I Have This Guitar Playing Friend..

Discussion in 'What's left to Talk About?' started by bombtek, Mar 27, 2020.

  1. bombtek

    bombtek Well-Known Member

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    That admits that my cheap (relative) gits are good to great players and play as well as his high dollar Gibson some better than it. However he is a gear snob. We have arguments about how cheap they are and that means bad quality to him.
    I just kinda chuckle and ask him who busted the nut on his neck by just turning it....
    Anyways gfs always inevitably comes up cuz...I use a lot of their stuff lol
    After one of our friendly arguments this analogy came to me

    Gfs-harbor freight
    Gibson fender..insert any big git company - snap on tools

    Harbor Freight tools are GREAT for a homeowner non pro and hell perfectly fine for some pro applications.

    Snap on tools are professional quality and you can trust them pretty much for the rest of your life. Pros use them because they're known and they're good.

    I don't NEED a professional tool to have fun with a guitar. Sure I'd love to own a full set of snap on tools to replace all of mine....if they were a free swap. My tools do everything a set of snap on tools do.

    My guitars (and cheap amps) do everything I need them to play just how I like them and sound killer....he can't get over the sound of my git/amp combos lol

    So...harbor freight for me with a sprinkling of snap on (I do have a Gibson and a Fender)
     
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  2. toomanycats

    toomanycats Well-Known Member

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    So does this mean Kurt/Rondo is like Sears Craftsman?

    . . . or at least the way Craftsman used to be.
     
  3. bombtek

    bombtek Well-Known Member

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    I my mind yeah lol
     

  4. backinit

    backinit Well-Known Member

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    My builds are old school USA Craftsman for sure, not the new Chinese crap. Who makes matco and mac?
     
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  5. msc_

    msc_ Well-Known Member Supporting Member

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    The problem with cheap hand tools is they are more likely to round off or break due to cheap materials or loose tolerances and should be thrown out (most people don't). Not much you can do about it but file them down, but that's really making them worse. With cheap power tools, it's less expensive to buy another than to repair in most cases. Cheap tools seem to have gotten worse over the last 20 years and cheap guitars have become substantially better. What you are typically (but not always) getting with a more expensive guitar are better materials and finishing. The woods are typically dryer and more stable and more attention is usually paid to the fretwork. Hardware is a mixed bag and inexpensive guitar electronics have become fairly reliable. Durability isn't necessarily related to price either, because many expensive guitars are actually quite a bit more fragile than their less expensive counterparts.

    I prefer to look at it as a curve of diminishing returns rather than price vs performance for guitars. I do agree with what you are saying regardless. You can have a great sounding and great playing electric guitar regardless of the price as long as the pickups are decent and the set-up is good. A cheap guitar can be as good or better than an expensive one. Snobs are going to be there regardless of what you are talking about (guitars, watches, food, toilet paper), so my philosophy is buy what I feel like I need and makes me happy.
     
  6. solteroblues

    solteroblues Well-Known Member

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    I think the toilet paper snobs were eradicated by Corona, as even the cheapest 60-grit is rarer than a dodo bird!
     
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  7. Narsh

    Narsh Well-Known Member

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    I'm going to say that at each extreme there is a huge difference. Plenty of gray area in the middle.

    Needs and wants are also two totally different things as well.

    I'm a very strong believer that you can attain very good and sometimes pro results with pretty much any gear. And if that's your thing well then awesome!

    But.... When you reach a certain level and have paid your dues, either on the road or practicing, there is a certain level of satisfaction in playing a high end instrument. Example here for me is I have several, Schecters, Fireflies, Fenders, Sterlings, Ibanez, PRS SE, amongst others in the $100-$1000 range. All great instruments and I can play them with a huge smile on my face at any time. But.... When I pick up my $2800 Kiesel its different. And.. I'm only using price as a comparison to somewhat relate to quality even though that's not always the case but I digress. The Quality of a high end instrument should be, hopefully is if you paid a lot, much higher and more satisfying to play than your $800 Schecter Banshee. Sure there will always be unicorns and the circumstance where all the wood, electronics, hardware etc. come together magically in your intermediate level guitar, but 90% of the time there is a difference.

    Again, there is a huge gap here, lots of subjective gray area and of course needs, wants, and where you can spend time and $$$.

    By the way, if I do buy tools, I usually hit up harbor freight because I don't know what I am doing and the tool wouldn't improve the outcome of my lack of skills. :)

    Guitars though, I have a bit more experience there.

    But that is just my .02.
     
