#168684  by zkinard
 Mon Nov 23, 2020 4:54 pm
Hi all,
Looking for feedback opinions here. I was cruising AliExpress and am considering the below guitar for possible budget Alligator project/future mods. Seller has been very communicative answering my questions and the seller rating for their store is solid. Guess I'm still torn about just getting the '50s classic vibe strat and calling it a day. I like that the Allie guitar is an ash body and maple neck. Has anyone here gone this route? Here's the link to the guitar:

https://www.aliexpress.com/item/3305306 ... 2e0eHBxuKt

Cheers,
Zach
 #168686  by lbpesq
 Mon Nov 23, 2020 6:14 pm
I have no experience with this brand, but the price alone raises a red flag. I'd want to know how much it weighs. Ash can run the spectrum in weight. And, assuming you will be replacing most, if not all, of the hardware and electronics, how much are you really saving going this route? For example, on the Alligator replica I recently completed and posted on this site, I used a custom vintage shaped Swamp Ash body from Warmoth which, unfinished, cost all of $195. If I had Warmoth finish it, it would have cost twice that amount. You can save a lot of money if you do more of the work yourself.

Bill, tgo
strumminsix liked this
 #168689  by PurpleTrails
 Mon Nov 23, 2020 8:16 pm
I've been very impressed by the quality of the classic vibe guitars. If you're familiar with Phil McKnight's youtube channel, he actually thinks the CV squiers are better than the MIM ones at this point.

Plus, it looks like that guitar has either a 3 or 4 piece body, which usually means lesser/heavier woods.
 #168987  by zkinard
 Fri Dec 18, 2020 5:55 pm
So I went ahead and pulled the trigger on an AliExpress guitar. Found a seller with good feedback and overall solid reputation and bought the below geetaw which I'm calling AliGator---mostly out of curiosity for wanting to see how these may stack up. Seller was very easy to communicate with...sent pictures throughout build and allowed for requested modifications namely the brass nut. Some of the things I requested they weren't able to accomodate. I asked them to scrub all references to Fender on the guitar so that it isn't a knock-off. I really have no moral objection to this at all once the Fender name is off it. Looks like they took care of that with the exception of the neck mounting plate on back--still says Fender. Obviously electronics will likely be upgraded down the road but on face value/looks alone at this point, it's off to a good start IMO. Hope the links of the pictures below work. Should ship out in next couple of days. It was $220 out the door.

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 #168988  by Jon S.
 Fri Dec 18, 2020 6:00 pm
RUKIND doesn't support posting pix via Google Drive. I found, though, that by right clicking on the pic, copying the image URL, and pasting it into an open tab I could view the guitar.

It does look to me like northern ("baseball bat") ash.
 #168989  by lbpesq
 Fri Dec 18, 2020 7:24 pm
Today I started gathering parts for my second Alligator after recently completing and selling my first. I ordered Raytheon control knobs, scalloped brass nut, vintage string tree, and vintage strap buttons. Just about $70 with tax and shipping. Makes one wonder what you can get for a $220 full guitar? Looking forward to your impression once it’s in your hands.

Bill, tgo
 #168991  by Jon S.
 Sat Dec 19, 2020 8:00 am
lbpesq wrote:
Fri Dec 18, 2020 7:24 pm
Raytheon control knobs
My dad worked his entire career, post-Army, for Raytheon, in their Microwave and Power Tube Division. He was an electrical engineer in sales and routinely drove around his company-provided Galaxie 500s and Impalas with their trunks full of our favorite tube types to give away basically as party favors to potential customers. What just one trunkful would be worth today NOS I wouldn't want to try to guess!

Dad used to bring home Raytheon prototypes for my brother, he, and me to play with together. For example, for a while, we had at our home one of the earliest Amana microwave prototypes that blew the neighborhood away.

My best prototype memory, though, is when, in the summer of IIRC 1964, Dad brought to our Catskill Mountains bungalow a prototype night vision scope under design for use in 'Nam. I can still recall vividly my shock, the first time, looking out into the field behind our house at night and seeing the deer like it was in bright daylight, albeit all green-tinted.

