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Messages - Tony Raven

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1
Well, though you're here to sneak in a click link, & it's possible you stole the question from some previous post, I'm going t take it at face value, because someone might benefit.

FWIW: the WD-10S is the more recent version (post-2010) of the D-10S. Though I prefer the earlier Washburns, I have no reason to think the newer ones are any less worthy.

How is it that you ordered a guitar online... but didn't have it SHIPPED TO YOU? :o

Because it's a wood (not plywood) top, the 10S tends to hold its value very well over the years. However, if it were me, I'd buy a used one, because then (should I eventually sell it) I'd probably made back what I paid, maybe a bit more. They're usually $150-$200.

An acoustic guitar sounds better as you play it. Some say this is because the adhesives & finish "settle in," losing the last of their solvents & becoming more solid, so contributing to the tone rather than damping it. Other say it's because the wood is still slowly curing, and the vibrations loosen up the wood's cells. Both might sound superstitious, but I've seen lab (materials engineering) studies that seem to support both. In any case, my experience is that a much-played guitar usually does sound better, AND this is most pronounced in guitars that have a higher wood content.

Another reason to buy a used guitar: it's probably had some basic adjustment done to it already, so is more likely to be ready to play "right from the box." While a new higher-end ($1,000+) guitar is probably ready to go, most buyers (especially beginners looking for a bargain) would rather save $20 than have a playable guitar. ::) It's NOT uncommon that a new "bargain" guitar needs to have the nut slots lowered (or the nut changed completely) AND the trussrod adjusted AND the bridge height adjusted AND intonated. A real guitar shop can do that stuff for $40-$100, or you can learn to do it yourself (which often means some damage). Trust me, though: decent adjustment is the difference between a guitar that's "mostly playable, more or less) and one you WANT to play.

Nothing wrong with tuning to a chord -- ask Dave Grohl or Tony Iommi. However, open tunings generally aren't versatile, & it's much more difficult to do stuff like minors, 7ths, sus4. And while power chords are GREAT for the 2nd guitarist in a metal band, it gets old fast with an acoustic.

2
General Discussion / Re: How to identify my Washburn J6
« on: April 06, 2019, 03:01:33 PM »
Generally, if it's got the"SI-" prefix, it's Samick Indonesia, a factory that apparently opened 1992. Before that, all Samicks were built in Korea (except possibly for a few higher-end guitars made in Japan).

Though the Indonesia plant launched ~1992, that's no guarantee Washburn got guitars from there, so it's not impossible that this J-6 is 1994. The J-6 was sold 1989-2004, so (given the s/n) that'd be 1994 or 2004, & I think the label is too minimalist for the latter, so I'm betting 1994, #205 for the month of June.

3
General Discussion / Re: Need to keep just one
« on: April 06, 2019, 02:48:55 PM »
No "expert" advice here. If for some reason I had to sell all but one acoustic, though I deeply appreciate my Washburns, I'd probably keep either my plywood Aria or beat-up Alvarez -- combination of sentimental value, well-aged tone, & sheer playability.

4
Announcements & News / Re: SERIAL NUMBER
« on: April 06, 2019, 02:39:39 PM »
Over the years, the "Washburn" name has been applied to instruments produced by literally a couple dozen different factories. Though Japan instituted rules meant to standardize serial numbers, elsewhere the format can vary widely. There are examples of Washburn numbers where any date interpretation would be impossible.

You're correct that serial numbers are generally on paper labels beneath the soundhole. Sometimes they fall off with time, or someone found it displeasing & took it off. IME, some non-Washburn Japanese guitars from the '70s & '80s never had a paper label (apparently the headstock logo was enough), so I suppose it's possible. Generally, I'm wary of numbers written (or rubberstamped) on the wood, as usually these are tracking numbers that don't indicate date or build order or any such thing.

Off to Blue Book. The D-25S is a Southern jumbo, not a dreadnought, offered 1985-2000. If it's got a spruce top, it's 1994 or earlier (replaced by cedar from that year onward). Given your number, it's possible that indicates 1986; if valid, the next two digits should be month, and the final digits is that instrument's actual serial-order number... so that'd be guitar #1,012 for the month of April 1986. Without a paper label, I'm not totally confient, but that's the guess.

