I ordered a Replogle cone for a Dobro that I ended up offering for sale before UPS brought the new cone. I'm taking a major hit on the Dobro so I'm not including this new cone. It'll remain in the box until I have an occasion to use it.
I have a 1973 model 114 ( a weirdo) that I really, really like the tone of. I've heard the Replogle cone will likely improve the tone over the stock OMI cone, but I don't even dare swap them out, for fear of losing what I already have. Not worth taking a chance I guess. I haven't even changed the strings in the 3 years I've owned it.
Not a question, just a rant I guess.
A friend of mine from Maine had one of those. It was a round neck blond top, kind of a dreadnaught shaped body 14 frets clear of the neck. I think it had a factory pickup, which would make his a 114-B. He liked it.
I bought it out of morbid curiosity on Reverb a few years back. It's not that fairy dust pops out of the screen holes or anything, but it does just provide a "go to" role, much like a D-18, J-45, or Telecaster might do. It's very comfortable and never ever seems to have a 'bad day'.
I would have a bad day if I ever dropped it on my toe though.
That was the first Dobro model I owned, serial # X-104, bought in January 1974.
Mine is X-134
Price in 1974, $280.
Does it have a stamped or spun cone?
It has a spun cone.
Scott, you're not gonna mess anything up by disassembling it. If anything, it would likely benefit from a good cleaning inside.
You have the Replogle cone, you might install it and it could be a major revelation, not to mention a new set of strings. I've come across some recognized singer/songwriter types over the years who actually prefer somewhat dead strings on their flattops, but I can't say off the top of my head that I've come across anyone who actually thinks dead strings on a Dobro are a good idea, be it roundneck or squareneck.
There are multiple ideas here where to look for instruction (StewMac, Howard Parker's video, etc.) on disassembling a dobro. The first thing I do when I'm getting ready to remove the cone, but while it is still in the correct position under string tension is to make a tiny mark near the edge with a Sharpie where the cone corresponds with the "12 o'clock position" on the spider leg pointing toward the fretboard. So if you put the existing cone back in you know exactly where to line it up.
You might also find with close examination after taking off the "hubcap" that the old dog could use a new pair of bridge inserts, they could be worn or chipped.
You might also find out if you popped the lid, that the Replogle cone is a little bigger than the hole in your Dobro. Both Quarterman and Legend cones were not a drop in fit for my 1984 OMI Dobro. That might help you make a decision pretty quick. The stamped cone that was in my Dobro is 10 7/16" in diameter. I think the late model cones are 10 9/16".
Edited by - 2BUCKS on 09/27/2020 08:35:25
You like the way it sounds now. You haven’t changed the strings in 3 years. To me that means that for your music a mellow and thuddy tone is just right, even best. Putting in a new cone and new strings etc. will change all that dramatically towards a brighter, louder sound. You can always try to put it back the way it was if you don’t care for the new sound, but unless you are a tinkerer like many of us here are, I’d leave it alone.
Well at the very least I would put on a new set of strings.
If you don't like it - "too lively" - give it a month or two of regular playing and you'll be back to the dead sound before you know it.
On the other hand you might be really happy with new strings, like most everyone else is, and you could end up saying, "what was I thinking - should have done this a long time ago!"
Edited by - MarkinSonoma on 09/27/2020 14:56:58
MarkinSonoma I think I had it apart when I first got it, mostly because of the weird neck tilt screw. I had to see how it worked. I almost think I replaced the saddles at that time. My memory is pretty much shot. I had a set of D'Addario mediums and stuck them on there as a starting point. Never took them off. The only thing I definitely remember is feeding the strings down through the top of the tailpiece so it would increase the break angle a tiny bit.
2BUCKS you are absolutely right. I have a '79 60DS squareneck that had a stripped nut in the cone. I ordered one from Stew Mac and found it to be too large. I removed the excess on the belt sander, a task I would not recommend to anyone, but i did what I had to do. When I ordered the Replogle I made sure to order the 10-7/16". Side note, the cone with the stripped nut ended up in my 1906-ish El Monte Dobro, with a 4-40 nut super glued on the back side. The stamped cone that was in there looked like a junkyard hubcap. I have mixed feelings bout THAT instrument, which is a whole other discussion.
AK Slider I am one of the fortunate few who can get a record-setting amount of time out of a set of strings. I have zero tolerance for dead strings, but my chemical makeup just dictates that I don't kill strings. I have a 2015 HD-28 that I bought in 2017. I put a set of Elixir 13s on it and they haven't moved. No need. Sounds great. I have one classical with 2014 strings. It's not something I do on purpose, it just happens that way. The Dobro 114.... the best way I can describe the tone is if you listen to Norman Blake's instrumental version of "Man of Constant Sorrow" from the Brother, Where Art Thou soundtrack. I have no idea what Norman is using on this cut, doubt it's a res-anything, but when I pick that Dobro up, that's the sound I hear.
If nobody buys that El Monte, maybe I'll put the new cone in that one. I'm surely not impressed with the tone from that old recycled OMI. I don't think rosewood saddles are helping either. Biggest frustration on that one is that there's no truss rod and mediums give too much relief. Going to lights or even extra lights goes against everything I've believed about reso's.
Norman always had his “tone” going way back early 70’s when following him and others around Bluegrass Music Festivals. Talent, style, flavor, habits, etc.
Here’s a blast from the past of Norman, Doc, Dan and Sam jamming 1979 - youtu.be/J8Y6dp3l1BU
OP - The Norman Blake track from ‘Oh Brother’ - played on a fretted acoustic guitar. It’s not a resonator body imho.
Majority of the time Bluegrass slide Dobro rocks my world with that modern piano’esque quality to the lower wound strings.
Going further down the string hole some of us have played around in depth with full/semi flat wound strings on fretted guitars and mandolins over the years for different solo tones.
But unfortunately flat wound experimentation on the Slide Dobro proved surprisingly “noisy”. At least D’Adarrio Chromes generated a lot of noise using Stainless bar.
I might be interested in 10-7/16” Replogle cone if you decide to not use? They’re the only decent thing I’ve found to drop into 80’s Brass/Nickel Dobro hole.
'Open g tuning' 10 hrs