Springs

Bodies, necks, fretboards, frets, and manufacturing tools
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Patzag
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Re: Springs

Post by Patzag »

I'm a little confused. I know Terry AND Billy and they're not the same person. But Bill's last name is not Atkins. Terry's is. So who is Billy Atkins?
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vjmanzo
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Re: Springs

Post by vjmanzo »

Billy Atkins (formerly of USM/Parker Guitars) now more regularly goes by @Terry Atkins, whereas Billy is @billy :) No relation to Terry or Parker Guitars, but a heckuva guy 😉
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Patzag
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Re: Springs

Post by Patzag »

vjmanzo wrote: Mon May 23, 2022 12:09 pm Billy Atkins (formerly of USM/Parker Guitars) now more regularly goes by @Terry Atkins, whereas Billy is @billy :) No relation to Terry or Parker Guitars, but a heckuva guy 😉
OK. I only knew Terry as Terry, not Billy.
Bill Henshell was also at USM at the same time. can't recall his title now. He was also the main admin for the forum - and also a great guy.
I know "our" amazing @Billy; not the same guy.
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Fly Rod
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$80 .009" & .010" Trem Springs on Reverb

Post by Fly Rod »

Saw this listing this afternoon & thought I'd Post it here...

https://reverb.com/item/55491272-parker ... 2022-black
https://reverb.com/item/55377713-parker ... 2022-black

This is a Parker Fly NOS 9/10 gauge tremolo spring made in the factory supplying Parker since 2008. It is New Old Stock. There is a limited supply of these. They work perfectly with the Parker tremolos, and no spring made in this factory has ever punched its way through the front of a fly guitar. They are made by a factory that specializes in flat springs, and have made this item for many years.
Buy with confidence.

Billy's Shop - I used to run the Parker production facility and am trying to offer Parker enthusiasts and owners accurate reproductions of, or newly manufactured parts from original suppliers.

Five sales on reverb since 5/26/22
Just passing on what I saw there.
Might be worth giving these a try & put the overpriced flipper gougers out of commission
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Re: $80 .009" & .010" Trem Springs on Reverb

Post by mmmguitar »

@Fly Rod, the NOS springs are explained here [MOD NOTE: THREADS MERGED]

Being as the seller page you quoted partially explains it: The short story is Terry (who ran things until the 2015 shutdown) recently paid Excel Spring and Stamping to temper the final batch of Fly springs produced in 2015. “Billy” (the seller) is his nickname.
Summary of the Parker Guitars speculator market, 2020-2022: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greater_fool_theory
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Fly Rod
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Re: $80 .009" & .010" Trem Springs on Reverb

Post by Fly Rod »

I have my ONE ONLY .009" Spring but was considering buying a .010" spring from this seller before they DRY UP..
Thanks That Explains the appearance of these springs on the market :mrgreen:
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Re: Springs

Post by Fly Rod »

12 Springs sold in a week on Reverb
I don't know how many Billy's Shop had produced but they will dry up eventually
Get em while the getting is good or you will be sorry you didn't
I'm going to buy a .010" Just Because I can this Friday as I might opt for .010-.046" or possibly .009"-.046"
Thank You Very Much Sir! :mrgreen:
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Re: Springs

Post by Fly Rod »

38 Springs sold in a month @ Billy's Shop
Wonder how many he had manufactured?
100% satisfaction
I must order a .010" just because
Gary
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Voice Of Reason
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Re: Springs

Post by Voice Of Reason »

I must say this is very tempting. The price is still very expensive, especially when converting to CAN dollar.

@vjmanzo : did you have a rough price you’d think you’ll sell springs once ready?
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vjmanzo
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Re: Springs

Post by vjmanzo »

Voice Of Reason wrote: Thu Jul 07, 2022 11:21 am @vjmanzo : did you have a rough price you’d think you’ll sell springs once ready?
As inexpensive as reasonably/sustainably possible—that’s the goal. 👍🏻

This is a labor of love project, so the formula we’re going with is (whatever it takes to get them made + enough to get them in a box and shipped + maybe a very small overhead so we can continue to try some new spring recipes). I can’t emphasize enough how little I care about making a profit from this particular effort. 🙂 I want good, reliable springs too!

Material costs/availability are in a bad way right now (really annoying!), but I was originally hoping for near $30, more or less. If we could do it for $10, we’d do it for $10 (not likely!), but it’s not entirely clear at the moment what’s possible. There’s a

I’m sorry for being somewhat radio silent on this, but we are still actively working on this. 🙏
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Bigpig63
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Re: Springs

Post by Bigpig63 »

VJ,

I don't post much so first, VJ, thank you for your time and treasure on behalf of this blog and beyond.

