We do all guitar repair, restoration, refinishing and setup work as well as pick up rewinds and amp and pedal electronics repairs. If it's broken or not playing like it should, we'll fix it.
The retail shop stocks and sells a full range of hardware, leads, strings etc and we have exclusive dealerships so check out the pricelists for the best prices around.

Tym guitars blog has moved

Tym guitars has a brand new website up and running with the new BLOG as part of the site. Please go to Tym guitars to view/comment and browse the BLOG.

March 30, 2010

Tym Toecutter

Here's another new pedal to join the ranks ..............
The Toecutter is the new Tym pedal that copies the original RAT. I started with the "Bud Box" and original "THE RAT" and tried to find out why new ones don't sound like old ones ? In this case, it really is true.
It turns out the RAT circuit hasn't changed that much over the years. It's mainly that the new ones don't use the original components due to their higher cost. The circuit stayed almost the same for about 20 years.
The original used the famous LM308 IC that has become expensive (for a chip) and was replaced with the inferior sounding OP07DP around 2003 when production moved to China, along with several other mods to the circuit. These original ones had a much nicer tone and harmonic distortion, what the RAT was actually famous for. The FET has also been changed over the years which in conjunction with the chip, makes the newer circuit "mudier"
These early RATs are now fetching BIG money and the new ones can't be modified to sound like the old ones (just check the Keeley site) so it seemed to make sense ........ to make one ?

It is built on custom designed Tym PCB and hand wired using original type caps, resistors, FET and IC to give the original tone as used by The Melvins, Nirvana, Sonic Youth, Radiohead and many many more. This has been fitted to my new enclosure design. It's the same size box handmade out of stainless steel, just sideways. This looks more like the vintage RAT design although liberty has been taken with artwork (thanks Tone) and pot placement. It has Boss style 9V input, Swithccraft jacks and true bypass. An LED is optional at a VERY nominal price. There will also be one available with toggle switches for "clean boost" and more "bottom end"

Thanks for supporting Tym guitars.

March 25, 2010

A "not so short" history of Tym guitars

Here at Tym guitars I try and run and honest business for people who care about what they buy and where they buy it. Most "business people" I know laugh at the sort of profit margins I run this place on. They can't believe I even do it. I set up this business to cater to working musicians who wanted quality gear at affordable prices. I never aimed my market at "collectors" or investors, although I do have them as part of my customer base and let me tell you, working musicians never have any money.

I'm a big believer in keeping things local, where possible. I buy my shoes from my local family owned shoe shop, even though I can get them cheaper online. I support other local independent shops wherever possible because I know what it's like to run one. I also believe in making gear locally using as much local material and labour as possible. We had great amp and speaker manufacturers in Australia in the 60's and early 70's until parallel importing shut the industry down almost over night. Independent business in any country should be supported vehemently. Once everything is owned and run by big corporate or overseas companies, you will have no choice what you buy, where you buy it from and how much you pay for it.

Tym guitars started as a guitar building business in 1997 after I had built several Mosrite inspired guitars for myself and friends. I quickly got calls from people down south who had seen my friends touring with these guitars. I then started to get enquiries from overseas. One of my first "big" customers was Nicke Royale from the Hellacopters in Sweden. I thought it was a friend playing a joke on me. His first Tym guitar is around serial number 15 or so and he owns 4 of them all up. Between '97 and 2002 I was mainly making guitars and doing repairs part time and working part time to pay the bills. At some point around here I started importing guitars and fixing them up to sell. Repair work took over as the money was better and I eventually quit my other job and just concentrated on repairing and selling guitars around 2006. As of 2010 I have made over 100 guitars completely from scratch. I don't have machinery for this. I do ALL my guitar building by hand. I shape my own bodies and necks by bandsaw, router, files and sandpaper. I make some of my own pick ups, I get my vibrato units sand cast by a local foundry and polished by a local metal polisher. I buy my timber from a local timber yard. I do all of this myself.

I started making effects pedals around 1999 as a "hobby" with the help of a friend who was a "retired" electronics engineer and found I really enjoyed the assembly side as I was still using my hands but it was more ........... straight forward than carving timber. The first line of pedals were crude but I quickly moved onto my now infamous "doghead" series using locally cast aluminium enclosures designed by me. These proved to be way too time intensive to manufacture and I dropped them for the standard Hammond boxes again. Then in 2009 I started using hand made enclosures again with printed aluminium plates on the front for a more distinct look.

