My Phiga Bolt - Questions for Bolt Owners?

Re: My Phiga Bolt - Questions for Bolt Owners?

Postby mikelawson » Mon Jul 08, 2013 10:23 am

All I can say now, in a word, is WOW!

Phil is an amazing craftsman. I can't believe he does this kind of detailed, hand work for what he charges. The woods are amazing. The binding is flawless. The action was setup exactly as I asked for it. He even custom crafted a spacer to allow the straplock to go on the tip of the top wing. This guitar is just simply wonderful. Four-layered body, A least 7 layer neck-through design (if you don't count the tiny layers for color with the big ones, in which case it looks like 13-14 layers). Its not nearly as heavy as I thought it would be. Spurzel locking tuners. Three humbuckers from Dimarzio, a MIDI/Piezo Acoustic Ghost system, hardshell case which he adds custom-cut foam to for a perfect fit. It sounds amazing, too. Electronics are perfectly placed. He even included an extra Lighting Bolt cap for me as a "spare" for the custom Stanley Mouse art inlay I ordered.

Chunky neck, somewhere between a 50's Les Paul and a 60's. I like big necks and I cannot lie. :)

Fretboard has a nice radius to it, inlays are stunning, and this headstock is NEVER going to break with that big volute on it.

If you were on the fence about getting a guitar from Phil, jump off it and order one. Sure, we never spoke on the phone, but he was always replying to emails within a day or so, and he made sure he kept every promise. I am really, really happy with this guitar. I own about 30 different guitars, including some high-end custom shop Gibson Les Pauls and the craftsmanship on this Phiga Bolt blows them away. What amazes me the most is that Phil is a one-man band. At the Gibson custom shop, they have a different department for each step of construction. Phil does all the steps himself. I am blown away happy with this thing.
Last edited by mikelawson on Mon Jul 08, 2013 8:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: My Phiga Bolt - Questions for Bolt Owners?

Postby TI4-1009 » Mon Jul 08, 2013 11:07 am

mikelawson wrote:Phil is an amazing craftsman. I can't believe he does this kind of detailed, hand work for what he charges.


Pretty much sums up my thoughts when I got my Tiger. If value is important in your decision, this is the way to go. Glad you like it Mike!
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Re: My Phiga Bolt - Questions for Bolt Owners?

Postby mikelawson » Mon Jul 08, 2013 11:29 am

TI4-1009 wrote:
mikelawson wrote:Phil is an amazing craftsman. I can't believe he does this kind of detailed, hand work for what he charges.


Pretty much sums up my thoughts when I got my Tiger. If value is important in your decision, this is the way to go. Glad you like it Mike!


THANKS!

The more I play it the more enthralled I am with this guitar. I really is flawless. Intonation is perfect. Value is surely even an understatement. I'd say its a steal. :)

To be fair to Resurrection, and the other Bolt makers, I'm sure they build really nice guitars, too, and I'd love to put this side by side one someday to see any tangible reasons why the other builder charge so much more for their Bolt builds. There is nothing inferior in parts, wood or crafting on this guitar. Out the door, with shipping and a case and every bell and whistle I wanted it was $2300.00. I kind of laughed when looking at my American Musical Supply catalog and saw '59 reissue Stratocasters selling for the same price. I've worked around guitar factories in my day (Gibson in particular) and I know first hand what it took to build this Bolt, having seen each station doing its tasks to make the finished product. I've been to the PRS factory, seen Steingbergers and Tobias factory processes on top of Gibson and its custom shop. The hand work that went into this guitar is stunning. Yes, I'm very, very happy. I'm already conjuring up something else to order now.

Maybe I need a Wolf, too. :)
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Re: My Phiga Bolt - Questions for Bolt Owners?

Postby ccw3432 » Mon Jul 08, 2013 6:34 pm

Have you had a chance to use the MIDI setup yet? I'm curious to hear how you like the Ghost system.

What MIDI controls are on your guitar? Does it have a volume knob and/or a switch to turn it on?
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Re: My Phiga Bolt - Questions for Bolt Owners?

Postby mikelawson » Mon Jul 08, 2013 8:17 pm

This Ghost Piezo system is amazing. I've played MIDI guitars with HEX pickups for some 20+ years now, and I've never had a guitar that triggers this accurately before, from bends to sliding up and down to speed picked notes. I am thrilled with the Ghost system. I can't see myself ever going back to a HEX magnetic style MIDI pickup ever again. I've been having a blast. This guitar is a freaky tone machine between the 5-way switch, the coil taps, rolling around the tone knob and three hum buckers. I have a separate volume knob for the MIDI which lets me blend the two. All three hum buckers share a volume and tone knob, the other knob is the MIDI volume. There is a switch that lets me tell the MIDI synth where its to allow me to change patches with my foot or engage the bending pedals. I've got an ancient GR-1 Roland, and it still works fine, but now that I've got a guitar that can trigger MIDI without pissing me off, I am gonna get a GR-55 ASAP and maybe a nice keyboard amp to run it to while running the hum buckers to my Fender Twin blackface '65 reissue. I also just got a reissue Mutron III, and I know some purest say its not as good as the original one, but to my ears for the price difference, it sure is close enough for me. I'm not necessarily trying to get Jerry's tone as much as pay it homage while finding my own tone in that spectrum, and I think I finally have the guitar that's gonna let me settle into a signature sound. 8)
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Re: My Phiga Bolt - Questions for Bolt Owners?

