Bit The Bullet

Expecting some new gear from Kiesel Guitars? Post here!

Moderators: Kevio, ElfDude, JesseM, RockCrue, soundchick, ChrisH, peb, Mike Jones, Bundy

Big O
Newbie
Newbie
Posts: 9
Joined: Jun 2017

Bit The Bullet

Postby Big O » Fri Aug 04, 2017 9:49 am

I finally pulled the trigger on ordering a Kiesel guitar after years of being a Carvin customer for other items, mostly accessories and parts. For my 60th birthday and retirement present this year my wife wanted to bequeath me a "special" guitar to add to my collection, which started out with a Harmony 1310 Archtop Jazz Acoustic back in 1971 (still own it), when I first started playing. For my present, I wanted a "Vintage Modern" type guitar - sort of old school but with some modern amenities. Because of this, I first started first looking at higher end Gibson LP models such as the Les Paul Standard 2017 HP, but the fancy G Force tuning system it has sort of turned me off as electromechanical things tend to break over time and it just seemed too gimicky to me. However, the Blueburst color option really struck me as being the type of color I wanted as I have been jonesing for a blue LP style guitar ever since I saw one hanging on the rack in a guitar store a couple of years ago. My wife was also wowed by the blue LP and asked me at the time "what kind of guitar is that!?"

During my search, my wife asked me why didn't I just order a custom guitar from the Carvin website I had been looking at a couple of years ago in my search for something close to a Gibson ES-125. I did not want to spend $3000 for a 45 year old Gibson, so I was contemplating obtaining a Carvin SH550 and dropping in humbucker sized P-90's in it to get something close to the ES-125. I had been looking to get an ES-125 for years as it was the first electric guitar I had ever played. The music store where I was taking lessons back in the early 70's tried to get me to push my parents to purchase one by letting me play the ES-125 for a couple of my lessons. I also tried out a Hagstrom H-III as well. But fate intervened and the Loar guitar company started producing a clone of the ES-125 sans pickguard so I obtained one. The Loar model is a Thinline HOLLOW body with the same body dimensions as the Gibson, and has P-90 pickups in it, so the Carvin being a SEMI-HOLLOW with different body dimensions and no P-90's was not exactly close enough to what I wanted to obtain (I also now have a new Hagstrom H-III to complete my collection of "demo" guitars).

My wife reminded me of Carvin, now Kiesel, during my search because she was absolutely blown away by the options available to build a guitar, and she was right. I could build basically what I wanted to suit my tastes and desires in a guitar - that is a guitar with an old school pedigree such as having a thicker neck but with modern upgrades such as a flatter fretboard radius, tremolo, etc. I already own a real Gibson LP and a couple of LP type clones, but none with a tremolo system (would have preferred a Bigsby but it is not an option on the CS6).

So I ordered a CS6 with a Hipshot Trem (already have a guitar with a Floyd Rose) that is blue in color and with a lot of "bling" as my wife puts it. Got it with coil splitters like the Gibson I was looking at and added an Option 50 on the wiring - Passive Treble and Bass controls instead of the standard 2 tone controls. There is an article in Premier Guitar on this circuit. It helps "clarify" distorted humbuckers or make them less muddy sounding with distortion.

I would like to thank Chris Hong of Kiesel, who helped me get my guitar ordered with the special options I wanted. What I ordered is below.

CS6X Right Handed Hipshot/Kiesel Tremolo System
BBE - Natural Top Wood Body Binding (Standard)
UM - Burled Maple Top
NMAH - Mahogany Neck & Body (Standard)
CG - Clear Gloss Finish (Standard)
TNB - Translucent Nightburst $40.00
TN - Tung Oil Finish Back Of Neck (Natural Wood)
TH - Traditional Style Headstock
UMPH - Burled Maple Headstock
REF - Royal Ebony Fingerboard
IB - Block Inlays
IA - Abalone Inlay Material
FR - Med-Jumbo Frets .048" H .103" W (Standard)
R14 - 14in Fretboard Radius (Standard)
S22B - S22B Bridge Pickup w/ Metal Cover to Match Hardware
S22J - S22J Neck Pickup w/ Metal Cover to Match Hardware
VT2 - 2 Volume/2 Tone w/ Push-Pull Coil Splitters
G - Gold Hardware
ABL - Abalone Logo $30.00
AK - Metal Knobs w/ Abalone Inlays
TCP - White Pearloid Truss Rod Cover

User avatar
ElfDude
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 10294
Joined: Jan 2007
Location: In and around the lake

Re: Bit The Bullet

Postby ElfDude » Fri Aug 04, 2017 10:01 am

How cool is that? I'm excited for you!

