Hello, this is Cheena.
If you are following my Twitter account, you may be aware of it already,
but I am very particular about guitar knobs.
An electric guitar, as an instrument, converts the vibration of a string into an electric signal, and then outputs the signal.
An electric guitar is also a work of art that is cut out of wood, brilliantly decorated. The looks and sounds move people's hearts.
For me, knobs are where those two above characteristics appear.
Because the knob is a part that doesn't really need decoration.
A cover to protect the pot shaft, improvement on operability by increasing the diameter, these are the minimum requirements for the knob, and if it meets these requirements, there is no problem even with a simple cylindrical shape.
However, in reality, there is a wide variety of knobs to choose from, and now there are handmade knobs and artsy knobs made in small factories, and the prices can be over 1,000 yen each.
Knobs are where both functionality and artistry meet together.
This time, I would like to introduce some of the knobs that I especially love.
■ Speed knob
A large and thick knob that is often installed on Gibson guitars.
Due to the thickness, it can be turned very easily, allowing for fine adjustment.
In addition, there are surprisingly many color variations, and unique colors like white and clear are also available, as well as black, amber, and gold.
The scale is engraved inside the knob, and it also goes well with the pointer washer mentioned later.
In addition, there is a bell-shaped knob as a derivative of the speed knob, and as the name suggests, the shape is like a hand-bell. The shape is similar to the Stratocaster hat knob, and the upper part is smaller, but there are no nicks or letters on the top.
■ Lamp shade knob
This is a derivative of the speed knob with a regular polygonal top surface, which is mounted on PRS guitars.
It's an expensive knob that costs 4000 yen for a set of two, but I think the looks is the enough reason to choose this.
A knob with a regular heptagonal shape and metal on top, which is mounted on the Mockingbird.
Unlike the reflector knob, which also has a metal on top, it looks like an industrial product, and although it does not fit for some guitars, it fits very well on others.
Here is the reflector knob.
It has a shape that can be called a straight knob with a skirt, and it has a somewhat bizarre appearance.
Like the hat knob, they also have Volume / Tone engraved on the top.
■ HATA - Knurled hat knob
Anodized metal knobs are available from the Tokyo downtown factory.
Silver and black are available at Sound House, but custom-made items, limited-edition items, and other musical instrument parts can be ordered from the HATA official website.
■ Extra edition ①: Pointer washer
A washer with a scale pointer, as shown in the image.
It is often mounted on knobs with scales, especially guitars with speed knobs and bell knobs.
This washer is actually quite useful to create detailed sounds, and since it visually shows how the knob is turned, you can correct the knob position if you accidentally touched or turned the knob.
■ Extra edition ②: Loknob
This is for effectors. It prevents the knob from turning in an unlikely event.
The jagged part on the bottom is fixed to the effector with tape, and you pull up the upper part to turn it.
This one costs more than 1500 yen, so it seems that many people install it only where it is absolutely needed.
■ Extra edition ③: Split shaft spacer
Some metal knobs use screws for mounting, but if the screw is at an angle, the shaft will bend when tightening the screw.
To avoid this, the spacer is inserted into the shaft. It is available from Montreux and ESP for 10 yen each.
From ESP, models with thicknesses of 1.5 mm and 1.0 mm are available to choose from according to the pot specs.
■ Digression: How to choose knobs
Some knobs don't fit on your guitar for other reason than the looks.
Taking the Stratocaster as an example, there is a well-known story that knobs are installed assuming that the hat knob installed right next to the bridge is used frequently, though it is now treated as a little disturbing.
If you install a large knob, such as a sombrero knob or a metal straight knob, the playability will get worse.
In addition, the Jazz Bass basically has three knobs and one jack on the control plate.
If you install a speed knob with a large diameter here, your finger may hit the side of the adjacent knob when you turn one knob. As you can see, each guitar has knobs that fit depending on the diameter and height.
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I wrote about the guitar knobs.
Sound House has a very wide selection of knobs, including many artsy knobs. The simplest, easiest modification that does not affect sound.
Let's have a good musical instrument life!