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Heritage Owners Club

deytookerjaabs

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deytookerjaabs last won the day on March 6

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About deytookerjaabs

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  1. Beyond roughing the wood blanks Heritage doesn't do much of anything different than Gibson. The rest of processes you'd have to build one hell of machine to do. Swap out roughing the bodies by CNC, clamps versus pneumatic presses, and the rest of the build process is pretty much the same circa 2019. Big difference is Heritage takes their time to get it right on the assembly line, Gibson fills quota so you have to be fast/efficient and at times we've all seen some head scratchers sent out the door. The cost per unit is likely cheaper at Gibson but aside from rough mill the people perform basically the same jobs. Still, let's break down the 50's prices for fun. From my reading on Kalamazoo, (accounting for inflation) a guy starting on the floor in the late 50's got 15/hr and after 6 months if he was meeting his numbers he got on the roster where very quickly he'd get up 20/25 hr plus bonus's, dental, health, and a pension with extensive internal mobility. The quotas back then were nothing compared to Gibson circa 2019 and for that matter possibly Heritage. Marv Lamb, to get the job at Gibson, IIRC needed to fine sand/fill 5 white wood flat tops per day at his station, by hand. So man hours at the real factory were certainly higher along with labor on the wood. Parts in the 50's? Way more man hours. Tailpieces were machined in house, strings machined in house, molds for patented objects created on company dollars, strings wound in house, pickup assembly and some machining in house, binding sheets cut/glued in house etc. Today? After inflation normally sourced parts are cheaper then ever and require zero additional labor/man hours since the aftermarket parts business is huge these days. Hell, even materials have been switched to uber cheap stuff like ABS molding. Design? Give me a break here, in the 50's the standard was employing an entire team of Engineers and foreman to constantly design the latest product, implement it's construction from scratch, then employ that design....new pickups, new bridges, new tuners, etc. That's a whole additional department of salaried dollars! Raw materials? All that I know of beyond endangered woods have paced behind inflation, that includes final prices on said parts. So...when we make the "it's the same price adjusted for inflation" argument comparing Heritage or Gibson to 50's Gibson the numbers don't add up on the production end...like not even close. The only reasons I can think that they aren't cheaper today? I dunno, but IIRC Ted McCarty pulled the equivalent of 250K after inflation and felt he lived very well. Word is the new Gibson exec pulls 3+Mil as he's likely about 12+ times more talented than Ted was, same goes for a whole host of other upper management salaries well outpacing inflation. Another possible factor, actual facility/land cost has probably gone up higher than inflation but I'm not familiar with the factory housing market. I don't have any access to open books but from a distance I'm baffled. No design implementation, cheaper labor, cheaper parts, cheaper materials, faster execution with higher quotas, more machine jobs, etc.... Why aren't they cheaper? Eh, and I don't reserve that "eh" just for Heritage & Gibson
  2. Bingo. I'd figured they'd give the market what it wants but the video don't lie, it's more marketing than substance.
  3. Well, the problem with that rabbit hole is if you ask a certain choir the prevailing answer is basically that ANYTHING in the 50's from the .0002% of ababalaselineneumum in the bridge post will be a sure fire arbiter of golden tone fairies. IMO, give it a shot and see what you dig/hear and trust your instincts regardless of what conclusion you come to.
  4. There's confusion, you should not need long shaft version. The long shaft is for gibson guitars that have that big hunk of metal acting as a shield/ground. Those pots are a solid deal, nail the 50's taper, and worth it all day. Again, IF that's what you're looking for because the slow to fast taper from 8-10 is pretty dramatic and I find it's just a matter of preference as I'm more than happy with my guitars that don't have them too. I've put those pot in a V I have, a firebird, a while back an H150 and last year a Les Paul: Do it! Oh, and I just used some NOS russian thingys bought cheap off ebay as the caps.
  5. Lately Gibson archtops have been expensive? No. They've been out of commission for decades on their solid carved top prices and are barely a part of that market any more which appears to be how they want it. That's not a recent development. It's far more economical to build popular guitars initially designed to be produce en masse at huge price increases as long as the market bears the price. And many applaud when a ho-hum LP Special guitar is 3K because someone fooled them to believe in there's a $1,000 hunk of mojo wood & craftsmanship hiding inside. Heritage is inching down that path. And, the myth of a need for price increases? Look at the facts. There's a reason bread & butter guitars from Fender & Gibson haven't even kept up with inflation, same goes with many other companies...it's because the overhead is lower than ever. The old American Standard 10 years later