Schecter or Not?

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by fenderman, Feb 10, 2006.

  1. fenderman

    fenderman Guest

    Greetings! I was wondering if there are any Schecter pros out there who could tell me if I have found a fake Schecter Strat or not. Plays great and has awesome sound/action/sustain like I've heard about. It has a serial # of SN96... but the logo differs from the common one seen today. It is larger and a different font - plus has a graphic that says 'Hollywood Ltd.'. The headstock IS NOT the full-rounded Fender design but is rounded. Can't seem to find any retro design logos for Schecter to see if it is, in fact, an older logo design used in the 90's. Thanks for the help!
     
  2. pfrischmann

    pfrischmann Member

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  3. Jon Silberman

    Jon Silberman 10Q Jerry & Dickey Gold Supporting Member

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    Pics would help, I have a friend with a VERY early Schecter (I believe year one) who I could ask to look at yours.
     
  4. John C

    John C Supporting Member

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    There are a boatload of fake Schecters around, mainly because the current ownership has taken a rather weasely approach to doing something about it. For example, Tom Anderson's have been similarly faked, and Tom himself will contact ebay and shut down any auction. The current owners of Schecter blow off these by simply saying "it wasn't made since we've owned the company" when I would hope they know full well what the guitars made from the time the company started until they went out of business circa 1986 really look like.

    Do I expect them to have records of every guitar? No, those often are lost to the sands of time. However, they should know what the headstock shapes and the logos look like; otherwise, why did they bother to buy the name if they didn't know it carried some type of "goodwill" in the marketplace based on what the originals looked like. Also, so far as I know they used the original Schecter logo/typeface well into the 1990s even though the current company had to change from Strat/Tele headstocks to the "generic curved" headstock.

    At any rate, we need pictures and we should be able to help you out.
     
  5. riverastoasters

    riverastoasters Member

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    I sort of collect old Schecters, but not seriously - I have seven or eight old ones and a couple modern ones. The serial numbers of the old ones usually start with A or B.

    If you post pictures I can compare to mine.

    By the way - the two modern US Schecters I have are extremely good guitars.

    My brother just bought his kid a new Asian Schecter C-1Plus and it is extremely good too.

    I have one of the early Asian Schecters (called "Genesis"). It's not extremely good. It's more like "less than awful". It was super cheap and I got it to practice guitar tech stuff.
     
  6. riverastoasters

    riverastoasters Member

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    I think they completely lost all the early records.

    The guys involved early on, like David Schecter and Tom Anderson, are doing other things these days.

    There are some Schecters out there that Schecter didn't build but which you would want to own if you could. I know a guy who worked in Giffin's shop in England and they worked on guitars that had been built from all Schecter parts, but built by good guys, and they were working on them too. Schecter would have no chance of having a record of these builds. I would guess Rudy's might have built some back in those days. I know for a fact the Schecter PTs which were prized by my bandmates were worked on a lot by John Suhr at Rudy's.

    There were problems with the original pickups in Schecter Pete Townshends lasting only a few years before they shorted - so it's not that unusual to have non-original pickups in them either.
     
  7. John C

    John C Supporting Member

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    Yes, Schecter certainly had an interesting business model back in the early 1980s - circa 1981-83 they set up certain dealers (maybe their only dealers at the time?) as what they called "Schecter Shops". The Schecter Shops actually assembled and set up a lot of the "factory" Schecters of that era. There were 8-10 of them in the US, plus a couple in Europe - of course, Rudy's (meaning John Suhr for a lot of these) was one. Valley Arts Music, Strings & Things (in Memphis), and Willcutt's (in Lexington, KY) were among them. Around the time Tom Anderson left the company in 1984 (I think David Schecter had moved on a year or so earlier), it switched over from parts and dealer-assembled guitars to full-scale production, leaving the Schecter Shops with a decision. Some, like Willcutt's, stuck with retail and only built the occasional one-off from various parts. Rudy and John went on with their Pensa-Suhr line of guitars, Valley Arts started their own line (the pre-Samick USA ones were very nice - they employed Don Grosh for a year or so right before Samick took over). I think Strings & Things had seen the writing on the wall and had started their St. Blues line before Schecter dropped the Schecter Shop concept.

    My cousin had a PT (Saturn as it was called back then) from 1984/85 for years - it had the covered "SuperRock" pickups. I guess he was lucky because it never gave him any problems. I think it was his #1 until he decided to "retire" it 5-6 years ago when he went on a Strat kick.

    I've played a couple of Bob Willcutt-assembled Schecters, and quite a few of the 1984-86 production ones; all from that era were really nice. I have played a few of the mid-1990s USA Schecters from the current shop - all were well built but I found the "standard" neck shape a little too thin and flat for my preference.
     
  8. Serious Poo

    Serious Poo Armchair Rocket Scientist Graffiti Existentialist Gold Supporting Member

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    On a lighter note, at this year's NAMM show I saw several sets of fakes running around with Schecter logos on them. Not complaining, though. Nope. Not at all.

    [​IMG]
     
  9. John C

    John C Supporting Member

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    Sorry, that is one of the fakes. That is a low-end strat-copy with a faked logo.

    A real Schecter Hollywood has either a figured maple top or some other exotic wood (lacewood, koa, burled walnut, etc.) and is rear-routed.