Around mid 2008 with the splitting of the business into 2 distinct sections of retail at the Valley shop and manufacturing and repair under the banner of TMI (Tym Musical Instruments) at the Gabba workshop I decided to once again start building amps. I had built some amps in the early 2000's based on Champs and Voxes but was never completely happy with them. With the help of some VERY talented (don't tell them I said that) amp designer and amp builder friends I dove headfirst back into amps again.

From these melding of minds came the Supertone 40 (and soon the ST20) and the Lemon 120 (and soon 80) with more to follow. While the prototypes had imported transformers to get "in the ballpark" we used mostly locally sourced parts for the rest of the amps. The chassis are handmade by the local independent metal fabricator who makes my pedal boxes, the sleeves are made by the local business that helps with my speaker cabs, the faceplates are printed by a local printing businesses and they're completely hand assembled at the Gabba workshop. This is a very expensive and time consuming process as anyone who has hand wired electronics will tell you. To me, it's the only way to do it properly and there will be more amp designs coming.

I had made speaker cabs back in 2003 but again, was never really happy with the results. They sounded good, but the tolexing left a little to be desired. There's probably about 15 or so of these boxes out there somewhere ? With the release of the amps I decided it was time to offer speaker cabs again as I needed quality head shells for my amps anyway. This time I enlisted the help of a friend who had the right machinery to make "boxes" here in Brisbane. We started with the 2x12 and 4x10, then the 1x12 and 6x10 bass cabs. More designs will be offered in the near future.

The retail shop was set up in 2008 with aim of stocking quality gear with price points between $400 to $4000. I try not to stock gear from countries where people are exploited so you can buy it cheap. I don't deal in Mexican or most Asian made gear with the exception of Japan or Korea. This is of course not a hard and fast rule, more of a guide line as it would make my already difficult job of stocking an independent shop even harder to follow this rule to the T, but where possible it is followed. I do however stock a lot of second hand guitars, amps and speaker cabs as well as a huge range of new and second hand effects pedals. We also stock speakers, valves, strings and hardware as well as some locally handmade gear that deserves to be put out there in world of retail like the Valvetone and Amwatts amps.

So by 2010 we have a manufacturing and repair shop making guitars, pedals, speaker cabs and amps as well as handling most guitar and electronics repairs and a retail shop that stocks over 100 second hand guitars, 50 amps and LOTS of effects pedals, all at VERY reasonable prices. I believe we are unique in being the only guitar shop I can think of that not only offers a great range of new and second hand gear in a friendly and accomodating retail atmosphere, but also has a manufacturing facility making locally made quality gear and working with guitarists from all over the world to design and make beter gear for the right price.

Keeping the shop stocked is a full time job in itself as I only try to find quality second hand gear from the US or Japan at prices good enough to add shipping, customs and GST onto the purchase price and still sell at a small profit to keep it ticking over. Add to this finding and ordering new pedals, hardware, leads etc and keeping up with what's available and "cool" and this is a lot of work. I also do guitar repairs, build pedals and amps and keep this monster going. None of this would be possible without my wife who puts up with my long hours, caffeine deprived rants and atroutious paperwork.

I'd like to thank anyone who has supported Tym guitars over the years with either financial input and/or moral and artistic support. It would be impossible to do this without you. You know who you are ............

March 9, 2010

Road Rage pedals

Road Rage are located in Canada and hand make effects loopers of the best quality we have come across at GREAT prices.

If you love vintage gear you'll know the biggest problem with vintage effects, as well as most new effects, is that they are not true bypass. What does this mean? Well it means a lot, if your pedals are not true bypass your guitar signal is still being directed through part of the circuit in each pedal you have plugged in, each circuit is taking away some of your original signal, in other words...
you are losing the tone and volume of your favorite guitar and amp when the effects are off and remain in your signal chain. The best solution to eliminate this problem is to use Road Rage True Bypass Effect Loopers. A Road Rage TBEL will keep the pedals out of your chain until you need them. The difference in your sound is incredible!

