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Interesting to see that you didn't correct the Californian's biggest design blunder.

(Yes, I'm trolling. Sorta.)

If you're referring to the slanted neck p'up, that's an absolute non-issue to me. :)

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The slanted neck pickup is fine. But there is no reason they couldn't have made the fretboard edge angle match the pickup slant angle.

The Californian is a rockin' beast and I can't fault its functionality and general bad-assness. But they could have made that angle match without negatively impacting anything.

I'll never understand why they didn't, and if I was having a guitar made from scratch, I'd do that.

I just think the fretboard/pickup space looks better in these:

qf3om4kblxl991rhnbld.jpg

b1e4d61482441a2231e7bdad4a54c814.jpg

1600-LPRCNACH_body.jpg

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Anyway, I was looking at his Magnum 24 builds, and he looks like a skilled builder who is going to deliver an amazing guitar to you.

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The Californian's design is specifically built that way, v. Form over function. You get one more "useful" string/fret and more even pickup response the way Hamer did it v. everything lining up in parallel and satisfying people's aesthetic taste.

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Yeah, again, the non-parallel p'up to fret board end angle is obviously a non-issue. In fact, I kinda like it for it's artsy-fartsy aesthetic. Ya know, the subconscious breaking with conformity and disrupting uniformity and all that psycho mumbo-jumbo. Some people need that shit. I would think given your <ahem> taste in guitars shaped like oversized potatoes :lol:;) , that a lil' thing like an askew p'up angle wouldn't make such a ripple.

As for my guitar building buddy Chris Leahy, he's got some considerable skill, that much is certain. Only time will tell if the Burrito will have the requisite mojo. :)

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The Californian's design is specifically built that way, v. Form over function. You get one more "useful" string/fret and more even pickup response the way Hamer did it v. everything lining up in parallel and satisfying people's aesthetic taste.

The point of a beautiful guitar design is to satisfy aesthetic taste. There are all sorts of areas Hamer could have sacrificed the beauty of the Californian shape to increase function, but chose not to in order to make the Ferrari of Superstrats. (A possibly unfortunate comparison: the Ferrari 308 wasn't really all that fast). For instance, deciding to go with only one single knob clearly reduces functionality, but makes it look cleaner/simpler.

So why in just this one, single area did they decide to throw aesthetics out the window and stand and the hard principle of function?

If the low e string fretboard edge is 1.3 fret spaces longer, it negatively impacts pickup response?

I'm going to need some evidence and/or math before I believe that one.

Of course, there are plenty of areas where they didn't have to sacrifice function for appearance. The scallops in the cutaways look cool and improve access. A well-proportioned fretboard looks pretty. A guitar that is balanced well often looks more balanced. Making the body contours more sleep more likely than not improved the ergonomics.

To be honest, I think the answer to the fretboard edge issue actually is: the designers just happened to prefer THIS aesthetic to THAT aesthetic.

And that's fine. It isn't such a big deal to me that I love Californians any less. But if I were having a guitar built from scratch, I'd keep the slanted pickup but have the fretboard edge made parallel, because *I* think it makes a more attractive guitar and I currently don't believe it would hurt tone or pickup response at all.

That doesn't mean I think anyone who likes the non-parallel lines has bad taste. I'm kind of happy we don't all like the same things in life, that would be boring.

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Using a completely non-scientific methods and idle, unfounded speculation, I've determined that there would be no discernible difference in the quality of tone or volume of a slanted neck p'up vs. one that is parallel to the nut and bridge, though, if that were the case the p'ups would be spaced much closer together. Like a NightSwan. I'm still gathering data on any discernible differences vs. one that is slanted parallel to the fretboard end. This will require a few more margaritas, a big ass router, several pickups and a destined-for-the-fireplace Cali.

:lol:

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Again, it isn't the pickup slant I'm talking about, it's the fretboard edge slant.

At this time, I cannot understand how a shallower slant of the fretboard edge, to match the angle of the pickup, would negatively impact guitar function or tone.

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Yeah, again, the non-parallel p'up to fret board end angle is obviously a non-issue. In fact, I kinda like it for it's artsy-fartsy aesthetic. Ya know, the subconscious breaking with conformity and disrupting uniformity and all that psycho mumbo-jumbo. Some people need that shit. I would think given your <ahem> taste in guitars shaped like oversized potatoes :lol:;) , that a lil' thing like an askew p'up angle wouldn't make such a ripple.

Where did I ever say I like the appearance of guitars shaped like oversized potatoes?

I like the infamous potato guitar because of its unique and innovative functional elements, despite its appearance.

But this is a digression; I just wanted to set the record straight.

The bottom line is based on his previous builds, I don't see how Chris' build for you can possibly not be bursting with mojo. I may have to order a 24 Magnum from him someday. Or maybe I'll have him use the Californian design but "fix" the fretboard edge for me. Either way, it's at least 5 years off.

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Sorry, Nathan. Justified or not, you have been assigned the role of apologist for potato(e) shaped guitars.

:)

Rgr that. Okay, I'll be more ready from now on.

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Also, like it or not, YOU are definitely not somebody who's word I'd really listen to when it comes to guitar aesthetics.

:D

The Californian wasn't designed as a work of art - that's not how Hamer did things. I've spoken to the people who designed those guitars, and although they all have an incredible aesthetic sense, they also will forget more about designing fully functional, great playing/sounding guitars than most of us here will ever learn. These weren't built to hang on a wall in a museum.

