594 HBII search is over, incoming NGD...

RickP

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Final Report:

Amplified:

As it was with the McCarty Hollowbody I, this didn’t take a lot of work. The 58/15LTs don’t sound their best on HXDA settings developed for the archtop pickups of the HBI, but a touch more gain and slight EQ adjustment and they are roaring. They clean up particularly nice, and I’m looking forward to running them through a Deluxe Reverb that George Alessandro “blackfaced” for me some time back, which I am sending through a pair of Celestion Alnico Blues in a Morgan cab. The HBI sounded beautiful through it, and the clarity of the HBII should really suit it nicely.

I am somewhat frustrated that I can’t find a pair of 58/15LTs to put in the HBI for a reasonable cost. I might try a set of Fralin Pure PAFs or SD Antiquity pickups at some point. The Archtop pickups are fine, but using them together with 58/15LTs is going to mean amp resets at every change. This sounds like justification for a second 594 HB II in the works...

Anyway, I’ll cut if off there. The new guitar is a perfect melding of everything I loved about my favorite two McCarty models, the HB I and 594. And less. It weighs comfortably under 6 pounds.

Floats like a butterfly, stings like a bee.
 

dmatthews

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Final Report:

Amplified:

As it was with the McCarty Hollowbody I, this didn’t take a lot of work. The 58/15LTs don’t sound their best on HXDA settings developed for the archtop pickups of the HBI, but a touch more gain and slight EQ adjustment and they are roaring. They clean up particularly nice, and I’m looking forward to running them through a Deluxe Reverb that George Alessandro “blackfaced” for me some time back, which I am sending through a pair of Celestion Alnico Blues in a Morgan cab. The HBI sounded beautiful through it, and the clarity of the HBII should really suit it nicely.

I am somewhat frustrated that I can’t find a pair of 58/15LTs to put in the HBI for a reasonable cost. I might try a set of Fralin Pure PAFs or SD Antiquity pickups at some point. The Archtop pickups are fine, but using them together with 58/15LTs is going to mean amp resets at every change. This sounds like justification for a second 594 HB II in the works...

Anyway, I’ll cut if off there. The new guitar is a perfect melding of everything I loved about my favorite two McCarty models, the HB I and 594. And less. It weighs comfortably under 6 pounds.

Floats like a butterfly, stings like a bee.
Brilliant!
Good luck finding a set of 58/15LTs. I tried for weeks to no avail. Some of them are not splittable BTW.
 

dmatthews

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I didn’t know that, thanks!
No worries. My search was to find a bridge 58/15LT for the 594 WL I bought. It came with a different pup in it, but there was a 58/15LT in the case.
It obviously didn't come with the guitar as it had only 2 wires.
In the end I found a local luthier that was able to add a split to that 58/15LT and install it.
 

Going Modal

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I might try a set of Fralin Pure PAFs or SD Antiquity pickups at some point.

Both great choices; but might I suggest possibly adding Lollar Imperial Low-Winds to that short list? I'd expect all 3 of these options to be "market equivalents," and darned good ones at that.
 

RickP

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Both great choices; but might I suggest possibly adding Lollar Imperial Low-Winds to that short list? I'd expect all 3 of these options to be "market equivalents," and darned good ones at that.
I wasn’t aware of that particular Lollar, but I’ll sure check it out!
 

RickP

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Ok, this is totally on another point, but I just saw this beauty at Ish Guitars. If I had the coin, it would be my second 594 HB. Wow, such a cool guitar! They’ve also got a maple neck/board version on their site.

https://reverb.com/item/39887715-pr...ody-ii-wood-library-frost-blue-metallic-satin

ayzg1xokr9f3mhdpjwpg.jpg
 

Alnus Rubra

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bodia

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livingston2012

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Hi @RickP ,
So, over 2 weeks later, how do you like the guitar? I’ve got a serious case of the GAS for one in either Trampas or McCarty Sunburst
How do you like the clean sounds? Are they comparable at all to the sounds of an ES-175 (or -335)?
Cheers!
 

strat63

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I should never open threads like this. The guitar is beautiful and now I think I want one. I usually prefer my hollowbody guitars with a Bigsby but I could see making an exception for this. That color is off the charts.
 

