Your Favourite Low-End Beater Guitar

Discussion in 'Fred's Barcalounge' started by Stencil, Oct 22, 2021.

  1. Stencil

    Stencil Gretschie

    Age:
    59
    328
    Oct 19, 2009
    Gif-sur-Yvette, or the AF lounge
    It occurred to me, with 20/20 hindsight, that I probably should have mentioned that my heavily modded Squier Jaguar was an attempt (in this case successful) to make up for my disappointment with how badly I get on with the Fender Johnny Marr Signature Jaguar.

    The Squier’s neck and low weight are perfect for my aging hands. The main challenge was reproducing the Johnny Marr circuitry and sourcing some pickups that I’d like better than the Bare Knuckles (found them at Manchester’s own The Creamery.)

    All told, after mods, the Squier cost well short of half of the price of the Fender Signature, and can be played out fearlessly.
     
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2021
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  2. Ricochet

    Ricochet Senior Gretsch-Talker

    Nov 13, 2009
    Monkey Island
    Low cost?

    In stock form probably my €300 Squier ‘50 CV Tele or $250 B&CH LP Junior.

    As modding platforms, the $200 used Squiers VMs I have turned out very nice. After the cost of the mods I’m not sure if they still can be called beaters though. o_O

    Front: Squier VM cabro. Back: Squier Double fat Tele. Again not bad in stock form, absolutely class after some mods.
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2021
  3. Stencil

    Stencil Gretschie

    Age:
    59
    328
    Oct 19, 2009
    Gif-sur-Yvette, or the AF lounge
    To each, his or her own, but even so, how unfortunate!
     
  4. Stencil

    Stencil Gretschie

    Age:
    59
    328
    Oct 19, 2009
    Gif-sur-Yvette, or the AF lounge
    You, Sid, are a man of impeccable taste.
    And I must admit that I have been known to share your pix with my significant other as the shape of things to come.
     
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  5. Archtops

    Archtops Country Gent

    Mar 4, 2021
    SoCal
    100% on the Firefly 338!
    Although definitely not a beater.;)

    22D1FEC5-638E-4334-BAA7-1EEA436ED8DD.jpeg
     

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  6. loudnlousy

    loudnlousy Gretschified

    Age:
    56
    Oct 18, 2015
    Germany
    After I mangled them for some years even high-end guitars became low-end beaters...

    I would call myself a "reverse-restorer".
     
  7. Randy99CL

    Randy99CL Country Gent

    Feb 17, 2020
    Albuquerque
    This seems to be morphing into a Squier Tele thread...
    When I first started collecting two years ago I read about the Squier Standard Tele and how it was possibly the best deal in Tele magic one could find, but they were already discontinued. Some said they were as good as the CV but $150 less.
    I didn't like the Bullet or Affinity student model and didn't want to spend the money for a CV.

    One day I checked amazon and out of the blue they found some somewhere! Reg $250 on sale for $230 and I put in the order half an hour before they were sold out.

    I do love it and it is a great guitar that I was lucky to get. No beater though.
    Squier Standard Tele 1.jpg
    Says Standard Model in small letters on the headstock.
     

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  8. jvin248

    jvin248 Electromatic

    61
    May 16, 2017
    Near Detroit
    .

    Whoa, there are some pricey beaters in the list!
    I bought a $15 acoustic that I cleaned up and traded for this Epi LP Junior and then put $15 of parts in it plus time on the frets and setup (I splurged on a $7 import pickup I could split to single coil). This one gets played a lot because of the great tone and easy playability. It weighs only 6lbs. Gibson discontinued these clip ear Epi Juniors so they may become collectible, so get yours soon ;)
    [​IMG]

    .
     
  9. I have not seen any first act guitars on this list. I’m guessing they are below the beater status.
     
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  10. AZBrahma

    AZBrahma Gretschie

    401
    Dec 18, 2020
    Arizona
    First Act, if I remember correctly, made two tiers of guitars. Dirt-cheap starter pack guitars, and US made custom shop guitars. Weirdly there wasn't anything in between.
     
