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Author Topic: Washburn's "ELITE" series of acoustic guitars  (Read 352 times)

Offline YerDugliness

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Washburn's "ELITE" series of acoustic guitars
« on: January 26, 2018, 10:26:48 AM »
There are some VERY good prices now on Washburn's series of "ELITE" instruments.

Here is what I've heard about the "ELITE" series, of which I am aware of 2 models:

Washburn WSJ60SKELITE Solid Cedar Top Southern Jumbo Acoustic Guitar with case

Washburn WSJ50SKELITE Solid Spruce Top Southern Jumbo Acoustic Guitar with case.

The 60 model has a solid cedar soundboard and laminate "Cocobolo" sides and back.

The 50 model has a solid spruce soundboard with laminate Koa sides and back.

Both models appear to be "Southern Jumbo" models...essentially "slope shouldered" dread-sized instruments.

There isn't much really known about how the ELITE series originated, but after having some conversations with the owner of the online company from which I order, here is what little I have heard (I have no idea how accurate it is).

The ELITE line was developed to be sold only in certain music stores, which were going to be designated as "ELITE" dealers by Washburn. This was reported to have been a project that was going to involve stores not only in the U.S., but also in Europe. Somehow, the "ELITE" dealerships didn't seem to get off the ground, but Washburn had a stock of "ELITE" labeled guitars already made, so one of the online instrument dealers (which IS an authorized Washburn dealer) apparently bought the entire stock and is offering great deals on these ELITE instruments.

One issue which is usually of particular importance (to me) is the quality of lutherie and the nature of the materials used. In this case, the instrument gets a B...the dreaded "ivoroid" cream colored bindings on the body and neck are notably absent and in their place is high quality maple. That gives the instrument a much more "professional" look. The Rosette is MOP/Abalone, but the purfling is not. The fretboard is bound, as is the head plate. The neck is surprisingly "thick" (I like a V-neck, so a thick neck suits me just fine). The only reason I give it a B rather than an A is that I also own a WG26S (Grand Auditorium body style) and the bindings along that guitar's fretboard/headplate  and around the body are much more "deluxe" than the ones on the ELITE. I would have expected that to be reversed for an instrument that Washburn was developing as it's premier line.

I have yet to see or hear the other ELITE offering from WMS...it's spruce soundboard should offer brighter tones and tolerate much more vigorous strumming, and the koa will give a warmth to the sound.

Cheers!

Dugly 8)

« Last Edit: January 26, 2018, 12:54:02 PM by YerDugliness »
YerDugliness,Esq./Post No Bills
Guitar Playin' FOOL, attempting to age disgracefully!
Washburns:WD32SW,D61SW,D62SW,C124SWK,
WMJ21S(2),WGO26SCE,WSJ60SKELITE,WG26S (2).
Other fine acoustics:Breedlove custom shop 000,Hippner #506 Hauser,Takamini 2005 LTD,Epi Masterbilt AJ500RC