  8. Partscaster

    Partscaster Well-Known Member

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    We here mostly know that one good thing about relatively cheaper stuff is you can own a lot more varying pieces/models ...see if you like the style or not,...and dare to significantly mod them for 1/4 the money.
    You can lend them out, let kids play croquet with them, and the desperado at the bar isnt scheming to steal it. Use them as wall paper, even !
    And one might even learn to make them play and sound better to your own ears than the stock Brand Name.
     
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  9. ID10T

    ID10T Well-Known Member

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    For what It's worth, I look at it like this.
    If you gave Stephen King some dollar store sidewalk chalk and a empty parking lot, he'll create a story. If you give me his typewriter/word processor, you aren't gonna be impressed with what I give you.
    I'm like a second grader trying to write my alphabet. Stephen King was in second grade at one time using big pencils and that funky yellow paper with pastel lines too.
     
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  10. SamIV

    SamIV Well-Known Member

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    I have a couple of Ibanez AR’s that came out of China. I just acquired a Gibson LP. I did do a lot lot work on the Ibanez guitars. Fret levels and rounding off the fret edge of the fret boards. I prefer the playability of both Ibanez guitars. The LP came from a guy who played it live and also builds and works on guitars. I have a few USA made guitars and a few more imports. Also have to admit, not a fanboy of LP guitars these days for some reason. So take that into account as well.

    I am not at the level of playing where I would desire an expensive guitar. Might be ordering another Asian made guitar, via Germany real soon. If you are happy with it, play it.
     
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  11. bombtek

    bombtek Well-Known Member

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    685C854E-D40E-484F-A427-1D8F336DA93F.jpeg What I find amusing is that my cheapest guitar brand new is also my best player
    My axl 1216jr is a crazy good playing.. sounding.. feeling guitar. It has a neck that's been massaged HEAVILY by myself and the only finish on the back of the neck is weeks of daily mineral oil pressed in using 2000 grit Sandpaper. It has this effect when you play it..the more your hand moves around on it the more heat is generated which seems to release oils onto your hand as you play. It's unreal lol
    But..the guitar cost me 170 shipped new...once I realized about two weeks into the neck oiling process what a great feeling neck it was turning it to be I started putting high quality or at least better optioned parts into it.
    Altogether..not including my time..I have about $475 into it.
    And that mismatch between the supposed quality of the guitar not deserving of the cost of the parts that are on it..I don't care lol
    Anyone that plays it agrees that is crazy good and I'm of that mindset...that's justification enough for me lol
    This bottle was brand new when I first started and aside from changing the strings and oiling 15 fretboards once since I got it..the rest was used exclusively on the axl neck.
     
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2020
  12. bombtek

    bombtek Well-Known Member

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  13. bombtek

    bombtek Well-Known Member

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    This git here is the only guitar I have that makes me a better player...I'm not good..like at all..but this guitar makes me sound like I'm not half bad....it's just plain so easy to play and the longer that you play it...I'm talking minutes..the easier it gets.
    If I'm completely warmed up on another guitar. Like my agile ps900 which has out of this world low action with no fret outs..and then I grab this thing.
    What I was playing prior comes so much easier and it was pretty nice playing it on the Agile...and....once this guitar warms up to me!!!! Everything becomes even easier due to that oil wicking off onto my had and making its way to my fingertips. Once you realize it's happened its almost giggle inducing how good it plays until you're done.
     
  14. andrewsrea

    andrewsrea Well-Known Member

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    My opinion is that the greatest positive difference in high $ and low$ guitars is subject to the law of diminishing returns. And typically, it is TLC & sometimes better components.

    I have cheap guitars and really expensive ones. They all needed work to be 'mine.' They all make me happy. The expensive ones aren't the best in my collection, IMHO.

    My absolute favorite is the les Paul I built. I sourced the wood (Hondoran mahogany from the 1940's, Eastern maple top from the 70's, Brazilian rosewood for the fretboard from the 60's). My brother-in-law and I did all the shaping, joining, planeing. Horsehide glue, alcohol stains, nitro-lacquer. USA made 50's style ABR-1 bridge and stop. Grover 15:1 Keystone tuners, Dunlop 6105 nickel frets. Hand made AMI "Gold-Greeny" pickups, switch craft toggle and jacks, CTS pots. I estimate it took <200 hours touch-time to complete, finished it in 2006. Worth every minute.

    Cost me <$400. I'll put it up against a real '59, any day.
     
