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brikus
11-15-2010, 07:32 AM
http://www.zacharyguitars.com/

I kinda like his Z3 design, which sort of revisits that of the strat, but what I especially love is his sense of humour ! :D

Excerpt :

I feature a lot of idiots on this site but its time I posted some really intelligent feedback I got. (also on the Zach Perspective page)
If you are an idiot, read these comments and try to comprehend them, you may just learn something and it could make all the difference for you. Those circle jerk forums have really done their damage on you. You can come here to be de-programmed.

The dude is sooooo funny. :D

Here's the page of his past and present builds...
http://www.zacharyguitars.com/Currently_for_Sale.htm
Note that when you click on pretty much any model, the title of the web page will be...another brand ! :D

Anyone here has dealt with him or owned one of his guitars ?

whoismarykelly
11-15-2010, 08:23 AM
AFAIK you cant just buy one of his guitars. It seems like he has to deem you worthy. I like the look of the Rkc 480 copy he makes though. I dont think I would spend $2500 on one though.

marsos52
11-15-2010, 09:13 AM
agreed
AFAIK you cant just buy one of his guitars. It seems like he has to deem you worthy. I like the look of the Rkc 480 copy he makes though. I dont think I would spend $2500 on one though.


i been to zacharys site to many times,,there is some thing just not right..

tonic-penta
11-15-2010, 12:53 PM
poor chap, must be living in his own world thinking the whole world is hating and doing him the biggest disservice. he sure does need a daily dose of "look in the friggin mirror"

brikus
11-15-2010, 01:38 PM
No, I think all the attitude on the website is not to be taken literally. To me, quite obviously, the whole website is pretty much tongue in cheek.

cardamonfrost
11-15-2010, 01:42 PM
"No wonder "luthiers" must go down a different road from me; of inlays, fancy wood, glossy finishes, CNC "precision", Plek machine fret work, sucking the dick of every hack guitar consumer. The bottom line; its non-players, making guitars for non-players. A distasteful and contemptible combination, to say the least. No wonder the results are what you find."

wow, dude is obviously functioning at a differnt level. Im kinda amazed he can find customers....

brikus
11-15-2010, 01:47 PM
"No wonder "luthiers" must go down a different road from me; of inlays, fancy wood, glossy finishes, CNC "precision", Plek machine fret work, sucking the dick of every hack guitar consumer. The bottom line; its non-players, making guitars for non-players. A distasteful and contemptible combination, to say the least. No wonder the results are what you find."

wow, dude is obviously functioning at a differnt level. Im kinda amazed he can find customers....

I can understand that kind of rhetoric can appeal to some people...especially when they share his sense of humour. :D

whoismarykelly
11-15-2010, 01:49 PM
"No wonder "luthiers" must go down a different road from me; of inlays, fancy wood, glossy finishes, CNC "precision", Plek machine fret work, sucking the dick of every hack guitar consumer. The bottom line; its non-players, making guitars for non-players. A distasteful and contemptible combination, to say the least. No wonder the results are what you find."

wow, dude is obviously functioning at a differnt level. Im kinda amazed he can find customers....

Might be worth questioning whether he is actually trying to find customers...

brikus
11-15-2010, 01:54 PM
Might be worth questioning whether he is actually trying to find customers...


The list of sold guitars seems to indicate he doesn't need to anyway...

verhoevenc
11-16-2010, 11:33 AM
I've seen some interaction between him and another forum in the past. He's definitely a weird dude, IMHO. There's a couple things that scare me about the guy:
1- His site says (or at least used to) that he doesn't bother sanding out all of the tooling marks cause he thinks that tooling marks are the sign that it was hand made... Which simply says to me there's a lack of pride in craftsmanship and he may be willing to cut corners.
2- Also, he contradicts himself on a number of his "ideological" points. Somewhere on the giant labyrinth that is his site he mentions things like not liking hollows in guitars, yet he then goes and makes a guitar with giant holes drilled all the way through it and claims it benefits tone?
3- I don't agree with all the "benefits" he claims of his headstock design.
4- He does demo videos in his tighty whities...
5- Watch the demo video of the guy pictured at the top of his homepage. I forget the guy's name, but he does a demo where he just abuses the trem to show how well a Zach plays... and the trem was putting strings out of tune, the guitar sounded tin-y, etc.
These are all things I noticed over a year ago, so I'm not 100% sure they're all still there, so sorry if they aren't, but I'm not wading through that seizure-causing multi-colored site to find citations again lol.
My $.02, that's all. I have never PERSONALLY played one.
Chris

ttuck
11-16-2010, 11:39 AM
I met him and played a few of his guitars at one of the Philly Shows a few years back. Guitars were just OK in terms of sound and playability. I didn't like the appearance at all , and I thought that they were overpriced. I really tried to like the instruments but they just didn't do it for me. He's a bit different , he thought quite highly of himself and his instruments and spent a lot of time dumping on some other manufacturers whose instruments are in my opinion far superior to his. Just my opinion, YMMV.

whoismarykelly
11-16-2010, 12:24 PM
I met him and played a few of his guitars at one of the Philly Shows a few years back. Guitars were just OK in terms of sound and playability. I didn't like the appearance at all , and I thought that they were overpriced. I really tried to like the instruments but they just didn't do it for me. He's a bit different , he thought quite highly of himself and his instruments and spent a lot of time dumping on some other manufacturers whose instruments are in my opinion far superior to his. Just my opinion, YMMV.

I would think he would be watered down significantly in person. His site shouts "you're probably an asshole for even looking at my page" and in person you cant really get away with that :rotflmao

Route234
11-16-2010, 02:38 PM
I hate his headstock. It looks so cheap. I do like the Z3 design though. Not sure I could buy a guitar from someone like him. Reminds me of Ed Roman for some reason. I think some of his wood choices and other design elements scream "cheap" to me and there are a lot of builders in his price range that are drama free.

Things like picking wood out of IKEA dumpsters may be "chich" to some people, but Im not buying a guitar made from cutting boards and kitchen cabinet cast offs.

magnus02
11-16-2010, 03:00 PM
this guy and his site have come up before for obvious reasons...

i think he's an idiot and would NEVER pay a penny for what he's building, all pretty hideous if you ask me

i have a very dry sense of humor but still can't go along with his

check out his pedal... that will get a laugh if nothing else... he mocks other expensive pedals and then puts out a $400 one... yea, that's who i want to fork money over to

and his soundclips (yes yes, i know its just a compressed sound clip) are pretty horrible

Fenderkid67
11-16-2010, 03:13 PM
I hate this guy..... I can't stand people like him.

sahhas
11-16-2010, 03:16 PM
those are cool guitars.
the headstock he uses for the hard times z is what i was thinking of for my next guitar project.
cool guitars, cool site!

The bear
11-16-2010, 03:29 PM
I think he should get together with Ed Roman-they have a lot in common!

cteaghin
11-16-2010, 03:38 PM
4- He does demo videos in his tighty whities...

I wasn't going to bother checking out the site until i read this point. Now I have to find out!

sahhas
11-16-2010, 10:17 PM
been listening to some youtube clips, a nice sounding guitar. love the z2 looks and sound!

CharAznable
11-16-2010, 10:23 PM
The string tension rant is right on.

Everything else.. pure hogwash.

Bart
11-16-2010, 10:42 PM
AFAIK you cant just buy one of his guitars. It seems like he has to deem you worthy. I like the look of the Rkc 480 copy he makes though. I dont think I would spend $2500 on one though.

Wow.Him and Dumble should hang out then.

fyler
11-17-2010, 08:28 AM
Alex (the builder of Zachary guitars) is a really nice guy. I own one of his guitars (a D1, the single cutaway Dano looking model), and it's hands down the best guitar I've ever played.
The website is intended to get folk riled up, & from the looks of this thread, it's doing it's job!
I can relate to Alex in that, for him, building exactly the guitars he wants, and railing against what he sees as the BS of the big instrument industry is very similar to punk rock rejecting the 'big' commercial music industry and doing things on their own terms. (i come from a punk/DIY/hardcore background, so that's why i see it this way...you may not).

tonic-penta
11-17-2010, 08:47 AM
i feel like ranting against the bullshit i see on his website since hes ranting against all the industry and stuff like that. so much for hand made, he forgot that pickups are a big part of the guitar sound. wonder whether he does for long hikes in search of natural lodestones, ferrofluids or rare earth magnets for his so called handmade shit. probably not. his magnets were probably cast and cut by some unknown faceless statistic in the third world. and all the hardware such as bridges and knobs and switches. id like to see him beat some of that metal into obedience via the good old hammer and forge. beauty in imperfection? lets see how his guitar fares in a studio. some things such as cutting the fret slots are best left to computers for a damned good reason, eyeballing not being one of them. and lastly to power-up the guitar and amp setup, maybe he might wanna get someone to ride those bicycle thingamajig to produce some electricity rather that having it mass produced via the burning of coal or some other power source eh?

on a side im wondering, does one still string those up with d'addarios? last i heard them strings arent handmade.

fyler
11-17-2010, 08:55 AM
The website is intended to get folk riled up, & from the looks of this thread, it's doing it's job!

i feel like ranting against the bullshit i see on his website...


see?

The bear
11-17-2010, 09:45 AM
Alex (the builder of Zachary guitars) is a really nice guy. I own one of his guitars (a D1, the single cutaway Dano looking model), and it's hands down the best guitar I've ever played.
The website is intended to get folk riled up, & from the looks of this thread, it's doing it's job!
I can relate to Alex in that, for him, building exactly the guitars he wants, and railing against what he sees as the BS of the big instrument industry is very similar to punk rock rejecting the 'big' commercial music industry and doing things on their own terms. (i come from a punk/DIY/hardcore background, so that's why i see it this way...you may not).

He is also attacking Tom Anderson who is considered a small builder.
I don think a "Nice guy" would rant like this and attack almost everyone in the guitar industry. A person like this just comes across as bitter and insecure-I would never purchase anything from someone like that.

stairs
11-17-2010, 09:54 AM
i dont want to "deserve" one of his guitars, as he states it on the site...

:rotflmao

whoismarykelly
11-17-2010, 10:01 AM
He is also attacking Tom Anderson who is considered a small builder.
I don think a "Nice guy" would rant like this and attack almost everyone in the guitar industry. A person like this just comes across as bitter and insecure-I would never purchase anything from someone like that.

Where does he attack anderson?

The bear
11-17-2010, 10:55 AM
Where does he attack anderson?

http://www.zacharyguitars.com/ZachPerspective.htm

Just scroll down a bit. Lot's of ranting here.

whoismarykelly
11-17-2010, 11:16 AM
http://www.zacharyguitars.com/ZachPerspective.htm

Just scroll down a bit. Lot's of ranting here.

I guess the two options when you start a company are to make a good product or talk down the competition so you product appears better. Clearly the latter is what Zachary opted for :dunno

fyler
11-17-2010, 11:33 AM
the website is far more tongue-in-cheek than you guys seem to realize. for example:
You go into any music store and you see the $3000 guitar hanging up next to the $300 guitar and they are virtually identical in looks, feel, tone and made the exact same way, on the same CNC machines. Both are almost the exact same guitar, except for the brand name and the endorser associated with each guitar. One is endorsed by some unknown death metal band in Ohio and the other is endorsed by Carlos Santana, Al DiMeola and Slash. Carlos is spiritual and knows the divine, Al can only play fast on a plastic guitar and if you buy that $3000 plastic guitar you will also get the lifestyle of Slash. You will be in touch with God as Carlos, play as well as DiMeola and party like Slash, all with from the same purchase. Not a bad deal. With the $300 CNC guitar, you will only get ugly fat chicks with tattoos and piercings. Its clear which guitar is more desirable to the Lexus driver and which one the parking lot attendant kid will buy.

...c'mon...that's funny!

brikus
11-17-2010, 11:56 AM
the website is far more tongue-in-cheek than you guys seem to realize. for example:


...c'mon...that's funny!


must...change...font...colour... :hide2

fyler
11-17-2010, 12:06 PM
must...change...font...colour... :hide2
i thought that added to the obnoxiousness. ;)

in the end, i do think Alex does his guitars a disservice by emphasizing his vitriol about the rest of the guitar industry on his website, rather than his (seriously fantastic) instruments.

I have had my Zach for several years (5...7? i've lost track), and it's literally the last guitar standing. i've sold every other guitar, and it is the one and only that i play every day. I highly doubt i will convince any of the folks who are so turned off my the Z website, but he truly does make an amazing instrument.

The bear
11-17-2010, 12:45 PM
the website is far more tongue-in-cheek than you guys seem to realize. for example:


...c'mon...that's funny!

I can't read that-can't see the letters on the screen.
I also don't really want to read it. I guess for me so called "humor" and instrument making doesn't go hand in hand.
The looks of these instruments doesn't appeal to me either. I'll stick with my Collings and Mcinturff!

Flinto2002
11-17-2010, 01:01 PM
Isn't this the guy who used to use enormous round frets that were sunk into the fretboard? The frets had no tangs, they were just round solid metal tubing, that was as big around as the inside of a bic pen. Quite interesting.

fyler
11-17-2010, 01:58 PM
Might be worth questioning whether he is actually trying to find customers...
this is the key, right here.

Alex does not want "customers/consumers/your money". He (whether you agree, or disagree) thinks of the guitars he sweats over, and pours his heart into as (functional) works of art, and wants to find players who appreciate them for what they are...the business of selling stuff is extremely far from his mind, or intent. think of him as an (temperamental, perhaps) artist, not a business man, and the extreme opinions/rants/whatever on his website make more sense.

personally, even if i didn't like him, i'd still play my Zachary. i don't need to be friends with the person that made my guitar. personality just doesn't enter into it for me. there are plenty of abrasive personalities in the builder/music/hell, every biz...i can separate the work from the person.

sahhas
11-17-2010, 02:03 PM
i didn't read all his website, some of it looked funny, i didn't take any of his stuff too seriously, he seems like he has a certain sense of humor which i think is funny....anyway...i did watch a lot of his youtube vids of his guitar demos....and just on that alone, i think his guitars have a nice sound. granted if you're a conservative guitarist, the Z2 will probably never/ever appeal to you.
but i think it's cool. nice to see someone do something different....

kevinhifi
11-17-2010, 02:16 PM
personally, even if i didn't like him, i'd still play my Zachary. i don't need to be friends with the person that made my guitar. personality just doesn't enter into it for me. there are plenty of abrasive personalities in the builder/music/hell, every biz...i can separate the work from the person.

Some people prefer to give business to people they think deserve it...not just for the product but for the integrity of the people behind the business. Others don't care about political affiliations or whether or not the people who run the company are a--holes. That's the choice we get to make as consumers.

I, personally, don't like to patronize a company that I don't like, regardless of the product. But I certainly understand those who don't care. There are other aspects of my life where I don't care and others do. Ahhh, the beauty of individualism.

