NGD - Joe Bonamassa '58 Black Beauty

59jimi59

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Mine came two days ago. Found it at sam ash in New York Seemed like the last one in the whole country, because I couldn’t find anything except japan eBay $1300. I was not gonna do that! Aany way the Strings were loose outta the case. Tuned it up and the neck had a concave bow in it. I adjusted it and it’s perfect Stays in tune like my two 59 reissues! I had a good feeling about this from the start. Only thing I wish was different is the frets are thin. But I can’t complain. This one will go up in value!! Congrats to all who took a chance on these!
 

CB91710

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Nice! Congrats -

acclimated? Call me crazy, but unless it’s a Sahara to Tundra transfer, it’s already acclimated!
Shipped out of Iowa to SoCal after being on a boat from China... That's pretty much a transfer from the Amazon to the Sahara. It's been pushing 100 for the last couple of weeks ;)
 

wjlim22

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Shipped out of Iowa to SoCal after being on a boat from China... That's pretty much a transfer from the Amazon to the Sahara. It's been pushing 100 for the last couple of weeks ;)

Where do you order your guitars from? I get mine from guitar center to OC usually in a couple days. If you're in the IE, you should be getting them quick too.
 

ttbit

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Last time I played a fatter necked Epi, it felt more D-shaped as well. Congrats!
 

CB91710

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Where do you order your guitars from? I get mine from guitar center to OC usually in a couple days. If you're in the IE, you should be getting them quick too.
I ordered directly from the JoeB store.
The order includes a voucher for two "meet and greet" before one of Joe's shows.

I will not give my business to Guitar Center, and certainly not mail-order.
Last time I was in Glendora (relocated Covina store), what little inventory they had was beat to shit... seriously. A cracked/broken hollowbody on display, I thought it was an Ibanez "relic" until I looked up what it was supposed to be. Ya, "aged" finish... but not scratched and cracked.
Quite a few guitars had one or two missing knobs. None had switch tips. I've seen the switch tip thing in Pasadena, manager said it was because people steal them (OK, so when my Aged SG is supposed to come with an amber tip, don't tell me all you have is black).
Their bass display was intermixed with used guitars... and honestly, it was hard to tell the used section from the new section... except the sparkly clean full wall of Wylde models... Ya, sure Zak, 1985 called and wants it's guitars back ;)

Wanted to buy a hand drum for my wife... they had one she liked without a price. Took it to the counter... 10 minutes later got the attention of an employee. He checked the price, I told him I wanted it, but wanted to look at guitars before leaving.
We cruised the walls... 10, maybe 15 minutes max because of the lack of, and condition of the inventory.
Got back to the counter. Same drone was there, oblivious. Finally got his attention. I asked for the drum. "What drum?"
He had put it back on the shelf!

We should have walked out, but she really wanted it, so I bought it. On the way to the counter, she picked up a Fender fedora that was marked $19.95.
He rang it up at $29.95. I told him that the shelf tag said $19.95.
NO aknowledgement.
We paid and left. Haven't been in a Guitar Center since... but I've spent over $5k at the Sam Ash stores in Industry and Ontario, including a Les Paul, US Strat, and a Taylor.

I seriously could probably have walked out the door with a Marshall stack... if there had been any new Marshalls bigger than 1-12 in stock.... and nobody would have stopped me.
The employees don't care, so neither do I.
 

wjlim22

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I ordered directly from the JoeB store.
The order includes a voucher for two "meet and greet" before one of Joe's shows.

I will not give my business to Guitar Center, and certainly not mail-order.
Last time I was in Glendora (relocated Covina store), what little inventory they had was beat to shit... seriously. A cracked/broken hollowbody on display, I thought it was an Ibanez "relic" until I looked up what it was supposed to be. Ya, "aged" finish... but not scratched and cracked.
Quite a few guitars had one or two missing knobs. None had switch tips. I've seen the switch tip thing in Pasadena, manager said it was because people steal them (OK, so when my Aged SG is supposed to come with an amber tip, don't tell me all you have is black).
Their bass display was intermixed with used guitars... and honestly, it was hard to tell the used section from the new section... except the sparkly clean full wall of Wylde models... Ya, sure Zak, 1985 called and wants it's guitars back ;)

Wanted to buy a hand drum for my wife... they had one she liked without a price. Took it to the counter... 10 minutes later got the attention of an employee. He checked the price, I told him I wanted it, but wanted to look at guitars before leaving.
We cruised the walls... 10, maybe 15 minutes max because of the lack of, and condition of the inventory.
Got back to the counter. Same drone was there, oblivious. Finally got his attention. I asked for the drum. "What drum?"
He had put it back on the shelf!

