beginner guitar

What are guitar strings made of? For technical questions about music and gear.

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anthropomorphizing_kitty
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beginner guitar

Postby anthropomorphizing_kitty » Sat Feb 14, 2004 8:06 am

Why is it that even though I've played guitar for about 6 years I still call myself a beginner? Spanish only took 2 years for god's sake. Anyway mostly I call myself a beginner because I still suck and I'm still too poor to buy decent equipment. My question, what is the best Stratocaster knock-off for a tight budget? I currently have a Squier tele which replaced my very first guitar which was a Peavey version of the strat. It played fine for my abilities but even as a beginner I realized it wouldn't stay in tune for crap. Any recommendations? I've noticed Squier and Kramer both have inexpensive strat-like-things.

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Dez
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Postby Dez » Sun Feb 15, 2004 3:52 am

I've fallen totally in love with the new Squier Custom Tele '72 rip-off. I played through it in the store an it sounded better than a G&L Tele and could almost keep up with a Gibson SG. It's fantastically inexpensive and I can't wait 'till I've bought one. First I'll have to check my piggy bank.

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Postby junkyardtodd » Sun Feb 15, 2004 7:40 am

Yay! I get to be mr know-it-all again!
First, the squier Tele is probably not actually a bad guitar, for like $50you could fix it up, n have it sound great, n stay in tune-
First, get a new set of tuners (grover, gotoh or such-get 'em cheap, used, on EAY), (you can install them yourself-don't be scared) and good strings (i like GHS, but there's lot's of great options). If it still won't stay in tune, take it to yr friendly local guitar shop n get the intonation, action, n neck tension adjusted-this is a basic 'setup' n should not be too much money...
You might also want to replace the pickups (again, not too difficult, just be careful with Mr Soldering Iron!) Again, go to EBAY, look for Seymour Duncan, they rule.

Secondly, I am here to say, "you do not suck!" just keep playing along with the records you love... you don't have to do all the fancy bits, just play along for awhile.
Isn't that fun?!!

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anthropomorphizing_kitty
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Postby anthropomorphizing_kitty » Sun Feb 15, 2004 9:22 am

Helpful tips, I thanks ya's.
However...
I was actually wondering about a Stratocaster-like guitar. I already have the Squier Tele (which by the way thanks for the tips on changing tuners, I'm going to check that out). I've been eye-balling the kramers from www.musicyo.com which get decent reviews and are ridiculously inexepensive. I'm wondering should I check one out at $70 bucks, or save my pennies to buy a Fender standard Strat for about 5 times as much?
Two other questions and then I'll leave you all alone. Has anyone checked out the Danelectro guitars and what are general opinions about them? And secondly and probably more importantly, if my band were to start playing shows sometime, what would be a good low cost amp to play these guitars through that I could take onstage?

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Postby Karousme » Sun Feb 15, 2004 2:05 pm

I have a Squier strat and was just going to play it until I could save up money for another guitar, but I really have had no problems, and I like the tone and it stays in tune. It was around 300 bucks new, and that was a few years ago. Are you looking for something cheaper?

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anthropomorphizing_kitty
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Postby anthropomorphizing_kitty » Mon Feb 16, 2004 8:44 pm

I'm looking for something that will stay in tune right now. I've been leaning towards getting a cheap something I can abuse (in truth my guitars are pristene). But I'm undecided. I don't know if my ear is sophisticated yet enough to care enough about the tonalities of a thousand dollar guitar. I'm partial to the idea though of getting something cheaper and playing around with making it better, changing up the tuners and messing around with setting it up and whatnot.

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Postby Dinsdale » Mon Feb 16, 2004 11:11 pm

If you're looking for a relatively inexpensive telecaster, a Mexican Fender Tele is a pretty good bet. I bought a used 96 (I think) MIM tele from a friend...sounds great, stays in tune. I'll probably eventually replace one of the pickups, but they certainly don't need to be.


Oh, I paid $175 in all after purchasing the guitar and then getting the nut replaced (it was broken). A pretty good deal. I've seen them go for around that price on ebay. A new one is like $369 or something.

-Dan

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John
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Postby John » Tue Feb 17, 2004 1:26 am

Danelectros are awesome starter guitars. They're cheap and effective. As far as all the cheap Fenders and Kramers go, the reason they're cheap is that, as noted, the tuners and pickups are cheap. The wood is cheap too but that doesn't matter as much at first. I agree that few people really need a thousand dollar guitar, but if your guitar is too cheap you won't enjoy playing it, (see: tuning problems).