Chrome Dinette
11-17-2010, 02:19 PM
Isn't this the guy who used to use enormous round frets that were sunk into the fretboard? The frets had no tangs, they were just round solid metal tubing, that was as big around as the inside of a bic pen. Quite interesting.

I believe you are thinking of TK Instruments.

baimun
11-17-2010, 02:25 PM
His site reads like the manifesto of a Uni-bomber type nut from a log cabiin in the woods. I'm surprised all the scattered text in different colored paragraphs are mostly in the same font. :D

limfac
11-17-2010, 02:42 PM
It's like the www.timecube.com of guitar makers...

Zelja
11-17-2010, 02:47 PM
I've bought strings from him a few times & it's always been hassle & attitude free, unlike some who are loved here & for whom excuses are made.

Yeah, the website is over the top - off the wall sense of humour? obnoxious? arrogant? lives in his own reality? eccentric? just plain nuts? maybe all of the preceding? - either way, he's at least a little interesting...

Can't comment on his guitar making skills - would be interesting to give a guitar a try. Definately wouldn't stump up cash before trying, but then again, I probably wouldn't be "worthy" anyway!:D

tonic-penta
11-17-2010, 03:02 PM
kinda unfair that all that mess happened to taku rather that this clown.

in light of all things, i retract this statement and apologize to all who have been offended by the rashness of mine forked tongue. i wont delete above statement, rather keep it up so as to let other folks know what was it that i retracted.

Chrome Dinette
11-17-2010, 03:12 PM
I like the looks of his guitars, especially the ones with the long upper horn, not so much the swiss cheese ones. I would definitely like to check one out.

e-z
11-17-2010, 03:25 PM
kinda unfair that all that mess happened to taku rather that this clown.

That's a little harsh, don't you think?

I don't know him and probably, based on his rants, not choose him for company but even jokingly wishing murder on someone is not cool.

Shiny_Beast
11-17-2010, 03:43 PM
I'm sure he can make a nice playing neck, I don't like the look of most of his guitars.

I don't mind the "arch" attitude, I can even buy into a few parts. Overall though, he puts me off, even if the website is half joking.

I wouldn't say I'd never own a Zach, but from what I understand, he wouldn't sell me one.

r9player
11-17-2010, 04:01 PM
I've owned one of his guitars when they were still affordable around $1K (and less used on ebay). It was quite a good guitar, very skinny neck, a little bright. But all in all very nice with a lot of good sounds and great playability. This was one of his very early ones.
Let it go in the end.
Alex himself, well he's very opinionated for sure but he was always nice over email with me. I always thought he'd be making more 'affordable' guitars, but then he started hiking up his prices more and more (I probably would've owned two Z's if not for that) which is good for him I guess.

Paul86
11-17-2010, 07:02 PM
I seriously like this guy. I can see myself playing one of his guitars too.
Oh he so makes fun of certain TGP guys, usually the non-pro crowd, with their "consumer is king" attitude that I find so repellent. A guitar is a guitar is a guitar. Some of the things people buy are much more pieces of furniture than anything else, and here's this guy making guitars out of cut outs from Ikea tables! How funny is that?
The fact that some people get riled up because of such childish teasing makes it even funnier. I mean, the best comedy is unintentional comedy, and the comments generated whenever there's a Zachary thread around here are hilarious!
Thank you guys, keep it coming!

Route234
11-17-2010, 07:23 PM
I seriously like this guy. I can see myself playing one of his guitars too.
Oh he so makes fun of certain TGP guys, usually the non-pro crowd, with their "consumer is king" attitude that I find so repellent. A guitar is a guitar is a guitar. Some of the things people buy are much more pieces of furniture than anything else, and here's this guy making guitars out of cut outs from Ikea tables! How funny is that?
The fact that some people get riled up because of such childish teasing makes it even funnier. I mean, the best comedy is unintentional comedy, and the comments generated whenever there's a Zachary thread around here are hilarious!
Thank you guys, keep it coming!

When you are stupid enough to buy an IKEA cutting board guitar for 3k Ill be the first to laugh at your expense. If you think its so funny/brilliant then put your money down. Im sure you are a good enough player to "make the Zachary guitar cut" so why not put your money where your mouth is?

mattmccloskey
11-17-2010, 07:56 PM
the website is far more tongue-in-cheek than you guys seem to realize. for example:


...c'mon...that's funny!

not really funny at all.

Flinto2002
11-17-2010, 08:43 PM
I believe you are thinking of TK Instruments.
Ah yes, thank you!

Scott Peterson
11-17-2010, 09:23 PM
He's coocoo crazy-pants. I get a hoot out of his rants, he's like a new wave Ed Roman. And that's a good thing. Go get 'em Zachary! He's tilting at windmills, but it is entertaining by any measure.

Drunkinminer
11-17-2010, 11:08 PM
Lets not forget the OP in this Thread.

http://www.ausband.com.au/modules.php?name=Forums&file=viewtopic&t=137253&postdays=0&postorder=asc&start=0

Jz Guitars
11-18-2010, 01:23 AM
When you are stupid enough to buy an IKEA cutting board guitar for 3k Ill be the first to laugh at your expense. If you think its so funny/brilliant then put your money down. Im sure you are a good enough player to "make the Zachary guitar cut" so why not put your money where your mouth is?

So rude, really. sounds like you're more angry that Zachary gets 3k for an Ikea cutting board than anything else. People are entitled to like whatever they want, I know people who spend more on clones of other guitars instead of just buying the real thing, to me that's stupid. I will always appreciate someone who is not afraid to create outside the box, and have the stones to make fun of the entire industry while he does it. You may not like Zachary guitars or Alex, but it's just plain rude to call someone stupid who does.

Roman Rist
11-18-2010, 05:37 AM
I will say this, this thread has probably brought quite a bit of new traffic to his site.:D

If I agree with his marketing strategy or not, or even like his guitars or not doesn't matter.

The fact is, the guy does produce instruments and seems to be getting them in to player's hands................which in the end, is the goal of any builder. :D


Now I ask this; is because he is not on this forum license to talk smack about him?

Chrome Dinette
11-18-2010, 05:56 AM
The more I look at it, the more the crazy text on the website seems to be tongue in cheek.

As for proving that you are worthy, I also get the impression that it isn't that daunting a task. I really think he would just prefer the guitars go to folks who will use them, as opposed to collectors. Whether one thinks it's any of his concern what the end user does is another matter, but if he is able to make the guitars he wants and sell them, more power to him.

shallbe
11-18-2010, 07:20 AM
Never any business from me I went to his website once and have no interest in even looking at it again.

huw
11-18-2010, 07:48 AM
Despite the undeniable wackiness of the guy, I have an internet buddy who owns two of his guitars & rates them very highly indeed.

Here's a thread on another forum where he spills the beans about his new Zachary hollow body jazz-box:

http://www.royal-orleans.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?f=14&t=36760&p=648496#p648496

John Coloccia
11-18-2010, 08:06 AM
I think he's entertaining and I read his site from time to time. Beyond that, I think it's a poor way to do business by bashing your competitors. That's just not how I was raised.

fyler
11-18-2010, 08:08 AM
The more I look at it, the more the crazy text on the website seems to be tongue in cheek.

As for proving that you are worthy, I also get the impression that it isn't that daunting a task. I really think he would just prefer the guitars go to folks who will use them, as opposed to collectors. Whether one thinks it's any of his concern what the end user does is another matter, but if he is able to make the guitars he wants and sell them, more power to him.

you get it!

and, incidentally, the body of my guitar was an IKEA kitchen table once (although i paid much less than 3K).
http://farm1.static.flickr.com/117/266143485_e8d9d83b57_z.jpg?zz=1

and as for the hateful calls to murder Alex...uh...isn't this place supposed to be uber-moderated? why aren't those users suspended, or banned?

verhoevenc
11-18-2010, 10:35 AM
A death threat is equivalent to a website with some over the top insults about the guitar industry? Are you a sociopath?

No, they're not equal. But you should also read more carefully. He said that he put THAT particular comment up with little thought, "BUT THE REST" he chooses to not retract.
Please let's not start putting words in one anothers' mouths here.
Chris

Flinto2002
11-18-2010, 10:44 AM
I thought the site was pretty entertaining. A little wacky, in a unabomber manifesto sort of way, but all in all, entertaining, and quite a departure from normal marketing and product placement.

it's a free country, he can do whatever he wants. If you don't like it, you don't have to buy from him.

I don't understand all the anger really, he's not half as wacked out as Ed Roman, and at least he is actually building the guitars from the ground up.

verhoevenc
11-18-2010, 11:11 AM
Ok, so a lot of people are defending him on the basis of free speech, etc. And I fully agree, he has every right to spout off nut-job (IMO) rants, we have every right to not buy from him because of it, and companies like PRS have every right to sue him for slander when they so see fit.
That's said, let's drop the "man behind the company" thing and look at the objective reasons why I would not ever want to own a Zachary guitar. These are things I noticed in a couple minutes of surfing his site today:
1- I saw SEVERAL guitars with cracked lumber. That, along with the IKEA guitar, shows he's not careful in his lumber selection and I would therefore not feel comfortable with him building me a guitar from lumber he chose.
2- Out of the few guitars I looked at I saw one with what I would consider an unusable amount of lateral runout in a neck. Once again, I don't trust his lumber choices.
3- I saw some other STRANGE figure in headstocks (didn't see good pic of neck's back) that would evince the neck is less than stable.
4- His video on his frontpage showing how "acoustically loud" one of his recent guitars is has SO much gain fuzz in the background that it's obvious what he's done... he's simply jacked up the gain on his mic to pick up the unplugged sound better and make it SOUND loud acoustically.
5- On one of his MOST RECENT bass builds (he's built enough he should have a better grasp by now) he had to jack the bridge saddles up SO HIGH (looks like to their max) cause he probably designed in poorly and that was the fix (or he's simply got poor design aesthetics?). Either or, he doesn't have the chops to charge his prices if he can't design builds that use a pretty standard bridge design effectively.
I could go on. But it's lunch time. WHO he is aside, I still stand that I would not want to own one of his guitars. I don't bash on other builders as a rule, but he has MORE than opened himself up to criticism with HIS bashing.
Chris

Paul86
11-18-2010, 12:37 PM
When you are stupid enough to buy an IKEA cutting board guitar for 3k Ill be the first to laugh at your expense. If you think its so funny/brilliant then put your money down. Im sure you are a good enough player to "make the Zachary guitar cut" so why not put your money where your mouth is?

Exactly! That's what I'm talking about! Thank you, thank you indeed for enlightening me with your brilliant, classy wit!
And since I'm stupid, I'll post a :sarcasm

I like to think of Mr Zachary as following the same line of thinking of a certain HAD, who builds amps for the stars. Apparently, he also refuses to sell his amps to anyone, and famous stars have reportedly chased after him to have an amp built. To misquote the credit card ad, "Fairy-dust-sprinkled-but-built-with-the-same-old-Fender-circuit-and-'proprietary'-parts amp: 12,000 dollars. Furniture-grade-swirling-maple-top-CNC-built monstrosity to be hung on the wall: 7,000 dollars. Refusing to build an instrument to full of cash and empty of skills wanna be musician: priceless."

tonic-penta
11-18-2010, 12:55 PM
Refusing to build an instrument to full of cash and empty of skills wanna be musician: priceless."

this i can actually understand. but what doesnt make sense is IIRC at certain parts of the site he slams satch and vai calling them overprocessed and untalented and a whole barrow of other non so sugar coated stuff. so WHO is he making guitars for if not either of both ends?

Bluedawg
11-18-2010, 01:38 PM
i suppose we might all be stuck at that level and not really playing if we troll like that. feedback accepted. my inner troll wants to go on, but i suppose practising would help me find me a gig after im done with my studies. :hide2


Yup ... I'd love to be practicing guitar ... but I'm at work

It's easier to get away with goofing off on the internets here ...

:hide

kevinhifi
11-18-2010, 02:16 PM
this i can actually understand. but what doesnt make sense is IIRC at certain parts of the site he slams satch and vai calling them overprocessed and untalented and a whole barrow of other non so sugar coated stuff. so WHO is he making guitars for if not either of both ends?

It's pretty clear that he's attempting to alienate absolutely everybody with his website. The result is several discussions like this where people are talking about him, trying to figure him out, fighting over his intent, defending him, slamming him, and...well...promoting him.

If you don't like his approach, the best thing you can do is stop talking about him.

e-z
11-18-2010, 02:25 PM
It's pretty clear that he's attempting to alienate absolutely everybody with his website. The result is several discussions like this where people are talking about him, trying to figure him out, fighting over his intent, defending him, slamming him, and...well...promoting him.

If you don't like his approach, the best thing you can do is stop talking about him.

I agree. He (or his surrogates) have done a good job promoting himself via this thread.

JPERRYROCKS
11-18-2010, 05:43 PM
Guys, this is all pretty easy to follow. These are simple, somewhat crude guitars that have minimal attention to detail.

He wants to do the most basic of everything - and then call it creativity because he wants the east way out.

And then act like a total ass and get attention. ...hey, look @ me!! But at the end of the day, you're acting like sid vicious because you know you don't have the talent to be geddy lee.

I've clicked on his website a few times before to read the rants...almost like being on ed romans website. Funny, but it's not worth another click. Why give the guy another view on his counter.

I wouldn't pay 500 bucks for one of his guitars, but to each their own.

John Coloccia
11-18-2010, 08:38 PM
FWIW, I think he does have one thing right. When it comes to making electrics, the choice of wood is a lot less important than many make it out to be. The wood does make a difference, but you can make a good sounding electric out of almost anything. They won't all sound the same, but I've yet to hear an electric and think to myself: "Boy, that stinks. If it were only made out of mahogany, it'd just be magical." Playability, ergonomics, how the nut is cut, and pickups really make just a huge difference compared to the wood. The wood is a bit like the fixins on the sandwich that don't make it good or bad, but steer it towards the flavor you're looking for.

As far as I can gather from what I've heard, he makes a fine playing guitar. Anyone who's made a guitar from scratch will tell you that getting to that point takes work, and maybe even a little talent. I still wish he didn't find the need to bash everyone else, though.

Just my opinion.