Also a little jealous of the retirement at 60 thing.
But that's beside the point. ;)

Looking forward to the pics and review when you get it!
SH445, Contour 66, AE185, DC135, CT4M, Bolt, SH225, LB76F, Nomad, VT16 Head, V410, Pro Bass 100
Midlife Crisis on FaceBook
My YouTube Channel

User avatar
skully13a
Gold Carvinite
Gold Carvinite
Posts: 1332
Joined: Aug 2015
Location: Left side of The Rockies

Re: Bit The Bullet

Postby skully13a » Fri Aug 04, 2017 10:06 am

Sounds pretty cool. I'll look forward to checking it out. 8)
SH645
V440T
Purple Bolt!
DC127 Koa
SM212 Stage Master
MB10

DWG
Gold Member
Gold Member
Posts: 152
Joined: Aug 2016

Re: Bit The Bullet

Postby DWG » Fri Aug 04, 2017 9:37 pm

Now that's how to get retirement off to a proper start! Congrats

DWG

Big O
Newbie
Newbie
Posts: 9
Joined: Jun 2017

Re: Bit The Bullet

Postby Big O » Mon Dec 04, 2017 11:32 am

Guitar finally on its way after a little over 4 months. Was tracking through FedEx. Delivery given as tommorrow 12/5 so I made plans to be home all day tomorrow and run all the important errands I had to do today. So of course while I was away for about 2 hours FedEx attempted to deliver the guitar a day ahead of schedule.

Lately I have had nothing but trouble with all delivery services - FedEx, UPS and USPS. Their tracking is unreliable making it difficult to be around for delivery. Very frustrating!

Big O
Newbie
Newbie
Posts: 9
Joined: Jun 2017

Re: Bit The Bullet

Postby Big O » Tue Dec 05, 2017 4:11 pm

My highly anticipated guitar arrived today 18 weeks after ordering. I already posted regarding this, but my post had disappeared, hopefully not deleted as this does not paint an entirely favorable picture. All I can say is that my family and I are somewhat disappointed in the finished product due to issues with the top (see picture below). I ordered the burl maple top option, but there is very little burl present and the top is primarily flame maple. The top looks nothing like the photos of burl maple tops on Kiesel's website, and while I don't expect perfection, the lack of a burl pattern in most of the top as well as issues with less than optimal bookmatching, primarily in the lower body of the guitar, leaves us fairly disappointed for something that was to be a special gift. My wife thought that they joined 2 separate guitar bodies together because that is how it looks to her.

That being said, the paint and color is absolutely beautiful and the remainder of the guitar build is absolutely stellar, better than anything else I have in my collection including a PRS Custom 24. I just wish that someone had communicated the issues regarding the top during the build process to see if something could have been worked out such as starting over again with a more asthetically pleasing top. I really don't care if the process would have taken longer to delivery. Looks like I may be sending the guitar back.

Image

User avatar
gumbynotpokey
Elite Carvinite
Elite Carvinite
Posts: 7164
Joined: May 2010
Location: Western NC

Re: Bit The Bullet

Postby gumbynotpokey » Tue Dec 05, 2017 5:08 pm

For taste, IMO, I would send that back.

Let us know how this turns out in the end.
Wife: C350, Claro top SH550, Vintage 16
Oldest: DC400M greenburst, C980TMW
Youngest: C750, GK1, CT624M Deep Black Cherry on flame, V3MC Celestion,
SH550 white/white, black binding, gold hardware
Me: LB70P jet black, LB70PF Claro BEM HAN, MB 10

User avatar
skully13a
Gold Carvinite
Gold Carvinite
Posts: 1332
Joined: Aug 2015
Location: Left side of The Rockies

Re: Bit The Bullet

Postby skully13a » Tue Dec 05, 2017 5:28 pm

gumbynotpokey wrote:For taste, IMO, I would send that back.

