Stevens Classic or Coliings I-35?

Discussion in 'The Small Company Luthiers' started by Guitar James, Aug 12, 2008.

  1. Guitar James

    Guitar James Member

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    Anybody tried both of these fine instruments?
     
  2. ultra

    ultra Member

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    I've played the I-35 but it is not a patch on my Stevens Classic.

    This September, I will have had my Stevens Classic for 10 years and nothing comes close. I keep looking and trying guitars out to see if they can usurp my Classic but..... no.

    I have ordered another Classic but this one will be the flat back model with a wrapover tailpiece which will be offered once the protos are refined.

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  3. Guitar James

    Guitar James Member

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    Can you eleaborate on why the Classic is so much better?
     
  4. ultra

    ultra Member

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    The Classic felt better to play, was superbly balanced (although heavier) and was sonically even across the whole sonic range.

    I felt that the I-35 was good but it felt " a little uncertain" and hesitant.
    The sonics had more peaks and troughs where notes would leap out and others would die away.

    There is nothing I can't do with the Stevens .... but I felt that the Collings was not going to deliver every time.

    This is of course my opinion and others may differ. All I want is for an instrument to "knock me out". The Collings I-35 didn't.
     
  5. Cobra

    Cobra Supporting Member

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    Wow! Your Stevens Classic is just beautiful! Love the honey colored finish... :AOK :banana
    What kind of pickups are in it, what's the weight, & what kind of neck profile does it have?
    Also, are the controls 2 volumes & a master tone?
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  6. ultra

    ultra Member

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    ThanksCobra.

    The pickups are Tom Holmes H450/H456, the neck is '59 ish.... not too big and not too slim, 1.72" nut, braz board and weight 8.5 lbs.
     
  7. ultra

    ultra Member

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    Sorry, left out the controls.... master volume and 2 tones. Coil taps in push/pull tone pots
     
  8. ultra

    ultra Member

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    Here are some more pics...different lighting


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  9. BettyFjord

    BettyFjord Member

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    Does anyone know if the Classic is a hollowbody, semi-hollow or chambered? And does Michael have a preference for removing the f-hole or was it your decision Ultra?
     
  10. Guitar James

    Guitar James Member

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    Beautiful guitar Ultra!
    I always wondered about the F-holes as well.
     
  11. ultra

    ultra Member

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    The Classic is chambered. It is a very lively guitar and quite loud without f holes. I recorded it with just a mic (no amp) in the studio for a gig and it was very "respectable" as an acoustic.

    I guess that Michael set out initially without f holes and that is one reason why i got one. My ES guitars just fed back in high gain situations.

    The Classic will feedback too, in the right conditions, but it is controllable and usable.
     
  12. ultra

    ultra Member

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    If you want to see the difference in dimensions, here is a pic of my Classic with a '61 ES345. The Classic is 25.5" scale.

    Pic is not great but you will get the idea

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  13. TNJ

    TNJ Gold Supporting Member

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    That Stevens is SWEET.

    S>
    j
     
  14. wichita

    wichita Supporting Member

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    I have played both.
    Both great guitars. Very different feel, and different tone. The Collings is a bit stiffer feel in my opinion.
    Michael does great work and I believe he influenced the guys at Collings quit a bit.
    Apples and Oranges, but Michaels work is always so stunning and perfect that if I ever find a Classic used I will buy it right away.
     
  15. BettyFjord

    BettyFjord Member

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    Thanks for that. I assumed that the guitar was chambered so a f-hole wouldn't be appropriate. But the controlled feedback makes more sense.

    I would love to own one of these someday. Luckily I've got a LJ on order to tide me over a bit.
     
  16. will richardson

    will richardson The Tennessee to California Connection Silver Supporting Member

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    I have three stevens two LJs and a classic, plus an all mahogoney classic on the way.

    Stevens worked For Collings for two or so years. Gee, wonder where Collings got the subtleties and nuances? Iv'e played the Collings I35 and City Limit. They are probably the best factory (boutique) guitars out there, tonally and detail wise.
    Stevens is the inceptor of tone, when people and players hear a Stevens they go out of their way to compliment the tone, clarity, projection, warmth, versatiity, blah blah blah. The bodies are obviously not their inventions but rather their take on "classics". Will R
     
  17. Ogre

    Ogre Member

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    Inceptor?
    MS also helped start the Fender Custom Shop. Before that he had a groovy repair shop in East Austin. He is one of the good guys.
     
  18. Dave Orban

    Dave Orban Gold Supporting Member

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    Beautiful guitar!
     
  19. matte

    matte Senior Member

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    my body.
    i've owned both. my first stevens was a korina classic that mike built in his garage while running the original fender custom shop. i've owned that guitar 2 times. i currently have a flatback korina classic with an eastern maple top and john mann steel trem on order. looking quite forward to wearing that the phuck out.

    grissom sold me his i 35. well crafted but stiff, unremarkable and not particularly responsive instrument. about what i would expect from an acoustic builder (on their first foray into electric guitar building).
     
  20. Guitar James

    Guitar James Member

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    Please post some pics of that beauty when you get it. Sounds like a perfect guitar.
     

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