Souldriver
11-19-2010, 12:04 AM
http://fatmouse.org/

this is what i think of this all

brikus
11-19-2010, 01:16 AM
http://fatmouse.org/

this is what i think of this all


HA HA HA HA HA Awesome !!! :D :D :D

Fatmouse, the new Chuck Norris ? :D

Chrome Dinette
11-19-2010, 05:15 AM
Ok, so a lot of people are defending him on the basis of free speech, etc. And I fully agree, he has every right to spout off nut-job (IMO) rants, we have every right to not buy from him because of it, and companies like PRS have every right to sue him for slander when they so see fit.
That's said, let's drop the "man behind the company" thing and look at the objective reasons why I would not ever want to own a Zachary guitar. These are things I noticed in a couple minutes of surfing his site today:
1- I saw SEVERAL guitars with cracked lumber. That, along with the IKEA guitar, shows he's not careful in his lumber selection and I would therefore not feel comfortable with him building me a guitar from lumber he chose.
2- Out of the few guitars I looked at I saw one with what I would consider an unusable amount of lateral runout in a neck. Once again, I don't trust his lumber choices.
3- I saw some other STRANGE figure in headstocks (didn't see good pic of neck's back) that would evince the neck is less than stable.
4- His video on his frontpage showing how "acoustically loud" one of his recent guitars is has SO much gain fuzz in the background that it's obvious what he's done... he's simply jacked up the gain on his mic to pick up the unplugged sound better and make it SOUND loud acoustically.
5- On one of his MOST RECENT bass builds (he's built enough he should have a better grasp by now) he had to jack the bridge saddles up SO HIGH (looks like to their max) cause he probably designed in poorly and that was the fix (or he's simply got poor design aesthetics?). Either or, he doesn't have the chops to charge his prices if he can't design builds that use a pretty standard bridge design effectively.
I could go on. But it's lunch time. WHO he is aside, I still stand that I would not want to own one of his guitars. I don't bash on other builders as a rule, but he has MORE than opened himself up to criticism with HIS bashing.
Chris


I actually wish luthiers on here felt more free to post stuff like this, because you appear to have valid points about the build quality that would not necessarily be apparent to every non-builder. I would much rather read about the important details than the rantings.

Lex Luthier
11-19-2010, 07:51 AM
I've checked out his site in the past, some of it is funny. But I don't understand why he constantly slams PRS. He should be thanking Paul for opening the door for smaller builders to be successful. Paul went from building guitars by himself in a small room to now giving the Big 2 some serious competition.

His CNC rants I don't get. It's obvious he has no experience with them. I work in a machine shop filled with CNC machines. If anything, it reinforces to me how amazing some of these machines are, and what they are capable of doing. They don't mindlessly pump out perfect product with zero human input. It takes a person to program the CNC, it takes a person to set up the CNC, it takes a person to monitor the output and make adjustments. It takes a person to replace worn out end mills, cutters, drills, etc and make the neccesary adjustments. Recently, another CNC operator at the shop I work at made a $10,000 pile of junk parts because he made an error after replacing an end mill and didn't bother to check the first part (or any parts) afterwards to see if it was right.

I don't claim to be god's gift to lutherie, but most experienced luthiers I know would love to have a CNC if they could justify the expense.

I guess the bottom line is: If you make a great guitar, your workmanship will speak for itself.

eligit
11-22-2010, 11:38 AM
i love mine!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yTc3p36jXgo

tone is always somewhat subjective....one guy's ideal tone for their own playing is not what somebody else would want for theirs....same goes for looks. one guy wants an old jazzmaster with poor sustain and tuning (but a particular look and sound that they like)....one guy wants a klein headless guitar or a parker fly or a Les Paul or whatever....

In terms of soundness of construction, sustain, clarity, touch responsiveness, set up, intonation, neck and neck joint stability, tuning stability, balance between strings, feel of finish (no plastic!), harmonics, all around resonance, etc....these guitars are top notch in a very demonstrable way. imho. i have gigged and recorded with them for the last 6-7 years (and paid full price for every one) and in the mean time the ES-335 , the parker fly , and the '89 PRS custom 24 have all gone.

the string sets are also great. chords ring out in a fantastic way on a properly set up instrument and the low end in particular is simply more defined and sustains better than the usual 10-46 sets.

sadly the original builder of the Z overdrive is no longer alive and they have not been produced in years as far as i know. i use mine daily.

alex is a unique character for sure and rubs many if not most people the wrong way with his wildly hostile online persona and sprawling website which disses many other companies, etc....but the work itself is very very strong. if you are looking for both a best buddy AND guitar builder in one....he may not be your cup of tea.....but if you are looking for amazing instruments in terms of performance.....he is a very accomplished builder by any measure.

21stcenturykid
12-02-2010, 03:30 PM
I'd quite like to know if this guy has actually played a Tom Anderson? After blasting off about the way Tom does things it would be interesting to know if he had any first hand experience of one of Tom's guitars.

Maybe Tom does use cnc machines and a bunch of people to make his guitars, but all I know is he makes the best guitars I've ever played. I've only played 2 Andersons in my lifetime. Both of them were the nicest feeling and sounding instruments I've played(I've not exactly been stuck with bad guitars till this point either) 10 minutes with the first convinced me to put a deposit on the second.

I'd love to play a zachary to see how it compares, a friend of mine has gone on about them for years and years and i've never seen the appeal but it's the playing of the thing that counts to me. Even if the builder does come across as a douchebag.

On another note that website has damaged my eyes i think with all those colours. I had to use the negative colour function on my mac just to read the thing for more than 10 seconds!

7StringJazz
12-02-2010, 11:17 PM
I have one of his guitars.
http://www.zacharyguitars.com/060807_45.JPG

http://www.zacharyguitars.com/060807_02.JPG

http://www.zacharyguitars.com/060807_16.JPG

http://www.zacharyguitars.com/060807pics.htm

And I love it! He is a character all right. Follows his own muse. Destined to be forever misunderstood. He has some original ideas and unique solutions to the guitar. Not every one of his guitars are great, but everyone, has been labored over with serious intent. I have probably had 10 custom instruments made for me from electric basses to archtop guitars over the years, and this is among the finest. Not for everyone, but as you can tell from his site, he doesn't try to be! YMMV.

carry on.

Zelja
12-03-2010, 01:10 AM
i love mine!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yTc3p36jXgo

In terms of soundness of construction, sustain, clarity, touch responsiveness, set up, intonation, neck and neck joint stability, tuning stability, balance between strings, feel of finish (no plastic!), harmonics, all around resonance, etc....these guitars are top notch in a very demonstrable way. imho. i have gigged and recorded with them for the last 6-7 years (and paid full price for every one) and in the mean time the ES-335 , the parker fly , and the '89 PRS custom 24 have all gone.



I have one of his guitars.


http://www.zacharyguitars.com/060807pics.htm

And I love it! He is a character all right. Follows his own muse. Destined to be forever misunderstood. He has some original ideas and unique solutions to the guitar. Not every one of his guitars are great, but everyone, has been labored over with serious intent. I have probably had 10 custom instruments made for me from electric basses to archtop guitars over the years, and this is among the finest.

Hey, I'm not sure you guys that have solid experience with the builder & his guitars are actually allowed to pipe up when there's a a good old fashioned TGP lynching in progress.

Shiny_Beast
12-03-2010, 01:40 AM
the guitars mostly look nice, and I expect he walks the walk, I can't get past the butt ugly headstocks.

brikus
12-03-2010, 01:41 AM
hey, i'm not sure you guys that have solid experience with the builder & his guitars are actually allowed to pipe up when there's a a good old fashioned tgp lynching in progress.

ha ha ha ha ha :D :D :D

7StringJazz
12-03-2010, 10:37 AM
Ok, so a lot of people are defending him on the basis of free speech, etc. And I fully agree, he has every right to spout off nut-job (IMO) rants, we have every right to not buy from him because of it, and companies like PRS have every right to sue him for slander when they so see fit.
That's said, let's drop the "man behind the company" thing and look at the objective reasons why I would not ever want to own a Zachary guitar. These are things I noticed in a couple minutes of surfing his site today:
1- I saw SEVERAL guitars with cracked lumber. That, along with the IKEA guitar, shows he's not careful in his lumber selection and I would therefore not feel comfortable with him building me a guitar from lumber he chose.
2- Out of the few guitars I looked at I saw one with what I would consider an unusable amount of lateral runout in a neck. Once again, I don't trust his lumber choices.
3- I saw some other STRANGE figure in headstocks (didn't see good pic of neck's back) that would evince the neck is less than stable.
4- His video on his frontpage showing how "acoustically loud" one of his recent guitars is has SO much gain fuzz in the background that it's obvious what he's done... he's simply jacked up the gain on his mic to pick up the unplugged sound better and make it SOUND loud acoustically.
5- On one of his MOST RECENT bass builds (he's built enough he should have a better grasp by now) he had to jack the bridge saddles up SO HIGH (looks like to their max) cause he probably designed in poorly and that was the fix (or he's simply got poor design aesthetics?). Either or, he doesn't have the chops to charge his prices if he can't design builds that use a pretty standard bridge design effectively.
I could go on. But it's lunch time. WHO he is aside, I still stand that I would not want to own one of his guitars. I don't bash on other builders as a rule, but he has MORE than opened himself up to criticism with HIS bashing.
Chris

Quite certain of your observations from looking at pictures on a web site are you? Never having actually seen, or played one in the flesh, makes your observations worthless except where it relates to looks. Just as I can look at your guitars and immediately decide I'm not interested. Not that you build crap guitars, I don't know that. Without having played and heard one in the flesh, I can't know that. I'm just putting it in a similar context. I would expect nothing less than an honest appraisal from someone who has direct experience. But such certainty of opinion without direct experience is fascinating, and so very TGP, but not very credible. I'm glad you don't bash other builders as a rule. Just sayin.

Alex may be a lunatic, but his integrity as an artist is solid. I'll take his lunacy in exchange for an instrument that is both unique and inspiring. Of course YMMV and I don't think all of his guitars are great. But mine is!;)

Route234
12-03-2010, 04:32 PM
He has a right to his opinion. Its not slander and even though it is offensive to some, he is within his rights to insult others and honestly I think his opinions are grounded in some reality.

There is a lot of BS in the guitar community and I certainly do not agree with most of what he says and I really dont take him too seriously either, but I think he has every right to do what he is doing and to say what he is saying.

sumis
12-03-2010, 05:31 PM
the guy's ramblings has an adequte and congenial form in the web design:jo what a douche!

.

Flinto2002
12-03-2010, 05:53 PM
Looks to me like he has no concept of what a CNC is and what it requires to program. He has no real knowledge of Anderson who for many years built guitars with out CNC. Attacking other builders (on a public webpage no less) ....is incomprehensible as is giving him public attention. He is also looking for a slander lawsuit maybe even a class action one.

Slander, LOL. He'd actually need some assets to go after, which are probably lacking if his Ikea table wood supplier is any indication of his solvency. ;)

Paul86
12-03-2010, 07:31 PM
Quote:
What he says about Tom is indeed flat-out offensive. This guy is an ego-maniac and obviously delusional.

You guys that are defending him should be ashamed, he insults the guitar playing public and many fine builders for no reason.

My take on the above,
What most people post here is indeed flat-out offensive to anyone with two working neurons in their brains. Most "musicians" posting on TGP are ego-maniacs and obviously delusional.
You guys getting flat-out angry and in a severe state of denial because there's someone making fun of pompous builders and buyers should be ashamed of yourselves.

Route234
12-03-2010, 07:47 PM
I do like some of his weirder things, not a fan of a lot of his stuff to be honest, but I do like his efforts on things like this guitar:

http://www.zacharyguitars.com/291010_005.jpg

Flinto2002
12-04-2010, 11:13 AM
Have you ever talked to Tom Anderson or John Suhr on the phone? These guys are not pompous at all. They are extremely nice guys and very polite, very generous with their time, and not pretentious in the slightest. They work extremely hard and make really quality instruments.

+100, I don't know any other builder who is a generous with his time as John Suhr, just a really nice and helpful guy.

I'm also friends with Jim Tyler and Ted Stevenson, also very nice guys, not a speck of anything pretentious in either of them.

In regards to Tom Anderson... Ever since I first became aware of his guitars in '92, I have never heard anyone have anything bad to say about him. That includes the years long friendships I've have with some long term employees at Anderson. Never heard anyone take a shot at Tom.... Except Zachary.

Seriously, if Zachary didn't talk this much crap about luthiers who's skill dwarfs his, would we even be paying attention to him right now? :rotflmao Its guerilla marketing, tasteless, but just marketing.

Scott Peterson
12-04-2010, 03:08 PM
Folks - there was a run of one guy that was trolling here on this thread and essentially wished Zachary dead. If you don't report that, we won't see it. We then get the 'well, they don't like Zachary so that's allowed - preferential treatment, playing favorites... etc et. al." and really all that happened is that we never saw it because no one alerted us to it.

TGP is a member policed community, moderator enforced. I just happened to stumble back into this thread, and was a bit unnerved that not one of you longer term members didn't report that sort of thing.

If the system breaks down, the entire concept cannot work. Please help us and work with us to keep TGP the best it can be. Without your cooperation in these things, it cannot function correctly.

Posts removed, infraction and suspension handed out.

Now back to topic.

7StringJazz
12-04-2010, 05:25 PM
In the interest of adding some perspectives outside the 'he's nuts and rude to boot ‘posts, let me provide my own motivations in commissioning a guitar from chez Zachary. I do this in the hopes that someone sharing similar motivations might benefit and with the proviso that I’m not trying to convert anyone. It’s not critical to my wellbeing or self esteem that people agree with me. I bought mine for me. I'm comfortable in my tastes and what works for me. Your tastes and preferences may, and likely will, vary. It’s all good. Perhaps there is nothing more personal beyond the music you make, than the instrument you choose to make it with. Always follow your heart in these matters! That is unless you follow the crowd in matters of the heart!

First I like wood. I like the feel and look of wood. Wood that breathes. Wood. Alex is resolute in his devotion to natural wood unsealed by paint or lacquer or other finishes that seal the wood. This is a simple thing, but is a key one for me. I have other instruments that are lacquered/finished but if given the choice I would prefer oiled, wood that breaths with the world. We all know that most people like shiny so the manufacturers give you shiny. And to be honest, shiny also protects the wood. The fact that shiny and/or painting also hides imperfections works for the manufacturer as well. Alex takes the imperfections and works with them. I note the recent interest in relec-ing that has swept the guitar world. It’s like getting jeans and washing them 1000 times to get them to feel comfortable. Is this not a rebellion against shiny? Certainly that’s got to be a part of the appeal of these artificially aged instruments.

The thing I most like about Alex's design aesthetic is his neck carves. It’s the coolest, most comfortable neck carve I've experienced. Now neck carve is a very personal aspect of a guitar and a distinguishing characteristic. Anyone who has played several guitars knows that some are a better fit than others. Some just feel better than others. This is a personal preference and can be the go/no go on purchasing and keeping a guitar. I like Alex's neck design. It’s a tangible difference in his guitars.

