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Good News & Bad News (follow Up To "dead Piezo Users" And Quick Review Of X-inserts)


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#1 clay-man

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 12:58 PM

So, as a lot of you know, I "fixed" my D string piezo a week ago.

Today I tried to maintain tuning on my variax, and I noticed that piezo was sticking out a bit, and I wanted it to be in the saddle as much as it can.

I lightly tapped it in with a hammer with cloth inbetween and it started acting up again.

 

I don't know what happened, but I attempted to put new copper back in. The problem is that I put it in too hard. I flipped the saddle over and tried to knock it out via the tiny hole where the signal wire goes. Much to what I was trying to avoid, the signal wire got cut, and the piezo's time was over. 

 

I got out my LR baggs x-insert I ordered from their site and decided it was time to actually use this. I was pushing away from using it as I don't know how to solder, and I don't have a kit. I also was afraid it would sound too different from the other piezos because some guy said the Variax piezos might be different than the X-inserts.

 

Either way, i tried to find a way to connect it to the PCB on the vibrato-block. It was really no use doing it a traditional way. Luckily the excess wire from the old piezo was there, and I stripped the tip to expose the wire inside. I jointed the new piezo and old wire together and tapped it to the side of the female end of the cable that goes to the DSP and main circuit board.

 

So far so good, but I honestly have 0 faith it will stay there long.

 

 

So far it sounds great though. No difference between the other piezos. I highly suggest ordering X-inserts from LR baggs if Line 6 ever wusses out from restocking their piezo elements.

 

Thanks for reading.


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#2 pwoodyman2006

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Posted 12 May 2013 - 03:45 PM

  1. I recently was given a variax 500 that has one small problem. The ribbon that connects from the saddle to the circut board seems to be stripped at the end(circut board end) . some of the contacts are gone leaving only a few strings working. is there any way to get a replacement (ribbon) or quick fix to my issue? 

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#3 clay-man

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Posted 12 May 2013 - 11:19 PM

  1. I recently was given a variax 500 that has one small problem. The ribbon that connects from the saddle to the circut board seems to be stripped at the end(circut board end) . some of the contacts are gone leaving only a few strings working. is there any way to get a replacement (ribbon) or quick fix to my issue? 

 

Any picks? You have non-whammy guitar which has a different PCB than the whammy guitars. I assume you're talking about the Molex looking ribbon that connect to the piezo PCB? I'm not sure if there's a replacement part for that other than on another Variax unit. You might have to make a solution yourself.

 

For me, I didn't have a solder kit, so I stripped the old piezo's wire and tapped the new piezo's wire down together on the ribbon cable's female connector. So far so good, hope that "permanent" double side tape will do the job for now.


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#4 toneman2121

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Posted 13 May 2013 - 03:49 AM

although your fix may hold permanently, you could lose something regarding response if you don't solder. ten bucks will get you an iron and solder


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#5 codamedia

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Posted 13 May 2013 - 10:14 AM

@clay-man! 

 

You said "I highly suggest ordering X-inserts from LR bags".  I have to ask - Where? I went to the LR-Baggs site, and don't see these anywhere. I assume they are the Piezo Inserts for their X-Bridge, but I can't see where you can buy parts like this. I'm in Canada, and Line 6 will not ship here - so buying the Saddles is next to impossible.


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#6 toneman2121

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Posted 13 May 2013 - 10:21 AM

http://www.lrbaggs.c...acoustic-pickup


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#7 clay-man

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Posted 13 May 2013 - 03:46 PM

@clay-man! 

 

You said "I highly suggest ordering X-inserts from LR bags".  I have to ask - Where? I went to the LR-Baggs site, and don't see these anywhere. I assume they are the Piezo Inserts for their X-Bridge, but I can't see where you can buy parts like this. I'm in Canada, and Line 6 will not ship here - so buying the Saddles is next to impossible.

 

Hey bud, what I did was email them asking to purchase an x insert. They're virtually identical to the piezos on the variax, and I honestly I hear no difference. 

I email them and they told me to call them when I wanted to order. Funny enough, the person who consulted my email was the person on the phone.

They sound great if you want a quick fix instead of getting a ghost system.

 

 

 

although your fix may hold permanently, you could lose something regarding response if you don't solder. ten bucks will get you an iron and solder

 

I don't hear any response drop since I fixed it. Do you mean over time? I don't know how to solder, and I've heard about oxidation being a problem when soldering, so I'm kind of scared to try it.


