Price paid: € 100
Purchased from: eBay
Features: Sakai was apparently a Japanese brand of guitars that made cheap copies in the 60's and 70's. Much information is not found on the internet bout these old guitars, except for images of Rick and Tele copies. I never found an image of a Mustang copy except from a Brazilian guitarist and even he couldn't tell me alot bout it except he got it from a pawn shop. The one I bought is from the mid 60's.
Anyways, it's a trusty copy of the Mustang with the red race stripe finish. Two single-coils with a separate on and off switch, volume and tone control. The nut is completely files down and has a zero'th fret (if that makes sense) as the actual nut, no problems with intonation. It has 22 frets, maple neck with rosewood fretboard.
I only got the guitar, but I made sure it has a nice bag to keep this old beauty as long as possible in my collection. // 7
Sound: I heard from most people to not waste your money on these guitars, but I took my chances (it was ONLY a hundred) and it sounds GREAT. From bright to very dark, shredding to simple tunes, this guitar can handle it all, even when plugged into a Vox AC30 or a Fender Twin Reverb.
Nothing much else to say on this topic, so on to the next one! // 9
Action, Fit & Finish: I needed to adjust the bridge pickup (when I got it, the strings were lying tight over it), which gives a very eery guitar sound when I turn it on and can even use it as a killswitch.
One or two frets were not installed properly, the tone control can't go till 10 (well, it skips 10 and goes straight to 11) and the volume drops quite rapidly when you turn it down. But I like that, because your guitar doesn't need to be completely on the foreground all the time.
I brought it to the shop and the fret buzz was easily fixed by refretting and the clerk told me I should probably change the pots or soldering because of the guitar's age. With the things repaired, it still sings like an (ancient) angel. // 7
Reliability & Durability: The finish is old, a bit chipped and starts to show cracked veins, but I like it since the guitar is very old (and probably mistreated) so it shows her character.
I already used it in band practices and recordings, had no probs. The strap buttons are still sturdy and won't let go of my strap, if only girls were like that. // 8
Overall Impression: To believe the myth that "Little Wing", my fav song, was recorded with a Mustang and many of my fav bands use this guitar too, I went looking for one but couldn't afford it (started studying photography, VERY pricey).
This "fake" one does the job perfectly and I don't think I would even trade it for a real one because I really love it. Heck, I even play this thing more than my (Squier Pro-Tone) Strat!
Like already said, this beast can handle anything from soft ballads to psychedelic jams to some slightly overdriven blues to even hard rock. Maybe metal is a bit asked too much from this guitar, but that's not what it was made for.
If it were stolen, I would search the one that made the biggest mistake in his life and ram it in his face. If I would die (I probably will), and I had to choose one guitar to be buried with, it will be this one. Love it. Peace! // 8