I think his problem with CNC and PLEKs and shiny plastic finishes have more to do with their focus on soulless repeatability. Soulless cause one spec generates 100s. Machines stamping out copies, one after the other, the same as the last one. Where manufacturing efficiencies often take priority over other considerations. I can relate to his abhorrence of that. At some point we are going to have to stop changing for the machines. Many have pointed to his dissing other luthiers. I never saw it that way. I saw it as railing against the mentality that leads to the result; Unflinching sameness and not coincidentally the loss of skilled craftsmen and jobs. I’m reminded of a shop keeper who sold hand made pottery items from local artists. A couple complained that when they ordered a set of pots they were not each identical. He had to explain that they were handmade and that the small differences are intended. I wonder if the general loss of creativity in the human race is due in part to the loss of hand-made things in our lives. Think about it.

Alex is old world in this respect, as working by hand invariably adds uniqueness and separates one instrument from the other in more than a superficial way. Notice there are no 2 exactly alike. Its like asking an artist to build you a guitar. You can tell him what you like, but you can't tell him what to make except as concerns model type. They are not all masterpieces, but they are all unique creations and this is what motivates him. I like and relate very well to that. Obviously he can’t build as many guitars, but every guitar is his unique creation.

I came to guitar at age 50 (2005) after being a bass player for 35yrs (mostly 6 string basses). Furthermore I consider myself more composer than performer, so you could say my only having played guitar for 5yrs and being a composer rather than performer rates my opinion less than that of others. That’s cool. But I know what I like and have commissioned many custom instruments and mods from luthiers and cherish the experience of owning something unique. As a side note bass players tend to be much more open minded about instruments. You can see variations in bass guitars that dwarf the guitar world. So when I decided I wanted a guitar built for me after owning a Les Paul and a PRS, I went looking and found Alex. Just like before you got close to your wife or girlfriend, it was the looks that started the mating dance. Same with me and Zachary. I liked the look of the Z2 and like that he uses wider and thicker neck carves, and longer scale lengths than most. And I liked his single-mindedness about guitar building. So after speaking with Alex and other owners I commissioned a Z2 with the only condition that it be exotic wood. Somewhere in the process I decided I like 7 string instruments over 6 string ones in part because the 7 string necks are bigger. So I requested he instead make me a 7. As luck would have it, he had been considering doing a 7 and my 6 had not been started, so he committed to do a 7 and get on it. It was his first 7. It blew me away right from the start and has become my favorite solid body. I like everything about it. Its organic in a way that the PRS by contrast was artificial. This may strike some as blasphemy but I thought the PRS was too perfect. I mean that literally. It was so perfect that it was soulless. I can't explain it any better than that. Beautiful guitar with incredible flame top enshrouded in finish. Very shiny indeed!

I've also had my problems with Alex. He is a hard-headed curmudgeon to be such a young guy. But problems aside, I've been fully converted to his artistic vision, and though he rubs many people, including me at times, the wrong way, the result redeems him in my eyes. He is not my friend but I respect him as an artist and creator of personal instruments.

He will never be a Suhr, Anderson,..., let alone a Gibson, Fender or PRS! But he doesn’t care. And neither do I. He does not seek you out to sell you a guitar. You seek him out and commission one. He is like the iconoclastic protagonist in Ayn Rand’s the Fountainhead; Howard Roark.

“Before you can do things for people, you must be the kind of man who can get things done. But to get things done, you must love the doing, not the people! Your own work, not any possible object of your charity. I'll be glad if men who need it find a better method of living in the house I built, but that's not the motive of my work, nor my reason, nor my reward! My reward, my purpose, my life, is the work itself - my work done my way! Nothing else matters to me! “ Howard Roark from The Fountainhead.

Are not guitars worthy of such consideration and devotion? Alex makes guitars for the same reason I compose music. For himself.

If you can get past the bluster of a guy (Don Quixote?) pissing into the wind of modern instrument manufacturing , you just might be pleasantly surprised. Then again, maybe not. As always YMMV.;)

7StringJazz
12-05-2010, 07:33 PM
Z3-7 http://www.zacharyguitars.com/210409pics.htm

http://www.zacharyguitars.com/210409_015.JPG

whoismarykelly
12-05-2010, 07:45 PM
How is it that you ordered a custom guitar from him yet his site claims that he does not make guitars for people, but rather makes what he wants to make and then decides if he wants to sell it to someone?

In the interest of adding some perspectives outside the 'he's nuts and rude to boot Ďposts, let me provide my own motivations in commissioning a guitar from chez Zachary. I do this in the hopes that someone sharing similar motivations might benefit and with the proviso that Iím not trying to convert anyone. Itís not critical to my wellbeing or self esteem that people agree with me. I bought mine for me. I'm comfortable in my tastes and what works for me. Your tastes and preferences may, and likely will, vary. Itís all good. Perhaps there is nothing more personal beyond the music you make, than the instrument you choose to make it with. Always follow your heart in these matters! That is unless you follow the crowd in matters of the heart!

First I like wood. I like the feel and look of wood. Wood that breathes. Wood. Alex is resolute in his devotion to natural wood unsealed by paint or lacquer or other finishes that seal the wood. This is a simple thing, but is a key one for me. I have other instruments that are lacquered/finished but if given the choice I would prefer oiled, wood that breaths with the world. We all know that most people like shiny so the manufacturers give you shiny. And to be honest, shiny also protects the wood. The fact that shiny and/or painting also hides imperfections works for the manufacturer as well. Alex takes the imperfections and works with them. I note the recent interest in relec-ing that has swept the guitar world. Itís like getting jeans and washing them 1000 times to get them to feel comfortable. Is this not a rebellion against shiny? Certainly thatís got to be a part of the appeal of these artificially aged instruments.

The thing I most like about Alex's design aesthetic is his neck carves. Itís the coolest, most comfortable neck carve I've experienced. Now neck carve is a very personal aspect of a guitar and a distinguishing characteristic. Anyone who has played several guitars knows that some are a better fit than others. Some just feel better than others. This is a personal preference and can be the go/no go on purchasing and keeping a guitar. I like Alex's neck design. Itís a tangible difference in his guitars.

I think his problem with CNC and PLEKs and shiny plastic finishes have more to do with their focus on soulless repeatability. Soulless cause one spec generates 100s. Machines stamping out copies, one after the other, the same as the last one. Where manufacturing efficiencies often take priority over other considerations. I can relate to his abhorrence of that. At some point we are going to have to stop changing for the machines. Many have pointed to his dissing other luthiers. I never saw it that way. I saw it as railing against the mentality that leads to the result; Unflinching sameness and not coincidentally the loss of skilled craftsmen and jobs. Iím reminded of a shop keeper who sold hand made pottery items from local artists. A couple complained that when they ordered a set of pots they were not each identical. He had to explain that they were handmade and that the small differences are intended. I wonder if the general loss of creativity in the human race is due in part to the loss of hand-made things in our lives. Think about it.

Alex is old world in this respect, as working by hand invariably adds uniqueness and separates one instrument from the other in more than a superficial way. Notice there are no 2 exactly alike. Its like asking an artist to build you a guitar. You can tell him what you like, but you can't tell him what to make except as concerns model type. They are not all masterpieces, but they are all unique creations and this is what motivates him. I like and relate very well to that. Obviously he canít build as many guitars, but every guitar is his unique creation.

I came to guitar at age 50 (2005) after being a bass player for 35yrs (mostly 6 string basses). Furthermore I consider myself more composer than performer, so you could say my only having played guitar for 5yrs and being a composer rather than performer rates my opinion less than that of others. Thatís cool. But I know what I like and have commissioned many custom instruments and mods from luthiers and cherish the experience of owning something unique. As a side note bass players tend to be much more open minded about instruments. You can see variations in bass guitars that dwarf the guitar world. So when I decided I wanted a guitar built for me after owning a Les Paul and a PRS, I went looking and found Alex. Just like before you got close to your wife or girlfriend, it was the looks that started the mating dance. Same with me and Zachary. I liked the look of the Z2 and like that he uses wider and thicker neck carves, and longer scale lengths than most. And I liked his single-mindedness about guitar building. So after speaking with Alex and other owners I commissioned a Z2 with the only condition that it be exotic wood. Somewhere in the process I decided I like 7 string instruments over 6 string ones in part because the 7 string necks are bigger. So I requested he instead make me a 7. As luck would have it, he had been considering doing a 7 and my 6 had not been started, so he committed to do a 7 and get on it. It was his first 7. It blew me away right from the start and has become my favorite solid body. I like everything about it. Its organic in a way that the PRS by contrast was artificial. This may strike some as blasphemy but I thought the PRS was too perfect. I mean that literally. It was so perfect that it was soulless. I can't explain it any better than that. Beautiful guitar with incredible flame top enshrouded in finish. Very shiny indeed!

I've also had my problems with Alex. He is a hard-headed curmudgeon to be such a young guy. But problems aside, I've been fully converted to his artistic vision, and though he rubs many people, including me at times, the wrong way, the result redeems him in my eyes. He is not my friend but I respect him as an artist and creator of personal instruments.

He will never be a Suhr, Anderson,..., let alone a Gibson, Fender or PRS! But he doesnít care. And neither do I. He does not seek you out to sell you a guitar. You seek him out and commission one. He is like the iconoclastic protagonist in Ayn Randís the Fountainhead; Howard Roark.

ďBefore you can do things for people, you must be the kind of man who can get things done. But to get things done, you must love the doing, not the people! Your own work, not any possible object of your charity. I'll be glad if men who need it find a better method of living in the house I built, but that's not the motive of my work, nor my reason, nor my reward! My reward, my purpose, my life, is the work itself - my work done my way! Nothing else matters to me! ď Howard Roark from The Fountainhead.

Are not guitars worthy of such consideration and devotion? Alex makes guitars for the same reason I compose music. For himself.

If you can get past the bluster of a guy (Don Quixote?) pissing into the wind of modern instrument manufacturing , you just might be pleasantly surprised. Then again, maybe not. As always YMMV.;)

7StringJazz
12-06-2010, 07:02 AM
How is it that you ordered a custom guitar from him yet his site claims that he does not make guitars for people, but rather makes what he wants to make and then decides if he wants to sell it to someone?

That may be his current business model. I know when I commissioned mine, he was taking orders, which also required a non refundable deposit. I also sent him some of my music and pics of some the custom instruments I own and was considered 'worthy'. :rotflmao;)

Lets face it, he's generally not dealing with a lot of people anyway since most are put off, if not outright 'offended' by his website. Just look at some of the comments in this thread. With some poor fellow wishing he had been murdered rather than another person who was. Talk about over the top and offensive! :crazyguy
His biting sense of humor, complete disdain for mass manufacturers and their accountants, combined with his overall curmudgeon demeanor eliminates the majority of potential customers. Hell that might be his purpose. Blast the front door with over the top criticism of the current state of mass guitar manufacturing techniques, blow-up some sacred cows, and the people left are either very serious or as crazy and iconoclastic as he is. In my case its both! ;) And of those left and still interested he does the ones he wants.

He is not impressed by your money, but is by your music. Like I said, he's not your average bear. It may be simpler for him to just build what he wants and sell what he wants without regard for anyone specific. Lots of artist are like that. And say/think what you will, Alex is an artist. You will need to contact him to know for sure.

verhoevenc
12-06-2010, 04:51 PM
Quite certain of your observations from looking at pictures on a web site are you? Never having actually seen, or played one in the flesh, makes your observations worthless except where it relates to looks. Just as I can look at your guitars and immediately decide I'm not interested. Not that you build crap guitars, I don't know that. Without having played and heard one in the flesh, I can't know that. I'm just putting it in a similar context. I would expect nothing less than an honest appraisal from someone who has direct experience. But such certainty of opinion without direct experience is fascinating, and so very TGP, but not very credible. I'm glad you don't bash other builders as a rule. Just sayin.

Alex may be a lunatic, but his integrity as an artist is solid. I'll take his lunacy in exchange for an instrument that is both unique and inspiring. Of course YMMV and I don't think all of his guitars are great. But mine is!;)

I really think you should go back and read what I wrote... Cause you seemed to have TOTALLY missed the ball. Cracked lumber, run-out, figure that is tell-tale of being unstable, and noticing impractical design flaws is not a judgment of aesthetics.
Feel free to respond with proper argumentation.
Chris

Pfeister
12-06-2010, 05:58 PM
Normally, when I see anything about Zachary Guitars, I just sit back and watch the fireworks, but this deserved a mention.

He posted about this thread on his site. He doesn't give the forum name, but he actually quotes some of the responses.

I'm remaining unbiased and not giving any opinions or saying anything about him, his site or his guitars. I just thought that was worth noting.

7StringJazz
12-06-2010, 07:35 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by 7StringJazz http://img.thegearpage.net/board/images/buttons/viewpost.gif (http://www.thegearpage.net/board/showthread.php?p=9559799#post9559799)
Quite certain of your observations from looking at pictures on a web site are you? Never having actually seen, or played one in the flesh, makes your observations worthless except where it relates to looks. Just as I can look at your guitars and immediately decide I'm not interested. Not that you build crap guitars, I don't know that. Without having played and heard one in the flesh, I can't know that. I'm just putting it in a similar context. I would expect nothing less than an honest appraisal from someone who has direct experience. But such certainty of opinion without direct experience is fascinating, and so very TGP, but not very credible. I'm glad you don't bash other builders as a rule. Just sayin.

Alex may be a lunatic, but his integrity as an artist is solid. I'll take his lunacy in exchange for an instrument that is both unique and inspiring. Of course YMMV and I don't think all of his guitars are great. But mine is!;)


I really think you should go back and read what I wrote... Cause you seemed to have TOTALLY missed the ball. Cracked lumber, run-out, figure that is tell-tale of being unstable, and noticing impractical design flaws is not a judgment of aesthetics.
Feel free to respond with proper argumentation.
Chris

Whose arguing? You have no personal experience of any of his guitars as a MUSICAL instrument. Unless and until you have that experience, it's just blather. I was merely pointing that out. You are certainly free to draw your own conclusions from limited knowledge. Its not a crime. Hell, here on TGP its an occupation. Have at it. I prefer to talk about his guitars from the experience of owning and loving one. Just sayin.

NGroeneveld
12-06-2010, 08:00 PM
Zachary gets one of his buddies to start this thread - and people fall all over it. At least his marketing strategy works.

verhoevenc
12-06-2010, 09:13 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by 7StringJazz http://img.thegearpage.net/board/images/buttons/viewpost.gif (http://www.thegearpage.net/board/showthread.php?p=9559799#post9559799)
Quite certain of your observations from looking at pictures on a web site are you? Never having actually seen, or played one in the flesh, makes your observations worthless except where it relates to looks. Just as I can look at your guitars and immediately decide I'm not interested. Not that you build crap guitars, I don't know that. Without having played and heard one in the flesh, I can't know that. I'm just putting it in a similar context. I would expect nothing less than an honest appraisal from someone who has direct experience. But such certainty of opinion without direct experience is fascinating, and so very TGP, but not very credible. I'm glad you don't bash other builders as a rule. Just sayin.

