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Are Heritage guitars still ok?


lavern23
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On 1/14/2022 at 8:05 PM, rockabilly69 said:

…I had to do extensive work on all 3 of my older Heritage H150s to get them where I wanted them, but they all turned out killer. I had to replace the nut and do fret dressing on all of them.…h.

That is my feeling too. The older Heritage often had "bad" fret work. But I put my main H guitars through the Plek system and that fixed everything.

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On 1/14/2022 at 11:05 PM, rockabilly69 said:

On this forum, I always felt uncomfortable saying what I did about the quality flaws of the older guitars, but there is NO doubt to me, that Heritage is building the best guitars they have since I've known of the company. Yes, some of the older ones are killer, especially some of the custom jobs I've seen, like Pressure, MartyGrass, Yoslate, and Kuz have commissioned, but I've seen many of the older ones sold in stores with some terrible nut slotting, fret filing and monkey soldering, etc. My friend Eric was a Heritage dealer and he carried all the standard models, so I played many of them from the so called golden years (preBandLab), and many people that bought them had problems with them.

I had to do extensive work on all 3 of my older Heritage H150s to get them where I wanted them, but they all turned out killer. I had to replace the nut and do fret dressing on all of them. I sold one because it was ridiculously heavy, but the other two I've kept for good reason. When I first started getting into Heritages you could find a good H150 for around $1000 and then go to work on it, so the old ones were a bargain, especially if you could find one with a weight and finish that you liked. And then for a few hundred dollars more, you could get, new wiring, pickups, and hardware, etc, and you had a seriously good sounding guitar. My older 2006 H150 smokes!!! I bought it for $1200 and then put about $500 more into it so was a SERIOUS bargain! But many of the new guard H150's and H530's that I've played, were turn key, and were both good sounding and playable with no modding at all. I think the company is building some great guitars, and although more expensive, are still reasonably priced.

Yes I know many of you guys are pissed about the way bandlab took over, but I don't care what they did, as long as they build good guitars and provide good customer service now. I have been looking at custom cores but waiting till I find exactly what I want. It's a new company better to start fresh.

With Bandlab and Plaza Corp, it wasn't about the product changes, but the people changes.  As previously mentioned, many OG members here became friends with the staff under the original factory ownership.  When that changed and the mass exodus due to Plaza Corp not understanding the business, people were extremely upset; rightfully so.  But Bandlab became a partner owning 50% of the company and helping break through the problems being an experienced company in the music business.  

I'll admit I'm on the new guard bandwagon, but for the same reason many OG members here were on the original wagon; they became friends with the staff.  I've become friends with the staff as well, so yes, I'm a bit biased. But make no mistake, I do miss the nostalgia of walking into the old factory and seeing the dust and mayhem that created some of the most stunning instruments out of Parson's street.  I loved listening to Jim, Marv, and Ren talk about guitars.  Seeing Curly and Arnie show off their skills...

Edited by DetroitBlues
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On 1/15/2022 at 7:07 AM, deytookerjaabs said:

 

Although they're more like 9 or so...think every vintage Firebird, those crack if you look at'em funny. 

More a problem of bad case design with Firebird which have crappy support at the headstock. I own one Firebird, and have owned three others, no problems with headstocks on any of them, as I modified the cases to support the headstock. 

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6 hours ago, DetroitBlues said:

I do miss the nostalgia of walking into the old factory and seeing the dust and mayhem...

Yes I'm sure it was nice knowing those old dudes and hearing the stories, but I like clean work environments. Yes some stunning instruments came were built back then, but many guitars with quality problems also came out of there. When they were cheap on the used market, I could look past that, because I have the skills to fix many of the things that were overlooked on the guitars that I bought. But the prices started creeping up and the problems didn't go away.

I think the work area didn't help. My philosophy is, at the end of the day, clean  up your work area to start fresh the next day. I find working in any dirty/messy area leaves me uninspired. And that's not when I do my best work!!! Many times it will be weeks, or even a month or two, before I head over to my studio to record. So after I finish a project, I cover all microphones that I leave on stands, roll up any loose cords, etc. And when I back get there, before anything get's turned on, I dust/clean/vacuum, even though it was clean when I left it! 

So as you can imagine, seeing the sawdust in a lot of those old pictures did not inspire my confidence. I love when the new guard cleaned up the shop! And I also love seeing new Heritage guitars with great fret work and properly cut nuts!!!

