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  • About the TurboTail

    3 min read

    Photo of the TurboTail, not yet installed on a guitar.

    The TurboTail

    The TurboTail is a simple, elegant device that diverts the tension of the guitar strings from the soundboard to the structural tail block of the guitar. All of the vibrations of the picked or strummed guitar strings are still transferred directly to the soundboard to produce sound. But, the tension load is diverted to the tail block, leaving the delicate soundboard free to vibrate optimally. The result is that the guitar soundboard can do what it was intended to do: Amplify and temper the vibrations of the guitar strings without having to provide a structural anchor for the strings.

    Guitar soundboards, without a TurboTail, are structural members, just like a floor, a wall, or a steel beam. This means that the soundboard’s most important job is that it does not implode due to the intense stress exerted by the taught guitar strings.  Guitar strings are like steel cables. The total tension of six steel guitar strings ranges between 140 and 190 pounds, depending upon the string gauge (12-string guitar tension can exceed 250 pounds.). That’s enough tension to lift a full-grown man off the ground.  Imagine what your guitar could sound like if the soundboard didn’t have to do all this heavy lifting.

    Improves Sound of Guitars

    Expert luthiers admit that the current design of the acoustic guitar is terribly inefficient. In fact, they estimate that only about 5 percent of the energy produced by the picked or strummed strings actually arrives at our ears in the form of sound. Ninety-five percent of the vibrations are consumed as heat friction, are absorbed into the wood of the guitar, or are absorbed by the player’s body.   

    Thus, any improvement in efficiency is great for guitars. A more efficient guitar produces more sound and, potentially, better sound for the same amount of effort. In fact, a more efficient guitar might even be smaller, which means that it’s more comfortable to play, as well as being lighter and more portable. A more efficient guitar might use lighter gauge strings to produce the same volume. Lighter gauge strings are easier on the fingers. Plus, lighter strings are easier for bending notes, performing hammer-ons, pull-offs, or fretting difficult chord shapes. 

    Optimizes Volume & Sustain 

    The TurboTail is ideal for optimizing the volume and sustain of acoustic guitars while at the same time protecting the delicate soundboard from bowing or warping. That’s because TurboTail relieves the top of your guitar soundboard from all of the tension, compression, and rotational forces that were hindering its ability to vibrate freely. 

    Minimal Improvement on Heavily Braced Guitars

    Some guitars are more lightly built than others. The TurboTail can really bring out the potential of these lightly braced guitars. On the other hand, if your guitar is built like a fortress, the possibilities are more limited. 

    Helps Guitars Last Longer

    When the tension of the strings is diverted from the soundboard to the tail block, the risk that the guitar will experience any temporary or permanent deformation of the soundboard or lifting of the bridge (“bridge belly”) is eliminated. 

    Even better, any past soundboard deformation or bridge lifting can be corrected by installing the TurboTail on a guitar with a warped soundboard. When you install the TurboTail on a guitar with a warped soundboard and a lifting bridge, you will see an immediate improvement. The bridge will be held tight to the soundboard, as it was when the guitar was purchased. The soundboard will be closer to the shape that it was designed to have. Over time, the soundboard will return to the shape it had the day it left the factory.   

    With no tension on the soundboard, it is conceivable that acoustic guitars could last for centuries, just like the finest Stradivarius violins.  

    Check out videos of the TurboTail in action here.

    You can test one out on your guitar. Buy one today

    It is zero risk to you since we have a 30-day, no questions asked and free return policy.