Other Guitars

Slick guitars

2

Well, no. I haven't played this GFS guitar. I played a GFS guitar a few years ago, and was impressed at how UNDERwhelmed I was, even for the price. I like GFS pickups, but the guitars don't generally get great reviews. They always include the death-term "for the price" along with a disclaimer excusing the guitar's shortcomings "because it was so cheap."

Well yeah.

Also, in this case, the marketing malarkey is pretty damn thick, and that's enough to put me off it.

Designed by Earl Slick in his New York studio. Each body is SOLID swamp ash. Necks are SOLID Canadian Hard Rock Maple. Fingerboards are Indian Rosewood. This is a serious recipe for tone.

Oh come on. DESIGNED? I really tire of builders yammering about how they "designed" a Strat. They made a few bog-standard specifications. Sustain? I know! Swamp ash and maple! I bet no one ever thought of that before.

And if we Capitalize The Words and Include the Country of Origin, it'll sound more important. (Practically ALL "rock" maple comes from Canada. And ask for their CITES certification for the rosewood.)

Where the Slick SL54 really distinguishes itself is with the PICKUP. We use a single Slick Brand, HAND AGED "Slick Old School" ALnico V pickup. Just the right amount of dirt- Alnico V bar magnets, Delrin bobbins, Formvar 42 gauge wire, German Silver baseplate and exact vintage correct plastic cover. Wound BIG at 9.2K.

MAN am I excited! Is there dirt IN the pickup? What's the "exact" "vintage-correct" plastic cover...on a humbucker? On a STRAT? Puke puke puke comes the hype.

This pickup are not just built from the right stuff,

Subject-verb agreement, anyone? Dammit, if you're going to puke malarkety, at least proofread for glaring usage errors.

but we hand age them- both cosmetically and magnetically. It looks like an old pickup... it feels like an old pickup... it sounds like an old pickup.

Hand-aged, hand-aged, what is this hand-aging? I get tired of "hand-made." What other appendages do humans make things with...or use to handle the tools that assist in the process? Do they...I don't know, rub the pickups with their grimy little mitts till they look old? Something to do at night while watching TV? "Get me another beer, Wanda, I gotta keep HAND-AGING this pickup cover."

And...do we bother to ask what the point is of a relicked Strat with a single humbucker? Where's the vintage model that replicates?

The feel and vibe

I'm relieved "vibe" got into the story. This complete encyclopedia of brain-dead guitar marketing buzzwords wouldn't have been complete without that.

is enhanced and preserved by the completely unique way that we finish Slick guitars.

Well, of course it is. COMPLETELY unique. Because "unique," meaning "singular" (and by definition one-only) isn't a strong enough descriptor for what they do to these guitars. It has to be adverbially enhanced.

The solid ash body is NOT wood grain filled.

Which costs money and takes time.

It is NOT sealed.

Ditto.

NO Polyurethane fillers. It's raw. We stain the wood and then spray a single coat of old fashioned automotive paint and sand it back. The pores don't get clogged so the wood can breathe.

OH BOY! My favorite! The wood can breathe! Its little stomae can respirate, the xylem and phloem can phlow through the still-living tree, suck up our deadly carbon dioxide and exhale life-giving oxygen! This ash-perfumed breath of this guitar will clean the air in your house and (in combination with the 49 others GFS had to buy from China in order to get the price break) combat global climate change.

I mean, by GAWD I'm glad they used "old fashioned automotive paint"! None of that is in the LEAST poisonous, or would clog the pores. OLD FASHIONED AUTOMOTIVE PAINT! That may be my favorite phrase. Do they mean enamel or lacquer? How old-fashioned? 1920s pre-quick-dry, when you could have any color as long as it was black?


What a load of crap.

The guitar may be fine - though that would run against the general reputation of GFS guitars - but what a loada bullhockey!

3

Ha! Too funny. Thanks for your thoughts. I’m just trying to decide what conditions I’d like to put my “nice” guitars through. Say I’m sitting outside my old Avion camper after a day of mountain biking, full of sweat/sunscreen/bug spray, do I want to grab my Guild or Gretsch and start jamming away? Maybe my less expensive yet still very nice Loar archtop? Not to derail my own thread but I guess it boils down to - at what price point am I willing to “not care” about a guitar? Maybe I worry too much about my nicer guitars and I should just play them regardless. I guess that’s how guitars get naturally relic’d right? Perhaps I should get a Squier classic vibe? It’s kind of a cunundrum I’m in here!