    Drum City/Guitar Land in Colorodo has some real ones; scroll about 3/4 of the way down to get past the imports and get to the USA Custom Shop ones:

    http://www.drumcityguitarland.com/inventory/Details.cfm?ProductTypeID=12&BrandID=38

    Hope that helps.
     
  10. Jon Silberman

    Jon Silberman 10Q Jerry & Dickey Gold Supporting Member

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    fenderman, I emailed the links to your pix to my friend today, I'll let you know what I learn.
     
  11. fenderman

    fenderman Guest

    thanks much for your help!

    someone else on the board told me it was a fake based on the headstock logo. unfortunately for me, i have always been focused on fender and not looked at the rest of the world so i don't know better.... at least i keep telling myself that.

    having played many guitars over the years (fender, gibson, G&L, copies of... etc) and owning an older strat and a newer tele re-issue, all i know is that the so-called schecter is something. it plays very well, very true and has great sustain. i am surprised if it is a fake and would like to find more of these!

    again, thanks for your help! :JAM
     
  12. Jon Silberman

    Jon Silberman 10Q Jerry & Dickey Gold Supporting Member

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    fenderman, I heard back from my friend. He and I are now both getting an error message, when we click on the links you gave to your pictures, stating no pictures are accessible. Please repost your pix and PM me if you want us to try again. Thanks. Jon S.
     
  13. redbaaron007

    redbaaron007 Member

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    Hi Everyone,

    I saw this post after digging around for information on my guitar and felt I had to respond. I have a guitar that looks EXACTLY the same, except
    the tuners and the pickups, which are more than likely after-market. It is see-through red with a maple neck, a round(ish) headstock, and a Strat(ish) body. Serial number is S/N97###. The action is low, the build is solid, the sound and feel is smoother than any American strat I have ever played, at any price. Like the other poster, I've been highly impressed by the build quality, to the point where I would be EXTREMELY surprised if it was a fake.

    I just got it back from the Sam Ash on Lee Rd in Orlando, FL, and there's an older, very good guitar tech there named Frank. I took it to him to fix the intonation, which i'd made a mess of.

    Mine has white EMG active pickups. The gain was too weak to do heavier tracks with it, and when I dropped if, he noticed they were active pickups, but that the battery was under the pick guard. I'd had the same one for like 5 years, with no idea the pickups were actives. Frank said the pickups were probably after-market, because the soldering (while perfectly functional) was not an overly clean job, and also, if it had been part of the design, there more than likely would have been an access panel on the rear.

    I'm not a Schecter expert, but I asked this guy if there was any indication that it was a fake when was poking around under pick guard. He said, point blank, "it's not a fake." The way it plays, as good as it feels, as heavy as the woods are, I would have been be extremely surprised if it were a fake, but the other posts above gave me doubts.

    If you dig around, the one or two other pictures of a Hollywood LTD. that are out there also have the same almost-Strat body of Swamp Ash (slightly pointier tips than a strat). I'm not sure about the body wood, but it's got sort of stripes to it. The fretboard is very soft, dark wood, a kind that I've only seen on really high-end instruments (like my dad's '61 Gibson 175), and the neck is a soft maple.

    I seriously doubt some cheap Chinese shop could produce a fake of this quality for very cheap, and I don't see why they would spend their time knocking off an unknown model and doing such a good job of it in the process. That would seemingly have a very poor return. Second, if they're knocking it off, where are all the clones? I had a hard time finding three other pics on the internet with the same body and headstock, and two were on this site. Kind of defeats the point of forgery if the clone is as rare as the original.

    Moreover, the guy from Dire Straits used to play one with a strat-ish body, and there are pictures in the Schecter catalogs of ones with roundish headstocks. Finally, Frank (who said he toured the world as far as Norway with his Schecter), said he first got the itch to buy a Schecter after watching Mark from Dire Straits play his Strat. He said he would use mine, and from an older gentleman that knows a lot about guitars, say that and seeming so sure it wasn't a fake, I'd have to agree, odds are, it's extremely unlikely that it ISN'T real. Fakes aren't usually us such of an exceedingly high caliber. If you look at http://www.guitar-list.com/schecter/electric-guitars/schecter-hollywood-ltd, it suggests they were made from 96-99, three a year, so only 12 total made, and both yours and mine appear to be made in those years, judging from the serial numbers. There is another Hollywood LTD at http://www.davidcowlin.com/gallery2/main.php?g2_itemId=195 that looks a lot like ours in the body/headstock shape and wood (just not the color). The "standard" Hollywood Schecter is also a lot like it in the see-through body color, so in all likeliness yours and my Hollywood LTD are a sort of prototype of the more widely-produced Hollywood Standard and USA Custom Shop California's (very similar body and grain pattern on the back, see http://www.americanmusical.com/Item--i-SCE-7011-LIST). At least that's what all the evidence points to in my view. One of the sites above suggests the buyer paid 3200 pounds for one in '98 (or about $4820 US dollars). I wouldn't let yours go for very cheap if you do end up selling it (assuming you haven't already).

    Any questions regarding mine or whatever, feel free to post here. Sorry for reviving an ancient thread but since mine and yours seem to be twins, and I feel it's very unlikely mine is a fake, thought I should let you know.

    Cheers,
    Aaron
     
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2015
  14. redbaaron007

    redbaaron007 Member

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    That's exactly like mine except for the tuners and pickups, both of which appear to be after-market or added in by request as a one-off. The active pickups because there's no access panel, the tuners because mine have black lock-down-top tuners that don't have the classic Strat look like the rest of the guitar.
     

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