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Updates To My 93' Alvarez Dana Scoop

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  • Updates To My 93' Alvarez Dana Scoop

    I bought this guitar brand new in 1993. I've had it in various stages of assembly over the last couple of years, so yesterday I decided to install all of the new parts and get it working and all together. I've had the parts and new neck pickup sitting around for almost 2 years. It's the only guitar I own with a Floyd Rose Bridge. It may look a little strange, but it sounds really good and plays like a dream with an ease you don't always find in superstars, at least in my experience.

    Here's a list of the new parts:

    New jack
    3 new 500k CTS pots (volume, tone, tone)
    Orange Drop .022mf tone cap
    New 5 way Switchcraft switch
    SD Parallel Axis Stack for the neck position

    Got the new pots, jack and switch all in without too much pain. I wish my solder joints were neater, but I don't use that skill very often. It's functional. The hardest thing about installing the neck pickup is, due to how this guitar is constructed, I have to take the springs off the Floyd and remove the claw to get the pickup in. That's why I put it off for so long, since it's a complete setup on the Floyd from scratch. Anyhow, it didn't take long for the actual install, which is nice. It's a very tight fit in this guitar, since the PA Stk is just slightly larger than a single coil. I slip one end in at a 45 degree angle and get the screw started, then a gentle tap on the other end using a screwdriver and mallet and it slips right in. No damage. Wire it up, easy peasy.

    Reassemble the term claw and springs, put new strings on and start the process of getting the Floyd balanced, baseplate level with the top and staying in tune. This is the longest part for me since I don't have any other floating trems and I rarely dissemble the damn thing. I've learned a couple of tricks over the years that help, but I'm still not fast. Oh well.

    So the guitar has an unusual pickup config, as you will see in the pic. It originally came with a triple bucker in the bridge (which was three single coil pickups wired together to work like a H/S/S setup, but you could get single coil sounds from the bridge position too. Honestly, it wasn't a good pickup and didn't sound great. No beef. I took it out years ago and have had a ton of humbucker in the bridge over the years and nothing sounded like I wanted it to. Finally some years ago.... the Original Parallel Axis TB. Wow, finally a great sound. So, now the pickups are:

    Original Parallel Axis TB PATB-1 - Bridge
    APS RWRP single (in what I call the middle position, but really the slot for the 3rd coil of the "triple bucker")
    Parallel Axis Stk - in what we'll call the neck slot, but it's closer to a middle position actually

    The guitar sounds great. The PA bridge is strong and crunchy with great warmth and clarity. I don't normally like such a hot bridge pickup, but this one is great. I do think I want to at least try the PATB-3, since it has a more PAF type sound, but output right around 10k I think. I do have to keep the PATB a bit lower so it's not too harsh or too hot, but I have it dialed in nicely. The APS sounds good combined with coils of the other two pickups. The PA Stk in the neck is a sleeper of a pickup and it sounds amazing. It's the best position honestly; clean or dirty. It's warm and sweet with nice clarity, chime and articulation. It sings under gain too. Just wow. Also, it's super light at just about 6.5lbs, maybe a tad more.

    Anyhow, it's cloudy and rainy, so a lone indoor pic will have to do for now. Thanks for reading.



    Click image for larger version

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    Last edited by Jeff_H; 10-26-2018, 01:23 PM.
    My Sound Clips

  • #2
    Re: Updates To My 93' Alvarez Dana Scoop

    I always liked those. Forum jock and luthier ChaoZ has made a few replica scoops which look really cool.
    Last edited by kramersteen; 10-26-2018, 02:34 PM.

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    • #3
      Re: Updates To My 93' Alvarez Dana Scoop

      Wow...that guitar has the ultimate upper fret access I've ever seen!!! I guess installing a neck pick up is out of the question.



      ;>)/
      sigpic Moderation is a fatal thing. Nothing succeeds like excess. - Oscar Wilde

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      • #4
        Re: Updates To My 93' Alvarez Dana Scoop

        Originally posted by RorySquier View Post
        Wow...that guitar has the ultimate upper fret access I've ever seen!!! I guess installing a neck pick up is out of the question.



        ;>)/
        Neck mount .

        How does the PA Stack sound? I've never heard one and I don't think anyone around here has done a decent review.
        If I only had a dollar for every song I've sung
        every time I had to play while people sat there drunk,

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        • #5
          Re: Updates To My 93' Alvarez Dana Scoop

          Originally posted by Chistopher View Post
          Neck mount .

          How does the PA Stack sound? I've never heard one and I don't think anyone around here has done a decent review.
          The PA Stk in the neck is a sleeper of a pickup and it sounds amazing. It's the best position honestly; clean or dirty. It's warm and sweet with nice clarity, chime and articulation. It sings under gain too. I really like it a lot!
          My Sound Clips

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          • #6
            Re: Updates To My 93' Alvarez Dana Scoop

            Glad you got it sorted out! I played one of those back when they were being produced. I really liked it, but was afraid it would break at the where the neck attaches to the body. I was impressed with the sustain and all tho. When I started seeing the ads, I didnt think it would sustain very well because of the gap. One day I want to try a PATB 1 and 2. Ive had a PATB3 before and liked it.