Alex may be a lunatic, but his integrity as an artist is solid. I'll take his lunacy in exchange for an instrument that is both unique and inspiring. Of course YMMV and I don't think all of his guitars are great. But mine is!;)




Whose arguing? You have no personal experience of any of his guitars as a MUSICAL instrument. Unless and until you have that experience, it's just blather. I was merely pointing that out. You are certainly free to draw your own conclusions from limited knowledge. Its not a crime. Hell, here on TGP its an occupation. Have at it. I prefer to talk about his guitars from the experience of owning and loving one. Just sayin.

Hahahaha, you still don't get it man. But ok, have a nice day.
Chris
PS: Don't know why it deleted my previous quote from in there, so look above for reference.

Flinto2002
12-06-2010, 10:45 PM
I gotta tell you, I think the guy is pretty funny. This is some of his latest verbiage, most likely about this very thread... I had no idea the forums I like to hangout on were public toilets, not that I was participating in circle jerks. I wonder if I need to come clean to my girlfriend :bonk


I was recently set straight regarding the Internet when complaining about the astonishing ignorance and the masses of stupid vermin found on guitar forums. I was told by the fourth most dedicated Z player that "You put it out there on the Internet. There is no moron filter available for e-mail. It is what it is. Get over it."

But its just astonishing to me! They all live on guitar forums and masturbate around a circle with their equals. This is why I call them Circle Jerks. Its just not a good scene. Its nothing more than a disgusting public toilet. In fact that is exactly what a guitar forum is. A public toilet. There you have losers from everywhere congregating for group support and growing their stupidity under the cowardliness of anonymity. They don't have to prove any ability or accomplishment, not even their identity.

Take this for example: "I really like his guitars. too bad you gotta kiss his ass for him to even consider making you one."

No you don't have to kiss my ass. All you need to do is prove to me that you can actually play the guitar and prove to me that you are not a moron. Just give me evidence for these two simple requirements and I will make you the best guitar in the world. Its as easy and simple as it gets.

Or how about this circle jerk?

I just don't know what kind of person would want to be part of that particular club. :dunno

The ones part of this club are all those who have proven that they can play the guitar and have a certain amount of intelligence. They now own and play the best electric guitars in the world.

I just don't know what kind of person would want to be part of that particular club. :dunno

You stupid piece of shit,... we are the ones who make up this club. Why? Because we can! ... and you can't.
So get back to your guitar forum you shameful jerk, you worthless anonymous piece of crap. That is where you belong.

Well, that's all to report for now. Next time I will not hold back with my opinions.

Oh, before I forget. PLAYERS WANTED!!! Are there any still out there? Or are gear forums posters the only thing left?
What a horrible nightmare that is.

Scott Peterson
12-06-2010, 11:02 PM
His attitude and hostility are honestly sad. I think it is pretty obvious (no offense to happy owners) why he has a day job.

Shiny_Beast
12-06-2010, 11:30 PM
I totally dig the old school attitude and OCD when it comes to the guitar as a work of art. I'm also assuming his guitars play well too. It's the relelntless tongue in cheek catch me if you can elistist dribble that makes me not want to associate myself with his work. So you have to be intelligent to play his guitars, does that group include me? I'm not sure I even want it to.

I have a soft spot for boastfullness and certain arrogance, we north americans aren't really supposed to toot our own horn, it's refreshing to see it sometimes. Still, I'm not entirely sure how, but that website alienated me.

eligit
12-07-2010, 10:39 AM
I really think you should go back and read what I wrote... Cause you seemed to have TOTALLY missed the ball. Cracked lumber, run-out, figure that is tell-tale of being unstable, and noticing impractical design flaws is not a judgment of aesthetics.
Feel free to respond with proper argumentation.
Chris

i think the use of "flawed" materials is a purposeful statement. It is a way of saying that the obsession with plastic covered "10" tops, 20 layer binding, ornate inlays, etc are a distraction from whether an instrument is really great or not. no offense to owners of very ornate guitars.

as far as structural integrity related to the woods used....these guitars have the most stable necks i have ever played....bar none. tightest neck joints of all time.

as far as "impractical design flaws".....after gigging and recording with em for many years i have not run into any problems with any flaws. the guitars ring like a bell, sustain for days, and stay in tune better than my gibsons and PRS guitars ever did (the parker was the best at staying in tune due to it's non wood construction etc but sounded and felt wrong to me). string trees notwithstanding....the Z design just works.

alex does seem to be on something of a mission to drive away business (or at least certain kinds of business).....which i cannot fully explain. the guitars are really good tho.

eligit
12-07-2010, 10:50 AM
His attitude and hostility are honestly sad. I think it is pretty obvious (no offense to happy owners) why he has a day job.

i think that is a very astute observation. I have no idea if he runs another business anymore or not....however you are right on about his not wanting to be part of the larger guitar marketplace.

I think he just wants to make the instruments in a certain very personal way and be left to his own devices totally separate from the world of consumerism. One could say this is is either admirable, crazy.....or both. or neither.

as a side note i just got an email from a good friend of mine (also a professional musician) who just got a new Z bass delivered to him in germany. he is very happy with it.

http://www.zacharyguitars.com/190510_045.jpghttp://www.zacharyguitars.com/190510_045.jpg

eligit
12-07-2010, 11:02 AM
How is it that you ordered a custom guitar from him yet his site claims that he does not make guitars for people, but rather makes what he wants to make and then decides if he wants to sell it to someone?

i think he is a bit ambivilent about the whole custom idea....he basically builds what he wants in terms of woods, pick ups, etc (after agreeing to a certain scale neck, model type, etc).

incidentally....my "go to" guitar is a Z guitar that i did NOT even originally own. i am the second owner....and that experience made me totally rethink the whole idea of even wanting a custom guitar. sometimes a good guitar is just a good guitar and i love playing it even if it was made for a totally different person. incredible resonance, sustain, clarity, tuning stability, action, intonation, etc....and originally sold for $1800 if i am not mistaken.

incidentally i have no financial interest in this company....i had to pay for every guitar and have never even met alex in person. i just think he makes really great guitars in a totally unique way.

stan p
12-07-2010, 12:05 PM
I find this extremely cool! The guy is not trying to build a business or reputation - he rather enjoys guitars and building them and wants to have as much funs as he can doing that!! He brushes off all people who stand on his way to enjoying what he does. That's cool IMO:)

verhoevenc
12-07-2010, 02:16 PM
i think the use of "flawed" materials is a purposeful statement. It is a way of saying that the obsession with plastic covered "10" tops, 20 layer binding, ornate inlays, etc are a distraction from whether an instrument is really great or not. no offense to owners of very ornate guitars.

as far as structural integrity related to the woods used....these guitars have the most stable necks i have ever played....bar none. tightest neck joints of all time.

as far as "impractical design flaws".....after gigging and recording with em for many years i have not run into any problems with any flaws. the guitars ring like a bell, sustain for days, and stay in tune better than my gibsons and PRS guitars ever did (the parker was the best at staying in tune due to it's non wood construction etc but sounded and felt wrong to me). string trees notwithstanding....the Z design just works.

alex does seem to be on something of a mission to drive away business (or at least certain kinds of business).....which i cannot fully explain. the guitars are really good tho.

And if you look back and read my original post, I don't talk about the sonic qualities, or playability. I am not commenting on things I have not experienced. I'm only commenting on his worrying lumber choices (which you can see clearly on the site if knowledgeable in that domain) and how TO ME they would illicit a level of fear in ordering from him. That said, I do comment on the "sound" of his guitar indirectly on one point. But I'm not actually commenting on the tone of the instrument, merely what seems like a misleading marketing ploy, to once again evince my reservations of trusting the man.
Please don't put words in my mouth here people.
Chris

stan p
12-07-2010, 04:54 PM
I am sorry John, I did not read it and thus cannot discuss this objectively.

I hope my comment did not offend you and other builders here who I deeply respect.

rh
12-07-2010, 05:03 PM
Anyone here ... owned one of his guitars ?

Had one sent to me several years back. His persuasive approach is not unlike your garden variety cult of personality.

The guitar made it a few days before it went back.

Not a fan, although I allow that someone may find them completely satisfactory.

7StringJazz
12-07-2010, 06:32 PM
I see no reason to bash the competition or your potential customers (you guys) to sell your product.
His diatribe on Tom Anderson couldn't be further from the truth.
I'm ashamed to say I bothered to read most of it.

John, I have the highest regard for you and your company and most, but certainly not all luthiers, who have made a successful niche in the music instrument business. Its a tough as nails endeavor and from what I see from you and your company, you have managed to do so with class and sincerity. Bravo! (btw I own a PT100!)

I love my Z and in no way support how Alex markets his work. I'm not in his head. It is what it is and is as baffling to me as it is to you. But I often come into contact with people whose brilliance exceeds their otherwise boorish behavior. Boorish behavior that without the talent would generally not end well for that person. Its not at all uncommon in the sciences, engineering and arts for the originator to be a crass asshole and given wide latitude to be a prick as a result of their talents. I give Alex that latitude and ignore his BS even as I continue to admire what he has wrought. The only area of his website I visit is his gallery. The other stuff is as you and others have suggested in poor taste and juvenile at best, and needlessly antagonistic, and inflammatory at worst. But there you go.

At the risk of offending you further, let me just say the market is free and people are still able to buy crap as well as gems. Which is which is often not very clear and often depends on whose doing the buying and what motivations, circumstances etc led to their purchase decision. Its not for me to judge them on their purchase. Alex sells his guitars in spite of his website rants. Some are even owned by TGP members but I would guess not the typical TGPer. ;)

I posted my thoughts here since I saw what one called a 'good old TGP lynching in progress' and wanted to add my own perspective to the conversation. Hopefully I have been respectful of those who disagree with me.

I suspect Alex will not change. He is who he is. People are free to not buy from him or in any way interact with him. As always YMMV.

eligit
12-07-2010, 08:50 PM
And if you look back and read my original post, I don't talk about the sonic qualities, or playability. I am not commenting on things I have not experienced. I'm only commenting on his worrying lumber choices (which you can see clearly on the site if knowledgeable in that domain) and how TO ME they would illicit a level of fear in ordering from him. That said, I do comment on the "sound" of his guitar indirectly on one point. But I'm not actually commenting on the tone of the instrument, merely what seems like a misleading marketing ploy, to once again evince my reservations of trusting the man.
Please don't put words in my mouth here people.
Chris

sigh.
sonic qualities (sustain, balance, intonation, harmonics, etc) observed over time are DIRECTLY related to structural integrity and woods used in construction. as i said....he purposely uses wood you find "worrying" to make an artistic statement....and these "flawed" pieces of wood have absolutely no negative impact on the functionality and lasting musical usefulness of the instrument. the guitars are physically extremely sound. there is nothing to be afraid of. the weather/humidity extremes are severe between summer and winter here in NYC and while my acoustic moves all over the place my Z guitars are solid as a rock and only require maintenance when the frets start to wear down after years of use.

an average SG with it's wiggly neck joint and vulnerable headstock (prone to snapping off as many have seen) are more structurally weak than any of the Z guitars i have personally played (maybe 5-6 over the years). my own gibson and PRS guitars (two giants in the guitar industry and respected all around the world) had less stable necks and inferior intonation and sustain as compared to any of my Z guitars....ie they were less structurally sound. just an observation. it does NOT mean (imho) that gibsons and PRS guitars are useless and impossible to get a cool tone out of, and if you play one you are an idiot (etc etc etc).....it just means i found both to be less stable physically than my Z guitars.

as a side note i should only add: the fact that i play Z guitars and respect the integrity of the work has nothing to do with my take on Alex's personality as displayed on his website, his insults directed at other companies, etc. that is his business. i simply think these are really good instruments. our personalities could not be more different.

verhoevenc
12-07-2010, 09:17 PM
If we're going to be comparing movement in an acoustic to movement in a solidbody electric, we are still not on the same page. I'm done with this argument. My comments stand.
Chris

eligit
12-07-2010, 09:23 PM
If we're going to be comparing movement in an acoustic to movement in a solidbody electric, we are still not on the same page. I'm done with this argument. My comments stand.
Chris

i am sorry if i offended you in any way.

acoustic guitars aside.....compared to both my gibson 335, and '89 PRS custom 24 my Z guitars are simply more physically stable and the necks required less adjustment due to climactic conditions. the Z guitars also had superior clarity of notes, smoothness and amount of sustain, balance between the registers in terms of volume and feel, balance between the strings, intonation, and better tuning stability. these are all measurable things that i observed when directly comparing the guitars.

as far as personal taste in tone and what exactly is good tone, bad tone, how something is recorded, aesthetic taste in terms of body shapes, methods of advertising and publicity, etc.....that is a whole other discussion and i can't add much there.

verhoevenc
12-07-2010, 10:23 PM
No offense taken, I'm pretty easy going in general. It's just pretty obvious that you, myself, and 7string jazzer aren't going to make headway on changing each others' opinions. That and one can only argue on a subject for so long without any change before they tire of the material. These are my personal observations based on what I see, and compared to how I would choose to work. That's all.
Chris

7StringJazz
12-07-2010, 10:45 PM
John, I have the highest regard for you and your company and most, but certainly not all luthiers, who have made a successful niche in the music instrument business. Its a tough as nails endeavor and from what I see from you and your company, you have managed to do so with class and sincerity. Bravo! (btw I own a PT100!)

I love my Z and in no way support how Alex markets his work. I'm not in his head. It is what it is and is as baffling to me as it is to you. But I often come into contact with people whose brilliance exceeds their otherwise boorish behavior. Boorish behavior that without the talent would generally not end well for that person. Its not at all uncommon in the sciences, engineering and arts for the originator to be a crass asshole and given wide latitude to be a prick as a result of their talents. I give Alex that latitude and ignore his BS even as I continue to admire what he has wrought. The only area of his website I visit is his gallery. The other stuff is as you and others have suggested in poor taste and juvenile at best, and needlessly antagonistic, and inflammatory at worst. But there you go.

At the risk of offending you further, let me just say the market is free and people are still able to buy crap as well as gems. Which is which is often not very clear and often depends on whose doing the buying and what motivations, circumstances etc led to their purchase decision. Its not for me to judge them on their purchase. Alex sells his guitars in spite of his website rants. Some are even owned by TGP members but I would guess not the typical TGPer. ;)

I posted my thoughts here since I saw what one called a 'good old TGP lynching in progress' and wanted to add my own perspective to the conversation. Hopefully I have been respectful of those who disagree with me.

I suspect Alex will not change. He is who he is. People are free to not buy from him or in any way interact with him. As always YMMV.

