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Anyone given on of the Recording King Nick Lucas knckoffs a try? Id be curious to hear about those. Their 12-fret 00s are ok (just that). Not imperssed with Loars L016 or the Epi EL. Hard to please.





I have a rare RK" jewel of a Lucas copy".....2012, Limited Black, Solid AA Sitka over solid hog, thin nitro finish, bound front, back, AND neck, 1 3/4 nut, 2 5/16 spacing, sounds excellent with Juber 12's! Here's a pic....


th_DSC00458.jpg... th_DSC00459.jpg..th_DSC00454.jpg... th_DSC00456.jpgnot many produced, and not for everyones style. Hard to find too!

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Well, we consider all our guitars as tools for making as much music in as many places and with as many people as possible. Not all tools can be considered beaters, but some can. So here is our beater tools list.


CA Legacy -- actually two. We bought them used while CA was out of business (about $1000 and $700) after much searching -- took me two years to find them. They have great electronics (our only guitars so equipped) and you can leave them in a hot car, play them in the direct sun, and use them in the rain (or in the shower or under water). They are not half bad acoustically -- they work ok even for bluegrass.


1943 J-43 -- the back was knocked out in a Memphis bar fight, but it has been well replaced. Great finger picker.


1944 D-28 -- replaced neck, but totally stable and correct. It sounds RIGHT, and it is worth only a fraction of an all-original one.


1935 Jumbo -- lots of work, and it was bought at about 10% of retail for a top model.


1954 D-18 -- My wife's rhythm guitar when she doesn't get the bass slot. Its got the best setup ever -- it came that way -- but a lot of over spray, an oversized bridge, and a doubled bridgeplate. It has been rubbed out with new bridged and bridgeplate (original specs). Sonically it is now great.


1930s pieced together Belltone. Almost no value, but here it is in action.


These are all on our sound A-list too.







Great sound is where you hear it -- not where you see it.


Let's pick,



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Beater thread is back so...


In retrospect I think I would been better served abandoning the whole beater concept and just bought something good to use out and about years ago and as long as I wasn't reckless just let nature take its course. I have probably spent more on a bunch of beaters that were never good enough and I either gave them away or offloaded at a loss.


For beaters I currently have a RK ROS-310 solid adirondack top and solid hog back and sides...I liked it for a little while but now I really just don't like its tone at all so it will be gone someday soon. I also have a Gretsch Jim Dandy ($120) that has gone many vacations..., although it is not the most versatile of guitars it's a bunch of fun and I plan to keep it around for the heck of it.


I think I might just pickup an used LG-2 American Eagle and be done with it.

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My previous guitar before my J45 is a Matao, and it's a true beater. Lots of scratches, etc. The problem now is that after purchasing the Gibson, the Matao sounds so bad it's almost unplayable. And the actions sits so high that after playing the Gibson I wonder how I ever even learned on the Matao. I have no interest in even playing it anymore. I'm now wanting a quality "beater."

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I think that the point of "beater" in what sense for what conditions?


Back in the early ''70s some time, I got two of the original AEs from Ovation. It was with a half-beater concept because I'd been having problems traveling with guitars in my neck of the woods (or un-woods) due to cold, rapid changes in temps, etc., and also difficulty in a country music "saloon" band in getting anything at all out of mikes that I felt was consistent.


So at the time the Electric Legend and Country Artist were not inexpensive guitars. Figure both are around 40 years old and still look and function as though I'd bought them a cupla years ago. Did have a top problem with the classical, they fixed it.


But neither are what I'd care to take out on a trailer sailer or ski boat. Nor necessarily at a campfire where not matter what, there's a tendency even for old men and women to let themselves go at least enough to feel like they're kinda like they're in their early 20s again.


A point well made also was the effect of bug spray. I virtually destroyed a nice little classical in the summer of '64 by using the spray. I thought I was just sweating 'cuz it was hot; I really wasn't sweating at all, my bug-sprayed-arm was liquifying the finish under my right arm.


I dunno. I guess I keep returning to my "if it feels good and does what you want in terms of notes, is the guitar itself that big a deal?"


For what it's worth, sometimes I think that if a given Gibson speaks to you and you're not the type bothered by knowledge you will beat it up, so what? And if that bothers you... find out the equivalent Epi for general geometry and, yup, the synthetic finish.


If even the epi is too nice for you to put into harm's way... That's when you look for used or pawnshop Epis.


