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Messages - Tony Raven

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Hollowbody & Jazz Series / Re: HB35 very dark sounding
« on: October 16, 2017, 10:33:55 PM »
So, any updates on the Great Capacitor Miracle? ;)

Acoustic Guitar Players Post Comments & Questions / Re: D10F-SB
« on: October 16, 2017, 09:57:01 PM »
The "F" is a new one on me. Lacking photos, I found a secondary source that says it signifies a flame-maple veneer (which seems to like up with Washburn's use of "Q" for quilt maple).

Hollowbody & Jazz Series / Re: New J6 owner
« on: October 15, 2017, 12:26:14 PM »
A truly great model, IMO worth far more than the $600 (+/- $150) they sell for.

It's one of the longest-lived Washburn models, running 1989-2004. I can't remember which tailpiece came first, but my (increasingly foggy ;)) memory says the "W" is most recent. Possibly it's an '89, but mostly I think you're right with '92.

Stereo output? Yah, maybe, though I'd guess it was for recording work, with one pickup right to the board & the other to a monitor amp or phones. (If I had to run a stereo output cross-stage, it'd be with a single stereo cord.) Even atthat, I'd still consider putting a low-Z pickup in for recording, but to each his own.

But don't fall for gear hype. There's all sorts of superstitious claptrap about Magical Capacitors -- Orange Drops, Bumblebees, Tropical Fish, gevalt!! -- & it's entirely BS. For 40+ years, I've replaced the common brown ceramic disks because it's not unusual for the darned things to shatter; my replacements have been green Mylars, because they're common & cheap & reliable. Anyone who pays an upcharge for a part worth less than a dollar is a fool who maybe SHOULD be parted from his money. 8)

To date, I have yet to meet a player who can tell by ear whether a pickup is a Lover-spec PAF or a new Artec, or detect any sonic difference between Alnico V & Alnico II. They are far less likely to tell the difference between capacitors... & the fact is that 98% of players don't fiddle with the guitar's Tone knob anyway. (IMO, most players would do better to remove the control entirely: less noise AND clearer sound.)

I've been told by "oldschool" jazz players that a proper jazzbox ought to be strung with .012 flatwounds. In any case, stuffing in the same boring usual overpriced overhyped pickups would be nuts, as those units are almost always designed to be stuck in a solid slab of wood ~1.75" thick. A "hot" pickup is only going to make a jazzbox sound boomy, & that's why players go online to fripe about how the guitar sucks ::) because of course it can't be THEIR fault for being clueless.

N Series (Nuno Bettencourt) / Re: Early N2 serial number.please help.
« on: October 14, 2017, 10:58:04 AM »
I've never seen a seven-digit serial number on a Washburn instrument. Six or eight, sure. If the first two digits are indeed "10-" I would be more inclined to guess it at 2010.

It's highly unlikely that ANY modern Washburn instrument had 1,170 units made in a single year. Any such would likely be low-end guitars -- in other words, maybe for an N1, but probably not for an N2.

And the hardcore Nuno fans can correct me on this one, but my experience is that electric guitars from early in the run tend to have many more little problems than those from a few years down the road. If you're going to actually PLAY the N2 rather than being yet another get-rich-quick "collector," I can't say I'd recommend an early version, especially if you're going to be paying anything near (or above) Blue Book.

Oh, yeh: value. Per the Book, it might be as much as $650 in near-perfect condition (not a single swirl mark much less a scratch) & original case (also near-perfect). HOWEVER, the reality is that 99.99% of players who want an N2 already own an N2, & are happy that way, & therefore there's not much of a resale market. The "naked natural" ones can readily be found at $400 & less.

it may be necessary for a change to the wikki entry
Already done; I take my job seriously. 8)

{Ugh -- the stuff that happens when my browser locks up during a reply... :-[ Let's go again:}

the Yairi connection to Washburn was likely a quote from the inaccurate article that was published in Premier Guitar.
Yah, though I don't have my notes handy, that is likely where I got the notion. Corrections will be made.

That photo is highly instructive!! I never would have thought that a factory would install the frets in a neck that's already been bound. :o (As much as I like the look & the feel of a bound neck, they are sometimes a total PITA to refret.)

Acoustic Guitar Players Post Comments & Questions / Re: D-30S dating help
« on: October 14, 2017, 02:36:20 AM »
O heavens, thank you so much, MBC_Jon!!! And please pass along my thanks to the estimable Mr Smith, upon whose wisdom I often rely, not least for steering the Wikipedia article.

