The BAT-357String; This 7 string Guitar which was designed and built at PBC/Bunker Guitars

Discussion in 'Sevenstring Guitars' started by Dave Bunker, Jul 24, 2020.

  1. Dave Bunker

    Dave Bunker New 7+ string hex mute technology

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    bat-7strg-tb500px.jpg
     

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  2. mlp187

    mlp187 Burrito Master Contributor

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    Well I certainly like the aesthetic.
     
  3. sleewell

    sleewell SS.org Regular

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    Very nice
     
  4. Adieu

    Adieu SS.org Regular

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    Sir,

    If you're trying to sell guitars to this target audience, I sincerely recommend doing anything and EVERYTHING with a spalted top and a (highlighter bright) blue-to-greenburst.

    I'm pretty sure that's the secret recipe to 7 string success.
     
  5. mbardu

    mbardu SS.org Regular

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    Sir?
    Sir, this is a Wendy's.
     
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  6. Adieu

    Adieu SS.org Regular

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    It says here he's over 50 years older than me
     
  7. Strtsmthng

    Strtsmthng SS.org Regular

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    Looks awesome. What scale length did you go with?
     
  8. Dave Bunker

    Dave Bunker New 7+ string hex mute technology

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    Good morning, mlp187, and thanks. I really appreciate the compliment on design. The big story here is how and why I worked for over three years to get this one right. I think my first big boost on the BAT guitars came when great legend Arlen Roth, (well known for his Hot Licks Videos, and friend to almost every artist in the guitar industry) got his PBC Guitar Technology NOVA. The NOVA was the baby brother to the BAT and preceded it by about two years. This is a carved archtop and back, guitar. (A few photos are included below. More coming on the design and technique of building it!!!)

    Over the last millennium, all archtop guitars were cured by the steaming and heating of wood. This process resulted in stress and warping which, over time, caused a change to the shape and integrity of the original guitar structure. Another problem was that this process was unable to control the string tension so the tops would pull up, making the guitars hard to play. In 1994, a new manufacturing method eliminated most of these problems.

    I'd sure like to discuss this new manufacturing technique with you all.
     

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    Last edited: Jul 25, 2020
  9. narad

    narad Progressive metal and politics

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    Hey Dave. Seems like a cool design. Just wanted to say welcome to the forum -- I used to have a Hen-Bev guitar that had your tension-free neck which was pretty cool :yesway:
     
  10. Dave Bunker

    Dave Bunker New 7+ string hex mute technology

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    Hey, narad, just sent a note to Scotty Bevilaqua, who built your Hen-Bev guitar, he'll be getting back to you on this Forum. Scotty is a great young man, worked with me for over 10 years, great, great luthier, you won't find better!!! Pictures are a few of my BAT guitars that he, co-built with me, special young man!
     

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  11. Dave Bunker

    Dave Bunker New 7+ string hex mute technology

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    I think on this one I used a 25.5-inch Tension Free neck scale, this scale seemed to work best on my BAT guitars. I use this scale also on my Galaxy and old Bunker Guitars ProStar guitars.
    Thanks for asking.
     

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  12. xzacx

    xzacx SS.org Regular

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    This is super cool to me, I love seeing more traditional looking designs like this as 7s. The non-traditional manufacturing makes it even better.
     
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  13. Dave Bunker

    Dave Bunker New 7+ string hex mute technology

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    Hi xzacx, Actually, as a custom builder this turned out to be one of the easiest, and the most efficient guitars I've built, all-natural wood, no bends, carved roughly on a CNC, top, ring,ctr and back and hand-finished, add my patented "Wishbone Bridge" and it almost played by itself. Also, it was from wood I logged for Bunker Guitars and process in my own kiln. Thanks for asking.

    Thought you might enjoy seeing what creates the beautiful spalting found in over-aged big Leaf Maple trees, it is the mushrooms which when decaying make a black inking, and creates the great colors. I took this tree on Whidbey Island Washington in 2015 with my Painter Jerry Drosch. It was a great spalt tree.
     

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  14. MaxOfMetal

    MaxOfMetal Likes trem wankery. Super Moderator

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    Welcome to the forum, Dave.

    I dig the f-hole continued onto the guard. Really nice touch.

    I had a few Ibanez USRGs and an old PBC bass, I forget the model. All exquisite instruments.
     
