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Thread: Ryder 10-string conversion

  1. #1
    Registered User Tom Wright's Avatar
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    Default Ryder 10-string conversion

    Enjoying 10-string so much I never played my Ryder, so I converted it to 10-string. It has a sweet tone from the combination of mahogany body with maple overlay, and the bolt-on maple neck.

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    I first tested to see if doubled strings could just use the single ferrules on the back, which test was successful. Slight widening of the smaller drilling was needed.

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    The existing Gotoh mini tuners served fine, with only very slight filing of the screw lug needed to get them to be close enough.

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    The Strat-style bridge pieces received slight grooves to keep the strings separate. I also swapped the single-coil bridge pickup for a Ryder side-by-side. I wired the coils parallel for a lighter tone to balance with the stacked single-coil neck pickup.

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    The truss rod easily handles the load, which is my usual set of .009, .014, .022, .034, .048. Although the scale is 1/4" shorter, the tone is strong and clear on the C. Now I have a choice of tone and feel for electric playing. Count me happy.

    I may cut a new nut for more exact spacing but this one is really close, so I will play for a while before tackling that chore. Note I set the C pair slightly wide for tone.
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  3. #2
    Americana in France? Daniel Nestlerode's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ryder 10-string conversion

    That's pretty cool Tom, and it looks great.

    Can you give us a report about the string spacing and the saddles after some playing time? I am curious about a couple things as I have been considering a similar approach...
    - Do the strings stay in place on the saddle after strumming a bit ?
    - Is the tuning stability or smoothness affected either by the saddles or by the sharing of a single channel through the body?

    Thanks!
    Daniel

  4. #3
    Registered User Tom Wright's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ryder 10-string conversion

    No problem with strings maintaining spacing on the bridge saddles, even with tiny grooves. The steep break angle probably helps on that. As of now, the height screws are tall and interfere a little with best spacing on the thicker strings. The C saddle has shorter screws and is fine, it’s the G as a temporary issue. When I am sure of other action settings like neck angle and relief I will shorten the screws or buy shorter ones.

    Tuning is stable, no problem stacking in one ferrule. I could slant-drill from the top and install a second rank, I suppose, but I always change strings entire, so no need for individual access. Nut slots need breaking in and/or lubing, still sticky on the long runs. I succeeded in keeping the string runs clear to the nut.

    Now I can say, having spent a fair time with the first version, the doubled courses sound fat and rich, while the former single courses sounded more toylike without major effects help. Doubled courses do not force a mandolin tone, just a bigger sound. I can get a very guitar tone from either 10-string. But it also can show that difference that the combination of short string and double courses yields, punchy and complex.

    Now I own 5 (!) 10-string mandolins, and nothing but. Can’t imagine having to make do with only 8 strings.
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