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Thread: MF Stupid Deal: G&L Tribute ASAT Classic Ash Body $299.99

  1. #1
    Better Tone thru Mathematics bob p's Avatar
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    MF Stupid Deal: G&L Tribute ASAT Classic Ash Body $299.99

    I don't know if this would interest anyone or not, but I thought I'd post the deal.

    TODAY ONLY

    MF Stupid Deal of the Day:G&L Limited Edition Tribute ASAT Classic Ash Body Electric Guitar, $299.99 + tax, free shipping.

    G&L Limited Edition Tribute ASAT Classic Ash Body Electric Guitar Gloss Natural | Musician's Friend

    gl-asat-ash.png

    Fwiw I bought one of these last month in Olympic White for $279 to use as a beater. It was my first imported guitar and I thought it was a good buy. The finish was flawless, the neck needed a minor trussrod tweak and frets needed a little polishing through playing for a couple of days, but after owning it for a couple of months I'm very happy with it. Personally I think this Indonesian G&L is a better guitar than the MIM Fenders I've played.
    "Stand back, I'm holding a calculator." - chinrest

  2. #2
    Supporting Member eschertron's Avatar
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    Thanks, Bob. Just pulled the trigger on one.
    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Conner View Post
    If it still won't get loud enough, it's probably broken.

  3. #3
    Better Tone thru Mathematics bob p's Avatar
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    NGD!!!

    Just unpacked mine. 2-piece ash body. The body seam runs right down the midline of the guitar, straight into the body's strap button. I was a little worried about what the body blocks might look like on a cheap Indonesian guitar, but I think they did a very nice job of grain matching. Better than I've seen on many Fenders. And it's a 2-piece body, not a 5-piece.

    IMO it's pretty nice for a $299 cheapo guitar.

    ngd1.jpgngd2.jpg
    "Stand back, I'm holding a calculator." - chinrest

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    Supporting Member eschertron's Avatar
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    Got mine yesterday as well. re-set the neck in the pocket after blowing out some wood shavings that hadn't been cleaned out, and a small piece of sandpaper used to shim the neck. Why it was in there, I haven't a clue, as the guitar came out of the box with the action waay too low. Much better now. It is a nice looking instrument, some oil on the neck will improve the play-ability. The fret ends are all well-dressed, much nicer than other guitars I've seen in this price range. My first Tele ..er whatever Leo calls this..
    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Conner View Post
    If it still won't get loud enough, it's probably broken.

  5. #5
    Better Tone thru Mathematics bob p's Avatar
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    How does the grain look on yours? Can you post a pic?

    I was worried that mine might look bad. I'm always a bit nervous when they blow out a guitar at 40% off -- I always suspect that there might be something wrong with it.

    That hasn't been the case though -- I'm very pleased with this guitar. It's the nicest G&L Tribute I've purchased. Right out of the box it's perfect -- clean fret ends, no buzzes, great truss rod adjustment and great action. The finish is flawless and I haven't felt the need to pull it apart ... yet. There's literally nothing that I feel the need to tamper with ... yet. I can't believe what a great guitar this is for the money. Mine is every bit as good in terms of fit and finish as an American Tele.

    People tend not to believe that -- they always think that the G&L fanboys are blowing smoke when they say that the Indo G&L guitars are as good as the Fender Americans. I didn't believe it either, but after buying one G&L Tribute as an experiment I've ended up buying two more.

    My first one, an basswood Olympic White ASAT Classic (tele), was GREAT right out of box. I worked slowly over a couple of weeks doing trussrod and bridge tweaks to make it perfect and I think it's the best playing guitar that I own. No kidding. And I only paid $280 for it. The only problem that it had was that the 3-way switch got busted in shipping, so I couldn't select neck-only mode. GC offered to replace the guitar, but it was so good that I refused to exchange it for another one. Instead, I had GC give me a Fender 4-way switch for a Baja Tele and I converted it over to 4-way switching with series/parallel wiring. I highly recommend that mod.

    My second G&L was a basswood Olympic White Tribute (strat). It wasn't perfect like the ASAT. The fret ends were perfect, but it needed setup attention at the pickups and a minor tweak of the trussrod. IMO the use of a 500k tone pot makes the guitar too bright. I have a thread open on that. To nitpick, I keep thinking about moving the bridge over 2mm to make the guitar perfect, but I don't really feel it's necessary. In the big picture this is also fantastic guitar for $300.

    My third G&L is this Natural Ash ASAT Classic. So far I can't find a thing wrong with it. Realistically speaking, if the order of these things going on sale were reversed, I might have bought only the Natural Ash ASAT and not the Olympic White one. Now that I have two I'm thinking about dedicating one to 5-string G Major tuning, where the ASAT gives a great Sticky Fingers vibe.
    Last edited by bob p; 09-15-2017 at 10:30 PM.
    "Stand back, I'm holding a calculator." - chinrest

  6. #6
    Supporting Member eschertron's Avatar
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    Alas, today I shopped for and installed shower doors instead of playing with the ASAT.