Let us know how this turns out in the end.

I concur. Return. :? :( :o
SH645
V440T
Purple Bolt!
DC127 Koa
SM212 Stage Master
MB10

User avatar
spudmunkey
Elite Carvinite
Elite Carvinite
Posts: 14518
Joined: Jan 2008
Location: San Francisco Bay Area

Re: Bit The Bullet

Postby spudmunkey » Tue Dec 05, 2017 5:37 pm

This thread can only serve to be an echo chamber, I feel.

Big O, you're disappointed, and I think no matter if it's "wrong" wood, just an undesirable outcome, or even a production error, you're entitled to be unhappy with what was delivered (even if it WAS exactly as you imagined), and if you haven't already, please contact Kiesel right away. Only you can decide if you are satisfied. And if you aren't, no matter the reason, we won't be able to change your mind, no matter how we might rationalize it! :)

If you do decide to send it back for a rebuild, you do have a unique opportunity: make sure you like all of the other specs you've chosen (fret size, fretboard radius, neck thickness, give the trem a work-out, etc) so you can change anything else that maybe you might prefer another way. :)

Oh, and your other thread wasn't deleted. It's still here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=49909

User avatar
gumbynotpokey
Elite Carvinite
Elite Carvinite
Posts: 7164
Joined: May 2010
Location: Western NC

Re: Bit The Bullet

Postby gumbynotpokey » Tue Dec 05, 2017 5:47 pm

From a non echo chamber perspective, I will say this - we have seen them BLOW THE MIND of the buyer on the rebuild time and time again, including the look of tops.
Wife: C350, Claro top SH550, Vintage 16
Oldest: DC400M greenburst, C980TMW
Youngest: C750, GK1, CT624M Deep Black Cherry on flame, V3MC Celestion,
SH550 white/white, black binding, gold hardware
Me: LB70P jet black, LB70PF Claro BEM HAN, MB 10

User avatar
spudmunkey
Elite Carvinite
Elite Carvinite
Posts: 14518
Joined: Jan 2008
Location: San Francisco Bay Area

Re: Bit The Bullet

Postby spudmunkey » Tue Dec 05, 2017 5:49 pm

gumbynotpokey wrote:From a non echo chamber perspective, I will say this - we have seen them BLOW THE MIND of the buyer on the rebuild time and time again, including the look of tops.


:applause:

I started writing a sentence like that, but it wasn't coming out right. Yours id better than mine was. :lol:
Last edited by spudmunkey on Tue Dec 05, 2017 11:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
ElfDude
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 10294
Joined: Jan 2007
Location: In and around the lake

Re: Bit The Bullet

Postby ElfDude » Tue Dec 05, 2017 8:51 pm

I think it's an awesome top. But if I had ordered burled maple, I'd be disappointed too.
One more vote for returning it.
SH445, Contour 66, AE185, DC135, CT4M, Bolt, SH225, LB76F, Nomad, VT16 Head, V410, Pro Bass 100

Midlife Crisis on FaceBook

My YouTube Channel

User avatar
texastoast
Gold Carvinite
Gold Carvinite
Posts: 1740
Joined: Apr 2010
Location: Duh, Im in Texas

Re: Bit The Bullet

Postby texastoast » Thu Dec 07, 2017 4:40 pm

gumbynotpokey wrote:From a non echo chamber perspective, I will say this - we have seen them BLOW THE MIND of the buyer on the rebuild time and time again, including the look of tops.


I can personally vouch for that. My rebuild is still one of the best tops I have ever seen period.

User avatar
MarshallTSL
Gold Carvinite
Gold Carvinite
Posts: 1790
Joined: Jun 2008
Location: North Potomac, MD

Re: Bit The Bullet

Postby MarshallTSL » Sun Dec 10, 2017 3:01 pm

OK, one more voice of support for a return.

I sent my first two Carvins back. I ordered #5 8 weeks ago and almost ordered #6 last week when I was in SoCal. Give them a chance to wow you.
CT6 Deep Blue Quilt, HH2 Claro, TL60C Black Cherry Quilt, Master Grade Ziricote SH65, Aries A6X Flamed Redwood Top In The Oven!!!


Return to The Waiting Room

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 6 guests