Yeah, again, the non-parallel p'up to fret board end angle is obviously a non-issue. In fact, I kinda like it for it's artsy-fartsy aesthetic. Ya know, the subconscious breaking with conformity and disrupting uniformity and all that psycho mumbo-jumbo. Some people need that shit. I would think given your <ahem> taste in guitars shaped like oversized potatoes :lol:;) , that a lil' thing like an askew p'up angle wouldn't make such a ripple.

Where did I ever say I like the appearance of guitars shaped like oversized potatoes?

I like the infamous potato guitar because of its unique and innovative functional elements, despite its appearance.

But this is a digression; I just wanted to set the record straight.

The bottom line is based on his previous builds, I don't see how Chris' build for you can possibly not be bursting with mojo. I may have to order a 24 Magnum from him someday. Or maybe I'll have him use the Californian design but "fix" the fretboard edge for me. Either way, it's at least 5 years off.

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"But how do you know Nathan is a witch?" "HE QUESTIONS THE MIGHTY CALIFORNIAN!!! BURN HIM!" ;)

wizard.jpg

I used to wonder about the Cali's fretboard not matching, but figured "ah f it, I'm sure they had a reason"...similar to the Nightswan, but I suspect the NS is more for "whoa, check that out!" reactions.

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Monty Python reference FTW.

I don't mean to hold the mighty Cali up as the end-all, be-all of shredders. I've got that Jackson CS Star down in the man cave that is superior in many regards to my array of Calis. I do think Cali's are the end-all, be-all of Hamer shredders and IMO certainly able to hold it's own against a dizzying array of other makes/models. But that's my experience and preferences. Naturally, others might differ and they'd be horrifically wrong and condemned to complete disregard.

:lol:

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I don't mean to hold the mighty Cali up as the end-all, be-all of shredders. ... But that's my experience and preferences. Naturally, others might differ and they'd be horrifically wrong and condemned to complete disregard.

I wasn't talking about you ;) I'm a big fan of the Calis, and I don't shred AT ALL.

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Also, like it or not, YOU are definitely not somebody who's word I'd really listen to when it comes to guitar aesthetics.

All those beautiful Hamer USA guitars in my guitar room must be an illusion, then.

The Californian wasn't designed as a work of art - that's not how Hamer did things. I've spoken to the people who designed those guitars, and although they all have an incredible aesthetic sense, they also will forget more about designing fully functional, great playing/sounding guitars than most of us here will ever learn. These weren't built to hang on a wall in a museum.

Jol Dantzig said:

My intention was to fashion a “super strat” that looked as though Ferrari had sculpted it.

To provide the Cali a more angular appearance than the traditional form, I downsized the body and employed radical contours and beveling in the cutaway areas. This improved access to higher fingerings and gave the horns an aggressive appearance.

Probably the most recognizable feature was the addition of extra frets at the end of an angled fretboard.

...

I placed [the neck pickup] on a rakish angle that complimented the end of the fretboard. This was primarily for styling purposes, since it would probably have sounded better angled the other way.

Based on all this, I don't see how changing the fretboard angle slant a few degrees would have ruined the Californian's kick-ass functionality (playability, tone, ergonomics, etc).

If Jol (and whomever assisted him in the design, if anyone) liked it non-parallel better, fine.

If some actively like the non-parallel, okay.

I suspect most don't care, and since that's the way it was designed, that's what they are used to and that's what now looks/feels right.

However, I still don't understand how making that angle could possibly affect the guitars functionality, and Jol's own words seem to support the idea it was a purely aesthetic choice and is thus open to aesthetic criticism.

Even if I'm the only one.

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Also, like it or not, YOU are definitely not somebody who's word I'd really listen to when it comes to guitar aesthetics.

All those beautiful Hamer USA guitars in my guitar room must be an illusion, then.

I am CLEARLY not talking about those.

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Aww come on Chris- one rotten, er... uh, potato don't spoil the whole bunch, ya know?

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However, I still don't understand how making that angle could possibly affect the guitars functionality, and Jol's own words seem to support the idea it was a purely aesthetic choice and is thus open to aesthetic criticism.

Even if I'm the only one.

But it's rakish. How can you argue with that? :lol:

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Also, like it or not, YOU are definitely not somebody who's word I'd really listen to when it comes to guitar aesthetics.

All those beautiful Hamer USA guitars in my guitar room must be an illusion, then.

I am CLEARLY not talking about those.

Well, so my taste can't be irretrievably bad, then, right?

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However, I still don't understand how making that angle could possibly affect the guitars functionality, and Jol's own words seem to support the idea it was a purely aesthetic choice and is thus open to aesthetic criticism.

Even if I'm the only one.

But it's rakish. How can you argue with that? :lol:

Let's get back to talking about rakish angles on your cool custom order.

You didn't go with a quilted or flamed maple finish, eh? Who is doing the graphic paint work for you?

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Well, so my taste can't be irretrievably bad, then, right?

I like to think that there is hope for everybody in this world.

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However, I still don't understand how making that angle could possibly affect the guitars functionality, and Jol's own words seem to support the idea it was a purely aesthetic choice and is thus open to aesthetic criticism.

Even if I'm the only one.

But it's rakish. How can you argue with that? :lol:

Let's get back to talking about rakish angles on your cool custom order.

You didn't go with a quilted or flamed maple finish, eh? Who is doing the graphic paint work for you?

Ah, but I AM doing a finish that is not the typical and expected graphic type. It WILL involve a figured top as well. :ph34r::blink::D

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Ah, but I AM doing a finish that is not the typical and expected graphic type. It WILL involve a figured top as well. :ph34r::blink::D

That's good to hear. Chris seems to be good at obtaining nice figured tops, so it would have been a shame to waste his skill in that element.

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