And like you, a Loar 650. They were *cheap* when they were first issued.
And this Washburn HB15 I converted into an ES175-sorta-thing by installing two humbuggies and a switch:
I would love to have a "175" style guitar. Have to be an Epi or off brand for my pocket book. I guess I typically "trick" myself by buying something at a modest price then over time tricking it out. I know I could have the real deal (used) for what I put into some of them but it is much easier money wise than cough up big bucks at once.
Ok, so tell me how it plays. I just looked at the price (about the same as a DIY Kit I have looked at and I don't have to actually put it together and finish it.)
Updated: I decided to get an Ibanez AF95 Archtop. I really like it so far. Great tone, feel, excellent intonation, and low action with no fret buzz (neck near flat-very very slight concave). Very happy so far. If one thing I would like it would be slightly wider neck to accommodate my short stubby fingers on first few frets but that is minor and something I can work on. Probably because I am used to bass guitar...Ya think LOL
Post by funkykikuchiyo on Apr 11, 2020 11:39:22 GMT -5
I have an import Gretsch - great guitar, but doesn't quite count for most people.
I'd love to have a decent archtop, but my tastes push me towards ones that are either A) very expensive, or B) made in limited runs. To me, an ideal archtop has a spruce top, laminate is actually okay, has to be thick enough to avoid having a tinny sound, and no bridge pickup. 17" body preferable, 16" acceptable. Under $1-2k, pickings are pretty slim. There have been Epiphones, Washburns and various other things over the years that match this description - even Martins and Tacomas! But, they're hard to find. Eastmans are the best thing going that is readily available, but the ones I've played have been a tad on the chunky side.
IMO, bridge pickups only sound good on archtops when we're talking Gretsches, and maybe if you're going for a Motown sound on an ES-175. Occasionally kinda cool when they're P-90s for a blues thing, like B.B. King in the '50s. For me, having one there isn't worth the other sacrifices. They add a big hole right next to the bridge, sometimes even removing material from the braces (a big hole right neck to the neck actually does less to impact tone than you'd think) and you're more than doubling the amount of wiring that wants to flop around.
Actually, what I'd REALLY like is to have my own shop and make one, per the Benedetto plans. I've watched his videos half a dozen times at least, and am confident my skills are up to the task... but hard/near impossible to do in an apartment. Anyone have a whole bunch of money they want to give me? I promise to send a nice Thank You note.
Sadly, I can tell you what I DON’T have. In the late 80’s, I always received Gruhn’s list of guitars - always good for a drool or two.
One day the list had Gibson L7 on it. About 1937 or so, as I recall. It had some cool fancy inlay fret markers. About $600. So I decided to take the plunge. I called, and was told the instrument was currently being restored, and they couldn’t get it to describe the exact condition, and it wasn’t really available at that time. They didn’t know when it would be.
The experience kind of soured me on Gruhn, and I never did get an archtop acoustic.
But I still think of that L7, and what might have been...