All true, but usually those people are not allowed to interact with the public. No comments about his product or workmanship, just his approach to fellow man. It is fine to second guess someones methods, practices or voodo and challenge them to an honest discussion in a forum where they have a chance to respond but this isn't his path.
Despite how nice his guitars may be... if they are indeed quality instruments, he is doing himself a severe disservice by his treatment of fellow and some extremely knowledgeable builders. Obviously he doesn't care and if I were a purchaser of an instrument that lack of respect for a fellow earthling might be an indication of his customer service, just saying since he saw free to lump myself and Tom in to his pile of discontent for fellow builders. Anderson is actually stopping by tomorrow to say hi. 90% of the builders I know all work together especially when in a bind and help each other as a community. This is how man progresses from Neanderthal. I fear you are right though, he simply doesn't care... a bit self destructive me thinks. At this point I see no reason to give him any more free press nor should anyone else IMO.:bong

Agreed. But if by free press you mean participating in this thread, that's not very sporting. The title is Zachary Guitars after all. ;) When the OP asks what users know about something its perfectly ok to say 'he's full of it' and his website is a disgusting craphole of bile. (hey i like that) as well as he does some cool shit. No?

I hear you on the first part, though I honestly don't take it all so seriously. Lampooning music instrument practices, executives, consumers etc is not that big a deal. Its just an up yours attitude. But when you, an influential music industry executive and maven here on TGP, end by suggesting that no one should participate in this thread or have any dealings with him. That's not much different from what he does on his site. The only difference is 'he hit me first'. Knowing Alex he would take your qoute and post it adding to the pile. Just sayin.

Zachary guitars exist or not because he builds them. People will buy them, sell them, burn them because they want to.

At the end of the day I would hope some music gets made.

peace

sumis
12-08-2010, 03:38 AM
i play suhr. i love his guitars to death. if john posted something like that on his site, i'd probably play something else ... that's just me.

.

whoismarykelly
12-08-2010, 06:45 AM
Normally, when I see anything about Zachary Guitars, I just sit back and watch the fireworks, but this deserved a mention.

He posted about this thread on his site. He doesn't give the forum name, but he actually quotes some of the responses.

I'm remaining unbiased and not giving any opinions or saying anything about him, his site or his guitars. I just thought that was worth noting.

The amount of copy on his site that is taken from forum posts indicates that he spends a pretty good chunk of time searching his own name to see what people are saying about him.

Crystal Lettuce
12-08-2010, 07:04 AM
From what I can see the purpose of this thread was not to judge/assess the guy's production....but just to highlight the unusual humor on his website....maybe you guys are pushing it a bit too far... :dunno

7StringJazz
12-10-2010, 09:08 AM
http://www.zacharyguitars.com/300710pics.htm

http://www.zacharyguitars.com/300710_030.jpg

http://www.zacharyguitars.com/300710_018.jpg

Beware of flaws in the wood! You just might be banned from the TGP shiny guitar club. ;)

shallbe
12-10-2010, 09:19 AM
http://www.zacharyguitars.com/300710pics.htm

http://www.zacharyguitars.com/300710_030.jpg

http://www.zacharyguitars.com/300710_018.jpg

Beware of flaws in the wood! You just might be banned from the TGP club. ;)


Is that a three piece back? What woods were used in the guitar? Ebony board?

verhoevenc
12-10-2010, 10:22 AM
Looks like Padauk top, ebony board, and perhaps walnut and maple back?
Chris

stan p
12-10-2010, 11:24 AM
http://www.zacharyguitars.com/300710pics.htm

http://www.zacharyguitars.com/300710_030.jpg

http://www.zacharyguitars.com/300710_018.jpg

Beware of flaws in the wood! You just might be banned from the TGP shiny guitar club. ;)

Bill Conklin made some exceptional one offs with spalted maple that had holes! It is cool!

whoismarykelly
12-10-2010, 12:39 PM
I've noticed that he leaves the electronics cavities open on a lot of his guitars which seems strange considering he expects people to really play these constantly. Thats begging for unwanted stuff to get into the electronics and cause noise and crackle issues unless everything he is using is sealed like PEC or similar.

Route234
12-10-2010, 01:42 PM
Bill Conklin made some exceptional one offs with spalted maple that had holes! It is cool!


Holes=cool
cracks and splinters in the wood=bad

verhoevenc
12-10-2010, 06:33 PM
Ambrosia maple is probably what you're thinking of as it's the maple known for holes. Those holes are fine as they're not due to other structural issues, they're simply burrows from bugs. Cracks and knots are different cause they are the result of structural/drying issues, evince internal stresses, and will actually affect tone. Tap two similar boards, one with a crack in it, one without. If it's a legit crack like that shown in the padauk, you will HEAR the crack. I kid you not.
And for reference, Ken Parker is under the impression that internal stresses are the bain of tonal existence* (that said, he's working on acoustic instruments so granted that principal does apply more there). Ulrich Teuffel is convinced long straight grained sections are key to tone in electrics, hence the shape of the birdfish bars as well as his liking of long upper bouts (ala Niwa). Lastly, tap a quilted maple board and a plain, straight grained maple board of the same dimensions, one will sound MUCH closer to cardboard than the other ;) That said, this is because figure is literally a diversion of the grain pattern in wood and therefore is less effective in sound transfer. This is the same thing that is going to happen in knots, except it will be more extreme (compare grain pattern of knot to curl). Also, in some cases of large knots grain may actually effectively END and therefore make sound transmission even less effective than simply changing the direction of grain. Glue two pieces of wood together endgrain-to-endgrain and tap it, sound transmission will be horrendous (granted this is an extreme case, but does demonstrate the principal quite well). My thoughts on this remind me a lot of fluid dynamics. For instance, take a straight hose and pump air at a given pressure (think "energy," so in our case sound energy) through it. At the end of it you will end up with relatively the same pressure (assuming a reasonable distance) because the friction, as well as the way the water flows is relatively unaffected. Then, take a pipe of the same length and put a nice swivel/angle piece in the center. Measure again, and you'll find your pressure has actually dropped due to the friction as well as fluid turbulence at this junction. This is how I view sound. It is an energy traveling down pipes (grain). The more you mess with the pathway, the more you will lose sound-transfer.
Chris
*To the point he re-joints his centerlines after carving his tops! (carving will release stresses as well)

eligit
12-10-2010, 10:32 PM
^

all conceptual stuff aside....the tone transfer on these instruments is as good as it gets. they literally ring like a bell. the neck joint is tighter than any i have ever played and you can feel the vibrations from the headstock to back of body.

they are as clear, pure, balanced, and full of ringing clear sustain moreso than any other guitar i have played.

i have not played the guitar pictured above with the crack displayed...so i cannot speak to that one in particular....however i think considering the very high performance standard of the 4 guitars that I DO own ....it is highly doubtful that the crack seen in that picture makes the guitar sound in any way deficient....although i can certainly see how it could be seen as a negative statement against the common practice of what kinds of woods are good enough for a high end solid body electric guitar.

in direct comparisons the les paul's (jr, standard, one custom) i have compared my Z2 guitar to sounded dull and lacking in sustain through all the registers. my '89 PRS custom 24 (which needless to say was cosmetically "perfect" with no flaws of any kind in the wood and a "10" top, etc) sounded completely "blah" with nothing to distinguish it tonally. average sustain, clarity, balance, etc. it sounded "fine" for lack of a better word.....and the Z2s sounded much more vibrant, sparkling, resonant, etc.

perfection of every inch of top wood does NOT equal a great sounding guitar. it is mostly a cosmetic thing...a way of packaging the instrument to entice perspective buyers. i think perhaps there has evolved this whole new era of guitar production which is geared toward creating the guitar that looks the most flashy, glossy, 3-D, ornate, bejeweled, and "beautiful" under the lights in a glass display case....which may or may not be a great feeling and playing guitar. I have also witnessed the hypnotic effect of cosmetically astounding instruments on people in stores, etc.....they just stare and stare and stare.....and if they ever really do play the guitar at some point their brain has already been fully programmed by the look and idea of the instrument...and the actual tone and resonance are almost besides the point. not that everyone is like this....just that it is a phenomena i have personally witnessed many times.

Flinto2002
12-11-2010, 12:31 AM
^


in direct comparisons the les paul's (jr, standard, one custom) i have compared my Z2 guitar to sounded dull and lacking in sustain through all the registers. my '89 PRS custom 24 (which needless to say was cosmetically "perfect" with no flaws of any kind in the wood and a "10" top, etc) sounded completely "blah" with nothing to distinguish it tonally. average sustain, clarity, balance, etc. it sounded "fine" for lack of a better word.....and the Z2s sounded much more vibrant, sparkling, resonant, etc.



I was with you until this last post, you mostly sound objective, just relating your experience with instruments you've owned, etc.

Hearing your LP's described as dull, (all 3 of them), and the PRS as "blah" in comparison... Sheesh... I've heard a couple dull Lesters, but 3... that you own?

Do you have any guitars that that sound better than your Z ?

Avenyr
12-11-2010, 02:42 PM
I visited Zachary's website a few times. I find the never ending rant on just about everything and everyone entertaining. I kinda like the Z2 shape and I'm a bit curious about whether or not those Optimum Gauge Strings are really the solution to all the other brands that are apparently wrong.

Apparently Zachary is from Canada. I thought it was cool so when it came time to purchase a new custom guitar I was all for supporting the local economy! Ted Stevenson got my money.

At least Ted is known to be a class act and a really great guy to talk to with an amazing quality and craftsmanship to his guitars and amps. As opposed to Alex and his Z Guitars, try to find a single negative comment about him or his guitars. I think it speaks for itself.

I wonder what kind of smack talk Alex has to say against him. If he can talk sh*t about John Suhr and Tom Anderson, I wonder what he's got to say against builders like Ted or James Tyler.

I can't talk about the quality of his guitars because I've never seen one in person but just what I hear from the process of getting one and how you have to watch yourself after in case he finds out you went out and bought a signature guitar of your favorite artist or a shiny PRS after he made you a Zachary Guitar is just plain bad. It's like he holds a grudge against you for betraying him or something. It's ridiculous...

In the end, I'd rather deal with someone who doesn't suffer from major ego issues or from the "misunderstood artist" syndrome with obvious lack of interpersonal skills. Maybe he loves to have everyone hate him, I don't know... If the Z guitars were as good as Alex says they are, they would be a lot more common and out there and appreciated or sought after. They might be great guitars but he's definitely not going at it the right way to show the world how right he is and gain global acceptance and recognition. But apparently, he doesn't seem to care much about showing he is right and work towards improving what he thinks must change in the business. He seems to prefer whining and taking cheap shots at everyone instead like an immature little kid who wasn't taught that being nice to people and respecting your competition and your potential customers gets you much further. Maybe he doesn't care about building guitars for others which is why I said maybe the bitching and whining and cheap shots works for him at getting as few customers as he can.

Tone_Terrific
12-11-2010, 03:50 PM
Maybe he doesn't care about building guitars for others which is why I said maybe the bitching and whining and cheap shots works for him at getting as few customers as he can.

I have watched his site for a few years and it seems he has no trouble selling off as much stock as he has.
The prices continue to rise, too.
He has definitely addressed some design flaws of traditional guitars, in a thorough manner, so, imo deserves credit for that, and moving towards function over flashy bling.
The over-the-top self-congrats and stone-throwing are treading that fine line between clever and stupid.

eligit
12-11-2010, 06:29 PM
I was with you until this last post, you mostly sound objective, just relating your experience with instruments you've owned, etc.

Hearing your LP's described as dull, (all 3 of them), and the PRS as "blah" in comparison... Sheesh... I've heard a couple dull Lesters, but 3... that you own?

Do you have any guitars that that sound better than your Z ?

Important note: the Gibsons i directly compared my Z guitars to were "dull" ONLY by comparison. not "dull" in the general context of guitars. The Z guitars by dint of their neck joint and other design features have a particular clarity that i have never heard in any other solid body guitar.

now...to some people's taste that is TOO clear. tone and eq can be very personal. to give you an idea when i was at the studio last year i plugged my 26" Z2 into a twin and the engineer asked if i was using a piezo. i was not....it was just the particular clarity of the way the guitars ring. it can be shaped with EQ....but the basic character is much more sparkly and ringing than a gibson.

i have NO doubt that to many people the comparatively "dull" (or less ringing/trebly/detailed) sound of a gibson is actually better. the laser like linearity of sustain characteristics may be too "hi-fi" sounding for some people. Compared to my 335 the Z guitars certainly resonate more clearly and sustain longer...no doubt about that. again...to some people the meaty less hi fi sound is desireable....they would not want the clarity of the Z because it can be very revealing of mistakes, etc....or they simply prefer that sound....period.

now...the PRS is another story....i tried my best to like that guitar (it certainly cost enough) but when i call it "blah" i think it is in line with what many other people consider it's "not a strat not a gibson" sound...ie does many sounds but none of them have as satisfying or identifiable character as the fender or gibson. the PRS i owned for 2-3 years was not "dull"....it was just lacking in vibe and character (to my ear anyway)....and the "10" top was not right for my style anyway.

the parker i owned for 2 years or so was a remarkable feat of engineering...but i could not love it. the plastic feel and synthetic character of the attack and decay of notes and how it "hit" distortion just did not speak to me. again....i wanted to love it....but in the end i could not.

In the end i have sold the 335, the Parker Fly, and the PRS and kept the Z guitars (1 25"-t, one 26"-t, one hollow 24.75" w p90s) Since my goal was never to chase the tone of any particular record or guitar player (as much as i may love page, hendrix, frisell, et al i do not want their guitars)....the unique "thing" that my Z guitars has suits me perfectly.

7StringJazz
12-11-2010, 08:56 PM
Glad to see the discussion is still ongoing. Typical and somewhat expected responses from this crowd, but some thoughtful responses as well.

Ambrosia maple is probably what you're thinking of as it's the maple known for holes. Those holes are fine as they're not due to other structural issues, they're simply burrows from bugs. Cracks and knots are different cause they are the result of structural/drying issues, evince internal stresses, and will actually affect tone. Tap two similar boards, one with a crack in it, one without. If it's a legit crack like that shown in the padauk, you will HEAR the crack. I kid you not.
And for reference, Ken Parker is under the impression that internal stresses are the bain of tonal existence* (that said, he's working on acoustic instruments so granted that principal does apply more there). Ulrich Teuffel is convinced long straight grained sections are key to tone in electrics, hence the shape of the birdfish bars as well as his liking of long upper bouts (ala Niwa). Lastly, tap a quilted maple board and a plain, straight grained maple board of the same dimensions, one will sound MUCH closer to cardboard than the other ;) That said, this is because figure is literally a diversion of the grain pattern in wood and therefore is less effective in sound transfer. This is the same thing that is going to happen in knots, except it will be more extreme (compare grain pattern of knot to curl). Also, in some cases of large knots grain may actually effectively END and therefore make sound transmission even less effective than simply changing the direction of grain. Glue two pieces of wood together endgrain-to-endgrain and tap it, sound transmission will be horrendous (granted this is an extreme case, but does demonstrate the principal quite well). My thoughts on this remind me a lot of fluid dynamics. For instance, take a straight hose and pump air at a given pressure (think "energy," so in our case sound energy) through it. At the end of it you will end up with relatively the same pressure (assuming a reasonable distance) because the friction, as well as the way the water flows is relatively unaffected. Then, take a pipe of the same length and put a nice swivel/angle piece in the center. Measure again, and you'll find your pressure has actually dropped due to the friction as well as fluid turbulence at this junction. This is how I view sound. It is an energy traveling down pipes (grain). The more you mess with the pathway, the more you will lose sound-transfer.
Chris
*To the point he re-joints his centerlines after carving his tops! (carving will release stresses as well)


Good to see you are still engaging in the conversation. Interesting. I like the fluid dynamics analogy, though I'm not sure its that big a deal for an electric guitar. Given the resonance and sustain of Zachary guitars I would say its an irrelevant consideration. The proof is in the guitar not the theory.