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  11. Synchro

    Synchro The artist formerly known as: Synchro Staff Member

    Jun 2, 2008
    Tucson
    Admin Post
    The Frey vs Felder war. :) I once had a Takemine classical and it was superb.
     
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  12. Dana Rudd

    Dana Rudd Country Gent

    Age:
    72
    Nov 26, 2019
    Greybull, WY
    I haven't seen a beater in this thread yet.

    I don't have a beater in my collection either, all my guitars get cased when not being played. I too have a Firefly 338 but it's no beater, just cheaper than most.
     
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  13. Synchro

    Synchro The artist formerly known as: Synchro Staff Member

    Jun 2, 2008
    Tucson
    Admin Post
    You make a good point; inexpensive doesn’t mean that the guitar is poorly made. There are some truly great instruments being made, even at low price points.
     
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  14. radd

    radd Country Gent

    Dec 27, 2017
    Santa Cruz
    Not a beater, just an old Epi Les Paul Gold Top 56 made in Korea that I found hanging in the back of a used guitar store and picked up for next to nothing. I cleaned it up, replaced all the electronics, most did not work. Like an idiot I sold it later……I wish I still had it.

    7A159F9A-7CA6-414B-A570-F40DE5E7F490.jpeg 34EB901D-7B7A-414F-86F3-30DE1353716F.jpeg
     
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2021
  15. Likeabrave

    Likeabrave Synchromatic

    684
    Feb 11, 2010
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Fender Gemini IV laminated dreadnought. Bought new in 1980something for under $200. I once left it on the beach overnight, which turned into 2 nights because peyote. It lived in unstrung in a basement for a few years in the 90s while I was trying to get square with the whole "meaning of life" thing. I keep it for 3 reasons. 1- It isn't worth the effort to sell. 2- Sentimental value. 3- It really, really sounds great. Oddly, it is the acoustic guitar by which I measure the tone of acoustic guitars. I can't explain it. It just is.
    [​IMG]
     
  16. Stencil

    Stencil Gretschie

    Age:
    59
    328
    Oct 19, 2009
    Gif-sur-Yvette, or the AF lounge
    I guess it's my fault that people are focussing a little too much on the term "beater."

    As GBS is claimed to have said, "England and the US are two countries divided by a common language." If you throw a Canuck into the mix, who's been living for a long time in France, things can get desperately confusing.

    I apologise to anyone who may have been offended by the term "beater." I guess I should have contented myself with "over-achiever."

    Cheers,

    Dominique.
     
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2021
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  17. englishman

    englishman Gretschified

    Age:
    64
    Apr 5, 2014
    Detroit
    So a vintage Gibson may be an unlikely entry for the “beater” category but the Sonex 180 deluxe qualifies. You can find these gems for under $500 all over.
    The knock on them is the bolt on neck and the resin core body. Weighs in at 9.2 pounds.
    Mine here has the world’s worst refinish job and a neck repair that while solid, was neck sanded smooth.
    That said, the unique Bill Lawrence “Velvet Hammer” pickups sound great and it plays wonderfully.
    My intention was to refinish this when I had time, but why bother?

    D5C3152D-AC85-410F-910A-2D9CE67CCC9F.jpeg 1B593AB1-CCD0-4ECC-9032-2597BD673E3C.jpeg 4BAF7C08-B0DC-4CF6-83D0-C6C6AC440ADE.jpeg 5B2C4003-33DC-4A3D-9A61-457033C50D8E.jpeg
     
  18. Stencil

    Stencil Gretschie

    Age:
    59
    328
    Oct 19, 2009
    Gif-sur-Yvette, or the AF lounge
    You'll have me waxing nostalgic about my first 'real' guitar -- a Gibson Marauder, whose theft in 1981 put paid to my assaults on the neighbourhood's eardrums...
     
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  19. LivingMyDream

    LivingMyDream Friend of Fred

    Synchro, I bought the Takamine Glen Frey Signature, and it was truly a special guitar. The problem I had was that the longer I played it, the more I knew that I just wasn't bonding with the neck. I fought it for a while, but ultimately let it go. In the right hands, it would have been a keeper for sure.
     
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