The trouble with replacing pickups and tuners is the good-money-after-bad problem. For the extra money of good pickups you probably could have bought a better guitar. I have drawers full of pickups and bridges and tuning machines that I keep intending to do something with but never do.

The only sure-fire way to pick out a good guitar is to go to a few different places and play every cheap guitar in the place. Plug them all in to the same amp and just play some chords. All those cheap guitars are totally different from each other, and about one in twenty is actually pretty OK. I guarantee that if you play twenty guitars one of them will probably jump out as the 'best' one and that's the one to buy. You'll just like it best.

As for amps... that's a can of worms too. But really almost any amp will work fine these days. Most places you'll play will want to mic your amp, so your amp can be pretty small. I'd play into a few cheap ones and pick the one you like.

Which all presupposes that you're not trying to buy your stuff on the internet. Go to a guitar store.

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Postby omphale » Tue Feb 17, 2004 2:50 pm

i'm with john on all-o-dat. most especially the part about not buying guitars and guitar-related thingys on the web. it really isn't easier, and unless you've got some kind of need to receive and return a lot of music equipment from UPS it's likely to end in tragedy. ok, maybe tragedy's a bit strong. but i'd say surefire dissatisfaction.

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Postby junkyardtodd » Tue Feb 17, 2004 3:09 pm

John, i am going to sneak into yr house n pilfer yr secret drawer full of pickups the next time i am in SEA

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Postby shredded77 » Thu Feb 19, 2004 9:54 pm

yuck, worst mistake i know of making gearwise was buying a mesa halfstack. total overkill and such a pain in the ass to move. sounds good, but i got a tech 21 trademark 10 and it sounds just as good and so easy to move around. word.

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John
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Postby John » Fri Feb 20, 2004 1:20 am

I got broken chorus pedals, I got fried Jenson 15" speakers, I got Casiotones and Boss ds-1's.

Hell, I got it all.

Except a Mesa half-stack. Too many damn knobs.

junkyardtodd
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Postby junkyardtodd » Fri Feb 20, 2004 5:09 am

back in the day, i was in a band with this crazy dude who sued his dad for his inheritance (pre-mortem) and used the money on a pair of Mesa Mark 1's. Bad Karma, but great amps!!

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Postby bubbamo » Mon Mar 01, 2004 7:39 pm

" Jay Turser" makes a great litlle line of Fender copies. Although I've
never had a strat copy I have had and played Jay Turser "Tele"
Kept tune decently but had the richest sound of any of the tele copies
also "felt" most like the real thing. Most good ones can be picked up for
$200.00 or less. TTYL

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carlitos
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Postby carlitos » Mon Mar 01, 2004 8:27 pm

John wrote:I got broken chorus pedals, I got fried Jenson 15" speakers, I got Casiotones and Boss ds-1's.

Hell, I got it all.

Except a Mesa half-stack. Too many damn knobs.


But do you have a disassembled Hondo pseudo-Gibson?

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Endo23
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Postby Endo23 » Wed Mar 03, 2004 3:49 pm

Funny thing about Hondo is that Adrock uses them exclusively... don't know how he cops the phat tones on In Sound From Way Out with one of those bad boys, but he does.

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anthropomorphizing_kitty
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Postby anthropomorphizing_kitty » Mon Mar 08, 2004 1:11 pm

John, I've been looking at the Danelectros...they've always fascinated me. Do you have any model recommendations? Also...I used to go to Music 6000 in Olympia which carried the Dano's...is there any place closer to Seattle?

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John
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Postby John » Wed Mar 10, 2004 12:52 am

The Danelectros I've played have all been more or less the same, despite the various body styles. They do make one with built-in effects(!), but I can't testify to those. As always, just play a few and pick the one that feels best. I don't really know who sells them in Seattle new... um... nope.

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anthropomorphizing_kitty
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Postby anthropomorphizing_kitty » Sat Mar 13, 2004 10:16 am

Well I guess I'll be out shopping for that guitar soon...well, not soon but when I have money again. My wife's car got stolen this morning with my Squire Tele, amp and SKB case I just bought still inside. :-(

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omphale
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Postby omphale » Sat Mar 13, 2004 5:05 pm

oh cwap. does her insurance cover such things? ...not that it matters if you're really in love with your amp (sounds like that's not an issue with your guitar). in any case, that really sucks. my condolences.

oh, and i have a newish danelectro that i picked up used for cheap and i really love it. however, i played several other danelectros while shopping that i didn't like much at all. they have a tendency to sound kinda pinched. so play a bunch of them with the same amp, like john said, (preferably your amp) (which i guess you'll also be shopping for!)


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