5
General Discussion on Washburn Electric Guitars / Re: WM 100 or BT8?
« on: February 24, 2019, 03:52:41 AM »
Set-neck or bolt-neck?

Blue Book is a generally good source, but I have found more than a few flaws in their database when it comes to Washburn. My notes said that the U.S.-made WM-100 was replaced by the WMSTD, which may have been an import. That would explain why it doesn't have the "Custom Shop" oval label. (The laptop I have the full research on is awaiting repair, so I don't have access at the moment.)

All the BTs had the tapered head (whuch I happen to like, as the strings pul straight across the nut) while the WMs all had the Gibsonesque "square" head.

FWIW, prototypes are a whole lot less common than people want to believe. For starters, it's highly unlikely that a prototype would have a standard serial number.

6
Vintage and Rare Washburns / Re: Washburn W500 from the 1970?
« on: February 24, 2019, 03:39:28 AM »
A Beckmen Musical Instruments import (Japan), before Rudy Schlacher bought the Washburn name from them in 1977, so it has nothing to do with either the Lyon & Healy Washburns (1864-1940) or the present company. One of the higher-end Beckmen models, though.

7
You may be correct. The prefix means Samick (Indonesia). Modern numbers are much easier to interpret than those from before the 1980s or 1990s.

Interestingly, there are people around who'll happily tell you that your guitar was built either in 1941 or 2041. ??? To be fair, Samick is usually meticulous about this... but I have seen two or three long (6 or 8 numerics) serial numbers that can't possibly indicate a year, much less any further data.

8
General Discussion / Re: ATTENTION, SITE ADMINS -- job application!!
« on: February 24, 2019, 03:11:32 AM »
Bumping this up, seeing as the uncontrolled CRAP is beginning to get really thick hereabouts. :o

9
First thoughts...

My old Blue Book says the BT-8 is valued at $550 in perfect shape, $295 in 80% condition. Really, not bad for MSRP $749. I did a fast analysis three years back, & set the BT-8 as the highest-value MIK Maverick, ahead of even the BT-10 & BT-9.

It's very difficult to affix a proper "market value" to because of the too-common BT-2, BT-4, & BT-3. Over the past 3-4 years, speculators have been snagging up all other models in hopes of getting rich. Believe me, I've thought of selling my BT-6 for twice what I paid for it a few years ago.

Per Blue Book, EVERY change made to a quality guitar reduces its value -- period.

If your axe is in great shape? SELL IT. 8) Buy a half-decent BT-2 or BT-4 (<$150 delivered), & feel free to poke at it as you will, because there's so little downside. In the past couple of months, I see that eBay has sold a black BT-2 ($73 delivered), another ($73), & another ($82). Someone got a BT-4 with HSC for $121 all-in. And if you want an axe with a face-mounted jack, why not just start there...? My Washburn "Shadow Series" is a dead-on Strat copy AND has Grover tuners, costing me a hundred bucks.

To "clean the pots," you need Caig DeOxit, & then to run 'em back & forth a couple dozen times. (Ditto for the switch.)

And after you overhaul the wiring, what will you have done to set the action?

10
I've never had to replace one, but the first place I'd go is Allparts.

https://www.allparts.com/search?q=battery


11
General Discussion / Re: ATTENTION, SITE ADMINS -- job application!!
« on: January 28, 2019, 08:55:32 PM »
So... given the BS in this forum alone in the past couple o' days, could we have any better proof that ACTIVE moderation is needed...? :o

12
Announcements & News / Re: Shut It Down
« on: January 22, 2019, 03:18:43 AM »
Now that I think about it, not really a "no harm" situation. More closely resembles "neglect the place & let it get overrun with roaches & rats, to justify bulldozing it."

I started commenting on another thread, which I'll put here instead --

Quote
My experience with Marketing types over the years hasn't been very good at all. They'll forget about (or practically bury) some product or service simply because they don't feel like doing the work, then blame "no demand" -- yet when something dubious is mercilessly flogged until it picks up the least traction (like a reprinted press release), suddenly everyone's a genius.