    I will have to take a daylight pic tomorrow, but in general, the fit and finish look great! Almost too great... I don't see any piece-marks on the body, so it's either a single slab of ash, or it's *something else* covered completely and seamlessly with the woodgrain pattern, on all visible surfaces. I took a peek inside the control cavity, and found it painted pretty thoroughly with the black conductive paint. Kudos for that! Looking at the rough grain in the cavity and toward the jack panel, I can just about convince myself that the body is a real, solid, chunk of wood and not *something else*. Psyched!

    edit: Looking again, I see the seams. It's a three-piece body, the matching done very well to the point that I had to look at the end-grain on the body to see the grain pattern mismatch. On the front - and back - of the body the matching is essentially perfect. Now that I see the piece marks, I actually feel better about the instrument.
    Last edited by eschertron; 09-16-2017 at 03:08 AM.
    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Conner View Post
    If it still won't get loud enough, it's probably broken.

  7. #7
    Better Tone thru Mathematics bob p's Avatar
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    I haven't been inside of this guitar yet, but the other Tributes that I've taken apart have all been painted in the pickup/control cavity with the black paint, and in the trem cavity with the same color paint used on the body, so that no bare wood is exposed.

    When I examined my guitar I made sure that it was not a sandwich body made with veneer. It really is two pieces of wood, and the grain matching was phenomenal -- so good that I have to look at it on-end to find the top seam. On the rear the match is good but it's not perfect/invisible. The fact that the seam can be seen on the back doesn't bother me, it's only the front that matters.

    I'm amazed that the body block seam matching on these guitars is so good. Someone is obviously taking more care in matching them for cosmetics than they do at Fender, where it's all too common to be able to spot the seams on the front, even on the more expensive guitars. I think it's typical that Fenders will have 3-5 pieces in a body and that the matching of the blocks is always visible. This ASAT is one of those guitars where the value you get for your money is very, very high. I'm very happy with mine. I'm glad that you were able to grab one.
    "Stand back, I'm holding a calculator." - chinrest

  8. #8
    rjb
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    I'm jealous. I paid about the same, maybe more, a bunch of years ago, for a used MIM Tele. Took forever to track down and resolve all the mechanical buzzes and rattles. Can't even see the wood grain thru the ~1/2" thick tinted poly. And every time I tried to play classic country or R&B, the dumb overwound pickups would yell out "Let's Rawk".

    But, hey, aren't you supposed to be de-treble-fying a Legacy Tribute Strat-a-thingy?

    - Mr. Budinski
    Last edited by rjb; 09-17-2017 at 02:01 AM. Reason: Changed "Strat-like" to "Strat-a"

  9. #9
    Better Tone thru Mathematics bob p's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rjb View Post
    But, hey, aren't you supposed to be de-treble-fying a Legacy Tribute Strat-like thingy?

    - Mr. Budinski
    Mr. Budinsk - you're right! I've still got to fix the Legacy brightness problem. For now I'm getting by with dialing the Tone control and Volume controls way back. I'll get to fixing it soon -- I promise! but for now I'm kicking that can down the road because I'm busy celebrating a totally unplanned New Guitar Day. When I saw the Stupid Deal come up I had to jump on it, and that caused a ripple in my to-do list.

    Actually, I'm thinking about replacing the 250kA tone pot on my new ASAT with one that has a DPDT push-pull switch, so that I can do the series/parallel wiring thing without going to the Fender 4-way switch, which has some noise issues that I haven't sorted out yet. That would free-up a 250kA tone pot + cap to go into the Legacy. (parts juggling)

    Quote Originally Posted by rjb View Post
    And every time I tried to play classic country or R&B, the dumb overwound pickups would yell out "Let's Rawk".
    It sounds like we have similar opinions of the power output of the Mexi-Fender ceramic pickups. They just have too much juice. Luckily these G&L pups are Alnico V and they sound great. On that Legacy I found that I had to lower them to get a handle on their output. Now my amps aren't complaining as much about their inputs being overdriven.

    Quote Originally Posted by rjb View Post
    I'm jealous. I paid about the same, maybe more, a bunch of years ago, for a used MIM Tele. Took forever to track down and resolve all the mechanical buzzes and rattles.
    I've been shopping for over a year trying to find a decent used Fender. I've always owned American guitars, and I recently decided that I wanted a new Strat because my main player Strat is a collectible guitar that's appreciated too much in price for me to consider keeping it. I've decided that there's no point in hoarding a bunch of valuable guitars so I'm replacing all of my expensive guitars with cheaper ones that are good "players".