            One more thing.. I remember the Scoop ads in the guitar mags where they had a girl on a Harley holding one. She was stunning... haha
            When my mom moved, she threw all of my old guitar mags from the 80s and early 90s away.. Id love to still have those cuz of all the old ads for Kramers and other cool guitars of the era. : (
            Last edited by BloodRose; 11-02-2018, 02:02 AM.
            Believe me when I say that some of the most amazing music in history was made on equipment that's not as good as what you own right now.

            Jol Dantzig

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            • #7
              Re: Updates To My 93' Alvarez Dana Scoop

              Ha! I know just the ad you're talking about. I had it framed hanging on the wall in my guitar room both in Colorado and North Carolina. I don't know what's happened to my pictures since we moved from Charlotte.

              I've really been surprised at how stable this neck joint actually is. For quite a while I didn't know how to properly set up a Floyd Rose, so I never really got the full sound out of this guitar. Back in 2010, I really set my mind to learning how, mainly because it was the only guitar I had left after my accident and gear sell off in 2006. So, I bought a used PATB stack for the neck and just watched videos on YT and messed with it until the tuning was rock solid. Then I recorded a couple of cover tunes with it while I was out of work in 2010...then I got a job. It was very demanding and I moved to San Antonio not too long after for an even harder job, so it went back into the case.

              Fast forward to 2018 and I'd bought other new guitars and this Alvarez had been in the case, unopened and unplayed since 2013. That's a long time. Long story short, when I took it out recently to get it back in playing shape....the damn thing was still in tune! Seriously. Each string was just a slight bit flat, but they were still in tune with each other. Still perfectly in tune enough to plug and play. The strings were stiff, felt dry and had no slickness to them, but the bridge was still perfectly level and the relief right where I left it. To me that was amazing.

              It probably helps that I've never taken the neck off or even loosened the neck screws, but it's completely stable and rock solid. You look at it and don't believe that can be the case. It all just balances perfectly.

              It does have a great amount of sustain and resonance when you play it. You can feel it strumming the guitar. The other thing, which is strange, is that the scale length feels shorter than 25.5". I really don't care for that scale length because my fingers are short. I actually always thought it was a 24.75" scale. But when I set it up this time, I measured it for the first time. I was surprised. This is a guitar that really shouldn't work, but instead excels at what it does.

              It's super picky about pickups though. I've had over a dozen different bridge HB's in it, and nothing sounded really good until the PATB-1. Right away I knew it was right. The body is Basswood as I understand it, with about an 1/8" flat maple cap. From the back of the bridge route to the front pickup, it's hollow underneath. The pickups hang from the maple cap like strat pickups hang from the pickguard. It's all hollowed out due to the Floyd route. That probably contributes to it's difficulty with pickups. Anyhow, I've grown to love it, now that i really understand it. Oh, and the fret access is pretty good too. Jumbo frets that are well done and a great smooth satin finish neck and fast feeling slick maple fretboard. It's a fine example of quality Korean craftsmanship from the early 90's.

              Hey, if you still have your PATB-3, I'd be happy to trade you my PATB-1. I really just want something slightly less hot, and the -3 is more like a Brobucker or 78' model in output. Consider it a standing offer.

              Thanks for taking the time to comment. This guitar always generates interest from everyone who see's it, and now i understand it enough to get better tone and playability out of it.

              Cheers.
              Last edited by Jeff_H; 11-02-2018, 03:09 AM.
              My Sound Clips

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              • #8
                Re: Updates To My 93' Alvarez Dana Scoop

                Great info!! Impressive tuning stability!! Glad your health allows you to play again! glad you are bonding with that axe too! Most of them I see or have seen are solid colors, so yours is even cooler. Yeah, the one I played all those years ago surprised me. About the pickup, I appreciate the offer, but it was in a guitar that I sold awhile back.. (Carvin SC90)
                Believe me when I say that some of the most amazing music in history was made on equipment that's not as good as what you own right now.

                Jol Dantzig

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                • #9
                  Re: Updates To My 93' Alvarez Dana Scoop

                  Whoa! I’ve never seen one of these...very interesting design.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Updates To My 93' Alvarez Dana Scoop

                    Originally posted by Gtrjunior View Post
                    Whoa! I’ve never seen one of these...very interesting design.
                    It most certainly is. I only have a couple of old pics of the full guitar in my old music room, but the best one is below. A few of the Scoops had matching headstock colors on certain special colors, like white. The majority of them had a black headstock, regardless of body color. Also, the vast majority were painted a solid color. There were only a couple of finishes that showed wood grain; like 2 or 3 finishes max.