Postby mikelawson » Mon Jul 15, 2013 3:50 pm

Correct cap came today. Phil accidently shipped me a Lightning Bolt inlay but had custom made this design from the original Stanley Mouse artwork that was on the cover of my 90's Ticket to Fly release with Merl, Jorma, and other friends. What do you think?

Image
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Re: My Phiga Bolt - Questions for Bolt Owners?

Postby Staemius » Mon Jul 15, 2013 4:07 pm

Love it! - way cool!
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Re: My Phiga Bolt - Questions for Bolt Owners?

Postby James-T » Tue Jul 16, 2013 12:30 am

That inlay just kills!

One of the reasons I first got into the dead was by being mesmorized as a kid by thier art work. That is a spectacular piece!

Very envious.

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Re: My Phiga Bolt - Questions for Bolt Owners?

Postby mikelawson » Tue Jul 16, 2013 8:55 am

James-T wrote:That inlay just kills!

One of the reasons I first got into the dead was by being mesmorized as a kid by thier art work. That is a spectacular piece!

Very envious.

Peace,

James



Thanks. You're not the only one. Last January I was @ the TEC Awards during NAMM, and Eric Burdon was in the "green room" before he went on, and was wearing a SYF button on his jacket. So I had to ask, "Eric, you're wearing a SYF, are you a deadhead, are you into the dead? He said, "Eh, a bit, but I like their graphics!" :D
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Re: My Phiga Bolt - Questions for Bolt Owners?

Postby midnightrainband » Tue Jul 16, 2013 6:52 pm

Well..... This might be better in another topic I thought I'd finsh it here since I started it here with my question about Phil's electronics. I did a little experiment with my Phiga wolf and here's what I found in the electronics.

left = neck
next = neck/bridge
middle = bridge
next = middle/bridge
right = middle

left toggle = up is humbucker down is single for the bridge pu
right toggle = same except middle pu

I think what's he done is put the middle pickup and the bridge in the oppsite positions. I assume I just have to have the middle and bridge pups reversed with each other. I'd appreciate any expert advice on this. I don't want my repair guy to screwe this up. He's really good but not a Deadhead at all. I'm in northern NJ.

Thanks in advance for any advice I can get.
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Re: My Phiga Bolt - Questions for Bolt Owners?

Postby midnightrainband » Tue Jul 16, 2013 6:59 pm

To add 1 more thing. The active single coils are the ones closer to the neck (looking down at the guitar the singles to the left side). Is that correct? Thanks again!
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Re: My Phiga Bolt - Questions for Bolt Owners?

Postby mikelawson » Tue Jul 16, 2013 9:32 pm

midnightrainband wrote:To add 1 more thing. The active single coils are the ones closer to the neck (looking down at the guitar the singles to the left side). Is that correct? Thanks again!


You sure the switches aren't just reversed vs. the pickups being reversed?

Also, did you get a Push/Pull pot for splitting the neck pickup? I did.

Phil's wiring job for me was good, especially the tweaks he did to get the MIDI triggering just right. Perfectly, even. This all said, I'm gonna have my guy go through and look it all over before I take it to the Grateful Garcia Gathering gig the end of the month, though I don't really have a reason to do so. I'm just paranoid. :D

I let a tech look it over and he was impressed with the thing, from wiring to woodwork to how it plays. I can't say enough about how well Phil setup this guitar. Its action is perfect, the intonation is perfect. But again to play to my paranoid I'm going to drop $25 to take it to another tech here in Nashville who can scan it on a PLEK system. I'm just curious to see exactly how well Phil did the frets/intonation, etc when setting it up. To my ear I can't hear anything out of whack and it plays great.
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Re: My Phiga Bolt - Questions for Bolt Owners?

Postby midnightrainband » Wed Jul 17, 2013 7:38 pm

Hey Mike

Thanks for the reply. No push pull as the neck is a single coil. The middle and neck humbuckers are reversed. I saw my guitar tech today and he said it would be easier to re-wire the 5 way switch and the min's than to move the pickups. He said the repair should be really easy. I didn't have the guitar with me and I don't think I'll get in there until my gig on the 27th. He's got a 2 week backlog.

Everything (and I mean everything) else about the guitar is truly awesome.

I'm sure yours is fine. I think he just made a small error in his electronics setup for mine.

For the price you paid I would certainly consider a bolt to go along with my wolf. That was an awesome price you paid.
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Re: My Phiga Bolt - Questions for Bolt Owners?

Postby mikelawson » Wed Jul 17, 2013 11:24 pm

I guess it would be hard to split a single coil! :)

My opinion is that even if you did have to get some wiring touched up, for what Phil charges, you're still ahead of the game when it comes to cost, and overall value/quality.


midnightrainband wrote:Hey Mike

Thanks for the reply. No push pull as the neck is a single coil. The middle and neck humbuckers are reversed. I saw my guitar tech today and he said it would be easier to re-wire the 5 way switch and the min's than to move the pickups. He said the repair should be really easy. I didn't have the guitar with me and I don't think I'll get in there until my gig on the 27th. He's got a 2 week backlog.

Everything (and I mean everything) else about the guitar is truly awesome.

I'm sure yours is fine. I think he just made a small error in his electronics setup for mine.

For the price you paid I would certainly consider a bolt to go along with my wolf. That was an awesome price you paid.
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Re: My Phiga Bolt - Questions for Bolt Owners?

Postby mikelawson » Sat Jul 20, 2013 4:56 pm

My Bolt had its shakedown cruise last night at a venue called Soulshine in Nashville with my new band, Hooteroll? and it was awesome to play it. I was really happy with how balanced it is, its weight (about 8,5 lbs) was fine, and most importantly I got the tone I was looking for, too.
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