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countrygypsy S@nderV MaxGuitar

Gypsy beginner and have question about setup

in Welcome Posts: 5
I am coming from a jump blues and American swing background and feel that it's time to employ some gypsy into my playing. That being said I'm looking at buying a Cigano GJ-10 as a budget way of approximating the gypsy sounds. I'm not looking at spending a lot of money a the reviews of the Cigano seem to reflect it's a decently authentic guitar for the price--maybe undervalued from some reviews I've read.

My question is, is the setup worth the current $215.00? Of course a good setup is always a good thing, but do these guitar play mostly really well out of the box? The setup includes complete fret level/dress and bridge work. While adjusting action with the bridge is something I can and have done (on archtops and electrics), the fret work is beyond my ability. For those who have experience with the guitar how did it play without the setup work?

While the cost of the setup is within my reach, I'm just trying to dip my toes into this style and wanting the keep the cost down.
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Comments

  • jonpowljonpowl Hercules, CA✭✭✭ Dupont MD-100, Altamira M01F
    Posts: 630
    I have played a few, and currently own a Cigano GJ-10. They are all over the place in terms of quality. A setup wouldn't have helped a couple that I played. The one I just bought is around 6 years old, never had a setup and plays all right. The neck isn't perfect, but is actually in tune at the 12th fret for a few of the strings, which is about like the few other gypsy guitars I have owned. Truth is, it sounds about how one would expect a $200 guitar to sound, good on single notes, a bit dark and muddled on chords. I am hoping new strings will make it sound better. Personally, I have a problem buying a new guitar that needs a setup out of the box.
  • Posts: 5
    Yeah, intonation and actions adjustments are natural as everyone has different preferences, but major setup work is another.
  • renzokrenzok Perú✭✭ Geronimo Mateos Audrey
    Posts: 26
    hey man, I bought a GJ 15 a month ago and it was good right out the box. Sure it can benefit a lot from a custom bridge (mine is too low and bulky, i believe its the same bridge of the gj-10) and the leather piece may be a good upgrade to protect a little the surface of the guitar and for dampening, but it plays really good, there’s little to no buzz and stays in tune really good.

    So it plays good but If you can you should consider getting a custom brige... I feel that would make a noticeable difference
  • Posts: 5
    renzok wrote: »
    hey man, I bought a GJ 15 a month ago and it was good right out the box. Sure it can benefit a lot from a custom bridge (mine is too low and bulky, i believe its the same bridge of the gj-10) and the leather piece may be a good upgrade to protect a little the surface of the guitar and for dampening, but it plays really good, there’s little to no buzz and stays in tune really good.

    So it plays good but If you can you should consider getting a custom brige... I feel that would make a noticeable difference

    So if you were to do it over again, would you still go for it right out of the box, or would you consider some setup work done? I have just very unfamiliar with these types of guitars.
  • crookedpinkycrookedpinky Glasgow✭✭✭✭ Alex Bishop D Hole, Altamira M,
    Posts: 823
    Mine was perfect out of the box. Given the price it's a good guitar to tinker with if you feel the need to.
    always learning
  • renzokrenzok Perú✭✭ Geronimo Mateos Audrey
    Posts: 26
    right out of the box.
    but if you have the money dig into the possibility of buying only the custom bridge, im sure Michael can help you, djangobooks has great customer service.
    if not, right out of the box is ok
    MichaelHorowitz
  • Posts: 5
    That is what I'm thinking about--custom bridge and maybe action adjustment. I emailed them, we'll see what they say.
  • Not sure how much experience the OP has in total, but I have observed that a well set up guitar makes playing much easier for anyone but particularly for those who have limited chops.
    The Magic really starts to happen when you can play it with your eyes closed
  • asd123321asd123321 ✭✭✭✭
    edited June 2015 Posts: 120
    I think the place to start is to enlarge the soundhole which gives a vast improvement in the sound. A guy in a review at Musiciansfriend agreed. I am skeptical that $215 setup would be worth it.

    I used a drum sander attachment ($8 Harbor Freight)
    for a drill to remove 3 of the 6 rings around the soundhole.
    This has livened up the tone considerably, especially down
    at the bass area. The sound hole is definitely too small.
    Have all sanding going downward to avoid lifting the finish.
    Do the last ring by hand, rounding the edge there.

    I lowered the top 3 strings by taking wood off the top of the bridge. I put a razor blade under the end of the frets so I could round the corners. I lowered the frets especially on the upper strings with ordinary files I have, with no problem. I put a number of pieces of masking tape next to the frets to not hit the wood.
  • cjlcjl
    Posts: 44

    Still pleased with my GJ 10, .....

    I had mine for about six months before I got a new set of strings and a set up (nowhere near $200! ... more like about £40), and I think it sounds better than a lot of other (much more expensive) guitars....
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