    I finally decided to take a chance on the G&L Tributes after I got tired of searching for a decent used Fender. Every Fender that I found for sale on the used market had something wrong with it and would have required some lutherie to fix it. Many of the times the Mexican Fenders had "rosewood" fingerboards that didn't even look like rosewood. I just couldn't find a Mexican Fender that was "right" and after a year of wasting my time I gave up trying.

    After reading the praise for the Indo G&L I decided to take a chance on the Olympic White ASAT and I was happily surprised. The Indo G&L are well made guitars. If you can catch them when they're on one of the Stupid Deals, the new ones with warranties go for about the same price that you'd have to pay for a used one. To me, that's a no-brainer. It's easier to shop with the megastore that allows returns if I'm not happy than it is to drive all over checking out used guitars.

    Right now we're living in the Golden Age of well-made cheap guitars. CNC machining has changed the world. Today there are too many guitar factories in the world, and they're all cranking out as many instruments as they can. That production glut has caused deflationary pressure on guitar prices so that new guitars can be had almost as cheaply as used ones. Abundant supply of cheap new guitars tends to really hurt the used guitar market. If you can catch one of these one-day sales at the megastores, the price cuts are so deep that the prices are on-par with used instruments. I've subscribed to email notices on the one-day specials from MF and GC. I posted the link in case anyone else wanted to jump on it.

    Quote Originally Posted by rjb View Post
    Can't even see the wood grain thru the ~1/2" thick tinted poly.
    I have to admit, the poly on these bodies feels pretty thick. On my Olympic White guitars it's so thick that I can't see any wood grain through it. On the clear guitar the body poly is pretty thick as well. On the necks though, it's a very thin satin finish, like you'd expect on a Mexi Fender. My personal preference for necks, believe it or not, is the thick poly used on the 70s USA models. I grew up playing on that, it's natural to me, so I have to adapt to the satin neck finish. I wouldn't recommend the G&L if you don't like the current finish on Fender guitars. It's pretty much the same.
    Last edited by bob p; 09-16-2017 at 08:51 PM.
    "Stand back, I'm holding a calculator." - chinrest

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    Supporting Member eschertron's Avatar
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    When I examined my guitar I made sure that it was not a sandwich body made with veneer.
    I'd rented a nice bass years ago that had the 'photo paper' on the front to simulate a veneered face. Looked just like wood. I was afraid that the technology had improved to the point where a manufacturer could completely wrap a photo around the complex-shaped guitar body and have it pass for actual wood. The THICK layer of poly doesn't help to dispel the notion. Finding the seams (after much close inspection) allowed me to breathe a sigh of relief.
    On the necks though, it's a very thin satin finish
    To my fingers, it feels like it's not finished at all, neither on the fingerboard nor the back of the neck. Must be thin indeed. I'm used to putting a thin coat of oil on the fingerboard as a preservative and playing aid. Do you recommend that for this neck?

    After receiving this ASAT, I took my SE singlecut (PRS' southeast Asian offering) to Music Go Round for a trade in. Unfortunately, I wasn't offered enough money compared to my estimation of the guitar, and so I have to keep it. I don't have many guitars, but I'm running out of room for the ones I have.

    Here's the ASAT
    imag4665.jpg
    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Conner View Post
    If it still won't get loud enough, it's probably broken.

  11. #11
    Better Tone thru Mathematics bob p's Avatar
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    Wow. That grain is very nice. I really like the big fat rings of grain that appear on the upper body. On my guitar you'll see that I've got tight grain there, and big fat grain down by the controls. I really like yours. If I had a choice to pick from a group I might have picked yours instead. Not that I'm unhappy with mine!

    Last edited by bob p; 09-17-2017 at 03:06 AM.
    "Stand back, I'm holding a calculator." - chinrest

  12. #12
    Better Tone thru Mathematics bob p's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eschertron View Post
    To my fingers, it feels like it's not finished at all, neither on the fingerboard nor the back of the neck. Must be thin indeed. I'm used to putting a thin coat of oil on the fingerboard as a preservative and playing aid. Do you recommend that for this neck?
    Great question. I was waiting for you to ask.

    That appearance of the satin finish on the neck is deceptive. It gives you the impression that the neck is unfinished when the reality is that it has been finished. It's just that the finish has never been buffed, and people mistake the feel of the unbuffed finish as being the same as unfinished wood.

    The reason that the Mexi Fenders and these Indo G&L use what they call a "satin" finish is because it decreases the guitar's production cost. They spray the finish on the guitar and let it dry and ship it as-is. They completely skip the buffing step. But if they were to buff the back of the guitar it'd have a glossy finish that feels just like a glossy neck.