But it got me looking into the effect of woods on tone in a guitar. I found this article on tone woods and the effect of woods on the sound of a guitar. Specifically acoustics guitars. I will let you read it for yourself but he makes some interesting points with regard to tone wood 'mythology'. I'm not in total agreement from my own experience but it speaks specifically to a point you appear to be making. That the wood choice and by extension wood flaws is a critical tone factor in guitars.

http://www.guitarnation.com/articles/calkin.htm

Some highlights I noted:
"The concept of tonewood is a hoax. Of the few things that we can do to a guitar and still call it a guitar, changing the wood it is made of will have the least impact upon the quality of the sound that it produces."

This is a daring statement no? I mean Rainsong made acoustic guitars out of graphite! There are also examples of graphite electric guitars. But in my personal experience they DO sound different. I just thought this was interesting.

"The tone of a guitar lies more in the hands of the builder than in the materials from which it is constructed."

Totally agree with this which is why I feel the proof is in the guitar not the theory.

"We hear what we expect to hear, what we have been taught to hear, what we want to hear, and often what we hope to hear. "

Bias is certainly alive and well in the guitar consumer world! No?

"This makes it extremely difficult for a daring luthier to sell instruments that aren't made of standard varieties of wood."

Of course Alex follows his own muse and daring is his calling card. He often chooses woods that others ignore.

" I also want my personal instruments to be as unique as possible, regardless of how others may judge them, and alternative wood is an easy way to produce a singular appearance."

Alex would take this just as it is.

"I don't concern myself with with tap tones or tap tuning. I believe that good work and experience is everything. None of this will sway a mind that is already drenched in traditional guitar mythology, but so be it. Most of those folks never made an instrument."

He is speaking specifically about acoustic guitars, where you would think the choice of wood would have the highest effect on the guitar's tone. He seems to be saying a great luthier can make a great guitar out of whatever they choose. You seem to think its a very important consideration hence my interest in your responses to his points.


As always YMMV. ;)

7StringJazz
12-11-2010, 08:58 PM
^

all conceptual stuff aside....the tone transfer on these instruments is as good as it gets. they literally ring like a bell. the neck joint is tighter than any i have ever played and you can feel the vibrations from the headstock to back of body.

they are as clear, pure, balanced, and full of ringing clear sustain moreso than any other guitar i have played.

i have not played the guitar pictured above with the crack displayed...so i cannot speak to that one in particular....however i think considering the very high performance standard of the 4 guitars that I DO own ....it is highly doubtful that the crack seen in that picture makes the guitar sound in any way deficient....although i can certainly see how it could be seen as a negative statement against the common practice of what kinds of woods are good enough for a high end solid body electric guitar.

in direct comparisons the les paul's (jr, standard, one custom) i have compared my Z2 guitar to sounded dull and lacking in sustain through all the registers. my '89 PRS custom 24 (which needless to say was cosmetically "perfect" with no flaws of any kind in the wood and a "10" top, etc) sounded completely "blah" with nothing to distinguish it tonally. average sustain, clarity, balance, etc. it sounded "fine" for lack of a better word.....and the Z2s sounded much more vibrant, sparkling, resonant, etc.

perfection of every inch of top wood does NOT equal a great sounding guitar. it is mostly a cosmetic thing...a way of packaging the instrument to entice perspective buyers. i think perhaps there has evolved this whole new era of guitar production which is geared toward creating the guitar that looks the most flashy, glossy, 3-D, ornate, bejeweled, and "beautiful" under the lights in a glass display case....which may or may not be a great feeling and playing guitar. I have also witnessed the hypnotic effect of cosmetically astounding instruments on people in stores, etc.....they just stare and stare and stare.....and if they ever really do play the guitar at some point their brain has already been fully programmed by the look and idea of the instrument...and the actual tone and resonance are almost besides the point. not that everyone is like this....just that it is a phenomena i have personally witnessed many times.

What can I say Eli? People like shiny.

eligit
12-11-2010, 09:05 PM
i think another interesting example of questioning the "tone woods orthodoxy" is ken parker. not that his astounding archtops use "crap" wood....but that he clearly thinks that design and execution are more important than the particular piece of wood.

in other words...a particular piece of wood WILL effect the way a guitar sounds.....but no piece of "less than perfect" will stop a guitar from sounding good in one way or another....if the person making the guitar is doing their job well.

i think that is alex's point in making some of his guitars with "flawed" wood....which he takes pains to emphasize in the pictures and text on his site. he is not just buying cheap wood to save money and then hiding the flaws....he is practically shoving the flaws in front of everyone for all to see....as a way of demonstrating that the wood does not "make" the guitar.....even if it is made out of wood.

and as noted above the proof is in the guitars themselves....which certainly have massive sustain and resonance. i have 2 korina body mahogany neck guitars that sound lovely....and another that is soft maple and some exotic dark hard wood (with a hard maple neck and ebony board) that sounds huge in a different almost pianistic way. that taught me the lesson that almost ANY wood is a "tone wood" in the hands of the right builder.

verhoevenc
12-12-2010, 08:47 AM
Good to see you are still engaging in the conversation. Interesting.

Glad to see you still don't fully read my posts. I said I was done arguing with you two, and I still plan to be. But I can still contribute comments such as answering what woods the guitar appeared to be made of, or what my thoughts on wood are. Just not going to bother arguing those points with you (especially since your most recent response shows you've already forgotten things I've said in previous posts), and will merely let my comments stand. I've already answered several of those questions before you even asked them, so I feel like this is wasted breath. If you're TRULY interested in my thoughts on these things 7stringer feel free to drop me a PM and we can continue this conversation there as I don't feel our personal back and forth, repeating points, and your attempts to try and call me out are what the people are coming here to read.
Chris

7StringJazz
12-15-2010, 09:25 AM
Glad to see you still don't fully read my posts. I said I was done arguing with you two, and I still plan to be. But I can still contribute comments such as answering what woods the guitar appeared to be made of, or what my thoughts on wood are. Just not going to bother arguing those points with you (especially since your most recent response shows you've already forgotten things I've said in previous posts), and will merely let my comments stand. I've already answered several of those questions before you even asked them, so I feel like this is wasted breath. If you're TRULY interested in my thoughts on these things 7stringer feel free to drop me a PM and we can continue this conversation there as I don't feel our personal back and forth, repeating points, and your attempts to try and call me out are what the people are coming here to read.
Chris

LOL! I'm not calling you out. This is a public forum in which you have chosen to play. I'm responding to your statements on what you think makes or does not make a good guitar and seeking clarity. BTW some people might also be here to read what people actually think about Zachary guitars and his website. No? Look at the OP.

Your latest response though reminds me of a saying my dad had.
"Son, don't put your dick out for public display, and then be surprised when someone shows up with a measuring stick." Just sayin.

7StringJazz
12-15-2010, 11:39 AM
I've noticed that he leaves the electronics cavities open on a lot of his guitars which seems strange considering he expects people to really play these constantly. Thats begging for unwanted stuff to get into the electronics and cause noise and crackle issues unless everything he is using is sealed like PEC or similar.

I'm not a fan of this either. Seems like its a problem waiting to happen. Have not looked into why he does this.

eligit
12-15-2010, 02:39 PM
I'm not a fan of this either. Seems like its a problem waiting to happen. Have not looked into why he does this.

i figure it is just to provide easy access if needed.

i only have ONE z with visible electronics (ie the hollow guitar).

there is not a huge difference btw that amount of space for dust to get in and (for example) the sound hole of an acoustic with an in body pre amp or internal mic....or a hollow with F-holes and pick ups/electronics inside.

granted....it is out of the ordinary and looks less polished than the average high end guitar....but after many months of daily playing i have experienced no problems with dirt getting into the guitar, etc.

pretty sure most of the new solid body guitars have no exposed electronics....not sure about that tho.

verhoevenc
12-15-2010, 03:55 PM
See what I mean. Comments like that of your father's are an obvious attempt to continue argument and call out, despite what you may say. You're implying that now that my "dick" is out in public, I should be embarrassed at someone "measuring" it (or else you would have used a different metaphor than a penis). I don't care if my comments are measured, I'm actually quite comfortable with that since my comments still stand,a nd me behind them. I'm just tired of explaining myself and you not actually listening ;)
Chris

7StringJazz
12-15-2010, 09:34 PM
Its all good man.:)
Remember its a public forum so any comments you or I make are out there for anyone to comment on. You could look at it as my drawing you out and respond, or your could look at as a question for anyone knowledgeable, and interested enough to have a take, to do so. Or you could look at it as a way to bump the topic using you as the foil. Or you could see it an opportunity to express your ideas on theory vs reality, mythology vs practical experience. Or you could invoke the first rule of non-engagement and not respond at all. I thought the article was worthy of readership in any case. Since Alex chooses wood that's often outside of the groupthink guitar industry, John Calkin's article was an interesting perspective. Which I only found as a result of your posts. So its all good.

7StringJazz
12-15-2010, 11:08 PM
i figure it is just to provide easy access if needed.

i only have ONE z with visible electronics (ie the hollow guitar).

there is not a huge difference btw that amount of space for dust to get in and (for example) the sound hole of an acoustic with an in body pre amp or internal mic....or a hollow with F-holes and pick ups/electronics inside.

granted....it is out of the ordinary and looks less polished than the average high end guitar....but after many months of daily playing i have experienced no problems with dirt getting into the guitar, etc.

pretty sure most of the new solid body guitars have no exposed electronics....not sure about that tho.

I see the industrial art aspect, and it doesn't to me look less polished. It just looks vulnerable. I would insist on covers.

Drak
12-15-2010, 11:36 PM
What I find a little amusing is that you, Chris (verhoevenc) and Zachary are almost identical in mindset, you are really two peas of the same pod personality-wise.

You are just as antagonistic toward people who don't necessarily believe the way you do, and you consider yourself and your opinions as better than other people's (just like guess who? ;)).

You promote yourself and your videos often, as if you are the 'go-to' guy (just like guess who? ;)).

The only real difference I see between you and he is that he actually has established himself, but your guerrilla-style aggressive self-promotion machine, just like his, will take care of that shortly I presume. ;)

You are a talented, knowledgeable, intelligent, creative builder, just with a ton of piss and vinegar and attitude to go along with it ...just like guess who? ;)

Whether you want to believe it or not, you have more in common with him than not, just a different view on the 'proper' way to build guitars.
Yours just happens to be more traditional mainstream, his is somewhat anti-mainstream.

About Zachary, I have been aware of him for many years, and he did build completely crap-ass guitars for some time, I myself used to laugh at his builds, and at a time, they were worth laughing at...maybe he laughed at them too...but after seeing some of the guitars here, I do believe the man has steadily gotten better at his craft and does indeed have a fresh voice when it comes to perspective, materials, and outlook, I am not so narrow-minded that I cannot accept change in people's craft when it's obvious they've been trying, whether I personally happen to like him or his promotion concepts or not (and I don't, not at all).

I know you'll probably take this as a hostile post, but really, it's not, I just find you two actually very similar in more ways than you may want to admit. :aok

verhoevenc
12-16-2010, 07:19 AM
For information, Drak and I have a LONG history of butting heads somewhere else, hence his views. Most of which, we've already had this conversation Drak...
Chris

Shredmonster
12-16-2010, 12:58 PM
Went to buy one once. After a few brief emails I told him his headstock was fugly.
Never heard from him again.
I would have bought one had he made a different headstock.
I just can't get past it. MAJOR FUGLY (IMO).

Pfeister
12-16-2010, 01:00 PM
For information, Drak and I have a LONG history of butting heads somewhere else, hence his views. Most of which, we've already had this conversation Drak...
Chris

Now it's spilling over into this forum:hide2

Flinto2002
12-16-2010, 01:15 PM
Went to buy one once. After a few brief emails I told him his headstock was fugly.
Never heard from him again.
I would have bought one had he made a different headstock.
I just can't get past it. MAJOR FUGLY (IMO).

well in all fairness, try telling Jim Tyler you don't like his headstock. ;)

But I hear ya, that Z headstock looks like a penis

verhoevenc
12-16-2010, 02:29 PM
Now it's spilling over into this forum:hide2
My thoughts exactly Craig.
Chris

Drak
12-16-2010, 04:48 PM
I only remember 'butting heads' with you a single time, and that incident ended amicably on both sides IIRC, so I'm very curious about the 'long history' comment, it certainly doesn't ring true on this end, I'm sorry you feel that way about it, I certainly don't.

Anyway, I was not trying to butt heads, else I wouldn't bother to pay you respect for your talents where I deem them appropriate, as well as Zachary.

I honestly see a lot of personality similarities between the two of you, that was the only point, and didn't put either one of you down really, just stated shared personality traits between the two of you, and found it a bit humorous that you are trying to discredit someone who is actually so similar to you.

End of story. ;)

verhoevenc
12-16-2010, 04:59 PM
...and found it a bit humorous that you are trying to discredit someone who is actually so similar to you.

And just like anyone else you're entitled to your own opinion. And as always, it doesn't mean I have to agree with it.
Chris

eligit
12-16-2010, 10:45 PM
Went to buy one once. After a few brief emails I told him his headstock was fugly.
Never heard from him again.
I would have bought one had he made a different headstock.
I just can't get past it. MAJOR FUGLY (IMO).

somehow i am not surprised you did not hear back....considering the headstock is a key design element and is on 90% of the instruments....:D

i would almost go so far as to say that a Z guitar with a "normal" headstock would no longer be a Z guitar. i have seen a couple of copycat Z guitars with strat type headstocks....and it looked so corny. I would not want to see a strat/gibson headstock on a Parker or Klein either.

the other thing to note about the headstock is that even tho to many it looks weird.....it is incredibly practical. very strong, resonant, and more efficient from a manufacturing standpoint. i would never want to test it....but i can bet it is far stronger than any gibson headstock (which are notorious for snapping off due to the weak spot where the neck meets the headstock).

however i do agree that it does look phallic. :D

Tone_Terrific
12-17-2010, 11:18 AM
http://t2.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcQacBi_qEDO9zLlgZi8LqA9kmRG0U2ni e3bFkSrEBzarsEChAaX

Z guitars design MUST have been influenced by these, including the headstock, which is a wonderful, efficient, design and almost:D unique.