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  15. Dave Bunker

    Dave Bunker New 7+ string hex mute technology

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    Good morning, Adieu, I have not built any Jazz/blues BAT, big body 7 string archtops out of spalted wood. I have built numerous NOVA guitars, the little brother of the BAT, using spalted tops. As soon as I have time, I would love to build some six and seven-string BAT Bunker Guitars out of the spalt I have in stock.

    It took me quite some time working with my son David, at Bunker Guitars of Utah, to learn how to stabilize the spalted wood, but it was worth it...a thousand times over. The sound you get from a fully carved archtop with my wishbone design bridge and Tension Free on the neck is really over the top. I think it is because a spalted wood top is so very sound-penetrable and reflective. Add to a carved figured maple back, a red Western alder ring, and it is absolutely something special when built to the "STS" (Stump to Stage) build process.

    As soon as I can, I will build several of these. You are right Adieu, people overlook this beautiful West Coast spalted wood. It really does have a character of its own and a great variety of new sounds can be found in it. Thanks for bringing this up.
     

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  16. Dave Bunker

    Dave Bunker New 7+ string hex mute technology

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    Hello MaxofMetal, The F-hole really makes the guitar flow. I appreciate your comments. Between 1991 and 1997 when we were building many Prestige USRGs guitars and the ATK basses for Ibanez at Bunker/PBC in Coopersburg Pa, I learned a lot about many of the problems guitar companies face in keeping the quality of their guitars always presentable to their customers. Ibanez was one of the best in delivering a good set-up and playable guitar. It was Jim Donahue, an icon in the guitar world, and a builder himself of high-quality guitars who introduced us to Ibanez and got Bunker Guitars/PBC involved in building the American made Prestige line of Ibanez guitars.

    When we had our first meeting with Ibanez, Tom Tanaca, president of Ibanez USA, had Joe Hoshino of Japan, the mother company of Ibanez, put the "Tension Free Neck" which Bunker owned to its breakable test. I stood almost paralyzed while he twisted it so far, with such a forceful effort that I never in my wildest dreams expected him to do. Later we found he had actually bent the pivotal pin in the neck but not the neck itself.

    Another procedure which Ibanez USA did, which I thought was great, was to set up each guitar as it came in, before being put into storage and running it through a complete inspection and set-up before they were shipped.

    Hey, MaxofMetal, hold onto that old bass. It probably was one of our early GTB basses. Thanks much for your comments. DDB PS I've posted some old Ibanez pictures.
     

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    Last edited: Jul 28, 2020
  17. Dave Bunker

    Dave Bunker New 7+ string hex mute technology

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    Yeh, I'm an old guy, hope it comes with some kind of wisdom, I could sure use some!! Good thing is I'm still, young at heart.
     

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  18. ElRay

    ElRay Mostly Harmless

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    Phenomenal. How wide is the neck at the nut? If this has Fingerpicking/Classical spacing at the nut: {takemymoney.gif}
     
  19. Shawn

    Shawn ESP • Ibanez Forum MVP

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    Welcome to the forum and nice guitars! I love the design. I used to live in Kitsap County in the 80s as my Father was stationed there in the Navy. Am a diehard Seahawks fan. Go Hawks!
     
  20. Dave Bunker

    Dave Bunker New 7+ string hex mute technology

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    Hi ElRay, Width at Nut- 1.70" (custom small is 1.65"). Width at 22nd fret is 2.22". This would be a good place to check out the specs of our BAT guitars -https://bunkerguitars.com/custom-shop-2/specs-bat/ - Thanks for asking, we do just about any width at nut and body butt end of necks in our custom shop. On my BTX guitar, blue picture attached, just for Touch Tap I use a straight no taper neck, Van Halen loved it the several time he played it at Namn shows.
    Also in the pictures is the hex pickups and electronics used in the Van Halen prototype.

    I use all straight necks, no taper, using .50" to .55" string spacing, on all my Touch Guitars because here you can slide, chords, or melody, up and down the neck and you don't want taper for that. On my tapping/touch guitars, you can slide any chord, or melody, the full length of the fingerboard and never lift your fingers off the strings while modulating to different fingering positions as you slide. The sound of the chord or notes will continue to ring out and resonate throughout your slide. This is because, with the wide .50" inch string spacing, you can play both verticle and horizontal to the strings. Just a little something I thought I'd throw out for you to chew on!!!!! Thanks for bringing up the subject of fingerboard sizes and widths. There are demo Dave Bunker videos on YouTube, lots to consider here.

    Thanks for asking, DDB
     

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