to put something together and see what happens.

I'm pretty sure he was talking about warping etc. I doubt that he was pulling up to the gig with a frozen guitar and having to run out on stage. I'm sure the roadies had that thing acclimated to the room well before showtime.
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Re: Travis Bean TB500 Ideas?

Postby williamsaut » Fri Dec 07, 2012 1:23 pm

I thought Jerry liked TBs for their stability!?!?


Maybe it never got a chance to cool down with Jerry playin' it!!

Maybe the guitar never got really chilled down like mine did gigging in the northeast. Going from the car to the bar in December was really noticeable.
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Re: Travis Bean TB500 Ideas?

Postby williamsaut » Fri Dec 07, 2012 1:29 pm

All that said, You've got my creative juices flowing to glue an aluminum block in a Jerrycaster with a graphite neck and see how it sounds. Anyone know some definitive shows when Jerry played the Travis so I can give a listen?
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Re: Travis Bean TB500 Ideas?

Postby NWPines » Fri Dec 07, 2012 2:03 pm

williamsaut wrote:Anyone know some definitive shows when Jerry played the Travis so I can give a listen?


http://www.wald-electronics.com/TravisBeans.html
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Re: Travis Bean TB500 Ideas?

Postby gr8fullfred » Fri Dec 07, 2012 2:26 pm

Fact is Jerry played many guitars in the early days. He just never found one that he liked, until Wolf and the other Irwins that followed Wolf (Tiger, Rosebud). Why spend the time and money building a guitar that Jerry did not even like enough to play for very long? Makes no sense. I saw a TB in a shop in Florida for $2800. I think that TB himself just passed away at this time. (a year or two ago).

If you really want one of these, best to go out and buy one. Would probably cost you more to build one. The aluminum neck would probably feel cold at any normal room temperature.

JMHO

Two on Ebay now:
http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200 ... 0734222365

http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200 ... 0496388912
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Re: Travis Bean TB500 Ideas?

Postby tigerstrat » Fri Dec 07, 2012 3:53 pm

It's hard to tell for sure, but it seems like it is being argued that aluminum expands and contracts with temperature fluctuations ...more than wood???
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Re: Travis Bean TB500 Ideas?

Postby Marlow » Fri Dec 07, 2012 5:04 pm

gr8fullfred wrote:Fact is Jerry played many guitars in the early days. He just never found one that he liked, until Wolf and the other Irwins that followed Wolf (Tiger, Rosebud). Why spend the time and money building a guitar that Jerry did not even like enough to play for very long? Makes no sense. I saw a TB in a shop in Florida for $2800. I think that TB himself just passed away at this time. (a year or two ago).

If you really want one of these, best to go out and buy one. Would probably cost you more to build one. The aluminum neck would probably feel cold at any normal room temperature.

JMHO

Two on Ebay now:
http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200 ... 0734222365

http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200 ... 0496388912


Well, I am going for my favourite tone, not Jerry's favourite guitar. And those two TB's on eBay are TB1000's, not TB500s, and they are $4,000 and $7,000...
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Re: Travis Bean TB500 Ideas?

Postby Marlow » Fri Dec 07, 2012 5:09 pm

williamsaut wrote:All that said, You've got my creative juices flowing to glue an aluminum block in a Jerrycaster with a graphite neck and see how it sounds. Anyone know some definitive shows when Jerry played the Travis so I can give a listen?


Hm. I'd never heard of graphite necks, apart from Steinberger basses I believe . What does it sound like?
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Re: Travis Bean TB500 Ideas?

Postby williamsaut » Fri Dec 07, 2012 6:46 pm

Graphite necks like the Modulus that Bobby played are extremely stiff and pretty much immune to temperature as well as moisture and have pretty much zero expansion due to heat. The ones I've seen on Ebay licensed by Fender have Truss rods but it's my understanding that their so stiff that there won't be much adjustment going on. Many top shelf acoustics employ composite strips inlaid into the neck to add stiffness. I did play an all graphite acoustic once and to my ear the high E string was a little week compared to a wood guitar but this might have been a workmanship issue. As for sound it's really a gain in sustain that would be more noticeable than a perceived tone. If someone made a graphite neck that had a wood board, IMO that would be better than all graphite.

http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200 ... 0484818521
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Re: Travis Bean TB500 Ideas?

Postby strumminsix » Fri Dec 07, 2012 6:48 pm

williamsaut wrote:Graphite necks like the Modulus that Bobby played are extremely stiff and pretty much immune to temperature as well as moisture and have pretty much zero expansion due to heat. The ones I've seen on Ebay licensed by Fender have Truss rods but it's my understanding that their so stiff that there won't be much adjustment going on. Many top shelf acoustics employ composite strips inlaid into the neck to add stiffness. I did play an all graphite acoustic once and to my ear the high E string was a little week compared to a wood guitar but this might have been a workmanship issue. As for sound it's really a gain in sustain that would be more noticeable than a perceived tone. If someone made a graphite neck that had a wood board, IMO that would be better than all graphite.

http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200 ... 0484818521

A couple notes:
- I recall Garcia having a Mody neck on an AY body
- Modulus Genesis has sandwhiches wood neck and fingerboard around thick graphite section
- Moses sounds significantly different than Modulus.
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Re: Travis Bean TB500 Ideas?

Postby williamsaut » Fri Dec 07, 2012 7:10 pm

Here's a site that specialized in aluminum instruments that look pretty familiar. Maybe a source for clones of the original pickups.

http://www.electricalguitarcompany.com/ ... q.main.htm
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Re: Travis Bean TB500 Ideas?

Postby zambiland » Fri Dec 07, 2012 8:36 pm

I have to say that I was never really a fan of the Travis Bean sound. Something about the aluminum just made the tone weird and a little grating to my ear. I've known other people who've played them and I've had a similar reaction. They also complained about tuning problems with temperature changes. I did like Dave Torbert's Travis Bean bass, but not more than any other good sounding bass.
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Re: Travis Bean TB500 Ideas?

Postby williamsaut » Sat Dec 08, 2012 1:07 pm

I can say that the Kramer aluminum necked mahogany one I had sounded fantastic. Full tone with lots of bite and dynamics.
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Re: Travis Bean TB500 Ideas?

Postby Jon S. » Sat Dec 08, 2012 4:28 pm

I love Jerry's May '77 tone and playing generally though I have played a couple of Beans (a guitar and a bass) and the feel left me cold (literally).
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