Silky is the result of years of research on one of the most known guitars in the world, the Strat. We all love these tones. It is easy to observe that the Strat is also the most "copied" guitar in the world. Old Strats, can be very expensive and musicians seek that one guitar with the "Holy grail" tone.
How can we re-innovate this beautiful guitar in order to make it more responsive, vibrant, and playable by also maintaining these original, vintage, bell-like sounds? How can we make the Strat better? That was tough..
It took years of research, development and optimization to create Silky. We dived into all details concerning tonewoods, geometry, pickup, bridges, nuts, truss-rods and finishing materials. We really are proud about what it led us create.
The Silky Tones
The best way to describe how Silky sounds is "The perfect clean tone, in all five positions". It has all of this original 60's vibe. It is made to sound full, articulate and clear. It sustains and vibrates according to our shape/material optimization studies. Its carefully designed pickups provide a sweet, dynamic and balanced response. Although we have implemented a modern perspective concerning hardware configuration, we achieved to maintain the vintage tonality of the guitar.
Position 1 will let you use the bridge pickup with a dedicated tone control. It provides a wide frequency response. It is full and it has enough bass to compensate the close-to-bridge position issues.
Position 2 will engage also the middle pickup. The tone control will cut high frequencies only on the bridge pickup. This feature creates a very wide pallet of tones. Very musical and sweet.
Position 3 enables only the middle pickup. In this situation there is no tone control to roll high frequencies off, but we assure you that it won't be needed. Position 3 in Silky is designed to give the ability to experiment. It is clear and pronounced without being ice picky or fuzzy.
Position 4 is similar to position 2 with the difference of the engaging pickups. We now have the middle and the neck pickups playing together with the tone control rolling off high frequencies only on the neck pickup. Infinite ways to set them up. Just be creative.
Position 5 is your soloing tone. Most of the times, tone control will have to be at 10. Cutting off some highs will be a creative decision for Jazz musicians and licks that require that wooly yet clear tone.
Silky body is made of Obeche. We wanted a vibrant instrument that is also going to be lightweight. Tonewise it is close to swamp ash but we like it more. Silky neck follows the tasty recipe of Madagascar Rosewood on Flame Maple. The tonewood combination is perfect for that full harmonic content we are looking for, concerning our vibration requirements. For more about tonewood selection and vibration, take a look at the "Quality in Depth" section.
It was very important to create the right pickup set. Alnico V rods is Silky' s tone foundation. The coil wire is the same heavy formvar wire material used to make pickups back in the 60's. Its heavy (wider diameter) insulation reduces the capacitance value of the pickups and this allows resonance to appeal more towards the harmonic area of the guitar's frequency spectrum. Combined with linear behavior potentiometers of the right Resistance value, we welcome you to a world of endless tonal capabilities. The Silky Mojo Set is scatterwound.
Hardware is related to tuning stability. It is well know that 6-bolt vintage style bridges are made to be used more than vibrato bridges rather than extreme tremolos. They have to be perfectly setup to allow tuning stability and sometimes this may be difficult. Tuning is lost when something moves and does not come back at its original position. We have a system of components working all together here. The tremolo, the tuning machines, the nut and everything the string touches has to work perfectly to avoid possible friction or movement.
We have chosen Gotoh's 2-point tremolo for the Silky and we have made it recessed into the guitar body. The bridge sits parallel to the body's surface and allows for string pulling up to 3 semitones. The feel of this bridge is smooth and musical.
For the tuning machines we have chosen Gotoh's HAPM system. Strings get locked automatically when we start winding the pegs. There are no fancy string locks visible at the back side of tuners that may be loosen accidentally. It all works by an engineered mechanism found inside the tuner. Except that, post height is adjustable. Staggered tuners allow strings to maintain the desired nut break angle. No string trees and no friction. The nut material is also important. TUSQ XL nut works perfectly for our purpose. It maintains the good tonal capabilities found on bone material without its disadvantages.
The truss rod is easily adjustable. No need to get the neck off to adjust. Just use the provided key to fine tune the truss rod each time is needed.
Buzz Feiten Tuning
Silky features the Buzz Feiten Tuning System. We really couldn't resist to the benefits of tuning compensation. We created Silky for demanding musicians and we know that good intonation is a must have feature. Take a look at the "Quality in Depth" section for more concerning the BF tuning system.
25.5" Scale Length
Buzz Feiten Tuning System
Setup: 010-046 Elixir String Set
Flame Maple Neck - BMC Custom Tapered C profile
Madagascar Rosewood Fretboard - Compound Radius
Gotoh 2-point Floating Tremolo
Gotoh Tuners - Locking / Staggered
BMC Tight Neck Screw System with Brass Inserts
BMC MOJO S Pickup Set (Scatterwound)
CRL 5-way switch
NOS Pio Capacitor
21 Jumbo Stainless Steel Frets
2-way Spoke Wheel Truss Rod
TUSQ XL nut
Original Gator Hard Case
HSS Pickup Configuration
You can order your BMC Silky with the HSS Pickup configuration. The bridge humbucker is an underwound PAF style pickup created to match perfectly our Mojo S singles. You can use a mini switch or a push-push pot to split the bridge pickup partially. This means that the second coil is not fully turned down. In addition, the wiring method matches volume pot values to 500 k when humbucker is on and 250 k when single coils are selected. A perfect choice when flexibility is a requirement.