Drak
12-17-2010, 01:10 PM
Wow, I would have to agree, I think you just found 'The Mothership'. :aok

eligit
12-17-2010, 01:29 PM
http://t2.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcQacBi_qEDO9zLlgZi8LqA9kmRG0U2ni e3bFkSrEBzarsEChAaX

Z guitars design MUST have been influenced by these, including the headstock, which is a wonderful, efficient, design and almost:D unique.

closeup? does it have the two outside tuners upside down like the Z?

btw i honestly think the Z headstock design is primarily an issue of practicality. I have no idea whether the instrument pictured above influenced it.....it well could have....but it is also possible that while looking for the simplest possible headstock two people could happen upon a similar solution. sometimes certain ideas are just in the air waiting to be used.

i think unique for it's own sake can be silly.....it is more a matter of how well it works.

Tone_Terrific
12-18-2010, 02:20 PM
http://www.kubicki.com/
Around since the 80's
vs.
http://www.zacharyguitars.com/090202_07.JPG

Both cool, imo. Much better to see than another Strat/Tele/LP clone.

Chad
12-18-2010, 02:51 PM
The string tension rant is right on.

Everything else.. pure hogwash.

No, the string tension rant is hogwash also.

eligit
12-18-2010, 03:28 PM
http://www.kubicki.com/
Around since the 80's
vs.
http://www.zacharyguitars.com/090202_07.JPG

Both cool, imo. Much better to see than another Strat/Tele/LP clone.

wow...i have never seen those before. obviously the shape of the headstock is very close....but the idea of stringing THROUGH the headstock....never saw that one.

eligit
12-18-2010, 03:41 PM
No, the string tension rant is hogwash also.

can't really comment on the rant (you can find over the top ranting all over the internet on pretty much any subject).....HOWEVER the string sets themselves are very much NOT hogwash. switching from d'addario 10-46 (my standard set for more years than i can remember) to ZOG 10s demonstrated a more balanced sound with a clearer more proportional playing response on the low end. one big open chord and it is pretty obvious.

again....personal preferences are always impossible to account for....some great players use 8 gage strings and that makes them feel comfortable and able to do their thing....and i can't get a satisfying sound out of em.

however as far as the ZOG sets being demonstrably more balanced with a less floppy low E string.....that is just a fact. the low E on 10-46 is clearly floppier than the A string. same with many bass string sets....the low E is always floppy as compared to the A. i can't see how that is a good thing for solid tone.

add to this fact that the price of the Z strings is identical with d'addario 10s ($5 a set i think?).....so this is not some overpriced marketing BS which is very much evident in other areas of guitar/music gear (insanely expensive cables, hi-fi audio systems, etc). the profit margin here is next to nothing.

Chad
12-18-2010, 03:49 PM
can't really comment on the rant (you can find over the top ranting all over the internet on pretty much any subject).....HOWEVER the string sets themselves are very much NOT hogwash. switching from d'addario 10-46 (my standard set for more years than i can remember) to ZOG 10s demonstrated a more balanced sound with a clearer more proportional playing response on the low end. one big open chord and it is pretty obvious.

again....personal preferences are always impossible to account for....some great players use 8 gage strings and that makes them feel comfortable and able to do their thing....and i can't get a satisfying sound out of em.

however as far as the ZOG sets being demonstrably more balanced with a less floppy low E string.....that is just a fact. the low E on 10-46 is clearly floppier than the A string. same with many bass string sets....the low E is always floppy as compared to the A. i can't see how that is a good thing for solid tone.

add to this fact that the price of the Z strings is identical with d'addario 10s ($5 a set i think?).....so this is not some overpriced marketing BS which is very much evident in other areas of guitar/music gear (insanely expensive cables, hi-fi audio systems, etc). the profit margin here is next to nothing.

I've researched the topic fairly thoroughly and the reason I stated his rants on tension are hogwash is because he states that measurable tension is ALL that matters when selecting strings. As you said, it's very subjective. Many things other than measurable tension come into play. Not sure if it's okay to post links to other forums, but here's a thread I created awhile back discussing the subject fairly in-depth:

http://www.jemsite.com/forums/f21/a-fresh-look-at-choosing-string-gauges-real-and-perceived-tension-long-thread-106703.html

eligit
12-19-2010, 06:31 PM
I've researched the topic fairly thoroughly and the reason I stated his rants on tension are hogwash is because he states that measurable tension is ALL that matters when selecting strings. As you said, it's very subjective. Many things other than measurable tension come into play. Not sure if it's okay to post links to other forums, but here's a thread I created awhile back discussing the subject fairly in-depth:

http://www.jemsite.com/forums/f21/a-fresh-look-at-choosing-string-gauges-real-and-perceived-tension-long-thread-106703.html

so...the difference is not to be measured in actual tension but in "perceived tension"?
i suppose that is ok as far as it goes....the thing is....the .46 on a 10-46 set is not just lower in tension in theory....it feels looser. if i do a bend on the low E and then the low A.....the A feels tighter.....and if i tune down to drop D on a set of 10-46 it really starts to slop out all over the place.

so if my experience with "10s" (perhaps the most popular string gage for electric guitars?) i would have to say that the perceived tension AND the actual tension in a set of standard 10s is off. believe me....the numbers are not what i am thinking about when i play....just what it feels and sounds like....and at least in my experience my zog 10s are just better sounding....the low end is clearer and more complementary to the other strings...you get a more pianistic chordal ring.

when eric johnson and others started changing their low E to .52s to compensate for the floppy low E i think they went to far....to me that thick of a low E feels out of proportion to the other strings.

it could be argued that when doing large bends on the low E you are also sort of bending the A string a bit....which means you are fighting the tension of two strings at the same time...which in turn might mean that a .46 is easier to bend.....but that seems like an unwise compromise considering that most of the time is NOT spent bending the low E....at least to me.

not to beat a dead horse completely into the ground....but i also think the zog sets stay in tune better on a guitar with a whammy bar because the tension is easier to balance against the springs in the tremolo and it functions better as a result.

naturally....because of the subjective nature of playing the guitar....people do all kinds of things to satisfy their particular wants (i saw jimmy page playing a plastic ovation for gods sake!).....but the logic behind the ZOG sets is pretty solid.....at least solid enough to get a guitar or two set up with them to hear/feel the difference to see if it is to your liking. if you hate em....you are out maybe $10-$15 (plus the cost of a good set up which is totally required to get the real experience)....not exactly a big deal considering the kind of money people blow on pedals these days......

now back to yr normally scheduled programming......:D

Tone_Terrific
12-19-2010, 11:31 PM
With the wealth of individual strings and various sets available, these days, it is not hard to come up with one's own balanced set, matched to the guitar, and personal feel.

I'm not sure if material type and things like core thickness or shape affect tension or compliance. Chad seems to think not.
Moving up or down a couple thou within the same brand and type should avoid that problem, anyway.

Chad
12-20-2010, 05:41 PM
With the wealth of individual strings and various sets available, these days, it is not hard to come up with one's own balanced set, matched to the guitar, and personal feel.

I'm not sure if material type and things like core thickness or shape affect tension or compliance. Chad seems to think not.
Moving up or down a couple thou within the same brand and type should avoid that problem, anyway.

Give the thread another read. Core thickness, shape, etc. fall under string mass, which is an attribute of measurable tension.

I'll agree it's easy to buy separate strings these days and experiment to find what works best on a given guitar. ZOG strings are really just one guy's take on what string packs should be. His packs are no better or worse than any other packs on the market. They will work for some players and not for others. And whether they work for a given player or not is because of measurable tension along with MANY other factors.

7StringJazz
12-29-2010, 09:42 AM
http://www.zacharyguitars.com/181210_017.jpg

http://www.zacharyguitars.com/181210_017.jpg

http://www.zacharyguitars.com/181210_039.jpg

Disclaimer: interest in these guitars can have an inverse effect on your TGP post count. You have been warned. ;)

7StringJazz
01-08-2011, 07:14 PM
Just saw this puppy and noticed there is no rant,...yet! ;)
http://www.zacharyguitars.com/010111pics.htm

http://www.zacharyguitars.com/010111_127.jpg

http://www.zacharyguitars.com/010111_119.jpg

http://www.zacharyguitars.com/010111_122.jpg

eligit
02-03-2011, 08:57 AM
Hi0bCBQ801s
little demo i put together yesterday.
26" z2-t guitar, Z 10s strings, Z overdrive pedal (discontinued), Emery Microbaby amp.

dougk
02-03-2011, 09:23 AM
why did you have to bump both threads?

eligit
02-03-2011, 09:44 AM
why did you have to bump both threads?

sorry....

just thought that maybe there might be subscribers to one thread who had not subscribed to the other....and would be curious about this particular gear.

i apologize if this is a breach of GP protocol.

e-z
02-03-2011, 12:33 PM
For a guy who seems to despise internet gear forums, he is making sure his associates talk up his guitars and (now) pedals.

eligit
02-03-2011, 12:54 PM
For a guy who seems to despise internet gear forums, he is making sure his associates talk up his guitars and (now) pedals.

(Sorry for typos....iPhone is acting up)
1)I think focusing on Alex and his attitude toward Internet forums is a distraction from the topic at hand (musical gear and it's sonic capabilities) I have no responsibility for alex's take on this or any other forum and I bet he would urge me NOT to post his gear here at all.:D I don't know.

2)he is not making anyone do anything. I share my own demos and playing because it is fun and hopefully informative. Zachary guitars (and the long since out of production z overdrive pedal) are a crucial part of my musical arsenal.
On my YouTube channel (http://www.youtube.com/user/Eliguitar1) you will find extensive demos of gear made by boutique companies ranging from AEA to Daking to Empirical Labs to Lehle to Wampler to Diamond to Lightfoot labs to Neunaber to PTD to Zachary.

If you are not interested in the gear made by Zachary or any of these other fine companies and do not wish to hear demos of the gear....just ignore my videos and the text info/opinions that accompanies them.

However I hope some people will get something out of them....i am trying to contribute something useful to the online information base concerning guitar gear and related recording equipment....and highlighting companies who i think have done some really good work in that area by recording it at high quality.

7StringJazz
02-03-2011, 01:06 PM
For a guy who seems to despise internet gear forums, he is making sure his associates talk up his guitars and (now) pedals.

Glad to see you are here. Enjoy.

eligit
04-23-2011, 09:58 AM
just recorded a clip of my 25" z2-t....this one (as opposed to my 26") has much higher output pups that "hit" the fuzz pedal in a very cool way.

z31_vw0H2Ak

yasha
05-02-2011, 05:17 PM
eli, your demo tone is amazing!

eligit
05-02-2011, 06:14 PM
eli, your demo tone is amazing!

thanks much!

be sure to check out the rest of the demos....all kinds of stuff...different pedals, guitars, etc.....neunaber, lightfoot, emery, etc....all recorded in hi fi sound.

simplecomplexity
05-03-2011, 06:32 AM
great demo there!

yasha
05-03-2011, 08:08 AM
this would be my 21st post in TGP. with my bad playing and mere knowledge i am not sure if its okay for me to post but z guitars are all funky man. he has his own shit going on. would looovee to try one out.

eli, do you actually gig with the guitar? i wonder what were the looks on other people when they saw your guitar. must be either hate it or love it, nothing in between. lol!

eligit
05-03-2011, 08:13 AM
Sure...they are my gig guitars for sure!
I just played the guitar in the demo above on Friday night at a gig.
Some like the look....some think it looks weird....but I always get 100% positive response to the sound!

eligit
05-03-2011, 08:16 AM
great demo there!

thanks!

here's a ton more:
http://www.youtube.com/user/Eliguitar1 (http://www.youtube.com/my_videos?feature=mhum)

nagarjuna
05-03-2011, 09:29 AM
thanks!

here's a ton more:
http://www.youtube.com/user/Eliguitar1 (http://www.youtube.com/my_videos?feature=mhum)

http://www.youtube.com/user/Eliguitar1 I fixed your link.;)

eligit
05-03-2011, 09:54 AM
http://www.youtube.com/user/Eliguitar1 I fixed your link.;)

thanks!
i did as well!:D

Tubevalvemaniac
12-05-2014, 05:23 AM
Some of Zachary's guitars are good sounding (I saw some demos and heard few first hand opinions), but some are average or even below (talking about good average for 2k priced guitar).
I was experimenting to add some new axes to arsenal (of 70+ guitars) and Z came into sight. It is not easy to find them and play, so all depends on chance that someone else whom you know owns it.
So far, I was lucky to play only two (one was kind of Telecaster and another was quite unique design that I frankly speaking didn't like - unimportant).
For me sound is all, appearance and hardware I don't care at all. If sound is perfect and visual side is strong, than I have the winner. So far, for few decades only several guitars deserved that status for me (Suhr Classic Tele, PRS Modern Eagle, Thorn Artisan Master Hollowbody and Semi-Hollow, Anderson Modern Strat and the latest PRS Ted McCarthy Rosewood SC245).
Zachary guitars look as good idea upfront, but after playing both I was utterly disappointed. Maybe it is question of inconsistency, but I wouldn't buy those even at heavy discount.
IMO not worth serious consideration, except in case if one can spend whole day playing with all axes in stock, before decision to buy.

vicenzajay
12-05-2014, 05:50 PM
And after 3 1/2 years, the thread is back!

Bushy
12-06-2014, 02:49 AM
They look hideous please bury this thread back in the vault

EL34
12-06-2014, 07:04 AM
I had an eBay transaction with Zachary many years ago (I sold something to him), and he was an absolute nut job. He tried to extort money out of me, and I refused, telling him to just ship the item back. He shipped back a completely different item. The messages he sent me throughout this ordeal were completely wacky. I'd recommend staying very far away!

vicenzajay
12-06-2014, 03:37 PM
I don't think they are hideous at all :-) I own two:
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v731/vicenzajay/ChristianMusicnightFeb5.jpg (http://smg.photobucket.com/user/vicenzajay/media/ChristianMusicnightFeb5.jpg.html)

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v731/vicenzajay/Padauk18.jpg (http://smg.photobucket.com/user/vicenzajay/media/Padauk18.jpg.html)

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v731/vicenzajay/zachbassjammin.jpg (http://smg.photobucket.com/user/vicenzajay/media/zachbassjammin.jpg.html)

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v731/vicenzajay/Zacharyonblack.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v731/vicenzajay/Zacharyoutside.jpg