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#8 toneman2121

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Posted 13 May 2013 - 04:11 PM

soldering's easy. heat the wire, touch the solder to the wire where the iron meets the wire. done. get some wire and practice. you probably need a spectrum analyzer to measure the loss, if any 


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#9 clay-man

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Posted 13 May 2013 - 07:26 PM

soldering's easy. heat the wire, touch the solder to the wire where the iron meets the wire. done. get some wire and practice. you probably need a spectrum analyzer to measure the loss, if any 

 

would you suggest doing this to the old piezo's wire to the new piezo's wire and joint them together, or should I remove the old wire and old solder at the PCB and solder it there?


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#10 toneman2121

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Posted 14 May 2013 - 01:58 AM

if there's enough old wire, do it that way. use shrink wrap tubing to insulate the connection. rubber tubing that you slip over the wire before soldering, then slip over the  soldered connection and heat it until it shrinks. if you feel you can solder directly. it would be better. then there's no need to insulate the soldered wires. i don't know your situation, what it looks like. how much room you have. is it a ribbon (wires joined together) or individual wires? if it's a ribbon, it would be easier to solder directly to the board since there is little space between the wires.  but practice soldering before you attempt anything until you are comfortable. or you can leave it. if you start to have issues, then solder.  soldering is easy if there's enough room to work. watch some youtube vids. there's plenty of them on there. one other point i'd like to make. if it aint broke don't fix it!


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#11 codamedia

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Posted 14 May 2013 - 06:02 AM

Hey bud, what I did was email them asking to purchase an x insert. They're virtually identical to the piezos on the variax, and I honestly I hear no difference. 

I email them and they told me to call them when I wanted to order. Funny enough, the person who consulted my email was the person on the phone.

They sound great if you want a quick fix instead of getting a ghost system.

 

Thanks for this info - I'll give them a call. But I have one more quick question - if you don't mind?

 

In searching "x-insert" I am not coming up with anything. Neither on the LR Baggs site, or the net itself. It's a term that doesn't seem to exist.

Is an "x-insert" a complete saddle (similar to what Line 6 sells), or just the piezo pieces that appear to drop into each saddle. Also, since you already bought some - do you remember what they cost?


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#12 clay-man

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Posted 14 May 2013 - 08:03 AM

Thanks for this info - I'll give them a call. But I have one more quick question - if you don't mind?

 

In searching "x-insert" I am not coming up with anything. Neither on the LR Baggs site, or the net itself. It's a term that doesn't seem to exist.

Is an "x-insert" a complete saddle (similar to what Line 6 sells), or just the piezo pieces that appear to drop into each saddle. Also, since you already bought some - do you remember what they cost?

That's what they call it. You can't look it up directly in their site, but you can ask to order just the piezo pieces, which is called an x-insert. They do this so people with their x-bridge can repair broken piezos.

 

They also support using x-inserts for old Variaxes. I told the person in the email it was for my Variax and he said it's cool for me to order an x-insert for it.

 

Mine costed about 12 USD.


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#13 clay-man

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Posted 14 May 2013 - 08:07 AM

if there's enough old wire, do it that way. use shrink wrap tubing to insulate the connection. rubber tubing that you slip over the wire before soldering, then slip over the  soldered connection and heat it until it shrinks. if you feel you can solder directly. it would be better. then there's no need to insulate the soldered wires. i don't know your situation, what it looks like. how much room you have. is it a ribbon (wires joined together) or individual wires? if it's a ribbon, it would be easier to solder directly to the board since there is little space between the wires.  but practice soldering before you attempt anything until you are comfortable. or you can leave it. if you start to have issues, then solder.  soldering is easy if there's enough room to work. watch some youtube vids. there's plenty of them on there. one other point i'd like to make. if it aint broke don't fix it!

 

It's just a lone signal wire. the new one is against the old one, taped down against the female molex-esque connector, because I thought it wouldn't be secure if I just wrapped tape around it.


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#14 toneman2121

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Posted 14 May 2013 - 12:21 PM

if it aint broke don't fix it!


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#15 clay-man

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Posted 14 May 2013 - 04:49 PM

if it aint broke don't fix it!

 

Well, it was broke, the real question is, is it truly fixed? :P

So far I'm having faith in this "scotch double side permanent tape". Seems to be holding on fine.


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#16 clay-man

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Posted 13 June 2013 - 07:57 PM

Aaaand I had to do it again today, because the wire jutted out of the tape, losing connection to the old wire.

 

I'm going to try to solder the 2 wires together when I can pick up a solder kit, but for now I threw out the tremolo bar again (because that's what caused it, YET AGAIN)

 

I kind of hate the guy who sold me this guitar now. I have bad luck with defective technology.


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