Price paid: £ 240
Purchased from: Shop in Dunstable
Sound — 10
Back then I needed something modern in style and light to play long gigs on. This Yammy fitted the bill exactly. I play at home, rehearsals and small gigs with a Fender Yale. No effects needed for my style as the Yale give a massive range of sounds. This combination can be quite sweet but never thin. With the replaced pick-ups it goes all the way to some very crunchy metal sounds. For big gigs I slave out from the Fender to a 150w Nolan head and 800w 4 x 12 (love Fane Crescendos)
Overall Impression — 9
I play blues, classic rock, soft rock, metal, punk and thrash and this baby just deals with it all. I have played for 44 years and this guitar is always the first I pick up on a practice. it's my longest lasting friend and buddy. NO-ONE gets near to stealing it. But if fate took it from me, I'd get another as soon as I could find one. Best feature, for me, is how light it is. So easy on the old bones. Worst is having to spend over an hour tuning the thing when it eventually needs it or a string breaks.
Reliability & Durability — 9
I have done all sorts of gigs with this guitar and it's as strong today as when new. It has stood up to my extravagant style without a problem. The only imperfection was that I managed to knock the end turn of the headstock off after a week, by spinning too fast and catching it on the stack. I wouldn't dream of gigging this or any other trem guitar without a backup and a quick roadie.
Action, Fit & Finish — 10
Factory setup was pretty near perfect (but I did know the guy in the setup room at Yamaha's distribution centre). There were no problems related to manufacture at all. Every component was correctly fitted but I did change the strap buttons for locking ones.
Features — 8
Bought new in 1985 or 86, Japanese made, 24 frets on a rosewood fretboard. Possibly Maple neck. Bolt-on to Basswood body. Red gloss finish. This is a super-Strat shape. Very flat like a plank. Locking trem of Yamaha design. 1 single coil neck pickup and a coil-tapped humbucket at the bridge. I replaced the Humbucker with an unbranded AlNiCo and turned a thin sound into something more like an SG. After many years I replaced the single coil with a DiMarzio P90 shape humbucker and the sweetness poured out of my Fender Yale amp. Having the locking trem, tuner quality is not important but the basic Yammys are still sound and smooth after 22 years.