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Anyone hear of Shijie Guitars?

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by arpegadream, Sep 19, 2019.

  1. Joe Tone

    Joe Tone Silver Supporting Member

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    GC, online
     
  2. crossbones

    crossbones Member

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    I hope they work out for people, but my experience with chinese stuff has been really bad.
    Nothing worse than having a name brand but chinese power tool break in half for no reason.
    Super soft metal for frets is a pretty terrible thing.
    I'm always amazed at the lack of attention to detail.
    A friend ordered a convincing looking guitar online and when it came in, it looked pretty ok...
    Upon further inspection, while the truss rod cover looked pretty well made, there was not actually a truss rod beneath it.
    Everything is always like a movie set.
     
    Gig Young likes this.
  3. Tone_Terrific

    Tone_Terrific Supporting Member

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    When they start arriving and IF they get good reviews for the regular production runs, will any of you bother to change your minds?
     
    Ray175 likes this.
  4. arpegadream

    arpegadream Member

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    I would. I don't care about prestige instruments at this stage in my life and some of my favorite guitars were cheap, the expensive ones I've owned were quite fine, but none inspired me as much as 3 of my cheapest ones. Still, I'd love buying from my countrymen, but I doubt I will ever have an income sufficient at 61 years old. I don't know how big a deal the shielding is because noise will still come through the pickups and that end. I know the faraday concept, I used to work in one and also studied electronics years ago. I'm just not sold on the idea. Still, a nice feature but the roasted neck, single piece wood body, yeah, nice. I don't begrudge overseas workers feeding themselves, if I had the budget I'd be buying guitars from all over the world.
     
  5. Joe Tone

    Joe Tone Silver Supporting Member

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    I think if I was selling guitars made in China I would Brand name them “Stigma” and just get it over with.
     
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  6. arpegadream

    arpegadream Member

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    Everybody has to eat. I try to buy American, but I also try to spread it around a little. From the video, it seems this maker is trying to do a good job and an honest job. But I could be wrong. I don't have a set opinion, more that I find it very interesting. For me, I've never viewed guitars with status in mind. I own two very low value guitars and they are awesome to me. I have owned a few that, if I still had them, would be quite valuable, and yet, I still miss one of my cheapest guitars the most. I don't know, maybe I just think a little like Neil Young, any decent instrument is fine, it's the fingers that matter, not the image. We've all got to eat, and there is enough for everybody.
     
  7. Samn314

    Samn314 Member

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    Regarding the purchase of a Shiejie, I haven't gotten it, yet. Here is the situation. The owner emailed me to let me know he was putting his attention to getting guitars ready to take to a trade show in China. And that he wouldn't be able to ship the guitar I ordered for about a month. He offered to honor any fees I would be charged by Alibaba for cancelling. I cancelled the order and he took care of me.

    Then we started emailing back and forth about tuners. He said he was getting some negative feedback about the locking tuners he was using. He asked my opinion as to whether Kluson Deluxe would be a suitable tuner. After a couple of back and forth, we agreed the non-locking would be fine in order to keep the price point where it's at. And that the locking models would be available for an up charge to cover the cost.

    The current status is that he his building a guitar for me with the non locking Kluson Deluxe tuners. I'm going to play it, have several guitar players in my local network play it "put it through it's paces" and get their opinion. If I feel like the guitar is everything I hope it is, and he can build and deliver consistent quality in a timely manner, I'm going to set up shop and sell them.

    I'll keep you apprised of progress.

    Best regards,

    Sam
     
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  8. Samn314

    Samn314 Member

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    ShieJie purchase update.

    I received the email that they were back to meeting delivery commitments. I placed an order and it shipped in about ten days via UPS. Air from China to Lexington, KY and trucked to Kansas City. Three days total in transit.
    I received the guitar yesterday afternoon just minutes before my sons and I were headed out the door to go see Polyphia. So, all I could do was tune it and let it acclimate.
    We played it when we got back last night and it is amazing.
    The quality of the materials, the workmanship, everything is outstanding. If you've seen the review on Darrell Braun's YouTube channel, it is everything he says, less the locking tuners.
    Regarding the tuners. I have several guitars with and without. In my opinion, if properly strung, locking tuners don't hold tune any better than non locking. They are just more convenient for restringing. I'm sure that comment will stir debate, but to each his own.
    The one thing that surprised me most are the tones from the pickups. I really like then a lot. I have an early '70s Fender Strat, not the golden age of the line, for sure. But it has always played well and has the classic Strat tones that it is. To my ear, the ShieJie sounds much nicer. Full sounding and each pickup has its own unique voice. The tone controls have even affect that allows for a lot of diversity.

    The company communicated with me very straight forward and honestly about what was happening. They responded very promptly, so well.