                    The finish that I have seems to be the most rare. Most of the ones I've seen in my finish have the black headstock as well. Mine has the matching sunburst headstock. I've only found one other picture of one like mine. There's no way to know how many of my finish were made. Anyhow, I think it's pretty cool.

                    Click image for larger version

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                    • #11
                      Re: Updates To My 93' Alvarez Dana Scoop

                      Cool guitar and nice review. I've got the PATB-1 set and have always wondered about that PATB single. Now I need to snag one. Btw, I had the PATB-3 before I switched to the PATB-1. I seem to recall it being hotter than the "1". I recall it as having a bit more bite, with the "1" being a bit smoother. But it was years ago.

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                      • #12
                        Re: Updates To My 93' Alvarez Dana Scoop

                        Originally posted by ArtieToo View Post
                        Cool guitar and nice review. I've got the PATB-1 set and have always wondered about that PATB single. Now I need to snag one. Btw, I had the PATB-3 before I switched to the PATB-1. I seem to recall it being hotter than the "1". I recall it as having a bit more bite, with the "1" being a bit smoother. But it was years ago.
                        Maybe you're thinking of the PATB-2? Looking at specs, the 3 seems to be in '78 or Brobucker territory like Jeff_H was saying.

                        I have a PA-STK lined up for my Charvel Model 2 along with a PATB-1 in the neck and PATB-2 in the bridge, but that probably won't be finished until next spring at this point. I need to spray a few base coats prior to trying a Kramersteen-style graphic, and it's too cold for that in MN.
                        Originally posted by crusty philtrum
                        And that's probably because most people with electric guitars seem more interested in their own performance rather than the effect on the listener ... in fact i don't think many people who own electric guitars even give a poop about the effect on a listener. Which is why many people play electric guitars but very very few of them are actually musicians.

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                        • #13
                          C'est vraiment des jolies guitares!
                          J'ai découvert, c'est 2 trésors au fond d'un magasin, abandonnée .
                          J'ai réussi à leur redonner vie!
                          La Dana rouge possède pour remplacer le Tri-Force pickup complétement détruit par l'ancien propriétaire
                          1
                          Sey­mour Duncan PATB-TB2B splitabe
                          1
                          Sey­mour Duncan SHR-1B BLK splitabe
                          et le micro original
                          1 Alvarez Dana simple

                          Avec tout ça le crunch et le sustain sont là avec beaucoup d'harmonique.(Son style ZZ TOP Eliminator selon les splits)
                          Peinture, Floyd rose, mécanique haut de gamme, elle méritait ça!

                          La Dana bleue avait le corps fendu sur la partie fragile, avec beaucoup de patience et de chimie, je l'ai remis en état,
                          une peinture parfaite dessus, elle a encore ses micros actifs d'origine.

                          Bonne restauration à tous ! Bravo pour vos travaux à coeur ouvert.


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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Lexx View Post
                            C'est vraiment des jolies guitares!
                            J'ai découvert, c'est 2 trésors au fond d'un magasin, abandonnée .
                            J'ai réussi à leur redonner vie!
                            La Dana rouge possède pour remplacer le Tri-Force pickup complétement détruit par l'ancien propriétaire
                            1
                            Sey­mour Duncan PATB-TB2B splitabe
                            1
                            Sey­mour Duncan SHR-1B BLK splitabe
                            et le micro original
                            1 Alvarez Dana simple

                            Avec tout ça le crunch et le sustain sont là avec beaucoup d'harmonique.(Son style ZZ TOP Eliminator selon les splits)
                            Peinture, Floyd rose, mécanique haut de gamme, elle méritait ça!

                            La Dana bleue avait le corps fendu sur la partie fragile, avec beaucoup de patience et de chimie, je l'ai remis en état,
                            une peinture parfaite dessus, elle a encore ses micros actifs d'origine.

                            Bonne restauration à tous ! Bravo pour vos travaux à coeur ouvert.

                            Welcome to the forum! These are pretty rare instruments, so we'd love it if you'd post some pics!

                            I sent this through Google Translate, since the language of this forum is English:


                            They are really pretty guitars! I discovered, it's 2 treasures at the bottom of a store, abandoned. I managed to bring them back to life! The red Dana has to replace the Tri-Force pickup completely destroyed by the previous owner 1 Seymour Duncan PATB-TB2B splitabe 1 Seymour Duncan SHR-1B BLK splitabe and the original microphone 1 Alvarez Dana single With all that the crunch and the sustain are there with a lot of harmonic. (Its ZZ TOP Eliminator style according to the splits) Painting, Floyd rose, high-end mechanics, she deserved that! The blue Dana had her body split on the fragile part, with a lot of patience and chemistry, I repaired it, a perfect paint on it, it still has its original active pickups. Happy catering to all! Bravo for your open-hearted work.
                            Dave, Ambassador/Writer/Artist for Seymour Duncan

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