Navigator Guitars

Discussion in 'The Small Company Luthiers' started by Urkoman, Dec 4, 2005.


  1. Urkoman

    Urkoman Member

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    I´ve been wondering about this guitars since i discovered them a couple of years ago. Initially Navigator was the name for ESP´s classic guitar "copies" in the 70´s, and they recovered some years ago that name for their custom shop models based on the "usual guitars" (LP, Tele, Strat, Flying, SG, Explorer).
    Here they are:
    http://www.espguitars.co.jp/navigator/index.html

    They always seemed to be veeeeery nice guitars, but i never made the next step because as they´re only sold in Japan, it´s difficult to find a review of them.
    I know now someone who has purchased one (strat), and both in his oppinion and another quite trustable guy, this surpasses by VERY far any production strat including relics, NOS, etc...
    The words used were "craftmanship as i´ve never seen and sounds like a Cathedral´s chorus" :D

    I´m willing to try it, and i´m having veeery bad ideas :D

    Does anyone else know about this navigators?

    Urko

    BTW, prices are veeeeeeeeeery high
    BTW II: Look at the headstocks :D
     
  2. Lex Luthier

    Lex Luthier Member

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    48th St Custom guitars in NYC used to sell them years ago, so there are a few floating around. Nice guitars, on par with older Tokai, etc.
     
  3. The Eristic

    The Eristic Member

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    From everything I've read and seen, the current Navigators are easily on par with and quite likely a few notches above Historics and the average Fender Custom Shop in quality.

    Given that real ESPs (ie, MIJ) are consistently extremely impressive in the build quality area, and knowing that the Japanese tend to be detail-oriented to an amazing degree, it wouldn't surprise me at all if the above were true. Navigators are basically the absolute top of the line in Japan (excluding custom builders). I think a couple of them actually cost more than some Historic models. 8^|

    I've been scouring the Japanese sites like Ishibashi and Ikebe-Gakki for a reasonable deal on a used '56 Standard and/or '54-style Custom to give them a try.
     
  4. baald

    baald Member

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    that top LP copy lists 609,000Y which works out to about $5k
     
  5. nikku

    nikku Member

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    Navigators are ESPs top of the line guitars, anyone who has been to the ESP shop in SHibuya, Tokyo will have seen the countless original Les Pauls, strats, teles, gretsches and more... none for sale, they use them for making their guitars! Its ctually quite annoying that they are just there for copying not getting played.. anyway, Navigators are incredible! They use the best wood... no problem with Honduras Mahogany and Brazilian Rosewood!

    I work near a big ESP shop in Tokyo so if anyone wants one let me know!
     
  6. Karmateria

    Karmateria Member

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    I remember seeing some big british band's guitarist playing those... probably picked 'em up on tour in japan. Foreighner or sombody like that.

    Karma
     
  7. r9player

    r9player Silver Supporting Member

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    I guess it is more about being able to afford one then just wanting one? at $5K I can get a really really nice '59 Historic.
     
  8. nikku

    nikku Member

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    I actually prefer the historics!
     
  9. Urkoman

    Urkoman Member

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    Yes...and no.
    I agree i´d buy a 59 over one of these any day...but if i look for a used LP i´d buy the Navigator for 2k any day over a 59 for 3500$.
    A different story if the prices were nearer, of course.
     
  10. MOE the Fish

    MOE the Fish Member

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    I played a Navigator LP and was FLOORED! Easily the nicest sounding LP
    I've ever tried.
     
  11. Desert Blues

    Desert Blues Member

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    thanks for the pics. did you ask them how ESP aquired the navigator name/comapny?
     
  12. Poorsche

    Poorsche Member

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    We did a shootout... my Navigator LP left every other LP owners jaws agap... Be it a bad investment as others may perceive this one is a keeper along with my Navigator Espionage Bass (thunderous deep solid bass) :)

    IMHO Navigator LPs, Strats and bass axe are the best bar none.
     
  13. Udonitron

    Udonitron Member

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    Agree 100%
    Navi's are incredible! :D
    Sorry about the necro-post!
     

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