RickP

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Hi @RickP ,
So, over 2 weeks later, how do you like the guitar? I’ve got a serious case of the GAS for one in either Trampas or McCarty Sunburst
How do you like the clean sounds? Are they comparable at all to the sounds of an ES-175 (or -335)?
Cheers!
I am loving the guitar. I mentioned in my HXDA thread that I converted my head to a 1x12 combo, and this is the guitar I’ve been using to test it. A hollowbody guitar blazing through a fired-up Plexi... it’s a near out of body experience. Now I know why Clapton did it! The experience bears out the surprise; great responsiveness from the guitar/top to the amp vibration, but no uncontrollable feedback. There if you want it, but effortless to avoid. I’m sure you could get too loud, but that’s true even of solidbodies. For my purposes, it’s just right.

It was really the overdriven tones I wondered about, because the cleans are above reproach. The pickups will remind you of older Gibson PAF-type or T-Tops from the 60s and just into the 70s. Both pickups are useable on all settings, clean or overdriven. That was what made me love the 72 SG I played for years, and the 58/15LTs do that same thing. Whether clear and clean, a little pushed, edgy breakup, or rocking out these pickups hold together and don’t get that flubby sound in the bass that some do. I haven’t played a bunch on a 175, but I would say a 60’s or early 70s 335 is a decent comparison, except to add that the HB II top vibrates more, but in a more controlled and predictable manner. The package of guitar and electronics come together in a very organic and vocal way. It never sounds ice-picky or muddy into a decent amp. And there are also good, solid and useful tones in the coil splits, which is a bonus. On some tunes, I’ll play rhythm parts in a split, then pop the pickup into humbucking for solos. It works surprisingly well!

As you can probably tell, I’m very happy with the guitar. Now that gigging looks to be on the horizon again, I might have to search out a backup for it because I can totally see this as my new #1. The great sound, tonal options, and super light weight are going to be hard to leave at home!
 
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matonanjin

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@RickP your thread is really making me think! Just a reall gorgeous guitar and you are clearly enjoying it. "I am loving the guitar.".

Yeah, @strat63, "This thread cost me a fair bit of cash.", probably me as well!

From my post yesterday, "Maybe I should consider a McCarty 594 Hollowbody?" Now you've thoroughly confused me even more!:mad::rolleyes:
 

RickP

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@RickP your thread is really making me think! Just a reall gorgeous guitar and you are clearly enjoying it. "I am loving the guitar.".

Yeah, @strat63, "This thread cost me a fair bit of cash.", probably me as well!

From my post yesterday, "Maybe I should consider a McCarty 594 Hollowbody?" Now you've thoroughly confused me even more!:mad::rolleyes:
You owe it to yourself to give it a shot! Several years ago, I wouldn’t have even been looking at semi-hollows as my experiences in the past weren’t the best. I got interested in the 594 HB after liking the 594s I played, but couldn’t find the one I liked. In the meantime, I followed a suggestion from @sergiodeblanc on trying a McCarty Hollowbody Spruce, which turned out to be a great guitar. Really great. That lead me to keep hunting for the 594 HB, ending when I found this guitar, which I am indeed still loving!

As I can’t see myself needing to shoulder the weight of a solidbody for a long show now, I’ve been considering selling off or trading a couple of others to get another HB I Spruce and a second 594 HB II (I like to carry just 2 matching guitars for live gigging for string breaks, or the occasional alternate tuning). I really like them all, but am in a “sell something to add something” financial life these days. Just not interested in debt spending on guitars. Fortunately I have lots of guitars and amps to fund any needed additions.

I’ve a feeling that, if you like the regular 594s, you’ll also love the HB version. For me, the Hollowbody has turned out to be even better!
 

matonanjin

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You owe it to yourself to give it a shot!
...
I really like them all, but am in a “sell something to add something” financial life these days. Just not interested in debt spending on guitars. Fortunately I have lots of guitars and amps to fund any needed additions.

I’ve a feeling that, if you like the regular 594s, you’ll also love the HB version. For me, the Hollowbody has turned out to be even better!
Thanks again Rick. And I will "give it a shot!"! The pendulum continues to swing back and forth between the DGT and 594. But if it locks on the 594 I am definitely going to think HB II version.

And I couldn't agree more with the possibly most important part of your post, bolded. I'm not about to borrow no matter what I end up with. There is a 594 I found, a solid body, but light. Gorgeous, but I'm probably going to miss it. Waiting for some funds to purchase this that are a week or twwo off. My wife and I are debt free and it's going to stay that way!

Thanks again.
 
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