That's considering you're playing more or less standard gigs either with a band or just for whatever crazy you're doing.


Yeah, I'd take one of those Epis on a 22-30 foot boat but then... is there a better option? Aren't they a bit big for a boy and girl on a 22-footer?


Gibson little boxes are real wood. Epis vary. Martin's "Little Martin" ditto with it's variations of fake or real tops with fake backs and a 23" scale. I'd wager tha in theory the ones with the fake top should suffer through quite a bit. I fact... perhaps their fiberboard more than an Epi/Gib laminate. some inexpensive Fenders might fit the bill. Yeah, that (note I did not mention Taylors. Something about them doesn't click and yes, I'd rather have a $400-900 Epi AE than a $2,500 Taylor.)


Laugh here if you will, but I'm not so sure that a $50-100 GC "Rogue" all-laminate decently set up would be all that bad. I've played a couple that were either well set up to sell fast or were "lucky" with all laminate that you could totally destroy and not necessarily feel great loss unless you're reeelly in financial trouble.


Then you have "backpack" guitars. A friend is getting one of the Martins. I dunno about others.


I dunno. I frankly love my PR5e Epiphone. At $300 some would consider it a beater. Plugged in it sounds as "pro" as anything; if it were broken, I guarantee I'd get another.


In fact, I'm half thinking of buying one and an El00 Epi and having a luthier splice the El 24 3/4 neck onto the PR5e body. I love the shape. The electronics work very nicely for what I do, and probably better than most could do with a good mike and sound board. Shorten the neck... Yeah it'd cost as much as a J14 or J35 that both get good review but... hey, I'm 98 -99 percent a fingerpicker and like 16-inch body archtops that... Hmmmm... have about the same shape and AE sound quite nice.


Other factors beyond price tag, sound, whatever constitutes "value:"


I'm sure Bill Gates could buy a top of the line Gibson if he knew even how to plunk some chords, and likely would be out much at all if it were to be destroyed but... what of it were a used $400 Epi given him by a dying favorite aunt or nephew because he'd enjoyed being with them while they were playing it?


"Value" takes a sudden shift.


A real-life example: Henry J could have any Gibbie he wants, right? But back when Nashville had the flood, some of his prototype and ... for whatever reason he wanted them ... guitars were functionally destroyed. I could feel in a note or two on the "Talk to Henry" forum when it started that he did feel a loss beyond that of a "playing guitar."


I guess it comes back to what do you want to do with the guitar, what's your checking account, what's your value on a guitar with a special personal use? I dunno. We're strange animals... and our attachment to otherwise valueless things can be difficult to explain.



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"A point well made also was the effect of bug spray. I virtually destroyed a nice little classical in the summer of '64 by using the spray. I thought I was just sweating 'cuz it was hot; I really wasn't sweating at all, my bug-sprayed-arm was liquifying the finish under my right arm."














LOL.........few summers back I did the same! Couldn't figure out why my top was getting so "sticky"](*,)





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My beater is a Seagull S-6 purchased for less than $100 on the big auction site - new, but with three cracks in the top and a dent in the top of the headstock due to shipping damage or being dropped or something. The 24.84-in scale is close enough to Gibson's that it works for me, and the laminated cherry back and sides are certainly durable enough. The finish is kinda matte, and not at all thick or gloppy. The top is solid cedar, but so far, so good. The neck is silver leaf maple. It sounds pretty good - I've described it as sounding like it is somewhere between a J-45, an LG-2 and a Harmony Sovereign 1260, good punch fundamental woody tone. And did I mention cheap?

post-380-038599000 1421956892_thumb.jpg

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Great Job drathbun! My beater is a cheapie Epiphone DR-150VS. Use it mostly for camping trips. And for a "kept out" guitar around the house. One that I don't cringe at the thought of my 3 year old grandson playing with it. And don't have to worry much about humidity. I actually like it. It's built like a tank, plays good and IMO sounds OK. I've owned & played worse.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Mines a 2002 Taylor big baby. This guitar plays well and with the spruce top (solid but back and sides laminated) it sound fantastic. The neck is made sort of funky-- it is screwed on.

I took this for years on camping trips with the Boy Scouts, and I passed it around. Then my two boys took lessons on it . Later I lived on grand view isle in the tidewater area of va and used it every Friday night during the summer at our cookout/bonfire on the beach. I remember the night I let two little girls "hold it", and they dropped it.But the only thing that happened is it still has some sand in the tuners. But that guitar has stood up and I love my baby!

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