    I buffed my white ASAT. By hand. I played the guitar until I got sweaty and the neck was wet, and then I rubbed it fast and hard enough with my bare hand to make the neck HOT from friction. I stopped just short of getting blisters on my hand. I did this several times with my bare hands and sweat. No cloths, no buffing compound or polish. Just sweat and friction. The result is that the guitar has gained a very smooth and shiny glossy finish on the back, just from heating up the "satin" finish while stroking it. I haven't bothered oiling it. I don't think it' necessary as the neck really is sealed, even though it may not look like it.

    The new ASAT with it's native "satin" finish feels very different than my other ASAT that's been buffed to glossy. I like the buffed finish better.
    "Stand back, I'm holding a calculator." - chinrest

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    Senior Member Enzo's Avatar
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    Well, I think they are both nice looking guitars.
    Education is what you're left with after you have forgotten what you have learned.

  14. #14
    Better Tone thru Mathematics bob p's Avatar
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    Thanks, Enzo.

    On the subject of glossing-up the satin neck finish, I guess I should clarify:

    I did a forced gloss-up on my first guitar (Olympic White ASAT) by rubbing the hell out of it with a sweaty hand. The result was that I instantly got to a waxy smooth low-gloss finish on the guitar. After playing it for a couple of months it's just gotten better.

    On my second guitar (Legacy) I didn't to anything to accelerate the gloss-up. I just played it for about an hour a day and after a month the satin finish that used to be kinda rough, like I was feeling bare wood, glossed-up a bit. It's much more glossy now but not close to the first guitar where I did the heavy rubbing.

    On the last guitar (Ash ASAT) I haven't done anything but play it for a few days and I already see the back of the neck is starting to gloss-up and feel smoother, more like a glossy finish.

    All it takes is time, but if you want to get there faster rubbing helps a lot.
    "Stand back, I'm holding a calculator." - chinrest

  15. #15
    Better Tone thru Mathematics bob p's Avatar
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    On the subject of comparing the Indo G&L to other guitars:

    A lot of G&L Fanboys like to compare the Indo G&L guitars to American Fenders. I think there's a component of trying to piss off Fender owners in doing that. What the G&L Fanboys don't like to admit is that the Indo G&L guitars are really just about as good as the American G&L gutiars, at a small fraction of their price.

    I recently had a chance to play an American G&L ASAT Classic at my local GC. It was a black translucent flameburst model, which was a very nice guitar but wasn't all that popular and didn't sell well. After GC sits on expensive guitars that don't sell well, they ship them to stores to be put on display as "used" instruments and they slash the price on them to move them out the door. I've bought a couple of brand-new but sold-as-used guitars this way at GC. It's a great way to pick up a new guitar at a steep discount if you don't mind losing the warranty.

    I also had a chance to play an Indo G&L Tribute Legacy in the black translucent flameburst at the same store a couple of weeks earlier.

    After getting two of the Indo G&L guitars that were pretty good, I was very much looking forward to playing a USA G&L to compare them. I wanted to see how much more guitar the step-up difference of $1500 would bring with the American G&L.

    The USA ASAT was a very nice guitar -- fit and finish were flawless, just like on my Indo guitars. All of them came out of the shop with ruler-flat necks that required a little relief to be added to suit my preferences. What was the difference? The USA ASAT had a different neck profile. It was a bit fatter and rounder and fuller, along the lines of a 50s style neck. It also had tiny tiny vintage style frets. In comparison the Indo guitars had more of a "C" neck profile, and humongous full-jumbo frets. That's all the differences there were. Seriously. Unless you wanted to choose a custom neck profile and choose the smaller frets, IMO there's NO REASON to pay 5x-8x for the American G&L. The Indos are really that good.

    Are the neck differences significant? Yes, if neck shape means a lot to you and you're willing to pay for it. I see the Indo G&L as great guitars, and the American counterparts as a custom-shop/custom-order type of instrument, where you have to pay through the nose to get non-standard features.

    The full-jumbo frets on the Indo guitars to make it easier for you to play out of tune than on a vintage style fret, or even a medium-jumbo fret, because they're so high and wide. The result is that I have to be very conscious of the amount of pressure that I use in fretting so I don't force the guitar out of tune. Super-tall frets are kind of like playing a scalloped fingerboard. It's easy to bend the notes sharp if you press down too hard, so technique becomes very important to preserve intonation.

    Personally, I can't see paying the big bucks for an American G&L or an American Fender. IMO the Indo G&L are really that good.
    "Stand back, I'm holding a calculator." - chinrest

  16. #16
    Better Tone thru Mathematics bob p's Avatar
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    FYI this deal is live again. today only.
    "Stand back, I'm holding a calculator." - chinrest

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