    Bottom line is that I am extremely pleased with the purchase process and more importantly, the end result. This is an amazing instrument.
    I have been telling a friend that I bought a Rasmas S100 for $950 in about 2009. That purchase was a big part of my motivation to get the ShieJie. I feel like I bought a Suhr for under a grand. A fantastic instrument. But if you've played one you know the pickups are very hot. Great guitar for high gain, but you won't get Strat, single coil tones from it.
    The ShieJie makes me feel like I bought a high end custom shop guitar for under a grand. I'm very satisfied.
     
  9. Samn314

    Samn314 Member

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    What are your thoughts about how much interest there would be for this guitar if -
    1)It was available from a US based reseller.
    2) It was plek'd and final set up performed in the US before shipping to US customers.
    As you know, there are costs to song these steps. Would it be worth an additional $200 to insure it was set up perfectly and you had access to the seller to address any concerns, including returning the product of not 100% satisfied?

    I would appreciate your thoughts.

    Sam
     
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  10. dr_Primus

    dr_Primus Member

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    Although I am not from the US I am really interested in these guitars...

    How do you like the trem? How does it compare to Gotoh 510?

    Did the manufacturer mention the possibility of using SS frets?

    How is neck finished? Is the finish thin? Is there a chance that they would use tung-oil or tru-oil finish?

    Thanks
     
    Samn314 likes this.
  11. dshow

    dshow Member

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    I had a communication with them on Alibaba to ask for options.


    STE-STD model basic price is $750
    HSS extra $80
    stainless steel extra $80
    Gotoh locking tuners extra $125
    shipping $160 (Italy)
    total is $1195

    Also was asking for the option of getting a nut width of 43mm instead of 42mm but didn't get an answer to that yet.
     
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  12. dshow

    dshow Member

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    How is the neck profile on these guitars. On the pictures it seems quite thin and flat with a bit of a shoulder.
    I really like a bit of wood in my hands and prefer rounder necks.

    Thanks
     
    Samn314 likes this.
  13. Droliver

    Droliver Member

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    To value this, I think you need to look at who you’re competing against. This mid range territory ($700-1000) has Fender MIM, Fender MIJ, PRS SE, Schecter’s Indonesian models, and any number of the companies using WMI In South Korea. That is a tough neck of the wood full of large volume manufacturers with mature supply chains and distribution. His is also where you find a lot of lightly used MIA Fender products. I don’t think Shinje wants to be competing there as a brand.

    Eastman has shown you can carve out a niche for high quality Chinese instruments, but it took a long time and a lot of good word of mouth to get that point. For pricing, I think you would want to be priced competitively as a high value/quality alternative to say a Fender American performer ($1000-1200) or PRS S2 Starla/Vela. Keep in mind, I think Framus has stiffed with their Chinese built line trying to hit this price point though.
     
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  14. frisco kid

    frisco kid Member

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    Too bad they don’t make a telecaster style model, I’d be tempted...double bound with tremolo, hmmm...
     
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  15. Samn314

    Samn314 Member

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    Sorry to take so long to respond.

    The neck is a one piece roasted Maple, including the fretboard. It has a very smooth feel like a satin finish.

    The neck profile is C. It's much like my early 70s Strat. Way thicker and rounder than the Rasmas S100.

    The bridge is a two point and looks very similar to the Gota 510. I have a Yamaha with a 510. I'll take some measurements and see if I can find differences. The term block is brass. The trem came setup as balanced and it works very well. Returns to tune nicely. That said, this is not my preference. I am going to drop it flat against the body and tighten the springs so that it doesn't drops tune when bending. My string bending muscle memory isn't used to having the guitar drop tune. Just a personal preference.

    And they just came out with a Tele body style.

    I am in agreement that trying to compete in the$750-$1000 range is a pretty tuff patch. Which is why I am asking the community their thoughts on what a guitar needs to provide in order to move to the $1000 - $1,250 range?

    Only one of the many guitars I own has been plek'd, the Rasmas. I feel like that adds real value. As was pointed out above, they will build these with stainless steel frets, locking tuners, Gota bridge/trems. They already have quality wood (Alder and roasted Maple) and high quality hardware.

    I'm considering placing an order for a half dozen guitars from them to evaluate the line.

    If the next six are as good as the one I received, I will offer them for sale. So, add to the list that they would be shipped to me, pre-screened, plek'd and setup here before shipping to US customers.

    Is there a room for these in the market? I have a Rasmas that was made in China. It is a fantastic guitar that I feel is on par with a Suhr. It has Suhr components built to Suhr specs then shipped to the US where it was plek'd.

    I think there is a place in the market for a $1,200 guitar that plays and sounds like a $2,500 guitar.

    Sam
     
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  16. Jon Kaneshiro

    Jon Kaneshiro Member

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    Hi guys!

