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Who would want a Harley Benton Esquire Style Guitar?

Discussion in 'Other T-Types and Partscasters' started by KrenarCilku, Sep 1, 2020.

  1. KrenarCilku

    KrenarCilku TDPRI Member

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    Hello everyone!

    After being converted to a single pickup guitarist thanks to my Harley Benton DC Junior, I've been scouring the internet for single pickup guitars.

    I've always loved telecasters and at the moment, an affordable Esquire copy seems to be a great idea.

    I've had a couple of Harley Bentons throughout the years and currently, it's the only affordable guitar company that I truly trust, mostly cause my DC Junior is my favorite guitar..

    I would love to hear your thoughts, would you be interested in a Harley Benton Esquire?

    Video Reference for the DC Junior :

    Cheers!
     
  2. Charlodius

    Charlodius Tele-Meister

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    I want to know too- been eyeing the LPJ but don’t need another guitar ( not that it’s ever stopped me before!)
     
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  3. KrenarCilku

    KrenarCilku TDPRI Member

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    I love my dc junior, it's an amazing guitar.. check out my channel if you have a second, I have a couple of videos about the guitar, cheers!
     
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  4. Charlodius

    Charlodius Tele-Meister

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    Is it a YouTube channel you speak of?
     
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  5. KrenarCilku

    KrenarCilku TDPRI Member

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    Yes, if you go to the beginning of the thread, the video I included is from my own channel and that's me playing the guitar.. I would love to hear some feedback if you check it out!
     
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  6. tubelectron

    tubelectron Tele-Afflicted

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    Harley Benton are great and cheap guitars - if you are willing to mod and setup them correctly, they play flawlessly :

    [​IMG]

    So why not an Esquire ? Yes... :)

    -tbln
     
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  7. ricardo1912

    ricardo1912 Tele-Afflicted

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    I had a Harley Benton LP Jr that was pretty good quality and sounded nice. Sadly I had to return it as the neck was a wee bit slim for me but absolutely no complaints about the build or thomann service.

    An esquire with a good size neck would get my vote.
     
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  8. 3-Chord-Genius

    3-Chord-Genius Poster Extraordinaire

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    Dude, those are HOT. Now I'm a-gassin' for one.
     
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  9. tubelectron

    tubelectron Tele-Afflicted

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    Thanks @3-Chord-Genius ! ;)

    These three Harley-Benton are very valuable modding platforms, you won't be disappointed if that's your goal.

    I bought these HBs JA-60LH OW and 2x MS-60LH VW 2nd hand for circa 180 Euros total, but they were nearly unplayable as is : so I had to mod them and setup them.

    Original looks :

    [​IMG]

    Once modded :

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    For sure, with a simpler HB model like a Tele, a LPJ DC, an Esquire, there would be much less work - I mean : only a good setup would be enough.

    But whatever : which guitar - including the costy one - don't need a good setup to play as expected ?

    By my personal experience : all ! So...

    -tbln.
     
  10. Nickfl

    Nickfl Friend of Leo's

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    It's funny, I've been surprised by how payable most of my Harley Benton guitars have been right out of the box. All three T-style HB guitars I have had perfect intonation when they arrived. One had slightly rough frets that smoothed out with playing and one needed the nut slots filled just a bit to cure some string binding, but otherwise they were good to go out of the box.

    On the other hand, I got a HB LP JR DC this summer like the one in this thread (mine is blue) and it needed a lot of work. Action too low, horrible intonation, and I had to shim the pickup a lot to get it even remotely close enough to the strings. It plays ok now, but need to sit down with it again and really get it dialed in, because I'm sure it could be better.

    I really appreciate that they regularly add new models and I wouldn't be surprised at all to see an Esquire sooner or later, but, my vote is for a 70s deluxe, I'd be all over that...
     
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  11. KrenarCilku

    KrenarCilku TDPRI Member

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    That's a great idea, it would be interesting to see what they come up with for the Wide Range Humbuckers! Good shout! Cheers!
     
  12. alnico357

    alnico357 Tele-Afflicted

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    My HB DC LP Jr has not been modded in any way. I did a small truss rod adjustment. The guitar is just fine the way it arrived. I've been playing for over 50 years and know what I like and what has to be done and if it needs to be done.

