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Old 01-25-2013, 01:02 PM   #1
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Just picked up an Ibanez Lonestar LS550

This is the one with the walnut finish, featured on the bottom right of this page from the Ibanez catalog .

The price was right I think. I paid 1.500 SEK, which is currently about $220. The guy bought it in 1987 but never learned to play so it basically just sat there for 25 years. He even had the original receipt. The original price paid was around 2.500 SEK, which at that time (1987) amounted to $378. This surprised me a little as I read somewhere that these guitars retailed for a lot more at the time. If that is true the price in Sweden should have been even higher with import costs, taxes and whatnot. But perhaps it was just heavily discounted at the store. In 1987 the Lonestar series would have been discontinued, am I right?

At some point, many years ago, the seller lended it to a musician friend who really liked it and even played it live a few times. It does have a few scratches, most of them probably from these occasions. Apart from these the guitar appears to be in great condition. There are some cracks in the varnish/paint in the joint where the neck attaches to the body. I hope that this is just the paint that is cracked, and that the neck is not coming off. I have tried bending the neck a little bit and could not see any movement around the cracks. The only thing that needs replacing is the saddle bone which has broken in two places. It doesn't seem to affect the sound but perhaps I will be positively surprised when I replace it at some point.

I really liked the guitar from the first chord and even more so now that I have changed the strings. There is a little bit of buzzing on the occasional fret but for now I think I will just live with it. The action is nice and low and the guitar plays like a dream compared to my old acoustic. I am quite surprised at the volume I get from it, considering that it is a laminate top.

Anyway, the main point of this post is just to share, but I do have one question: The bridge pins are black plastic. Disregarding the aesthetics, would it be worth it to replace these with something better? The general opinion seems to be that the material can make a difference, but will it really matter on a laminate top guitar? Have any of you Lonestar owners out there changed the pins and noticed a difference in sound?

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Old 01-25-2013, 06:51 PM   #2
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HNGD !! i don't know much about the hairband ibanez acoustics ut it looks nice. nah, the bridge pins probably would make much of a difference unless you also changed the saddle and nut. that's where you'll notice more of a change.
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Old 01-25-2013, 08:32 PM   #3
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different strings make the most difference on the laminate guitars i've owned followed by changing the nut and saddle.

congrats, and enjoy your new-to-you guitar
Originally Posted by Skeet UK
I just looked in my Oxford English Dictionary and under "Acoustic Guitar", there was your Avatar and an email address!
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Old 01-28-2013, 04:06 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by patticake
different strings make the most difference on the laminate guitars i've owned followed by changing the nut and saddle.

congrats, and enjoy your new-to-you guitar

Thanks. Good to know. I can see a new nut and saddle in my near future. Especially since the saddle is broken.
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Old 11-05-2014, 06:55 PM   #5
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Thumbs up

I have one of these. I have the LS300MS (Marine Sunburst)

I can assure you, it is most definitely NOT a laminate top. It is solid spruce with mahogany back and sides.

You got a good deal. They are sweet guitars. Surprising richness and volume of sound.

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