4

Ah.

Well, the Slick has the virtue that it's clearly already a beater guitar, and you'd certainly be free not to care about it.

But even in a tote-about guitar I look for something I like, which for me wouldn't be a humbuckered Strat. A Squire Classic Vibe would certainly be likable...but I guess I'd go for a used one so I didn't have to put on the first dents-n-dings.

A thin hollow or semi is handy for a porta-guitar. Maybe a used low-end Casino? One of the thin-body Ibanez Artcores? (Again, used.) I'd shop Reverb or Ebay, and you'll be the rare buyer who isn't looking for excellent or mint condition, so you'll have the pick of the cosmetically challenged cheap-but-goods out there.

And instead of GFS, I'd go with anything in Rondo Music's lines of similar imports. My experience with those guitars has been universally positive (even "at the price," they've been well finished and play nicely). And their website is clumsy and primitive - but blessedly free of malarkety.

6

My Stagg Strat was $175 brand new, and it sounds as good as any Strat I've ever heard, and plays better than many Fenders I've tried. I don't consider it a "knockaround," but at that price, it could be.

8

All you have to do is open a Premier Guitar or Guitar Player magazine and be also inundated with the "Malarky". Go to the back pages and you will find "one of a kind" guitars from obscure makers that claim that this is the best of the best of what has already been in production for 60 yrs.

Same for pickups, strings, picks, steel bars, you name it. It's the best copy of the best copy. Originality has unfortunately left the guitar industry long ago. Every now and then there is a revelation, but that costs money well past any GFS stuff.

If Earl Slick wasn't in it for just the money and nothing else, he would be with Fender or Gibson, or PRS, but his name is obscure to many, not all, but many and if he is willing to put his name on marginal product, so be it. We all buy with our wallet and heart, so for many, these guitars are automatic non starters. After taking a look at that "strat", it's a body only, the rest is traditionally wrong and add in the fake relicing, it's a hard sell to me.

9

Proteus, don’t ever change, man.

11

I wonder if I could get the guy from GFS to write my next Resume.

12

You could fertilize roses with that description.

13

Ok ok, I’m off the slick. Thanks for the words of wisdom and for talking some sense into me. Was just looking at it briefly today. Got me to thinking on things. I think what I should do is start a “camper guitar” thread. Lots to think about when in a camper. Maybe too much to think about! Ah, maybe I’ll just continue bringing my old fender acoustic. Probably better for “home on the range” than an electric rig anyways. Cheers!

14

Ok ok, I’m off the slick. Thanks for the words of wisdom and for talking some sense into me. Was just looking at it briefly today. Got me to thinking on things. I think what I should do is start a “camper guitar” thread. Lots to think about when in a camper. Maybe too much to think about! Ah, maybe I’ll just continue bringing my old fender acoustic. Probably better for “home on the range” than an electric rig anyways. Cheers!

– Rockabilly_Nick

Im going camping this weekend. Im bringing along my old faithful,,my Ovation plastic round backed acoustic. Ive had it for almost 20 years now ,it plays great, takes bumps and dings very well and since I didnt pay too much for it if anything bad happens no big deal.

Stick with your tried and true Fender acoustic.

15

Enjoyed the rant Proteus, sufficiently scathing and eloquent. They seem to indulge in a lot of hyperbolshit (sorry, enjoyed that a little)

16

Great term, Vince. I’ll stash it along with “malarkety” for future similar use.

17

Enjoyed the rant Proteus, sufficiently scathing and eloquent. They seem to indulge in a lot of hyperbolshit (sorry, enjoyed that a little)

– Vince_Ray

That's Jay Abend. The guy who was behind Bedrock amps, and before that did marketing/photography for Guild in the 80's.

18

Yeah I suppose for camping the acoustic gets me where I need to be. Really just need something to keep my fingers nimble while away from the nice guitars.

19

Do they...I don't know, rub the pickups with their grimy little mitts till they look old? Something to do at night while watching TV? "Get me another beer, .....

.....that's where the dirt comes from, Tim!

20

I hear people use coffee grounds to age plastic. Weird.

21

My kids are definitely hand-ageing me.

22

I like their pickups. Great bang for the buck. But yeah, their sales pitches are so over the top they actually might be counter productive.


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