    Modifications just have to be done by some people to "own" the guitar, and that is personal preference, but my particular specimen is good to go.

    A blanket statement that all HBs must be modded to play correctly is foofa.
     
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  13. LAPlayer

    LAPlayer Tele-Meister

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    With those requirements I would find a used Squire CV Esquire. In the long run you'll have a better guitar and better resale if you decide to part with it.
     
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  14. That Cal Webway

    That Cal Webway Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

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    Is Harley still in Sturgis??









    :)
     
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  15. tubelectron

    tubelectron Tele-Afflicted

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    @alnico357 : Simple HB models don't need much work - I agree - like Tele, LPJ, etc...

    But trust me, it's not a blanket statement at all ! :eek: the 3 HB I have were really in need of work to be simply playable as expected. For me, it means playing flawlessly in tone, noise, tuning stability, comfort.

    I discard the personal mods I did to suit my taste and look expectations, OK ?

    Want some proof ? The pictures below speak for themselves, I think. And it's just for the 2 MS-60LH OW I own.

    - Removing the cause of offset tuning at the tremolo side - part 1 :

    [​IMG]

    - Removing the cause of offset tuning at the tremolo side - part 2 :

    [​IMG]

    - Nulling tremolo upper lever backlash and bridge saddles backlash :

    [​IMG]

    - Nulling stud threads backlash :

    [​IMG]

    - Nulling stud/bridge backlash :

    [​IMG]

    - Removing the cause of offset tuning at the nut :

    [​IMG]

    - Removing the cause of offset tuning at the string tees (tuners are original : no flaw here) :

    [​IMG]


    Another example : now for a HB ST-20LH BK Strat of a friend's daughter - to just make it playable correctly :

    [​IMG]

    I could continue on other HB models I saw or own, but I think that's enough... :D;)

    -tbln.
     
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2020
  16. AndrewG

    AndrewG Friend of Leo's

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    My only experience with H-B has been a small parlour guitar which was so cheap yet seemingly well specified, that I took a punt and bought it. I wish I hadn't bothered and gave it away it was so toneless. Since then I've been wary of Thomann's own brand, especially given numerous reviews which haven't exactly been effusive with praise. The fretwork, in particular, seems to be a real bone of contention with many.
     
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  17. Mr_Martin

    Mr_Martin Tele-Afflicted

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    Remove the neck pickup and buy a Esquire pickguard, done.
     
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  18. 3-Chord-Genius

    3-Chord-Genius Poster Extraordinaire

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    My guess is that low end acoustic guitars are probably not the bargain that low end electric guitars are. The sound of electric guitars is a combination of a lot of things, whereas with sound of an acoustic guitar is right from the guitar, with no assistance from anything else. If an acoustic guitar sounds cheap, there is nothing that can be done about it.
     
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  19. Ted Keane

    Ted Keane Tele-Meister Gold Supporter

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    I have a couple. a HB single cut,double cut,some Tele type and a ltd 1000 type.They are all great,maybe a couple needed fret ends cleaned up.My new single cut in silver sparkle sc jr is great.No setup work needed.The acoustics were not well liked.But the $200 and up guitars are really nice.And a great new bridge on my sc jr.
     
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  20. Steerforth

    Steerforth Friend of Leo's

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    The name on the headstock is unimportant, and more and more just an excuse to overcharge.

    As long as the neck is made of decent hardwood and is straight and sound, everything else can be dealt with.

    Learning to do setups, fretwork, and how to solder in new guts all go a long way and make for cheap, drastic improvements.

    But play it before modding. I bought a G&L Tribute a short time ago, with every intention of changing the pickups and modding it. After playing it, I left it alone.

    And always replace the stuff in the control cavity before buying new pickups. And make sure your pickup height is set right.

    With electrics, you can get a lot of mileage out of a cheap guitar if it’s fundamentally sound and you’re willing to mod and do setups/maintenance.

    Acoustics, you have to be more careful. But I do have some relatively inexpensive, carefully chosen acoustics that will give a lot of expensive guitars a run for their money. You just have to choose wisely then refine them a bit.

    If you will ever want to resell the guitar though, pay for the headstock name. You won’t get your money back on an inexpensive, modded guitar, no matter how great it is.
     
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