    I don’t post on TGP at all, but thought I should give my two cents on the Shijie guitars. I’ll try to give a little review as best as I can. Most importantly, these guitars are downright amazing as is Mo who is the sales manager for Enxi that supports Shijie.

    Build quality: I know it’s crazy to say this, but they definitely are on par with Suhr guitars. In the picture is my Suhr Classic Pro with v60lps and a Thornbucker. They use all the best industry standard woods and then some. The neck is roasted maple. I know people were skeptical of their roasting process. I got pictures from Mo once they arrived from their roasting process. I took the pictures to my local luthier who builds custom guitars/basses for Pearl Jam and other bands. He said the wood was definitely roasted. The frets are Jescar stainless steel. They are perfectly dressed and polished. Even have the nice rolled edges and fingerboard edges too. Paint job is top notch as well. Used poly for the top coat and is super shiny. Everything on this guitar just feels sturdy. Everything is lined up well and is consistent from all the other reviews.

    Playability: it plays just as good as my Suhr. I look for a certain slinkiness in the strings and this one has it. Not so slinky that they feel like rubber, but just reach a bent note really fast. It helps that the frets are level. No buzzing or fretting out on this guitar. Action was set nice and low right out of the box. I still want to get a setup since it came from overseas. The nut needs to be filed a bit. A little tight in a few of the slots. The neck feels more like a D shape than a modern C, which is actually very comfortable. My Suhr is an even C and is slightly smaller. The Shijie has a little girth in a good way. Also really love how the tremolo feels. They set it up the same way as my Suhr, but this one feels a bit smoother and have more play in the modulating of the notes. Feels like I can use it for Jeff Beck type of stuff rather than just shaking chords like I do with the Suhr.

    Sound: acoustically it is very resonant and loud. I’m sure the roasted maple plays a roll in that. Plugging it in for the first time I was a little underwhelmed by the pickups. I run a Kemper amp btw. After talking to Mo I just realized the pickups are more on the hot side and not bad sounding. Hot and a tad bright. I played the Suhr and this side by side and really all I did was turned the tone down on the shijie and then it matched the Suhr. Had nice sustain and roundness. Just misjudged the pickups. Love the humbucker. A little hotter than the Thornbucker. Maybe in the upper 9k range compared to the 8.9k of the Thornbucker. Now I just love the sound of the pickups in the guitar. Just needed to get used to manipulating the tone knobs a bit. Only thing I didn’t like was that the humbucker isn’t wired to a tone knob. Easy fix though!

    Parts/hardware: they use a ton of industry standard parts and are always striving to find out what everyone finds useful in guitars. Mo has asked me a lot especially about tuners and bridges. The bridge almost feels like a Gotoh 510. At least it functions as so. Love the sound of the brass trem block. The tuners are locking Gotoh vintage style tuners. They are smooth! Inside the body is copper shielding as you might have seen from Darrel Brauns video. Really nice feature! Already mentioned the roasted maple neck which looks so cool. My first maple necked guitar as well as first roasted neck. Super comfortable and fast.

    Price: on their website it’s $750 plus shipping for the guitar. Such a good deal. The stainless steel frets, locking tuners, and bridge humbucker were up charges. After it was all said and done it was a little under $1200. So for Suhr quality and parts you’re paying half the cost. They also throw in a cool pick dish that is roasted maple and in the form of a guitar body. Came with some shijie logo picks, strap locks, and all the necessary tools for setups.

    Gig bag: it’s a very solid gig bag. Nicely padded with a neck support. Lots of pocket space. I’ve had the Incase gig bag that came with the Fender John Mayer sig strat and this one is up there. Not as protective as the Incase but definitely a quality gig bag.

    Conclusion: I wouldn’t hesitate to order another one of these before getting a Suhr. Love Suhr guitars so much but they keep going up in price like crazy. It was nerve racking buying one of these site unseen, but I assure you it’s worth it. This one will stay for forever.
     
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2020
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  17. Kluch

    Kluch Member

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    The Darrel Braun YouTube video had me seriously looking at these guitars.
     
  18. dshow

    dshow Member

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    They seem to be very nice guitars but I think it will be hard for them to reach the masses. I'm in Europe and if I have to Import the guitar with some Features like stainless steel frets I would end up paying ~ 1500$ (with taxes).

    That's a lot of money. Also If there was something you don't like you will have to sell it for little money because there is no used market.
    At that price point you get a lot of options from well known companies.
     
  19. Wishing Wells

    Wishing Wells Member

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    I would probably consider one of these at their base price but the $150 they are trying to charge for shipping to the US makes it an immediate no thank you.
     
  20. mystixboi

    mystixboi Member

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    Yeah. I’m in the same boat
     
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