became the American Special at a lower price point after inflation, the old Les Paul studio got a satin treatment with bulk up and became the Tribute at a lower price point after inflation. The SG's, Firebirds, and many other models have all seen prices in recent years less than they were in the 90's...after inflation. The same can be said if you look closely at G&L in the past or at the parts builders like Musikraft/Warmoth etc and more. WHY??? Because, productivity & efficiency is off the charts thanks to time management of labor, labor adjusted for inflation is cheap, wood/steel/materials have paced behind inflation, parts from strings to pots to knobs are behind inflation, certain tax structures, accounting predictability of machine governed operations like rough mill (CNC's can't sue for disability) and a whole host of other reasons why regular USA guitars & parts can be made at low prices these days. The reason "custom shop" guitars have doubled in price the past 10 years is because they realized that market segment can & will pay the premium on guitars that aren't by any means custom in their production process. Meanwhile, the floor model market segment can't bear price increase....thus you still have tons of American made guitars between $800-$1500 that in the 90's were $700-$1200, and no, they aren't "loss leaders" otherwise anyone not named Fender/Gibson would be out of business. There's zero reason "crafsman" can't build good old custom ordered USA (and now Europe) carved top guitars between 4-7k in 2019 other than bean counting the margins, consumer interest, lack of knowledge, or just plain laziness. This goes even more so for a place like Heritage where there are specialists who are more efficient at their job than independent small shop builders who might know how to tape binding..but they don't do it 10 times a day so they have to take their time. Yet, those guys without any advantage can crank out the boxes at real world prices. Anyways, now that's all about how well you can build a guitar designed to be mass produced at the highest price possible then brag about "fit and finish" as if you can't get a $300 korean guitar with a perfect "fit and finish" there's no sense for me to argue....it's like throwing play-doh at the wall expecting it to bounce back, lol.
  6. For me, the regular solid/ES-ish guitar lineup for Heritage was a cut above at a price below traditionally. Right now the Gibson ES guitars I've played which you can get brand new for 2k to 2.5k, basically the standard/traditional or satin ES335's are really nice guitars. I spent some time with a P90 one that was just smokin for 2K, great guitar. It's likely the same can be said of the new Les Paul Standards once they hit the shelves. It's to the point where you'll about have to prefer the Heritage specifications/sound along with the company backstory etc alone. The part where Heritage REALLY always kicked G's azz was the Jazz boxes (and custom builds in general) and while they still offer a couple models they've about shelved the beauty of custom ordering those given the model decreases along with custom build price increases. I really regret never plunking down on spec'ing out a custom archtop years back when I worked for a dealer & was seriously considering it when the prices fit the income. I remember fawning over the Henry Johnson model forever. But, ya always think everything will always be available, lol. Meanwhile I was scoring H-150's, 535's for under a grand on the used market. Oh the times have changed in short. I went to one of the over-charging guitourist shops here in Nashville the other day and they're asking $2,500 for a regular used 90's 535! WTF??? I guess they'll convince some tourist that's "market value." Meanwhile for what they were asking for a used 535 after taxes I scored a Freddie online: If I was made of money, given the great deals out there today, I'd be like a trophy wife shopping sunset blvd.
  7. That's cool, a little blingy for my taste with the blue flame but a nice guitar nonetheless. As for the Gibson body thing I've not yet seen a Les Paul Custom from the late Norlin era that had a 2 piece back, nor a standard for that matter, however the then new lower budget "studio standard/customs" did have multi piece backs IIRC. Also, for it to be a Gibson body it'd have to have been an unworked body as the control routs wouldn't match up at all. Then take into consideration you've a studio body back yet a highly flamed matched 2 piece top? That's a HUGE stretch there. There's nothing wrong w/2 piece body backs though IMO, but I prefer them at a certain price point!
  8. Yeah, I'd buy used for around $1500+/- or get a used/clearance Gibson but that's another rabbit hole.
  9. Maybe they're on spring break??
  10. TWO Golden Eagles?? I liked you....at first
  11. Neato, I've got a "2019" "Memphis" ES-335 w/P90's on the way and was wondering about the "2019" part, lol. I guess there's a few leftovers, I should have e-mailed them when I was in town. Either way, post some pics when you get'em!
  12. No ****? Huh, I was there two weeks ago on a Saturday and from the outside it looked vacant towards late afternoon and the "tour" section of the website taken down a few months ago. Would love to have gotten a glimpse.
  13. Haven't paid for it yet? So they haven't built it yet or, I'm confused. Either way I hope you get it soon, Memphis closed shop back in November. Would love some pics!
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