Walden G570 Refurbish & Setup

Brought home this old guitar for a refurbish and setup.

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Walden Guitars have ceased operation but their guitars have generally garnered good reviews from players. The G570 is Grand Auditorium sized guitar with a solid cedar top and laminated mahogany body.

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It’s got an interesting headstock shape. Quite similar to a Seagull but not so slim. The guitar also feel rather light despite it’s rather wide lower bout. It’s slightly wider than a dreadnought but it’s shallower and curvier.

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We got some work to do because this one did not appear to have any form of maintenance done to it at all. Just look at the dirt and grime on the fingerboard. Yucks.

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There’s also some rusty frets going on. Let’s hope our friends steel wool and Ax Wax can help. Give the entire fretboard some rubbing and we may get some good results.

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Cookie was my assistant for this project. And he’s smiling because the fretboard is shiny again.

From this: Rusty and dry

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To this: Shiny and nourished

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Let’s work on the saddle. It needed some shaving off to get a lower action. Walden used Graphtech Fossalite saddles so I reckoned I’d just keep it. It’s actually quite well-cut.

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Pencil lead on nut slots. Again, this is a Graphtech Fossalite nut and pretty well-cut.

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Restrung with fresh Elixirs PB.  I may get a set of Tusq pins soon.

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I took the time to remove the pickguard. I can’t stand pickguards on acoustic guitars. Here I used a very thin guitar pick (0.4mm) to pry out the edge and slowly peeled off the entire pickguard. No heat needed. Then I used MusicNomad ONE to remove the lil’ bit of glue residue.

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Action set at just a hair under 3/32 inch at 12th fret capo on 1st. Really comfy to play.

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It’s quite nice really. Now I may have to find an all-solid Walden to do a comparison. 🙂

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Closing notes:

The G570 is a nice entry level guitar (solid top laminate body) that offers something different from the usual dreadnought shape. It’s more comfortable to play because it’s shallower. It’s “quieter” (if that’s appropriate to describe the tone) probably due to the cedar top.

The cedar top is also less prone to be overdriven than the more common spruce top. Sure, it lacks some power and volume, but the overall tone of this guitar is still rather bright compared to hardwoods such as mahogany. The GA shape does offer a decent amount of bass.

One thing I did notice is that the tuners and finish on this guitar is by far the best I’ve seen in budget guitars. Upon reading up, Walden did use a nitro satin finish on their guitars and this could be why it feels better made than the more common poly-finished guitars at this price-point.

I wonder if I find an all-solid model (G830 or G810) for a shootout.

 

 

 

Epiphone New Guitars

Epiphone has announced some new affordable guitars at the SNAMM.

Les Paul SL

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The talk of the town is the new Les Paul SL. Billed as the “$99 Les Paul”, it comes in different funky colours including Pacific Blue shown above and Sunset Yellow below.

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Not too sure about the wraparound bridge though. Let’s hope they don’t present too many problems down the road.

Les Paul LT

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This should be considered a step up from the recent Les Paul Special VE due to its carved top. A simple basic guitar for those who are beginning or just wanting to try out the LP shape. Let’s hope the hardware is a step up too.

SG Special VE

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So Epi has decided to give the VE treatment to the SG model this time. Like the Les Pauls, there are some nice colours to choose from.

Masterbilt DR-400MCE

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Billed as the most affordable full solid Epi, this one should be attractive to those who prefer to have all solid construction in their guitars. How nice it would be if Epi can use the Wildkat style headstock on these.

*photos from Epiphone

New Fender Bluetooth Speakers

Fender has made their first foray into the world of bluetooth speakers with the Newport and Monterey speakers.

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The bigger Monterey is a 120W speaker and allows RCA connection for your other audio devices that are non-bluetooth. The wooden construction houses 2 woofers and 2 tweeters, and useful tone controls.

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The smaller battery operated Newport offers portability and also acts as USB charger to your mobile devices while on the move.

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Great looking speakers that look like Fender amps. Let’s see how they stand up against the Marshall speakers that already have been on the market for some time.

*photos from Music Radar and The Verge

 

 

New Fender Custom Shop Guitars

Fender Custom Shop has launched a slew of new guitars for Summer NAMM.

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Pacific Battle Strat and Tele

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Not too sure why guitars would be made to look like WW2 fighter planes, the new Pacific Battle guitars are made with ash bodies in transparent green stain and tarnished hardware to achieve the bomber place look.

Artisan Thinline Koa Strat

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Beautiful looking semi-hollow Strat. Plenty of exotic woods used here ranging from the okoume body, roasted AAA birdseye maple neck, blackwood fingerboard, and of course the koa top.

Front Row Legend Esquire

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Stunning Tele here made from relaimed yellow cedar from the actual benches of the famed Hollywood Bowl. Each guitar is unique with it’s own nail holes, cracks and markings. This is probably Fender’s answer to the recent trend of making guitars from reclaimed woods.

LTD 50’s Thinline Tele Relic

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Another beauty here with its floral paisley finish. This is a good blend of modern and vintage elements. We get soft V neck and brass saddles to go along with more modern features such as Greasebucket tone control and Texas Special pickups.

*photos from Gearnews.com and Fender

More New Fenders at NAMM

Updates via MusicRadar:

More new Fenders for Summer NAMM. These new signature models just look so good.

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Jimi Hendrix Monterey Strat

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A remake of the iconic Strat set on fire by the himself, this is done in true vintage specs with 7.25″ fretboard radius, 21 fret neck and vintage wound pickups. OK, no more rosewood allowed so we get pau ferro fingerboards these days.

George Harrison Rosewood Tele

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On the other end of the spectrum, this one features plenty of rosewood by way of a rosewood neck (yes, you read it right), rosewood fingerboard and rosewood body. Quite a strange release since Fender only just released a similar guitar last year. Only 1000 guitars are made so expect this to be in high demand.

JMJ Road Worn Mustang Bass

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A short scaled bass in sweet daphne blue finish, this one features rolled fingerboard for speed and comfort.

Ed O’Brien Sustainer Strat

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Interesting pickup configuration here with a Seymour Duncan JB Jr bridge, Texas Special single coil middle and a Fernandes Sustainer neck. Now, who doesn’t love a white Strat?

Read more on MusicRadar:

http://www.musicradar.com/news/summer-namm-2017-fender-reveals-new-jimi-hendrix-george-harrison-and-justin-meldal-johnsen-signature-guitars-and-basses

http://www.musicradar.com/news/summer-namm-2017-fender-launches-ed-obrien-sustainer-stratocaster-guitar

*photos from MusicRadar