#1
Hi guys. My band has just started gigging and I'm looking for recommendations for a cheap but decent guitar to use on the road. My main guitar is a Gibson SG Standard, and in the handful of gigs we've already played I've been paranoid about it getting lost/stolen/broken/dented etc. I really want to keep it in decent condition, and just use it at home, band practice and recording.

So I'm looking for something to take out on the road, that I won't be worried about getting a bit bashed up. Hopefully the band will be playing more and more in the future so I'm looking for something reliable. A fixed bridge is a must, as are humbuckers. We play rock/alternative/punk kind of stuff so my main sound has a decent amount of distortion, think Thrice, Alexisonfire, etc. Pretty heavy but not too extreme. I play through a Marshall 2550 head into a 2x12 cab.

Budget is probably about £350/$500, second-hand is fine. I'd be prepared to upgrade the pickups after a while as well, so that would be on top of the stated budget. I've been looking at these options:

PRS SE Custom 24 / Custom 22 / 245 / Tremonti, etc. There don't seem to be that many about with a fixed bridge though.

Epiphone Firebird. I really like the look of these, but I've played an epiphone les paul and sg and wasn't impressed. I've heard epi's can be hit and miss though (and I really don't like the look of the headstock on epi les pauls & sgs, sorry!)

EVH/Peavey Wolfgang.

Anybody have any views on these guitars, or any other suggestions?

Thanks in advance.
#2
Vintage VS6. it's an SG copy and damn good one. you might want to swap out the pickups but otherwise it's a solid guitar. prefer them to the epiphone SGs i've tried.
#3
My bar guitars are a pair of Agile ALs (LP-shape guiltars) that I picked up for around $200 each, one B-Stock, one used. Both had a run through the PLEK machine, and I've left the pickups they came with alone. Solid bodies, sustain for days, jumbo frets, 14" radius, fast buggers. And one would have to be *really* inebriated to look at me with a 10-lb hunk of mahogany in my hand and want to violate my personal space.
#4
You heard right, Epiphones can be hit and miss. I've seen plenty I wouldn't walk across the street for if they were 5 bucks, and plenty I liked really well. My favorite acoustic was a 70's Epiphone. I've played several of the SG and Les Paul models that were pretty nice, and lots I didn't like at all. Found a nice Epiphone Firebird on clearance at a local music store, was going to buy it and got laid off instead...

Check around at pawn shops and such, see what pops up. I've played several off brands that were good, one I really regret selling was a Lotus Les Paul copy I had in the 80's. Some of the other off brands are good, you just have to check them out close. Fender Squires (mostly single coils though), Aria Pro, Yamaha, Ibanez, Cort, all are hit and miss. If you see a Washburn BT 2 sitting around somewhere definitely check that one out. Another one I really regret selling, but I needed the money so it's long gone.

Some of the Corts are nice, they make a Les Paul model that has a good reputation, I have a CL 1500 hollowbody that's great.

The Yamaha SG2000 is an old favorite as well, built like a double cutaway Les Paul and heavier, excellent pickups, the one I played had a great neck, the only thing I didn't like was when I had to hold the damn thing on my shoulder for 1 1/2 hours...other than that I absolutely loved it. Have fun trying to find one though...I've never seen even a used one so far.
Hmmm...I wonder what this button does...
Last edited by Paleo Pete at Mar 20, 2015,
#5
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

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#7
Hagstrom's F-200 would be a decent option, as would their Pat Smear sig model which is based on it. The F-200 is no longer in production, but new ones are still out there, running about $450 on eBay.
http://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_from=R40&_trksid=p2047675.m570.l1313&_nkw=Hagstrom+f-200&_sacat=0

The new Pat Smears will run @$475-700 on eBay.
http://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_from=R40&_trksid=p2047675.m570.l1313&_nkw=Hagstrom+pat+smear&_sacat=619

http://www.hagstromguitars.eu/index.php?option=com_zoo&task=item&item_id=2132&Itemid=47
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#8
Quote by monwobobbo
Vintage VS6. it's an SG copy and damn good one. you might want to swap out the pickups but otherwise it's a solid guitar. prefer them to the epiphone SGs i've tried.


+1

Friend has one, it's pretty solid, I have the Vintage V100, the LP shaped one and gigged many times with it, also dropped it more times than I can remember, bar breaking a tuner and a paint chip it survived very well, plays solidly, prefer it to all Epiphone LPs I've played
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#9
I've been gigging my Gibsons for years & never had anything happen that couldn't have happened at home or band practice

Transport it in the hard case you probably have, invest in a good stand to hold it steady between sets & try to remember not to throw it across the stage.