We should have walked out, but she really wanted it, so I bought it. On the way to the counter, she picked up a Fender fedora that was marked $19.95.
He rang it up at $29.95. I told him that the shelf tag said $19.95.
NO aknowledgement.
We paid and left. Haven't been in a Guitar Center since... but I've spent over $5k at the Sam Ash stores in Industry and Ontario, including a Les Paul, US Strat, and a Taylor.

I seriously could probably have walked out the door with a Marshall stack... if there had been any new Marshalls bigger than 1-12 in stock.... and nobody would have stopped me.
The employees don't care, so neither do I.

Yeah, they don't pay enough to give the right kind of service that is needed. I totally agree. I still use them for the convenience, but I have seen some bad examples of product and service as well. Some of the stores here are terrible. I wonder if they are like that across the country.
 

CB91710

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Yeah, they don't pay enough to give the right kind of service that is needed. I totally agree. I still use them for the convenience, but I have seen some bad examples of product and service as well. Some of the stores here are terrible. I wonder if they are like that across the country.
There's a reason the company has been on the edge of bankruptcy for the last 5 years... and it's not because people aren't buying guitars.

It's the K-Mart syndrome.
Fancy new stores, and maybe a FEW remodels on existing stores, but let the rest of the stores turn to rundown crap shacks.
Overspending on decorating the new stores and expanding into already saturated markets, which runs them into more debt, so they can't pay their bills, which costs them inventory and more sales.
It's a death spiral.
But the main problem was overexpansion.
LA has, what, 6 Sam Ash stores? Industry, Rancho, Westminster, 3 more in the north end of LA... all of the stores are pretty evenly spaced from each other so each has a good sized territory.
I'm lucky to be halfway between two of them.

Guitar Center has (or had?) 40 in California. I pass by 3 on my way to/from work.
They have 15 covering the LA area.
 

wjlim22

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There's a reason the company has been on the edge of bankruptcy for the last 5 years... and it's not because people aren't buying guitars.

It's the K-Mart syndrome.
Fancy new stores, and maybe a FEW remodels on existing stores, but let the rest of the stores turn to rundown crap shacks.
Overspending on decorating the new stores and expanding into already saturated markets, which runs them into more debt, so they can't pay their bills, which costs them inventory and more sales.
It's a death spiral.
But the main problem was overexpansion.
LA has, what, 6 Sam Ash stores? Industry, Rancho, Westminster, 3 more in the north end of LA... all of the stores are pretty evenly spaced from each other so each has a good sized territory.
I'm lucky to be halfway between two of them.

Guitar Center has (or had?) 40 in California. I pass by 3 on my way to/from work.
They have 15 covering the LA area.

It's hilarious! There's like 5 of them around me - Brea, Orange, Cerritos, Fountain Valley and Lake Forest. HAH! None have consistent inventory of anything, but it is great to have so many to return stuff to. They have so many stores and they are all enormous.
 

NH Wild Bill

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Congrats brother, I picked one up at my local GC (yeah I know) a week and a half ago - three days after it had hit the store.
There was just something I liked about the look and after playing it for a bit there decided to bring it home. I do love that middle position growl from the three Probuckers fired up. I've been playing it thru the Katana but need to take it downstairs to the Marshall and give it a run.

Been playing it since and still like it. It is funny with the neck - it feels fine to me (the first point in buying for me) but the shape makes me think of a baseball bat. Also playing with three pickups instead of two taught me I tend to pick deeper than I realized. I was surprised at the weight and the quality of this one was perfect.

I was even more surprised that it was $60 bucks less because it was on "clearance" - they didn't understand it either but it I got it a that price, I expect it was a Guitar-A-Thon oops.
I hadn't seen any other posts on it so glad to see this one. Enjoy it! :dude:

GC.jpg
 

wjlim22

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Congrats brother, I picked one up at my local GC (yeah I know) a week and a half ago - three days after it had hit the store.
There was just something I liked about the look and after playing it for a bit there decided to bring it home. I do love that middle position growl from the three Probuckers fired up. I've been playing it thru the Katana but need to take it downstairs to the Marshall and give it a run.

Been playing it since and still like it. It is funny with the neck - it feels fine to me (the first point in buying for me) but the shape makes me think of a baseball bat. Also playing with three pickups instead of two taught me I tend to pick deeper than I realized. I was surprised at the weight and the quality of this one was perfect.

I was even more surprised that it was $60 bucks less because it was on "clearance" - they didn't understand it either but it I got it a that price, I expect it was a Guitar-A-Thon oops.
I hadn't seen any other posts on it so glad to see this one. Enjoy it! :dude:

View attachment 495325

That is the best mask I've ever seen.
 

