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Decept
11-06-2006, 11:47 AM
Anyone seen these? They are gorgeous! Does anyone know anything about them? Where they are made? Are they high quality? Are they worth the purchase? I am thinking of trading in my big block tele for one. Please let me know if you are familiar!

http://img3.musiciansfriend.com/dbase/pics/products/2/3/2/326232.jpg

http://www.musiciansfriend.com/product/Fender-Special-Edition-Koa-Telecaster-Electric-Guitar?sku=517890

mrfjones
11-06-2006, 11:59 AM
they look nice but the three i played did not sound good or play well at all. I will admit that there has to be a few nice ones out there and the body seemed nice enough to me but, I had problems with the necks. The nuts were cut very high and the action was way too high. The fret edges were sticking out and i didn't like the contour of the neck. If you would give one a good setup and a new nut (possibly fret job too) you could have a pretty good guitar.

Decept
11-06-2006, 12:01 PM
Where are they made? And how was the tone and output?

paulg
11-06-2006, 12:12 PM
Haven't played one. Koa is a pretty hard wood. Perhaps denser than mahogany. So, I'd expect a pretty snappy tone. That said, the Koa Fender is using looks pretty plain. Perhaps they are choosing it for wieght. Good idea, Koa can be real heavy.

Taller
11-06-2006, 12:16 PM
"Alder body with a Koa top."

I doubt you'd realize any of the tonal properties of Koa with that guitar.

trivial
11-06-2006, 12:34 PM
I am not positive, but I think that the koa is just a veneer.

.m

scottlr
11-06-2006, 03:26 PM
I have seen one locally. It's pretty. And it is just a veneer. I didn't play it, though. They are either MIM or MIK I think.

Glowing Tubes
11-06-2006, 04:04 PM
Yes its a veneer. I have not heard great things about this Koa strat and tele series, unfortunately. Nice looking and good idea though.

Good luck.

scottlr
11-06-2006, 04:11 PM
They are purty, for sure. I have resisted grabbing the Tele I see because I don't WANT to like it LOL The same shop has a lefty MIJ Tele that I absolutely love. Fortunately for me, I am a righty. But damn that neck feels so fine! First new MIJ I have ever seen in this area, too.

clunk
11-06-2006, 04:15 PM
yes its a vaneer and from what ive seen its basswood not alder as the main body.

Clunk

el_cid
11-06-2006, 04:22 PM
Im pretty sure they are Korean, but I just bought a Light Ash Tele, which is also Korean and I love it. I almost didn't buy it jsut because of where it was made, but I'm glad I did. Came stock with Duncans, and I already bought an RS Tele Kit to fix everything else.

Decept
11-06-2006, 06:35 PM
What do you mean by vaneer?

scottlr
11-06-2006, 06:39 PM
Thin layer of KOA over the alder body. Maybe 1/8" thick or even 1/16" thick is all. This has been an accepted practice with furniture for a hundred years or more. Just a woodworking trick for aesthetics.

Decept
11-06-2006, 06:46 PM
So it's basically an american alder telecaster, with Koa over it... and then shipped to Korea to be made.

george4908
11-06-2006, 07:32 PM
A little homebrew koacaster I whipped up:

http://home-and-garden.webshots.com/photo/1509668460047853223jLsNLa

http://home-and-garden.webshots.com/photo/1509667719047853223eWlCkH

The koa top is about 1/4" over ash.

Decept
11-06-2006, 11:37 PM
Are there any places to get a pickguard like that? Or a metal/designed one?

blind radish
11-07-2006, 05:50 AM
Made in Korea ... very pretty, but the couple I have played in local GCs don't thrill for sound or construction .... fret sprout on a new guitar SHOULD be unthinkable, but both that I played had jagged ends.

the PUPs are OK but nothing to scream about ... not much to recommend at the list price of $629 ....

Dave Yeats
11-07-2006, 08:01 AM
Did somebody say Koa Telecaster? Here's my partscaster:

http://www.tdpri.com/telephoto/data/519/Koacaster1.jpg

I imagine the Fender versions are a lot like the lite ash telecasters (also Korean-made), but I haven't played one.

scottlr
11-07-2006, 08:33 AM
A little homebrew koacaster I whipped up:

http://home-and-garden.webshots.com/photo/1509668460047853223jLsNLa

http://home-and-garden.webshots.com/photo/1509667719047853223eWlCkH

The koa top is about 1/4" over ash.

That's a cool looking Tele. Did you do the guard yourself? Is that metal or clear plexigass?

fendrguitplayr
11-07-2006, 08:39 AM
Haven't played one. Koa is a pretty hard wood. Perhaps denser than mahogany. So, I'd expect a pretty snappy tone. That said, the Koa Fender is using looks pretty plain. Perhaps they are choosing it for wieght. Good idea, Koa can be real heavy.

The ones that I've tried have been extremely heavy.

drolling
11-07-2006, 08:43 AM
Made in Korea ... very pretty, but the couple I have played in local GCs don't thrill for sound or construction .... fret sprout on a new guitar SHOULD be unthinkable, but both that I played had jagged ends.

the PUPs are OK but nothing to scream about ... not much to recommend at the list price of $629 ....Yeah, but that "fret sprout" is quite common on new Korean guitars w/unbound necks - The humidity over there means most guitars have to do a good bit of drying out once they arrive in north american. No big deal having those ends filed off.

But that laminate is super-thin & adds nothing to the guitar's tone, and, of course, those pickups'll have to go, too.

I'd pass on it..

homestar_kevin
11-07-2006, 11:05 AM
I saw a KOA strat and played it at guitar center yesterday and loved it. They're definetly made in Korea. The strat played really really nice, good action, great set up and finish, Nice single duncan single coils in it and sounded and felt really good. Maybe I played one of the few well set up ones?

Kevin

Decept
11-07-2006, 11:42 AM
Well... I decided to trade in my Big Block Tele (yuck) for a KOA Telecaster. Cool thing was, it was the last one GC had, and since it had a single scratch in the back... I got 100 off for it. And since it was a returned trade, I saved 184 total. Which is pretty sweet.

To be honest... they aren't THAT heavy. And the body and finish is really nice. GREAT guitar. Yes, the fret ends need some filing, and it needs new strings and a proper set-up and new pickups (haha)... but the way it looks is worth all that work. I'd rather have one of these than an american tele to be honest.

It's looks and it's feel are great.

Anyways... I NEED OPINIONS ON NEW PICKUPS.

I have a thinline tele that has P-90s... and I need tele sized pickups that have the same output. If anyone can answer this... it would be greatly apreciated!

Decept
11-07-2006, 12:31 PM
*bump* :D

george4908
11-07-2006, 10:10 PM
>>That's a cool looking Tele. Did you do the guard yourself? Is that metal or clear plexigass?

Thanks. The guard is aluminum. I ran into an metal artist at a crafts fair who was willing to take a stab at it. I sketched out what I wanted for the design (which was based on National Hawaiian resonators), gave her a pickguard I acquired elsewhere and she did the final design and etching for $50. You can't really see it, but I also had "ALOHA" engraved on the neck pickup cover.

homestar_kevin
11-07-2006, 10:16 PM
>>That's a cool looking Tele. Did you do the guard yourself? Is that metal or clear plexigass?

Thanks. The guard is aluminum. I ran into an metal artist at a crafts fair who was willing to take a stab at it. I sketched out what I wanted for the design (which was based on National Hawaiian resonators), gave her a pickguard I acquired elsewhere and she did the final design and etching for $50. You can't really see it, but I also had "ALOHA" engraved on the neck pickup cover.

great idea and find. It looks amazing on the guitar.

Kevin