#1
Some of you may have seen this thread discussing the $199 deal on the Kramer Custom - https://www.ultimate-guitar.com/forum/showthread.php?t=433235. Got mine today (took about 4 days from order date).

My initial impression......worth $199 and a bit more.

First, it's made in Indonesia. I was really expecting it to be Chinese (despite MusicYo listing it as a US series.....hmmmm).

Anyway......the guitar is much darker than it appears in the photos on the site. Plugged it in and it sounds pretty good with the stock pickups. I have an Epi Les Paul Standard and an Ibanez ARC300 w/ a Duncan JB/59 combo. The bridge pickup is fairly close to the the JB. Not quite as bright and not quite as hot. The bridge pickup is pretty close to the '59 but a little more low end. Overall, I would say they fall in between the Epi and the Ibanez leaning a little more towards the Ibanez.

The feel of the neck is really nice. I may get out the digital calipers and do a comparison to the Epi but they feel pretty close. The Kramer neck feels a little bit faster. I think there is something about the finish that just makes it feel a little more slick than the Epi, as they are both painted necks.

The pots are a little bit on the stiff side. Hopefully they will losen up a bit with use as it takes a bit of effort to turn them and given the small size of the knobs, don't expect to do quick turns on them.

Fit and finish is OK. About the same as my Epi but not as nice as my Ibanez. First, there are som small gaps where various pieces of binding meet up (the creme, not the abalone). Specifically at the headstock/neck joints and at the neck/cutout area. The cutout are is especially nasty...in fact, I think this area approaches second/b-stock quality. There is some wierd stuff going on with either the binding/glue/paint or something.

The other issue is that the binding is white, but when you throw a thick coat of clear over it, white items tend to look yellowish....fine, that happens all of the time. But when they polished out the body, it removes some of the clearcoat on the binding making some areas more white. This is really bad at the cutout. Also, prior to polishing, the removed the plastic coat that typically goes on the plastic electronics covers. So, when they polished out the body, they actually polished the plastic to some degree....but not very well, so some parts are polished, some aren't. Also, all the screws are black, but the polishing removed some of the painted finish of the screws, so there is chipping on the screws. These issues are mostly on the back of the guitar.

There were also a couple of spots where something got on the binding and wasn't removed before the clearcoat, so there is some junk trapped under the clear.

Ultimately, it looks fantastic from 6 ft or so and let's face it, most of us would notice those things before the average person. It's still worth what I paid for it.

If you're in the market for an LP style guitar, at $199, this is a really good deal. It's still less than you'll find a used Epiphone for yet looks like you spent a lot more money.
#2
pics?
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#3
I'll try and take some later. I only managed to do a quick check of it during my lunch hour.
#4
OK. Here's some comparison measurements.

Epiphone
Body at rear strap - 2"
Width at nut - 1.68"
Width at 12th fret - 2"


Body at rear strap - 1.89"
Width at nut - 1.68"
Width at 12th fret - 1.99"






#5
wow thats a beaut! whats the fretwork etc like?
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#6
The fretwork is actually pretty good. Nice polish job, no sharp edges at all.
#7
It doesn't look as bad as your description says it is.
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#8
Quote by aznrockerdude
It doesn't look as bad as your description says it is.


yeah i know it actually looks pretty good
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#9
I really love the look of it! And you made it sound pretty bad, but it looks to be pretty good. Hope you enjoy it!
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#10
It's a nice guitar. Don't get me wrong. The flash kind of washes out the color on a few areas. You can see the wierd crud going on with the binding on the cutout. I think that when you factor in that this guitar is $199 that it's half as much as an Epiphone Les Paul Standard yet looks like it cost twice as much, it's still a good deal.
#12
Quote by Chevylegend454
Damn you Now I wanna go get it
do it for $199 youre lucky to get a guitar that plays right let alone one that plays great, and looks and sounds this good. Its a keeper.
#14
Well, I still think it's a good playing guitar. I've been on the fence about whether to send it back for an exchange or not. As mentioned by someone on another forum, I think this may have been a factory second that was touched up, specifically because of the way the plastic pieces on the back are partially polished from being buffed.
#16
Quote by CustomCustom
do it for $199 youre lucky to get a guitar that plays right let alone one that plays great, and looks and sounds this good. Its a keeper.


Did you get your one?

btw, congrats to TS, looks good hehe.

EDIT: Didn't see your thread below, ignore above comment >_>
Last edited by Mwoit at Sep 20, 2006,
#17
Glad to hear it is a good playing guitar. That is mainly what I am looking for. I just want something inexpensive that plays good to go with my american strat. It does sound like you may have gotten a second though based on the limited number of reviews that I have found on this guitar. Here is a review on the guitar that really suprised me and they appear shocked at the quality of finish on the guitar. http://www.vintagekramer.com/company54.htm
#18
That is a sweet, sweet looking guitar. Wish mine had the abalone inlays all the way around the body, fingerboard, and headstock like that. And the quilt top is really deep looking.

For $200, I think this is just about the best deal out there for an LP.
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#19
That guitar makes me touch myself at night.

I <3 dark green.
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#20
Wow... only $199? Dude... STEAL
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#22
i want one, do they deliver to the uk at a reasonable price?
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#23
^ i looked into it, you're talking about $90 postage for one guitar. and that's not including customs (22.3% or so).

they're good value in the USA, not so good here...

if you order like 3, then the postage is like $120 for 3, or something... but you're hardly going to order 3 without knowing what they're like...

I passed. I have one of the strikers from when they had a european warehouse, but it's closed now.
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#24
meh, i think ill pass on that note too, ill get some new pickups instead.
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i was biking with my guitar and it fell in a puddle of mud, i was like OH MAN and i whent home immediately and put it in a bucket of water
#25
^ yeah, the postage and customs effectively doubles the price you'd be paying if you were in the states... and then you're almost up to ibanez sz range...
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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.

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Et tu, br00tz?
#26
OK. So after seeing some of the others here, I did a closer examination on mine. Found some additional issues. Big paint run in the clear at the top of the neck near the heal. The book matched top is not centered. The seam runs under the B string. The Body is a multipiece mahogony body with all of the pieces being different sizes. Mine is made up of three pieces. Rear strap button isint centered from top to bottom.

I decided to open up the control cavities and see if there was any wierd stuff happening there as well. The rear route for the toggle switch must be off (not the actual plate but the inner portion) as the switch isn't centered and they gouged a portion out so the switch would fit. The cavity could have been routed bigger as there was still a bunch of room. Volume/tone cavity looks fine.

Think I'll be contacting them today and sending this one back since I already have an amber on the way. Hopefully I won't have to return that one.

.....yeah, I know.....$199 guitar...but, remember....this is actually supposed to be a $350 guitar. I'm willing to live with some cosmetic problems, but it seems like this has a huge number of them.