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  15. 50 amp fuse

    50 amp fuse Well-Known Member

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    As a mechanic by trade I can tell a good tool from a crap one and brand name has very little to do with it. I actually have a lot of HF stuff, as well as Snap on. Mac, Matco, and many others. Same applies to guitars. My go to logo snob punishers are my First Acts. Granted a few are expensive US made custom shop models but they don't know that, all they see is First Act. But to be honest some of my favorites are just modded cheap Asian fare. I've been known to modify cheap tools as well. Its all in the way you perceive and work with it.
     
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  16. Jaymo

    Jaymo Well-Known Member

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    Well, as much as i love all of my budget friendly guitars and basses, my Carvin bass is fan-freaking-tastic.
    The quality is easy to see and feel and hear. I love it. There is nothing like the feel of a very high quality instrument.

    That does not take away from how much I like my others.
    But damn, a Carvin/Kiesel is a very nice instrument.
     
  17. AnotherJim

    AnotherJim Well-Known Member

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    Could you share a pic? Maybe even the build? Sounds like an awesome guitar
     
  18. Jaymo

    Jaymo Well-Known Member

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    Mac=Proto
    Matco=Danaher

    I have tools ranging from Harbor Freight up to Snap Off, Mac, and Matco.
    Most of my Snap Off tools stay at home, because I'm a field breakdown tech (mechanic) and tools get lost, stolen, and broken.
    I use a lot of Craftsman, Husky, HF, Autozone, etc, at work, because they do the job, day in and day out, without putting me into massive Snap Off debt.
    Also, when you owe Snap Off money, their tool guys are Johnny on the spot.
    When you need to get a tool replaced under warranty, they're either nowhere to be found, or they don't have your tool in stock.
    I got burned by Snap Off over 20 years ago and I go out of my way to not give those shysters any of my money.
    Their warranty sounds good. Until you have a screwdriver or prybar that needs replaced under warranty.
    Shank breaks? Get a new shank hammered into your existing handle as a warranty replacement.
    Handle breaks? Pay for a new handle to be hammered onto your existing shank.
    I saw it happen to coworkers too many times when I worked in the shop.
    I had enough Snap Off sockets crack and break to never go back to them.
    You can go into Snap Off debt to the tune of a home mortgage, just to brag about how big your dick is all you want. I'll pass.
    I need tools that work all day, every day, are easily sourced, if one breaks (rare) gets lost or stolen (common) or has to be "modified" by me for a special task.
    I need these tools to be affordable, because I work for money to support myself and my family NOT to support my Snap Off tool man's Porsche addiction.
    Fuck Snap Off. I refuse to drink their Kool Aid, and it only took me 10 years of wrenching for a living to figure it out.
    I've been doing this for 30 years, and all the Snap Off corksniffers (cocksuckers) always repeated the same Snap Off sales bullshit "X brand is OK for the weekend warrior, but a real mechanic needs good tools."
    My X brand tools have done the job for 20+ years now. I have a set of Harbor Freight, craptastic angle wrenches I've owned/used daily since 1997.
    I had to replace the 15/16" after about 12 years of constantly double-wrenching it with one of my long pattern Husky (made in USA at the time) wrenches. I abused the hell out of it and it eventually had the jaws spread.
    My fault. Not warrantable. My local HF insisted on replacing the entire set under warranty.

    I bought a set of Snap Off O ring picks 6 years ago. They were the best O ring picks I'd ever owned.
    Then, they got stolen 2 years ago. So, I bought the same set again from the Snap Off dickhead that sells tools to our shop techs.
    Big Mistake. The exact same set, made 4 years later has been a total pile of shit. Tips bend easily and the shanks won't stay in the handles. Never again.
     
  19. Jaymo

    Jaymo Well-Known Member

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    And, don't think that I love my "cheap" guitars and basses appreciably less than my Carvin.
    My SX Liquid/Hawk/Callisto, Ibanez GAX70L/miKro bass, Turser Pbass, and Sawtooth Tele all thrill me to no end. If I didn't love them, I'd get rid of them.
    I'm just saying that you can easily see and feel and hear how nice the Carvin LB70L is.
    For what it cost when it was new, it better be that nice.
    Kiesel makes a fantastic product. Its on the "never sell" list.
    But, my cheapies still give me a silly grin, just like my Carvin.
    And, it's lasted longer than any of my Snap Off tools.
     
  20. andrewsrea

    andrewsrea Well-Known Member

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    DCP_1510.JPG DCP_0314_0001.JPG DSCN0595.jpg DCP_0101.JPG
    I don't have many good pics, but here are a few. The last one was when I was still building it and stained the back a deep purple (which I stripped off and did the campaign cherry-red)
     
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