Price paid: $ 40
Purchased from: Pawn Shop
Sound — 8
This guitar has a finished neck, so if you are at all sweaty, the guitar plays kinda slow. Otherwise, the action is good, and there is little fret buzz. This guitar is heavy, but doesn't sustain well, I am still tweaking the guitar. It has a good middle-ground sound, not very bright, but not very dark. I do, however, prefer a fatter sound, which this just doesn't get. I am going to modify this to a string through body with TOM bridge and I will check the neck pocket as well, and I plan to fix the pickups to the body, as well as redo the pots to a traditional Gibson configuration. This guitar is a little muddy in the neck pu, so aftermarket pu's are in this axe's future.
Overall Impression — 8
I play hard rock/metal, and this guitar is right at home with me. I like the weight, and the feel. Tough as nails, as a guitar should be, and plays well. I don't like the pu selector placement, and I really don't like how these imports are marketed as prime tonewoods, but are really just a foreign relative. It should be illegal, but that is the nature of our media, to tell us what we want to hear, not the truth, and mislead you to pay for what you are not looking for. Other than that rant, I do like this guitar and look forward to someday aquiring one of Hamer's USA guitars. They are not too much compared to the big names.
Reliability & Durability — 10
The wood is what makes this guitar heavy, and it feels like you are playing something, and doesn't feel flimsy at all. This guitar will hold up to abuse (obviously, mine was acquired abused and still sounds fine.) Has nice strap buttons, they are not loose, and the strap, even my cheap one, has a hard time coming off. With a good strap(which you should gig with anyways) I am sure there is no need for modification. Hardware is good, but should be replaced if you would gig, and the finish is not going anywhere. I suspect this guitar to be at least 10 years old, and it will rock for 100 more.
Action, Fit & Finish — 6
I can't comment about the factory set-up, I really don't know how this can be rated anyways. Everybody plays differently, and has different preferences. I grade on how well the guitar can be set up, with fret buzz, action, intonation taken as the mediums. There is very minor buzz at the lowest possible action, and intonation is very close with the compensated bridge. Transparent cherry finish, I bought it banged up, the previous owner did not take care of it. The finish is done excellent, and feels very hard, but doesn't feel like it adds too much weight.
Features — 5
I do not know the year, as I tried to date it, but has no ink or imprint on the back of the headstock. Hamer.com says that is how you date your guitar, if you have any information about this please post it below so I can find out how old this is. It is a Gibson double cutaway (not SG) style and smells like it is mahogany, but I was told that the imports are made of Asian mahogany, which is NOT the same. Bolt on neck, HH config, 2 volume 1 tone and 3 way selector at the end of the guitar, which is a bad place for this. It is SOLID though, which is rare for imports, which I am assuming this is. Wraparound compensated bridge, it is intonated pretty close, close enough to sound accurate. Tuners are a little loose, but keep the tune pretty well.