That's the kind of quality I want when I buy a guitar. And the new guard is doing some cool things. The Harmony guitars are killer reasonably priced instruments, and the new Custom Cores are getting some serious praise!

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12 minutes ago, rockabilly69 said:

Yes I'm sure it was nice knowing those old dudes and hearing the stories, but I like clean work environments. Yes some stunning instruments came were built back then, but many guitars with quality problems also came out of there. When they were cheap on the used market, I could look past that, because I have the skills to fix many of the things that were overlooked on the guitars that I bought. But the prices started creeping up and the problems didn't go away.

I think the work area didn't help. My philosophy is, at the end of the day, clean  up your work area to start fresh the next day. I find working in any dirty/messy area leaves me uninspired. And that's not when I do my best work!!! Many times it will be weeks, or even a month or two, before I head over to my studio to record. So after I finish a project, I cover all microphones that I leave on stands, roll up any loose cords, etc. And when I back get there, before anything get's turned on, I dust/clean/vacuum, even though it was clean when I left it! 

So as you can imagine, seeing the sawdust in a lot of those old pictures did not inspire my confidence. I love when the new guard cleaned up the shop! And I also love seeing new Heritage guitars with great fret work and properly cut nuts!!!

That's the kind of quality I want when I buy a guitar. And the new guard is doing some cool things. The Harmony guitars are killer reasonably priced instruments, and the new Custom Cores are getting some serious praise!

I get what you're saying. Inspiration and what makes someone feel good or creative is a strange and unique thing. Everyone responds differently. It's all about what makes you come alive I guess, and for me  it's pretty much the exact opposite of what you said. Seeing a super clean and tidy place where wood carving, etc happens makes me immediately think "wow...not much happening here, they must not be doing too much" or "this place is too damn tidy for me to get creative, it feels like it's never been used or worked in before!" I personally love seeing old dust and stuff out and about that's being constantly used and has been out and on for the last 100 years. That old dust inspired me when I used to go in the factory years ago! You'd walk out of there thinking "wow... I breathed in historical, 100 year old dust! Damn!! I gotta go write a song!" lol! Like I said, that's just me though. I get what you're saying- I know a ton of people who feel the same as you and HATE clutter, dust, etc. It's weird how pone person sees a mess and another sees beauty....

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On 1/14/2022 at 7:04 PM, rwinking said:

I am blown away by what the used Heritage's are going for. I buy to play, not to sell. Ten years ago on this forum you could get anything for a good price. Not so much now. .

I have a bumper sticker on my car that says "Capitalism Bums Me Out."

Oh well, when I kick the bucket my wife and or daughter will benefit but I ain't selling yet. I will have a letter to each of them in the cases to not let shady guitar guys take advantage of dead guys' families.

The old ones are great. My main two gigging guitars are both old Heritages. The new ones that I've played are also great. However, you can't get the H170 or H-162s or cool guitars like that new.

 

[Danny mumbles under his breath that Capitalism has nothing to do with the current spike in guitar prices.]

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2 hours ago, HANGAR18 said:

 

[Danny mumbles under his breath that Capitalism has nothing to do with the current spike in guitar prices.]

Really?

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Dude spent his money on a bumper sticker that denounces capitalism. I am guessing that it was only the cost of materials charged, no labor or anything else. 🤣🤣🤣

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14 hours ago, HANGAR18 said:

I like a clean work environment. I think that surrounding yourself with chaos produces more chaos.

Oddly enough, there are some folks who like chaos. 🤨

Edited by davesultra
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On 1/16/2022 at 12:57 PM, Heritage1970 said:

 I personally love seeing old dust and stuff out and about that's being constantly used and has been out and on for the last 100 years. That old dust inspired me when I used to go in the factory years ago! You'd walk out of there thinking "wow... I breathed in historical, 100 year old dust!"

Anybody else ever talk to Marv about what started the fire in the early 2000's?

Edited by yoslate
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20 hours ago, HANGAR18 said:

I like a clean work environment. I think that surrounding yourself with chaos produces more chaos.

this is EXACTLY how I feel about it!

 

On 1/16/2022 at 10:57 AM, Heritage1970 said:

I get what you're saying. Inspiration and what makes someone feel good or creative is a strange and unique thing. Everyone responds differently. It's all about what makes you come alive I guess, and for me  it's pretty much the exact opposite of what you said. Seeing a super clean and tidy place where wood carving, etc happens makes me immediately think "wow...not much happening here, they must not be doing too much" or "this place is too damn tidy for me to get creative, it feels like it's never been used or worked in before!" I personally love seeing old dust and stuff out and about that's being constantly used and has been out and on for the last 100 years. That old dust inspired me when I used to go in the factory years ago! You'd walk out of there thinking "wow... I breathed in historical, 100 year old dust! Damn!! I gotta go write a song!" lol! Like I said, that's just me though. I get what you're saying- I know a ton of people who feel the same as you and HATE clutter, dust, etc. It's weird how pone person sees a mess and another sees beauty....