They have experimented by building several types of true bypass loopers, trying different wire, jacks, enclosures, etc.. When they got the wiring and components to the point where it sounded the most transparent, they thought it would be shame just to use the same old style of enclosures so they set out to design their own. After an extremely long time and an unwavering dedication to our vision, they came up with what I personally consider the best built and the coolest looking Loopers, A/B's, DIY Boxes and Kits. All RRPG pedals are hand-built one at a time by myself with great pride and care.

Check 'em out now at Tym guitars.

March 3, 2010

Tym guitars T shirts

There's a new T shirt available now.
I'm lucky enough to have a friend of mine design most of my artwork for everything from T's, to pedals to amps and even help design guitars for me. The "look" of Tym guitars is all his work.
We've been using the Tym logo in the oval since 1997 and the back still has this logo as have most of my T shirts done over the years.

One of my favorite T shirts was designed by Lluis Fuzzhound from Spain via Melbourne. He does great artwork for all kinds of things inc flyers and album artwork, so check him out. His site has lots of other work.

This was Tone's version of the R'n'R tuxedo T shirt. The shirt and leather jacket were taken from Tommy on the cover of the first Ramones album and the Tym logo and badges added.

Sometimes Tone does some pedal artwork that works for a T shirts as well. The Fuzzilla artwork was just begging to be put on a shirt.

In the past we've done a couple of limited edition T shirts that are no longer available. Two of these were designed by Lenny from Tumbleweed and hand drawn especially for Tym guitars.

There are a few more T's we've done in the past that I can't find the artwork for ? There will be plenty more to come too.

March 1, 2010

Tym Hire gear

Here at Tym guitars I have a lot of guitars, amps and effects that I don't really want to sell, but I hate the idea of a guitar or amp sitting in a cupboard, or worse a vault not being used.
This practice of "collecting" nice guitars and amps and hording them away in vaults is actually killing this gear as they NEED to be used to keep them "alive". Guitars that sit around with string tension, or worse, no string tension but with the trussrod still adjusted, will almost certainly end up with a warped or twisted neck, not to mention pots and jacks (and sometimes pick ups).
Amps left for years without being switched on and having voltage run through them WILL NEED at the very least capacitors replaced when the amp is to be used again. This defeats the purpose of keeping these items in storage to be more valuable and original in the future, as they won't be usable in this state once they're taken out.
So, if I have stuff I don't want to sell. I hire it out. This is good for you as I have generally kept the nicest examples of guitars I want as they come through my shop. Once a nicer one comes along, I sell the the one I have been keeping.
Although this isn't all my personal stuff as some is just (unfortunately) too valuable to hire out in case of damage or theft, it is a nice cross section of gear and most can be used for studio and/or live use.
Here's a list of current gear I have for hire. If there's something you don't see, ask me, I might just have it and be happy for it to be used for studio use.
'69 Gibson SG special
'71 Gibson SG
'96 Gibson SG
'79 Gibson 335
'89 Gibson LP Custom
'90 Gibson LP '57 Goldtop
Fender Strats
Fender Esquire
Fender Teles
'66 Fender Jaguars
'79 Fender P bass
'96 Rickenbacker 360
'86 Rickenbacker 340
'89 Rickenbacker 330
'70 Rickenbacker 335
'70's Travis Bean
'79 Marshall JMP
'90's Marshall 20W (handwired)
'80's Marshall 800
'80's Marshall 800 combo
'90's Marshall 900
'72 Orange OR80 (Graphic)
'73 Orange OR120
'76 Matamp GT100
'74 Orange OR120
'04 Matamp GT1
'04 Matamp King Street
'65 Selmer Zodiac 50
'76 Fender Twin
'76 Fender Twin
'98 Fender Twin blackface reissue
'74 Fender Bassman 1971
'06 Vox AC30 (JMI hotrodded and greenbacks)
Roland JC120 combo
Ampeg SVT1000
Mesa 410
TYM 212 (vintage 30's)
TYM 212 (Greenbacks)
TYM 410 (Mojotone)
TYM 410 (Jensen)
TYM 610 (Emminence)
Marshall 4X12 quads (G12's)
Marshall 4X12 quads (Greenbacks)