NGD: S.D. Curlee International guitar... Sweet!

Discussion in 'Other Guitars, other instruments' started by geetarfreek82, Aug 14, 2011.

  1. geetarfreek82

    geetarfreek82 Tele-Afflicted

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    I walked in to my friends guitar shop yesterday just to hang out and b.s., and I walked out with this thing... It is awesome, and apparently rare. It has a walnut body with a hand ribbed lacquer finish, and a three piece maple "bolt through" neck. The pickups (which are old Dimarzio Super Distortions) and bridge are mounted directly to the neck. The bridge, switch tip, nut, electronics and neck plates and tuners are all brass, and the bridge is a top loader with 6 Tele style barrel saddles. It's also Fender scale length. It has a huge neck and big frets and is a breeze to play. The only way to describe how this thing sounds through and amp is unique. The neck pickup, since it is way farther away from the neck than it would be on a tele, is rather articulate, and it almost sounds like a single coil. The bridge cuts but isn't thin, and if you roll the volume back a bit it can do a convincing twang.

    Okay, here's some pix...
     

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  2. RevMike

    RevMike Poster Extraordinaire

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    A buddy of mine has the bass version of that sitting in the case in his house.
     
  3. harold h

    harold h Friend of Leo's

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    Those are very nice. I remember when those were new, the owner of the company was Randy Curlee, he chose the name SD because he thought it sounded nice.
     
  4. geetarfreek82

    geetarfreek82 Tele-Afflicted

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    Actually, the S. and D. stood for the last names of his two business partners... From wikipedia:

    "This small enterprise was founded by Randy Curlee around 1975 in Matteson. The name S.D Curlee came from the three original designers, Sonny Storbeck, Randy Dritz and Randy Curlee. According to Michael Wright (Guitar Stories), this independent entrepreneur built and sold around15,000 handcrafted instruments, including 12,000 bass guitars, between 1975 and 1982. Recently Denny Rauen disagreed and said these highly exaggerated figures were solely used for publicity purposes. In truth the Matteson workshop could produce a maximum of 25 instruments per month "...when things were running smoothly..." (source http://www.sdcurleeusa.com/yesterday.htm) With hindsightit’s safe to assume S.D. Curlee U.S.A manufactured around 2500 to 3000 guitars and basses in total. Curlee wanted to offer a quality built instrument at an affordable price. Advertising campaigns were rather scarce: only a handful of ads exist. A rather classy 8 page color affair from 1979 and a few black-and-white flyers were distributed."
     
  5. geetarfreek82

    geetarfreek82 Tele-Afflicted

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    The one I have is the International version, made in the matsumoto factory in Japan. They also made some guitars in Korea under the Hondo name. The quality of this guitar is great though... I love old 70's Ibanez Artists and Icemans and the quality of this is right up with those. Another thing... They were more known for their basses, and estimates are that 75% of the total production for this company were basses, so this is a nice find.
     
  6. Ringo

    Ringo Poster Extraordinaire

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    that's a bolt on neck!

    I've only seen a couple of those guitars and basses, that's quite a bolt on neck, extends into the body all the way to the bridge!
    How's it sound? is it very heavy?
     
  7. geetarfreek82

    geetarfreek82 Tele-Afflicted

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    I love the way it sounds. It isn't very heavy either, though it is neck heavy because of the 24 frets and where it joins the body.
     
  8. Joe-Bob

    Joe-Bob Doctor of Teleocity

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    You can replace the tuner knobs with pearloid or wooden ones. The metal ones are solid and are surprisingly heavy. Quite often this alone is enough to cure a "neck-heavy" guitar. (Do it during a string change.) ;)
     
  9. ITSGOTQUACK

    ITSGOTQUACK Banned

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  10. SamClemons

    SamClemons Poster Extraordinaire

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    nice
     
  11. geetarfreek82

    geetarfreek82 Tele-Afflicted

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    Thanks. Yeah, like that one on ebay, the most common pickup configuration for these had that "single coil" in the neck... It was basically just one coil from a Super Distortion, but with rod magnets in it... I haven't really found much info online about my double 'bucker model.
     
  12. dog fart

    dog fart Friend of Leo's

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    Nice find! I doubt I've seen even a half dozen of these in the flesh in the last 30 years. Big thumbs up for thinking outside the box. Most people wouldn't have given it a second glance. Congrats
     
  13. geetarfreek82

    geetarfreek82 Tele-Afflicted

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    I have always said that I was born in the wrong decade... I LOVE stuff from the 70's, whether it's music, guitars, etc. This thing has that 70's mojo in spades! I had to get it! Lol
     
  14. Fearnot

    Fearnot Poster Extraordinaire

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    I had quite the guitar crush on this back then. Congrats.
     
  15. geetarfreek82

    geetarfreek82 Tele-Afflicted

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    I showed this thing to a couple of my buddies and already have a few offers from them... I've barely gotten to play it and people wanna buy it off of me! Lol MINE! :D
     
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