Also, you say it's your main guitar - that makes me assume you already have a backup. If you're happy with your back up & really can't get over your paranoia, promote the backup to being the main gig guitar & leave the SG in it's case until you need it.
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#10
You can always get an Epiphone copy of your gibson. Or some of the Japanese Tokai SG copies.
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#11
Quote by ironicallyindie
telecaster

that won't work.

he wants a fixed bridge.
I wondered why the frisbee was getting bigger, then it hit me.
#12
Quote by gregs1020
he wants a fixed bridge

I've been playing for about 30 years & this still makes me think it must have been broken!!
Gibson LP Traditional, LP GT, LP Studio, SG Standard x2
Barber Tone Press > EHX Worm >TC Polytune > EXH Glove > EHX East River Drive > Zoom G3 > TC Spark Mini Booster
EVH 5150 III LBXII
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.
My SoundCloud
#13
Ibanez artist models are quite nice and you might find a good deal on a used one. They are a double cutaway like the SG but a carved top like a Les Paul. The 58 humbuckers are good pickups and it has great action a good player.

http://www.amazon.com/Ibanez-AR320-Electric-Guitar-Sunburst/dp/B00AMM9LTM/ref=sr_1_7?ie=UTF8&qid=1426946222&sr=8-7&keywords=ibanez+artist+guitar
#14
Thanks for the suggestions, a lot of those guitars I hadn't even heard of. I really like the look of the Hagstrom Pat Smear.

Quote by GaryBillington
Also, you say it's your main guitar - that makes me assume you already have a backup. If you're happy with your back up & really can't get over your paranoia, promote the backup to being the main gig guitar & leave the SG in it's case until you need it.


Actually I've got two guitars, the SG and an American Standard Telecaster. The other guitarist in the band plays a Tele, and we like to have kind of distinct sounds.
#15
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#16
I'd be remiss in my duties as...well, ME...if I didn't suggest a Reverend.

The Sensei line is a well-made double cut that could do the trick for you. There are a few models, mostly varying in their pickups and color choices- the HB would probably be most like your Gibson in terms of the pickups, but they're all very flexible, tonally. I know in the UK, new ones run about £600, but you may be able it find a used one.
http://www.reverendguitars.com/instrument/sensei-hb/

In addition, the model that it replaced in Reverend's line was the Daredevil, which was a more symmetrical double cut with the same pickups. One of those may be perfect for you, if you can find one.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#17
Do you want something as close as possible to your SG or something different?
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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#18
Good question! If not, there are other Hagstroms & Reverends I would suggest.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#19
Quote by Dave_Mc
Do you want something as close as possible to your SG or something different?


No, not neccessarily as close as possible to an SG. The other guitarist in the band plays a tele, so I just want something different sounding to that, hence the humbuckers.

I'd never heard of Reverend, they look really cool, as do the Hagstroms.
#20
They're both brands worth checking out. Reverend is a small company, though, so FINDING one will be the real challenge.

Hagstrom, OTOH, has Ben putting out quality instruments since the 1960s or 70s, so you may even be able to find a nice vintage axe. I've seen some on eBay and other sites- I'm looking at this one, for instance:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/291409800761?_trksid=p2055119.m1438.l2661&ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT

Unfortunately for you, that seller only ships to Canada and the USA.

THIS seller, though, ships internationally:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Hagstrom-Tremar-Super-Swede-p90s-3-P90s-w-6-way-switch-for-and-array-of-tones-/181690485750?pt=Guitar&hash=item2a4d98cbf6

So does this one (though you have to scroll to the bottom of the page to find that out):
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Hagstrom-TRESUSWEP-WHT-Super-Swede-White-/371266933026?pt=Guitar&hash=item56713bd122
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
Last edited by dannyalcatraz at Mar 22, 2015,
#21
Quote by Colt80
No, not neccessarily as close as possible to an SG. The other guitarist in the band plays a tele, so I just want something different sounding to that, hence the humbuckers.

I'd never heard of Reverend, they look really cool, as do the Hagstroms.


no worries, just figured it was worth asking.

p90s might also be worth considering- should sound a fair bit different from a tele. As you said, something which sounds different is probably a good call.

If you're ok with used, you might get very lucky and find a used Japanese-made Tokai for that kind of money. They copy most of the Gibson models and are great. Just beware, they have cheaper non-Japanese models which aren't as good. And a lot of the time the sellers act like they're japanese. Normally it says on the back of the headstock. and the truss rod cover on the Japaneses ones uses two screws.

