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Show me Your Cort Guitars

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by D_W_PGH, Jan 11, 2019.

  1. D_W_PGH

    D_W_PGH Friend of Leo's

    Age:
    42
    Aug 28, 2018
    Pittsburgh
    My first guitar was a Cort. I don't wish I still had it, but it was probably about the worst that they made.

    At the time, there were Cort branded guitars from junk to higher spec, and after selling off the plastic fingerboard effector that i started with, I never really looked that hard at anything with the cort brand on because despite the fact that there are TONS of cort-made guitars in the US, there aren't that many that actually say Cort on the peghead.

    I was looking around yesterday and saw a decent looking Cort M520 at a GC location for $170 and thought about having it shipped, and google and all of the other magic selling algorithms immediately started showing me others. Long story short, some of the options look interesting. There's an LP faded style guitar (CL 150) for about $295 new, and a PRS-ish/Ibanez SZ type M600 with a tone-pros bridge and graph tech nut that someone was selling cut price new ($439).

    I bought the latter (the M600) and am waiting for it. It looks like a pattern that I might not mind copying scale and proportion-wise into a neck through arch top double cut.

    If you have one (a Cort) that you like, feel free to share.
     
  2. D_W_PGH

    D_W_PGH Friend of Leo's

    Age:
    42
    Aug 28, 2018
    Pittsburgh
    (I wouldn't be surprised if a lot of the ibanez korea guitars were made by cort, or schechter, or pretty much anything - and I see that cort is operating in indonesia now, too. So, if someone would say above "those guitars are a lot like the SZ because the SZ ibanez guitars are cort", I wouldn't be surprised).
     
  3. shupe13

    shupe13 Tele-Meister

    497
    Mar 18, 2010
    Greenfield, IN
    I had a Cort Curbo 6 bass years ago. I can't find a pic.

    Sent from my REVVLPLUS C3701A using Tapatalk
     
  4. Wally

    Wally Telefied Ad Free Member

    Mar 17, 2003
    Lubbock, TX
    I have owned only one....and I bought it as a project that I have never tackled. It is a doubleneck 6/12. Someone did a real hack job on a refret and it needs to be redone. It is even in its original case.
     
  5. soulman969

    soulman969 Telefied Ad Free Member

    Mar 20, 2011
    Englewood, CO
    Labor issues in Korea caused Cort to shut down a plant and move production of some models to an Indonesian plant. There many stories on the internet about this and Cortek's mistreatment of it's workers. But this was over ten years ago.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cort_Guitars

    Quite a few top US and Japanese brands are built under contract for them by Cortek including the brands you've mentioned. I have two G&L Tribute models that were also built in Indonesia by Cortek and contract builds are their primary business.
     
  6. D_W_PGH

    D_W_PGH Friend of Leo's

    Age:
    42
    Aug 28, 2018
    Pittsburgh
    I vaguely recall those labor disputes, and only remember them because "before the internet" someone had said (when they saw my cort effector) "cort makes guitars for a lot of brands, and they make some good guitars".

    As far as the labor disputes go, I think a lot of it probably (just guessing) has to do with international demand from consumers and distributors for really cheap guitars. The fact that cort is big makes them an easy target. South Korea is a tough place to work (in a factory OR in an office). When I got credentialed, there were a lot of chinese and korean people at the event that I went to to receive my placard, etc. The guy I sat next to was from Korea - and he described a work environment that I wouldn't want to be in. He's either working long hours or going to the bar (by mandate) with the boss and coworkers. What I'm getting at is that the situation was probably a combination of factors, but the largest contract makers (who are probably making a profit level on each guitar that would pay for some of us to dessert on top of an extra value meal), probably couldn't meet the labor demands and stay in business.

    Sears is a good example of a business model that's generous to rank and file employees but without changing much in business operations.

    So, I sort of stay out of those kinds of things. I learned pretty early on in college that the groups arguing against nike labor practices, etc, were not supported by the actual workers, because those folks were the first generation making their way out of subsistence living. 20 years have passed and most of the low-cost instruments now can't be made in korea because it's too expensive. It's hard to know what the "right answer" is.

    (of course a zillion other makers have gone to indonesia at the same time, without the same fight or publicity, so fleeing to another brand isn't a guarantee of something better).
     
    soulman969 likes this.
  7. bondoman

    bondoman TDPRI Member

    Age:
    28
    70
    Nov 10, 2018
    vallejo ca
  8. soulman969

    soulman969 Telefied Ad Free Member

    Mar 20, 2011
    Englewood, CO
    They do make some excellent guitars. My G&Ls would attest to that.