Is the manufacture process of a spring something that Mr. Parker will not share with you? Do you have to go to the dark mountain and mine your own ore, smelt it and bend hundreds of failed samples while Ken Parker laughs at us with Emperor Palpatine-like smugness? That may seem oversimplified since he owns the patent and should be paid for it. He went out on a limb when everyone else was perfecting 50 year old technology. I guess we're all SOL until the patent runs out in 100 years. Now I wish I bought a Nightfly instead of a Fly Mojo.

I keep my trem in the locked position. The spring only provides a stabilizing force, not a tremolo action. I have a 10 installed and a 9 waiting in the green room. As an adult guitar student I'm focusing on string bends over tremolo use, at this time.

Respectfully,
BigPig.

1998 Parker Fly Mojo Transparent Red
??year Parker PDF35 "It's Monday and I have to go to work" Black.
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Re: Springs

Post by mmmguitar »

@Bigpig63, the most recently produced batch of Fly springs in 9 and 10 gauges made available by Terry Atkins, who headed Parker after Ken sold the brand, are available on Reverb. Are you needing springs in a heavier gauge?

Forgive me if I’m speaking out of turn when I say that, as far as I know, the goal of VJ’s spring project is to develop springs superior in function and lifespan to what Ken came up with around thirty years ago, after KORG allegedly mandated he offer a Fly with a trem as a condition of distributing his brand.

From what I’ve gleamed, It’s not so much a matter of reverse-engineering as it is navigating the hurdles of getting a brand new product developed and manufactured from the ground up, through non-profit means afforded by the cooperation of departments within the polytechnic institute of which he is faculty, over the course of however many semesters end up being necessary - Not requiring patience so much as requesting an understanding that a project of this nature is nothing anyone with a sense of urgency should be waiting on (There are others out there selling springs to those who need them badly enough to pay exorbitant amounts ranging between $85 and $200). It’s nowhere near an optimal situation - It’s an “it is what it is” situation, centering on a dead brand.

For what it’s worth, I reckon Ken’s got more of a Jedi vibe to him - Though I’m sure he can scrounge together the requisite parts to build a red lightsaber in that basement of his.
Summary of the Parker Guitars speculator market, 2020-2022: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greater_fool_theory
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vjmanzo
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Re: Springs

Post by vjmanzo »

Yes, Bigpig63 everything mmmguitar said is spot on (thanks, Marc!). Thank you, also, for the kind words.

I’ll just add that the Fly patents have all expired at this point. Regardless, Ken has been as helpful as he can be with this effort. As Marc suggested, a time-consuming part of this effort has been doing an analysis on what the bridge/springs are doing and what they ought to be doing. As a lab, we often serve as R&D for companies and artists that aren’t set up to make analysis and prototyping their focus, so it’s similar for this spring project as part of Fly Clone in that we set up experiments and start to get a sense of what’s really going on. We’ve needed to earn the knowledge for ourselves—not just about Fly springs, but about how vibratos work, how springs fail, etc. and then build/establish our own tooling/workflows/platforms as we continue on.
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Bigpig63
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Re: Springs

Post by Bigpig63 »

Dear MMM,

No thank you, I don't need heavier springs. I just want to have additional springs. I certainly don't want to pay 80 dollars plus shipping from Reverb, but that's the going price. I saw the YOUTUBE video where T. Atkins spoke about the unreliable spring manufacture process and that they found a company "XL" in Chicago area who could produce the flat spring to spec. I'll have to see what I can dig up after my current college paper is written...what a beast. Business ethics, no less. Interestingly, Mr. Atkins also spoke about truss rods failing left and right, but from what little I could dig up, those dual action truss rods he's fond of were used at / around 2011. My 1998 Fly hasn't spontaneously combusted...yet.

Dear VJ,

I saw the Ken Parker lecture on your institute's website, and it was interesting to hear Mr. Parker speak freely, when I could hear him. It would have been appropriate to mic him up. He turns away from the mic on his other lectures at other presentations, as well. He was adamant about the dangers of the paint process and I thought he was over the top but as he often says, it's one man's opinion. I felt that he looked at the electric Flys behind him like I look at angry in-laws. "You're here, but I don't want anything to do with you." His dreams must have had a great battle with the reality of business and manufacture. I'm not sorry for him, like pity, I'm sorry that his tremendous contribution to guitar building and manufacture was not as rewarding as he had hoped.