New I'm wondering if some of the fretkings might be worth a look. The blue label has a few humbucker and p90 models which I've often seen being blown out for around the £300-£400 mark. I've only tried the fender-style models, though, and the older models with the gotoh japan hardware are possibly better value.
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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#22
As Dave probably remembers, I have a Fret-King Super 60HB of my own. I've been impressed enough by it that I have a short list of other F-Ks I want to add to my collection.

One is the Esprit 5 I recommended upthread, and here are some reasons why:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TGVVHVE5BrA&sns=em
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UAMstI6HE_o&sns=em
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1NJFW491KLs&sns=em
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tn6sSAmF0bk&sns=em

I also like the Esprit 3, which is the same axe, but with 3 P90s instead of 2HBs.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#23
i would just get another SG. i picked up a faded one for $320 a few years ago. they aren't as cheap now, but i would see what you can find.
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#25
Quote by dannyalcatraz
As Dave probably remembers, I have a Fret-King Super 60HB of my own. I've been impressed enough by it that I have a short list of other F-Ks I want to add to my collection.

One is the Esprit 5 I recommended upthread, and here are some reasons why:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TGVVHVE5BrA&sns=em
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UAMstI6HE_o&sns=em
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1NJFW491KLs&sns=em
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tn6sSAmF0bk&sns=em

I also like the Esprit 3, which is the same axe, but with 3 P90s instead of 2HBs.


the esprit's pretty heavy, isn't it? that's what made me chicken out of it.
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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#26
I don't pay much attention to weight. It doesn't bother me much. And honestly, the next F-K I get my hands on will likely be the next one I buy- nobody in Texas sells them, AFAIK.

IOW, I haven't touched an Esprit.

But just looking at them, they ARE pretty slabby variants on the Explorer body, so I don't think they're going to be featherweights.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#27
A guitar with a similar silhouette is the Fernandes Vertigo. I bet it is within a few oz. of the Esprit in weight.
http://www.fernandesguitars.com/products/guitars/vertigo.html

And there were enough comments about THAT that Fernandes introduced the Vulcan, which has a much shallower body.
www.fernandesguitars.com/products/guitars/vulcan.html
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#28
I think I read 10lb in a review somewhere. that's crazy heavy, at least for me.
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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#29
Quote by Dave_Mc
I think I read 10lb in a review somewhere. that's crazy heavy, at least for me.

I'd have thought less, but 4.5kg/9.9lb is what this article says.
http://issuu.com/john_hornby_skewes/docs/gb_may_08_esprit_5
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#30
10 lb guitars make me sad.
I wondered why the frisbee was getting bigger, then it hit me.
#31
LTD viper. Used. Can get a good model for that price. Good enough for Phil X.
My gastronomic rapacity knows no satiety.
#32
Thanks for all the suggestions everyone. I really like the look of the Fret-King Esprit 5, the Diamond Hailfire and Renegade, Hagstrom Pat Smear and Reverend Sensei, and if I found one used I'd probably go for one of these.

Unfortunately those guitars seem to be incredibly rare on eBay UK, which is probably where I'll be looking for the most part. They're a bit out of my budget new.

So I think it's going to be a more common brand I'll be looking at, used on ebay - Gibson SG Special, LTD Viper, PRS SE, etc.
#33
Quote by dannyalcatraz
I'd have thought less, but 4.5kg/9.9lb is what this article says.
http://issuu.com/john_hornby_skewes/docs/gb_may_08_esprit_5


yeah i'd imagine that's the one I read. maybe the guitarist review of the one with the 3 p90s said 10lb as well.

Quote by gregs1020
10 lb guitars make me sad.


+1

Anything much over 8 and I'm not happy.

And by 8 I mean 7.
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#34
Wussies.


Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#35
I don't know if you are open to this, but the Gibson Les Paul Junior's can be great guitars. They are fairly cheap and are incredibly hit or miss. But I've played some that are just amazing. In that vain the AxL Bulldog is absolutely fantastic but nearly impossible to find.
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#36
Quote by gregs1020
10 lb guitars make me sad.

10lbs guitar make you a man
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#37
If your dad plays a light-weight guitar, you have two moms.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#38
but yet any time anyone mentions chops, suddenly guitar playing's not a sport...

I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#39
Pop on this group and search for Josh Sullivan, hes got a viper 401 for sale, Swap the pickups out and jobs a good'un


https://www.facebook.com/groups/guitarexchange/
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