So in the long run, this site is likely futile -- per my previous "forget about it or bury it" comment. The site's decline is highly indicative of the management's refusal to do any proper marketing, instead "milking the cash cow." I normally avoid any "great man" theorizing, but the brand really has gone downhill since Rudy Schlacher sold. At its peak, there were more endorsers in ONE CATALOGUE than there's been in the past decade (okay, 8.5 years) combined. (Heck, there may have been more SIGNATURE MODELS all at once than endorsements since the sale.)

Though even "the Washburn mystique" (that it's been one long unbroken history all the way back to 1883) is getting tattered, the name remains. Look at all the people who sign up here just to find out whether the Washie they spotted at a pawnshop or garage sale is going to make them rich ::) & never interact further. There's dozens of brands that would cost as little & be worth much more, yet the name grabs their attention.

And the mystique is a real thing, especially in acoustic/folk circles: when I set out my M1SDLB mandolin, I get instant respect from the name alone, though it cost me substantially less than my Michael Kelly.

If there's anything here that anyone finds valuable/informative, they ought to make copies for themselves, since it might all disappear suddenly.
I started a "cheap guitars" forum site last year -- the provider maintains everything, even forums that haven't had a new post since 2005 -- but it needs some overhaul. When I get that sorted out, maybe I'll start a Washburn section; everyone's invited, I may even host photos on my own dime, & spammers will be mercilessly eradicated. 8)


13
General Discussion / Re: ATTENTION, SITE ADMINS -- job application!!
« on: January 22, 2019, 02:57:31 AM »
Heya, Ship -- good to have you check in occasionally.

I like this place. I check in a couple times a week, & am willing to "pay my way" by cleaning up a little.

I wrote a bunch of other stuff, but it's better for elsewhere.

14
Congratulations... but, really, if I'd had a decent axe back in college, I'd probably have put it under the care of my parents & got myself a decent beat-up $100 guitar. 8) That's even more true if you are living in a dormitory or if there is EVER going to be drinking involved.

No matter how hard you try, you eventually WILL give it a significant chip, gouge, or ding. This might occur years from now, or a few hours, but it WILL happen. The only way to avoid that would be to lock the guitar safely away & never play it, & what would the point of THAT be, right?

So, first thing to consider: insurance. It'll cost you a few bucks a month, but that protects at least SOME of your cost if it winds up stolen, vandalized by a rival or ex-lover, destroyed by fire or flood, lost by the airline, etc.

Get it an initial setup at an actual guitar shop.

Humidifier, yes. Locking hardshell case, definitely (but I have always played big dreadnoughts, so I can simply hold onto a quality case while the guitars come & go over the years).

From a violin ship (or credible music store), a small bottle of lemon oil to keep the fretboard properly maintained. (It lasts practically forever since you need like two drops a month.)

DO NOT get all carried away with commercial polishes, especially AVOID those containing silicone. Lightly dust it, wipe down the frets regularly, otherwise remove grime with LIGHT application of MILDLY soapy water then wipe it off. (I used to recommend Octagon "Crystal White" dish soap, but that's often difficult to find, so Dawn Ultra is fine, so long as the water is only somewhat blue.) If that doesn't take the soil off, you might need to occasionally use a drop of alcohol & a SOFT cloth.

Aside from that, play it long & often, because that works wonders helping a new guitar "break in" properly as the glue continues curing.

15
There's probably no stock look-alike replacement available. You kinda have to take what you get, or contact some luthier about hand-building a custom neck.

Warmoth has a few 3-3 versions. Their snakehead is really dorky (apparently based on the prototype Esquire/Tele), but the "Vortex" & "Warmoth" are decent, & maybe you'd rather have a Fender-style panhead.

If you want a "one-to-one" swap on any bolt-neck guitar made since the '70s, measure the old neck from the nut (where the string passes) to the center of the 12th fret, then double that, which gives the scale length. The only source I can find says his measures out at 630 mm, which works out to 24.8" a.k.a. the "Gibson scale" (LP, SG, 335).

Most replacement necks meant for Gibson or PRS, however, are NOT shaped to fit a bolt-on pocket. Warmoth isn't cheap, but they exclusively make bolt-on necks. If you go dig around on eBay, you'll quickly find some interesting options for under $100, often so-called "conversion" necks so Tele/Strat players could have the shorter Gibson scale.

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