Many people seem to believe that Washburn serial numbers are like those of the electrics from Gibson (stamped on at manufacture) or Fender (decal under clearcoat at manufacture). As Mr Smith has previously said, many Washie models do not last beyond their initial order of 200 units; if sales are slow, a given guitar might be stamped a year or even two past its actual date of manufacture.

Then there's the model number. I work in a plant that makes transit buses. It's not rare that (say) a critical engine part winds up languishing amongst various brake-assembly components because a number was poorly printed & the stock people diligently went with what it looked like.

So, my suspicion was that your D36 might have had a messed-up "0" in there, whether when printed or mis-read by whoever printed the label.

In any case, a truly lovely guitar, & I hope it sounds at least as good. :) I'm a fan of ebony fretboards, but own only one, a bass -- make sure it gets some lemon oil. ;) (Ebony has a bad habit of splitting.)

Vintage and Rare Washburns / Re: Help identifying
« on: October 11, 2017, 09:33:35 PM »
Just a wild guess, but it sounds like an oldie. Offhand, I can't think of any 1978+ Washburn acoustics that have an unbranded headstock.

P.S. -- know how they did that abalone logo? It's a trick used by Austin about the same time. They carve a shallow slot in the headstock face, glue down the "inlay" material, then silkscreen the logo over the top of it. The result looks much like inlay, but takes very little work.

It's possible that it was a one-off upgrade from the Custom Shop, for someone who wanted a bolt-neck rather than a set-neck (WM). But I've never seen a trussrod cover like that.

The abalone is over-the-top. I seriously doubt someone would "upgrade" the logo like that!!

What leads me to believe it's the Real Thing? Count the frets. :o

Is it worth gazillions of $$$? Oh, HECK no. :P It's still a BT, albeit a rather cool one. Maybe $500, tops.

Lovely axe!! Yah, the WE were a short-lived experiment. WE-1: Strat (sss); WE-2: Strat (hss); WE-3: Tele. They mostly get ignored because of confusion with the Lyon brand. IME, decent copies.

But I thought all the Lyons had Grover tuners (like the WE-1B sitting a few feet away).

My best guess: your WE-4 was a short-lived attempt to crowd a "superstrat" in, but the line was cancelled soon after when they realized how hard it would be compared to putting the same effort into an original design: 1996 launched the BT line & expanded the MG, total three new models $350-$400, right about where the WE-4 would've been.

I'd hesitate to call it "rare," but "unusual" is apt, maybe even "scarce."

Vintage and Rare Washburns / Re: Washburn D61 SW
« on: October 10, 2017, 11:17:03 PM »
Well, "value" depends a LOT on whether you're using the number to insure it or replace it or sell it (& where, & how quickly).

FWIW, last MSRP was $1,200. Book value in Excellent condition is something like $600-$750 (with hard case). If played hard but well-kept, say $400-$450.

Acoustic Guitar Players Post Comments & Questions / Re: D-30S dating help
« on: October 10, 2017, 11:04:15 PM »

First of all, while modern Washburn serial numbers generally indicate date with the first two digits, there have been more than a few oddities. I have a BT-3 that begins I81, but as the model was made 1997-1999, it's likely 1998. Somewhere around here, a serial number is presented that is impossible to match up with the known build years.

I didn't know that Samick Indonesia (the "SI" prefix) goes back so far. Now that I look, the Cileungsi plant opened in 1992. Live & learn. ;)

Blue Book says the second-version D30S was 1985-1994, but '85 was pre-SI. ???

Those triangle inlays are distinctive. The Book says the 30S had dots. The only Wash with "arrowhead" markers that I can find was the D-36S (2002-2003); the bridgeplate & headstock seem appropriate. The 36 had an ebony fretboard, & would also have a "Buzz Feiten Tuning System" decal on the back of the head (not the 30S).

The BT-9 was the only BT with maple fretboard. The BT models with Rose system were BT-6 (hss), BT-10 (hh), & BT-20 (hh). Is there any indication the bridge is a later addition?

At a wild guess, I'd say you have a short-lived "transitional" guitar (or a short-run "demo"model) as the line went from "BillyT" to "BT" naming. It certainly has the BT-9 style pickguard (which only the BT-9 & BT-3 had). The only BT that had the sunburst were BT-4 & BT-20.

As the BT-9 were only around 1996-1999, that'd put yours at the early end. As I showed previously, these appear to have used only the first digit for year, which does appear to make yours a 1996.

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