Price paid: £ 118
Purchased from: Amazon
Features: Being a John Lennon fan I couldn't resist this one... It's only 100 odd quid & after a few modifications I got it to look very similar indeed. His original 1958 325 that he bought in Hamburg (or never paid for if you listen to George Harrison!) was originally a natural wood finish with gold pickguard & gold Rickenbacker truss rod cover. It was a prototype with only 2 ever made. No F hole, rubbish vibrato and short neck length... He changed the vibrato to one that resisted going out of tune & had it sprayed black (but still with gold trimmings) when they returned to Liverpool but after their first visit to record at Abbey Rd. They hit it big & he played it until the second Ed Sullivan show in Miami when Rickenbacker gave him a new one which was essentially a copy except the pickguard was a double skin white one & the Rickenbacker logo on the truss rod cover was also white. He used this as his main guitar until the Epiphone Casino came along.
This Gear4Music guitar is very similar to this 2nd Rickenbacker. The body dimensions are exact, the neck length is a normal size, there is an f hole, the pickguard is double skin, the headstock is pretty close, there are only 2 pickups. However a spray or two of black gloss paint with every thing masked off to get rid of the gear logo, a coat of matt black paint inside the F hole, a blank truss rod cover from the internet & an RB decal to go on it with numerous sprays of clear lacquer over it & it looks great! // 8
Sound: It plays very well... Good intonation throughout the neck & good action... If you want the authentic sound you can mess around with replacing the pickups or just get a modelling amp (I use a Fender Mustang) which will give pretty much any sound you want. Having said that, I prefer to play this with a clean sound through a Marshall 50w acoustic amp with a Behringer Blues effect pedal. // 6
Action, Fit & Finish: Good action. // 8
Reliability & Durability: It plays very well. // 8
Overall Impression: At the end of the day I have a Fender Tele, a Gretsch, an Epiphone Casino & various others that I've spent a lot of money on & because I've modified this guitar it feels as good as any of them! // 8