CB91710

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Congrats brother, I picked one up at my local GC (yeah I know) a week and a half ago - three days after it had hit the store.
There was just something I liked about the look and after playing it for a bit there decided to bring it home. I do love that middle position growl from the three Probuckers fired up. I've been playing it thru the Katana but need to take it downstairs to the Marshall and give it a run.

Been playing it since and still like it. It is funny with the neck - it feels fine to me (the first point in buying for me) but the shape makes me think of a baseball bat. Also playing with three pickups instead of two taught me I tend to pick deeper than I realized. I was surprised at the weight and the quality of this one was perfect.

I was even more surprised that it was $60 bucks less because it was on "clearance" - they didn't understand it either but it I got it a that price, I expect it was a Guitar-A-Thon oops.
I hadn't seen any other posts on it so glad to see this one. Enjoy it! :dude:

View attachment 495325
Awesome.
I really, really do like it a lot.

Have you tap-tested your active pickups in various positions? The middle position is supposed to be bridge + middle, out of phase.
There's no option to combine the neck pickup with the middle or bridge.
 

007

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Is there a difference between the Bonamassa model and the Framton model?
 

Sp8ctre

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Is there a difference between the Bonamassa model and the Framton model?

From what i have been able to research there are two major differences.

The Frampton Model has the old Epiphone Headstock with the cut off corners.

The Frampton Model also has a wiring scheme where there are many more pickup configurations available.

The Bonamassa has on Neck alone, Middle and Bridge and Bridge alone.

The Frampton has blend control with the pots where you can get any and all combinations.

I don't own the Frampton and this is just from research and a couple of YouTube videos...
 

NH Wild Bill

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Awesome.
I really, really do like it a lot.

Have you tap-tested your active pickups in various positions? The middle position is supposed to be bridge + middle, out of phase.
There's no option to combine the neck pickup with the middle or bridge.

Actually I haven't. I was under the impression the middle was all three pick-ups, but being out of phase makes a bit of sense to me on the sound. I'll be checking them out tonight. Thanx for the tip. :fingersx:
 

CB91710

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Actually I haven't. I was under the impression the middle was all three pick-ups, but being out of phase makes a bit of sense to me on the sound. I'll be checking them out tonight. Thanx for the tip. :fingersx:
If you look in the control cavity, I think you'll find only two pickup leads... meaning the center pickup goes directly to the switch, as it does here....

LPC.jpg
 

NH Wild Bill

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If you look in the control cavity, I think you'll find only two pickup leads... meaning the center pickup goes directly to the switch, as it does here....

I did pull her out last night and gave her a tap test, of course it's as you had said.
And that "out of phase" sound is definitely what I had been hearing, just didn't realize it was what I was hearing. I have that option on my LP Modern but with a volume drop that doesn't occur with this guitar.
I also noticed the volume difference mentioned on here between 0 - 7 & 7 - 10.

I had been just playing around getting the physical feel for playing it, now I'm digging the technical aspects of it's design thanks to your post. I'm glad I got her and also for getting the notice of this post in my weekly e-mail from this site. Thanx for all your insights brother.
 

CB91710

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Swapped the strings to DR 9-46, and took a look inside, as well as adjusted the setup a bit.
Will do the final setup next weekend since I've gone to lighter strings.

After changing strings and bringing it to pitch, I checked the relief, and the neck is VERY straight at around .004"
I'm able to fret the strings at both ends and get a clear tone on the treble strings, but the bass side is a bit buzzy, so I'd like to bring that relief up to .008 or so.

With the new strings and the low relief, factory action was a heavy 6/64 on the bass side and a high 4/64 treble.
I brought it down to a low 4/64 bass and high 3/64 treble and got a bit of buzz on the bass side... raised it up to a high 4/64 on the bass side and it's rock solid. Not buzzing, not fretting out on Gilmour bends (more of a problem on Fenders with the tighter radius)

Interesting that on the switch, they soldered a small jumper wire to the shield (or maybe to a drain wire) rather than soldering the braid directly to the switch frame for the middle pickup (which connects directly to the switch, rather than the pots):

JB-Switch.jpg


QR Code in the bridge pickup cavity with the serial number. Helpful since the serial numbers are extremely hard to read on black Gibson/Epiphone headstocks.
No black paint under the sticker, and while the sticker appears to be stiffened by the clearcoat, it's not stuck down very well.

BArcode.jpg


Orange drop caps, full-size CTS pots, long neck tenon, and three Probuckers.

JBGuts.jpg

Tenon.jpg

JB-Routing.jpg

JB-Pickups.jpg
 

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