There aren't a lot of G&L dealers and often those dealers have limited stock. So...that typically means purchasing online, which offers lots of options, but it's tough buying a guitar without holding, playing, hearing, etc. So, in that spirit, I offer my observations and experience regarding the ASAT SPECIAL guitars. About a year ago, I decided to buy a USA ASAT Special. Placed an order, selected the options I wanted and after about 10 week, my shiny new guitar arrived. The guitar looked good, played OK, but there were two hairline cracks in the finish at the neck joint. I decided to return the guitar. Another 10ish weeks, and a new guitar arrived at my house. 1. The guitar looks very good, but again, a minor finish flaw where the end grain wasn't fully filled. I accepted the flaw and still have the guitar. 2 guitars - 2 finish flaws. 2. After playing the guitar for about a year, there are four things that bother me about the guitar. 1st, the string height above the body is very high compared to similar bolt on guitars. Uncomfortably high and awkward almost like an arch top. 2nd, the G and D string generate ghost notes at the head stock. Next, the neck pickup is louder than the bridge pickup and can generate "wolf tones". Lastly, the “saddle lock” bridge, while a cool concept is sloppy. 1st - Exploring the string height issue, I removed the neck to discover the neck had been shimmed with putty colored tape. I asked the dealer, they denied doing this, so that means G&L did it. Shimming isn't necessarily bad, but curious. I discovered that the "saddle-lock" bridge has saddles (unique to this bridge) that are way to tall for the neck pocket/depth and the fix is either filing down the saddles or shimming the neck. To address this, I removed the tape shimming the neck then filed and reshaped the saddles, and the guitar plays way better and more like a bolt on guitar should feel. So...does this affect all ASAT Specials? Seems like it would, but I've only owned one so i don't know. 2nd – G & D string ghost notes, resonance. The headstock on the ASAT is longer than a tele or any 6 inline guitar I know of. As a result, the strings extend pretty far past the nut. The single string tree on the E/B string addresses this issue. However, the D/G does not benefit from a string tree resulting in a shallow break angle across the nut and both strings resonating. The simple fix is to add a second string tree. I have a piece a Velcro attached to the strings on the head stock muting the strings beyond the nut. But, the break angle remains unchanged. I may add a second string tree. G&L said an email this does not void the warranty as long as done correctly. 3rd – The ASAT Special has the large MFD pickups. I both love and hate them. Tons of spank, very wide range, but can drive the amp so hard the clean can get dirty. I like the bridge pickup a ton. Twang for days with lows too! No mud. The neck pickup is great -- at times. But, it’s too hot to match the bridge pickup well. I understand G&L used to not wind these so much, I've read 300 fewer turns? I think that might fix this? G&L only winds them one way, according to an email I received from them. Too bad a less hot neck pickup isn't available. 4th – The saddle-lock bridge. This is touted as Leo’s crowning achievement. And, it is a great concept, but it fails to deliver as well as it could. Fix the saddle height. They are nearly 2 x as tall as the need to be to permit effective adjustment without shimming the neck. Next, there is too much slop left to right in the bridge. When you set up the guitar and then lock the saddles, the strings move toward the low E 1/8” – 3/16” So, the strings become poorly aligned and the action is changed across the crown of the frets. Tighter tolerances could eliminate this unnecessary movement. I don't "lock" my saddles, they stay in place fine but I don't get the advertised benefit of this bridge. This bridge has unique screw pattern and is not easily replaced. A cool 3 x saddle half tele bridge would be really cool on this guitar! So, is the ASAT Special worth owning? Yes, it’s cool as hell. Tons of spank and in your face clean. The fret work is solid, satin neck is smooth and comfy, and the stock tuners have a unique taper forcing the strings to the lowest position on the tuner posts. But, don’t expect out of the box perfection. G&L could easily take this guitar from a solid player to an exceptional instrument with a few refinements and better quality control.