Original model: 7-string Leningrad factory acoustic guitar
Model: "Karev Akkord"
Credit: Valerij Karev, Lithuania
Well, this guitar's story begun when I got it for free from my
friend. It was a seven string Russian guitar (obviously from the
Leningrad guitar factory). The guitar was a total mess. The body was
cracked and was written all over, the tuning knobs were loose, so
was the fret board, the frets were slim and dirty, the bridge was
unscrewed. It was a disaster.
First I decided to fix the cracked body. I've done it with a
pack of silicon glue. The guitar body was perfectly fixed. Then it
was the loose fret board. A woodblock was putted under it and glued
on the both sides. The loose tuning knobs were filled with silicon
glue (they were hard to turn, but not loose). I've found some bolts
and screwed the bridge to the body. Finally I have cleaned the dirty
frets and the body from the writings. The guitar was in playable
After repairing the guitar I've decided to modify it to a hollow
bass. The bridge was modified with a metal corner (with four cuts
for the strings) screwed to it. The tuning rod holes were drilled to
fit in the bass strings. The nut was also changed and cut into four
sessions for the strings. I've got to the nearest guitar shop and
bought bass strings. They have fitted perfectly.
First I have made a pickup out of a magnet and a reel. It was my
second pickup ever made, so it was big and too messy. It was
connected directly to the socket. But it was to large and it was
annoying me, so I have made another pickup. It was almost the right
size, so I've put it into the guitar. The guitars' sound was
too clean and too much low frequented, so I've decided to make a
custom bass booster. The booster worked perfectly and was integrated
into the guitar. I've put in a switch to turn the bass booster on and
off and in to clean mode, and a light emitting diode as an
identifier. The socket was in a very uncomfortable place, so the
guitar could be connected only when standing.
I have put a wood texture sticker and the front of the guitar.
Sealed the hole. I have named my first modified guitar the "Karev
Akkord". My band's bassist played it for half a year. The guitar is
not very impressive, but fun to play.
This mod was sort of popular back in the 70's - 80's in USSR. Seven-string acoustic guitars were considered an authentic Russian folk instrument and were produced in large quantities. It was tuned differently from six-string standard EADGBE; young generation wanted to play rock which required a six-string instrument. Remember, this was before Korn, so the seventh string was considered useless. One popular modification was to get rid of the seventh string and make new holes in a bridge and reroute the nut. The other - more clever - mod was to convert it into a bass guitar. Actually, the seven string bridge had seven holes so you could skip the second, fourth and sixth holes and use only four remaining holes. The string spacing was actually very similar to a bass and there was no need to work on a nut and bridge.