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I've just acquired a late 80's overseas Kramer that's been "5150"d relatively well. One thing that baffles me is that it's quite obviously got a plywood body. My questions are: is this tonal death and how widespread is/was the practice of using plywood?

The gtr actually has a really nice DiMarzio pickup (single slanted bridge humbucker) and an FRII that while a bit worn is still quite serviceable, so it's not a dead loss.

I think I'll use it for refinishing practice, just wondered if any Kramer fans could tell me if the DiMarzio was original and if there was anywhere online I could accurately date the guitar - serial is SD4020.

Edited by Alexander
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The Chinese loves them some plywood. I don't really have any issues with the good 5-ply and 7-ply they use. The real crap IS sonic-death. Dead as a mackeral. Now just how dead does a fish need to be to be considered a mackeral? No experience with Kramers, new or old. I am surprised at the supplied pickup, however. Sounds like a keeper to me.

Edited by thedoctor
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The Chinese loves them some plywood.

I picked up two Chinese telecasters (Stagg and Johnson) recently --neither is made of plywood...both are solid alder, and the Stagg's alder has a great-looking grain. The Johnson is more drab, but boy is it light --and resonant! The guitar just chimes. Both guitars cost 89 euros.

On the other hand, I have an Applause strat --and that IS plywood. It's Korean made, probably from the late 80s, early 90s...unplugged, it has a nice ring to it, but I'm getting rid of it, just keeping its excellent neck and making a new body with my patented Bocaster/Strabocaster shape.

And I have an old Morris Melody Maker copy too...from the late 70s...that body is plywood too, but the pickups made up for that pretty well. Really nice mahogany neck too. That one will probably turn into yet another weird-looking guitar.

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  • 4 weeks later...
Guest Brockyman

For Kramer info try www.vintagekramer.com where you should find most things you need to know about Kramers. I have an aluminium neck Kramer bass which I bought new in 1980 and that has a DiMarzio precision pickup. It has a solid maple body though. In the 1970's I had an Antoria EB0 copy and the body of that was made of blockboard - sounded like it too until I had some old Guild pickups fit, thats how I found what it was made from.


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