When I see a bolt on neck, after having a Fly for three years now, I can't help but think that the industry is chasing outdated production methods. Our problem, as Fly owners, is that parts and pieces are no longer being made to any appreciable scaled amount. If my tremolo bridge breaks, if my piezo saddles come loose, I'm done. I play in the locked-trem position for that reason. In the end, I would like to make my own guitar, a milestone in my book, just for me, a total one-off. LED lights in the fretboard markers that light as I play, headless, composite materials in combination with reclaimed exotic wood (for color, not tone). I've got to get my act together before we turn into Venezuela.

The Ebay listing for the last, complete, Fly piezo bridge in gold is gone. Now I have the Fly-Hoarder mindset creeping in...

Respectfully,
BigPig
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Musikron
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Re: Springs

Post by Musikron »

Bigpig63 wrote: Thu Aug 18, 2022 7:57 pm
. He was adamant about the dangers of the paint process and I thought he was over the top but as he often says, it's one man's opinion.
Do you have a link or at least do you remember what he said about it? Dangerous for the guitar or dangerous for the human?

I do have an actual reason for inquiring about this. Some recent heath issues have left me researching all the toxins we're (specifically myself) exposed to, and I've concluded musicians are potentially exposing themselves to large amounts of toxic compounds via their instruments, and us luthiers are exposed to even more. It wouldn't shock me to know Ken was keyed in to this long ago, so I'm very interested in what he had to say on that subject.

I am slowly putting together my discoveries, backing documentation and studies, as well as ways to mitigate ones exposure (I hate being all doom and gloom without offering a solution of some sort) but it's a slow process. It doesn't help that I have a number of irons is several fires at any given time.
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Sloppy Paintwork

Post by vjmanzo »

Musikron wrote: Sun Aug 21, 2022 11:21 am Dangerous for the guitar or dangerous for the human?
Ken did develop an intolerance to cedar (which is why there are only three cedar Fly Artists from his era), but I believe what he’s referring to here is how the paint shop had the potential to mask their craftsmanship. On more than one occasion, Ken has looked at the “roundness” of the headstock on one of my Flys and angrily remarked about how the headstock is supposed to have “sharp” features.

Not sure if that’s the “danger” he’s referring to, but figured I’d add that since Ken has brought being at the mercy of the paintshop up to me before.

#FinishMatters
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Bigpig63
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Re: Springs

Post by Bigpig63 »

Dear Musikron,

The lecture is available here: It Is at VJ's EGIL lecture hall. Mr. Parker is referring to the paint being dangerous in its atomized state. He doesn't get scientific about it, he just says "poison this" and "poison that" a few times and laments the inefficiency of the spray process. After it dries, it's not possible to inhale. Also, since you have a guitar that is years old, there should be no more off-gassing, if you wanted to get that detailed with exposures to vapors and airborne chemicals. More easily absorbed and available to hurt you, I would be diving deep into the Glyphosate that is allowed in your food, even if it's labelled organic.

Dear VJ,

If you are thinking of an alternative to the flat spring that Mr. Atkins has the monopoly on, you might consider this micro piston here: https://industrialgassprings.com/micro-gas-spring/. I submit this possibility because it appears to me that the Fly Clone purpose is first to support current Fly technology and secondly to improve upon it.

With a few modifications, attachment points or additional coiled support springs, it might be a direct solution that is repeatable and reliable. The modifications I'm talking about are a coil over spring or a spring on each side, like a car suspension. We know that the spring on a suspension is what provides shock-absorbance and the piston removes energy from the system so that your car doesn't bounce for extended periods or cycles. This is very doable because the normal force (gravity effect at 90 deg to stationary surface) of the car is met by the equal and opposite force of the suspension. The force (tension) of the Fly's strings at different gauges would be met by this equal and opposite force from the piston and spring insert.

The piston insert can be tailored to string gauge or there could be an insert that compresses the piston causing it to exert more force and become harder to compress (the insert that compressed the piston would be in-line with the piston, so no distance is lost along the axis of force-transmission). A #9 insert might be 0.50 inches of metal rod and the #10 insert might be 0.70 inches of rod, for example. The longer the rod, the more it compresses the piston and makes the piston harder to compress, just like a #9 flat spring is easier to compress than a #10 spring. I'm simplifying Force = known compression constant of a spring over a measured distance (F=k*x)...(before failure).

The whole assembly would fit in the existing cavity, using the two existing attachment points and still permit the user to place the piston/ spring assembly in one of the three slots on the bridge.

Respectfully,
BigPig63
Psalm 144:1
1998 Parker Fly Mojo
??year Parker PDF35
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