    As for the rest I didn't want it to become a political issue at all but simply provided it to be informational as far as why production was moved to Indonesia. :)
     
  9. Rich_S

    Rich_S Friend of Leo's Gold Supporter

    Dec 29, 2006
    Potsdam, NY
    My only mahogany, short-scale, dual-humbucker (i.e. “Gibson-style”) guitar is a Hamer Slammer Series “Sunburst” model (although it’s wine red). It was reputedly built by Cort and was the best of the Hamer imports. It is an awesome guitar, the only “Gibson” I need.

    The build quality is excellent, Neck is just the right size, good frets. I like the scarf joint at the peghead, it’s not for the purists, but it’s much more durable than a traditional Gibby peghead, and you can’t see the difference unless you really look for the glue lines.

    I’ll post pics next time I’m on my computer.
     
  10. claes

    claes Tele-Holic

    704
    Aug 20, 2007
    sweden
    Here is my beloved cort:
    [​IMG]
    Fender DG22 (but i tell everyone it's a Cort) Solid top, laminated maple, built by cort in Korea.
    Raving reviews
    Cort can build anything they want. But it doesn't matter how good guitars they build people don't want the Cort brand. You probably get most for you money buying Cort because of this, but you can't sell it for a decent price when you want to. Cort probably cries all the way to the bank since they are a fortune 500 company building OEM for everybody else.

    The color came out a litle off. It's actually more of a ruby red. Makes me stand out in the sea of singer-songwriters. It gets the crusty seal of aproval "It's just not good, it's good enough"
     
  11. Bob Mc

    Bob Mc Friend of Leo's

    Mar 17, 2003
    Mo'town NJ
    A few decades ago, the shop I did repairs at stocked them to service the students taking lessons. The had an acoustic series ("earth" 'IIRC) that had good QC and played/sounded very nice for price point. Not long after, I found them rebranded on Carvins homepage with a $200 extra price tag.
     
  12. LeftFinger

    LeftFinger Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    68
    Aug 16, 2015
    Saskatchewan
  13. D_W_PGH

    D_W_PGH Friend of Leo's

    Age:
    42
    Aug 28, 2018
    Pittsburgh
    I wonder who makes the dangelico guitars in korea (the excels), because they are masterfully made - and since they're MIK, they can be found inexpensively used (not so much new, unless you find a sale deal).

    I get the sense that some of the higher priced foreign dean guitars are also MIK by the same maker as the dangelicos.
     
  14. jvin248

    jvin248 Poster Extraordinaire

    Apr 18, 2014
    Near Detroit, MI
    .

    In the middle of restringing the guitar after replacing all the trapezoid inlays. Bought the guitar used from a guy that had lost the 5th fret marker inlay. No way to find an exact match so I replaced all of them with a tort-like design.

    [​IMG]
     
    Cobra1957, FenderGyrl and shupe13 like this.
  15. D_W_PGH

    D_W_PGH Friend of Leo's

    Age:
    42
    Aug 28, 2018
    Pittsburgh
    looks good!!

    I have a second offer out on another set neck type, double cut, otherwise similar to that.

    My collection of guitars is getting to be scooped. Expensive or inexpensive, not much in between.
     
  16. D_W_PGH

    D_W_PGH Friend of Leo's

    Age:
    42
    Aug 28, 2018
    Pittsburgh
    http://www.cortguitars.com/en/community/news_view.asp?idx=605

    I really like the tele-paul special on the left. LP special shape and scale, tele bridge and single coil and P-90 neck.

    I recognize that $6 bridge from alibaba, and was hoping someone would be dumping one of these used, but it looks like few ever made it here in the first place.
     
  17. D_W_PGH

    D_W_PGH Friend of Leo's

    Age:
    42
    Aug 28, 2018
    Pittsburgh
    Well, the guy selling the cort m600 decided to send a refund without explanation. I ordered a used kx custom and a used MGM 1 to make up for it. The former just looks to be a version of the Ibanez sz with Duncans in it, a coil tap, hard case, etc. Some weird resale site had it, and a thing popped up and said, ' click here to chat for a deal', I was going to pay the ask, but followed their prompt and got another chunk taken off the price.
     
  18. Rich_S

    Rich_S Friend of Leo's Gold Supporter

    Dec 29, 2006
    Potsdam, NY
    As promised, here's my Cort-built Hamer.

    Before:
    [​IMG]

    And After:
    [​IMG]

    I could find no fault with the wood, assembly, or finish; just a first-rate guitar all around. The pickups were too hot - I believe they were a Duncan-Designed "Distortion" set - but that was an issue of feature selection, not build quality.

    Having lusted after Hamers back in the late 70's and early '80s, I wanted the look and sound of the old 4-digits. So I told Josh Gravelin, "Double cream and zebra, and make it sound like Budokan." He came through for me big time. I've also changed out the pots and switch for CTS and Switchcraft, and put on a set of real (used) Schallers. In the end, it's a "forever" guitar for me and scratches my Hamer itch for half of the cost of a USA model.
     
    Cobra1957 likes this.
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