Yep we're all different! 

 

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On 1/14/2022 at 7:04 PM, rwinking said:

shady guitar guys take advantage of dead guys' families

This is one version of capitalism that bums me out.

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5 hours ago, yoslate said:

Anybody else ever talk to Marv about what started the fire in the early 2000's?

I never heard the story, but I know, from doing health and safety stuff in a plant that handled class 1 flammables and lots of powders that made explosive dust that it can be incredibly dangerous.   That's one of the reasons I was so impressed with they way they set up the new work area.

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I don't think Heritage changed a damn thing in their work environment. 

Point is, IMO, if you're going to talk **** about a sloppy workplace leading to poor results then you should have the courage to do the same about the entire "golden era" of Gibson, otherwise you're a hypocrite. 

oosUiug.jpg

 

Every dude had 10,000 random bits of things on his work desk. 

Edited by deytookerjaabs
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For many years Heritage was the land OSHA never heard of.  It was like walking into the 1940s or 1950s.

To my knowledge there was no policy prohibiting masks, goggles and hearing protection.  But they were not commonly used as far as I could see.

It was the same environment and mentality though that produced some of the best guitars in the first 70 years of the last century.

I do like the current work standards.  A walk through the factory feels more sterile though.  

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1 minute ago, deytookerjaabs said:

I don't think Heritage changed a damn thing in their work environment. 

Point is, IMO, if you're going to talk **** about a sloppy workplace leading to poor results then you should have the courage to do the same about the entire "golden era" of Gibson, otherwise you're a hypocrite. 

[img]https://i.imgur.com/oosUiugh.jpg[/img]

 

 

If you're saying that Heritage in its beginning was like Gibson, that's about right.  Gibson may have been more organized.  Well, they were more organized.

Heritage was probably sloppier the first 20 years compared to Gibson.  You're right though that you don't need tidiness to create great instruments.  OTOH, it couldn't hurt.

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4 minutes ago, MartyGrass said:

If you're saying that Heritage in its beginning was like Gibson, that's about right.  Gibson may have been more organized.  Well, they were more organized.

Heritage was probably sloppier the first 20 years compared to Gibson.  You're right though that you don't need tidiness to create great instruments.  OTOH, it couldn't hurt.

 

It's just the irony of it. So many people will capitulate to guitars built in the 50's being special, bla bla bla, but the work conditions & flow in Gibson or Fender in the 50's were literally squalor compared to every factory out there today.... So, if you're going to attack Heritage for it at least be consistent. 

Edited by deytookerjaabs
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On 1/16/2022 at 10:55 AM, rockabilly69 said:

More a problem of bad case design with Firebird which have crappy support at the headstock. I own one Firebird, and have owned three others, no problems with headstocks on any of them, as I modified the cases to support the headstock. 

 

If you put a Telecaster in a vintage Firebird case....the Tele would never break......

 

Pic-1.jpg

 

^^^ That's the problem. The design leaves you with a tiny bit of wood holding a lot of tension. I wouldn't want to drop any new or old Firebird on the floor. 

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In Japan people loves New Heritage than originals because they don't know about Jazz so much. Many people loves solid guitar and New Heritage does great work about that.

Original Heritage isn't great so much about their business especially about branding and pricing. New company does great about that I think.

Of course I 'm crazy about archtops made by original 4 and Aaron cowles, but New Heritage Is great.

 

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11 hours ago, yoslate said:

Anybody else ever talk to Marv about what started the fire in the early 2000's?

Marv told me it was a transformer fire.  That is all I know. 

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I remember at the first PSP we all wanted to take a small bag of saw dust home.  We did... on our clothes, in our ears and in our shoes.  I was sneezing mulch for a week. 

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8 hours ago, High Flying Bird said:

Marv told me it was a transformer fire.  That is all I know. 

And the mythology evolves.  Told me there was a guy who worked there who put his cigarettes out in a sawdust pile, insisting they wouldn't ignite the dust.  They had to clamp down on that story for the insurance coverage.  Marv loved a good folktale....

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