Try something like that today with a defense contractor prototype and you'll go to jail!
 #169030  by wpmartin1979
 Wed Dec 23, 2020 9:08 am
Jon S. wrote:
Fri Dec 18, 2020 6:00 pm
It does look to me like northern ("baseball bat") ash.
Hey Jon can you explain a little bit why this is a bad thing. I am just curious. I mean I understand that the wood would be heavier, but some people prefer heavier guitars. I mean Jerry’s guitar was super heavy and was made of Cocobolo which is super heavy and dense.
As far as tone, how can someone say that the tone would be better worse, isn’t it subjective? I mean all if the old Fender guitars are pretty heavy and many of them sound great.
Also in regards to baseball bats, yea they need to be dense to drive the ball and so they don’t break, but also need to be light. The lighter the bat, the better which is why players used to “cork” their bats. It seems to me then that Northern Ash should be well regarded as one of the lightest “more dense” types of woods if it is being used for baseball bats.
If lighter and less dense woods were best wouldn’t all guitars be made of basswood and pine?
Just wondering why there seems to be this trend of “lighter is better” with both amps and guitars these days. To me it doesn’t make much sense.
I need help in understanding.

BTWThis is all written light heartedly and with love- with no ill intention - this is just a topic that has been in my mind a lot lately that I feel should be hashed out lol!
Last edited by wpmartin1979 on Wed Dec 23, 2020 11:47 am, edited 1 time in total.
 #169031  by wpmartin1979
 Wed Dec 23, 2020 9:09 am
PurpleTrails wrote:
Mon Nov 23, 2020 8:16 pm
I've been very impressed by the quality of the classic vibe guitars. If you're familiar with Phil McKnight's youtube channel, he actually thinks the CV squiers are better than the MIM ones at this point.

Plus, it looks like that guitar has either a 3 or 4 piece body, which usually means lesser/heavier woods.
Jerry guitar was made of cocobolo which is one of the heaviest and most dense of all woods. Also it was not a one piece guitar body. Any neck they guitar is a three piece guitar. I’m trying to understand your point because it seems like you are saying it is inferior.
Last edited by wpmartin1979 on Wed Dec 23, 2020 10:04 am, edited 1 time in total.
 #169032  by wpmartin1979
 Wed Dec 23, 2020 9:16 am
zkinard wrote:
Fri Dec 18, 2020 5:55 pm
So I went ahead and pulled the trigger on an AliExpress guitar. Found a seller with good feedback and overall solid reputation and bought the below geetaw which I'm calling AliGator---mostly out of curiosity for wanting to see how these may stack up. Seller was very easy to communicate with...sent pictures throughout build and allowed for requested modifications namely the brass nut. Some of the things I requested they weren't able to accomodate. I asked them to scrub all references to Fender on the guitar so that it isn't a knock-off. I really have no moral objection to this at all once the Fender name is off it. Looks like they took care of that with the exception of the neck mounting plate on back--still says Fender. Obviously electronics will likely be upgraded down the road but on face value/looks alone at this point, it's off to a good start IMO. Hope the links of the pictures below work. Should ship out in next couple of days. It was $220 out the door.

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I checked this out and it seems like a pretty good deal. I mean even if you just used the body, you are getting a finished ash body for half the cost of Warmouth without needing to do finish work which is a pain. and easy to mess up. Throw in the maple neck and if it’s decent you have a steal on your hands. Since Jerry’s was a Fender I don’t see the problem with having the Fender logos on it, I would see that as a plus if they look decent. Seems like a great inexpensive way to approach a fun project. I can’t really see the downside unless for some reason the wood is not really wood or something. I mean if it looks like ash and feels like ash ...
 #169034  by wpmartin1979
 Wed Dec 23, 2020 10:00 am
lbpesq wrote:
Fri Dec 18, 2020 7:24 pm
Today I started gathering parts for my second Alligator after recently completing and selling my first. I ordered Raytheon control knobs, scalloped brass nut, vintage string tree, and vintage strap buttons. Just about $70 with tax and shipping. Makes one wonder what you can get for a $220 full guitar? Looking forward to your impression once it’s in your hands.

Bill, tgo
Bill where did you get the Raytheon knobs? I have found h to see to be very pricey ... like to the point where for three knobs would cost $50-$100.
Also quality brass nut usually $20-$30 minimum.
I saw your Alligator and it was a stunning work of art on another level of attention to detail and quality.
Are you willing to give up your sources? Lol
 #169035  by wpmartin1979
 Wed Dec 23, 2020 10:06 am
wpmartin1979 wrote:
Wed Dec 23, 2020 9:09 am
PurpleTrails wrote:
Mon Nov 23, 2020 8:16 pm
I've been very impressed by the quality of the classic vibe guitars. If you're familiar with Phil McKnight's youtube channel, he actually thinks the CV squiers are better than the MIM ones at this point.

Plus, it looks like that guitar has either a 3 or 4 piece body, which usually means lesser/heavier woods.
Jerry guitar was made of cocobolo which is one of the heaviest and most dense of all woods. Also it was not a one piece guitar body. It seems to me that any neck thru guitar is a three piece guitar body. Just trying to follow the logic here.
Is there hard evidence that a one piece body is better or is it based on personal preference?