Price paid: $ 320
Purchased from: eBay
Sound — 9
With four single coils each with individual controls, your bound for some cool sounds. From country twang, to blazing blues, to creamy necks, you get all sorts of noise. I generally play through either a B52 LG100A or Marshall JTM45 and this thing sounds sweet. Maybe it the forty year old wood singing or just the sweetness of the beast, but either way she sounds great. I play mostly indie, alternative rock and heavy blues rock and she tackles it all extremely well. Though the hardware has signs of wear (oxidation and what not) they still sound great. That's why I want to take the pickup covers off, I bet those single coils have absolutely no wear on them and I want to see! (And hear of course ;D).
Overall Impression — 10
I really love this guitar. Sure she's not the best, sure she's old, sure she might have only gotten an 8 out of 10 in the last category, but I truly love her. I've played a shit-ton of guitars and I own quite a few. I own a Fender Strat, a Gibson Custom VOS 1958 Les Paul, a couple Ibanez's, a Danelectro, but this one is special. There's this mojo surrounding her that makes me connect with her on such an amazing level. She feels more like an extension of my body and voice then a guitar. I'm a singer-songwriter and everything I'm not playing with my acoustic I'll be playing with this beauty I bet. I wouldn't recommend this to everyone (i.e. metal shredders, blue grass players, etc) but if they wanted it, they can be my guest to blow my mind. No guitar is unsuitable for a genre, that's not what I meant, just personally I wouldn't use it for that.
Reliability & Durability — 8
This is a tough one. I've seen a little warping in the rosewood of the fingerboard. And I've seen some rough spots on her in other places too. But, I think she'll last, hell, she's lasted this long, I'm sure she has at least another forty years in her if treated right with lemon oil, cream of carnauba, and chrome polish. I don't know how durable she is granted I've only had her for a few days, but when I play her, I'm not in fear of her breaking or snapping, I just cut loose, so I'm sure she's durable. I plan on going on tour with her.
Action, Fit & Finish — 9
The action on this guitar was a tough one to work out at first. The high B and E strings were too far over and the rust on the tail piece made it hard to work with at first. After twisting and twisting, I finally got them to a comfortable place, but then I realized the strings on there were of what felt to be an 8 gauge. An 8 gauge. That's cool if you're into playing fishing wire, but I for one require at least a 9. So I actually moved up to 10. I haven't had it set up since I've done that so the neck might actually be a hair too far forward but that's okay. I finally had a chance to set up the action on it. It's fairly low, very useable. Probably around that of a $1500 Fender or $2000 Gibson. After I get it set up, it'll probably be even better. The finish seemed gross at first on the Internet, but after receiving her in person, the green burst is gorgeous. And the black pick guard has yellow flowers all over it, SO PRETTY. I received mine with some scratches and a screw or two missing, but what could I expect from a fairly cheap, Vintage guitar? Oh, the body reminds me of a Rickenbacker, sort of.
Features — 10
This guitar was made in either the 1960s or 1970s (I'm still unsure) as it sports four single coil pickups with covers over each one. They seem almost fat enough to be tri-sonics, but unfortunately I can't get the covers off to have a look, so we'll assume standard single coils. Each pickup has an individual switch and volume control with one master tone (5 knobs and 4 switches). This also has a tremolo arm capable of lowering the pitch a half step and raising it as far as you can stretch without snapping! My tremolo arm, however, seems to have the spring loose, so when lifted too high, the spring actually falls out. This isn't important to me because to raise the pitch of the guitar when playing I generally bend up and only use the tremolo to lower the pitch. It has a tune-o-matic style tail piece before this tremolo allowing the action to be set as needed. Each string groove on this tailpiece is attached to a screw so each string can be moved over as far as wanted. Overall, this guitar offers a lot of control and customize-able-ness.