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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I just scored this little beauty.

Almost unplayed and it came with a custom-fitted hard case as a bonus.

Really unusual instrument, Gibson scale length, chambered wings, solid centre with a set neck, Ibanez Super 58 pickups, even solid wooden porkpie hat knobs.

The neck is as straight as an arrow, the fret-ends are like full prestige bullet ends, it's acoustically quite loud and I cannot find a single quality issue anywhere, it's literally perfect.

Made in China 2006 by the Saehan facility!

As far as I can tell this was only available for custom order from the Artcore custom catalogue in 2005 and 2006 and there were not very many sold.

I've decided to add a Graphtech ghost piezo saddle system to it and to keep it looking as clean as possible I'm junking the standard volume pot and just fitting a blend pot with centre detent instead to control the piezo.

I'm shocked how good it is for a Chinese guitar.
 

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Artcore Customs were the first case of a J Custom shop master going to another factory to train. I only saw the masters work at NAMM, or the Chinese were far more teachable than the Indonesians because every one I saw looked J Custom. There were no custom orders though. I've been told any order contracted to China would start with 100 units, although he was generalizing and not speaking specifically about anything. Some of the Chinese factories do build decent guitars, not great guitars, but decent. If they could get all the details better and build slow and dry they always had a chance to built great guitars.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I couldn't see any image attached, but looked up the model... very cool! What kind of bridge is that? Are those fine tuners on it?

https://www.strumentimusicali.net/product_info.php/products_id/4358/ibanez-awd102-naturale.html
It's just a standard tune-o-matic type bridge with fine tuners on the tailpiece, I literally have no idea why since the tuners are really smooth and low-geared already, it doesn't need them.

The neck pickup is a particular highlight, sounds absolutely brilliant clean, not as top-endy as a SD Jazz but really creamy.
 

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Nice find....
as far as the quality coming out of china... i recently purchased a China built artist 2009 i think it was? I was blown away
mostly because i didn't expect much (not high end but damn close) :)
the frets were finished very similar to my RG2610

once again cool guitar
enjoy
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
My Graphtech Ghost piezo saddle set came today, hoping the Acousti-Phonic preamp kit comes tomorrow so I can build it up this weekend, I've changed my mind about the blend pot, I'm going to use the guitars original tone pot for the piezo volume, that way I can more accurately mix the mag and piezo signals, I'll EQ the tone at my pedal board if needed with my trusty GE-7.

I'm gonna have to mod the original gold tune-o-matic from the guitar by drilling six holes in the base of casting for the individual wires from the saddles to pass through before they sneak under the bridge pickup mount and into the cavity, mounting the 9V battery is going to be tricky unless I use a smaller lighter rechargeable battery pack instead.
 
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