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Wilkinson guitars, didn't expect that.

Postby Random Guitarist » Tue Nov 27, 2012 4:36 pm

I just picked up a newish Wilkinson V100IT that I'm doing a setup on for a friend. And I am very surprised. It's a very decent guitar.

The back is made of two pieces of nicely joined wood, the front has a respectable bit of veneer on it. Bridge and stop bar are OK. Nut is adequate, no reall need to adjust it. Fretboard is very well finished. Machine heads are a bit loose loose to turn, and not as precise as a nice Gotoh, but entirely adequate. Quality of finish is nice, not as much of a plastic gloss as an Epiphone.

Plugging it in it sounds entirely decent, wiring upgrades would probably make it better still but there's a good tone here.

In fact the only thing that lets it down is the scratch plate which seems a bit inferior, but I think we'll be taking that off.

It seems to me that this is a decent guitar for not much money

So my question to you, are they all like this? If they are I think I may have found my new playing in a pub brand.

Thanks,

Grant.
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Re: Wilkinson guitars, didn't expect that.

Postby Folderol » Tue Nov 27, 2012 7:26 pm

I had one very many years ago, and sold in in the late '70s because I'd stopped playing. Regretted it ever since

Lovely well built guitar, light action, bright tone {sigh}
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Re: Wilkinson guitars, didn't expect that.

Postby SecretSam » Thu Nov 29, 2012 7:40 am

Do you mean the Vintage range ?

I had my hands on one of their teles a couple of days ago. I was well impressed, couldn't believe how good the finish was, and it cost very little.

Next time I get a trip to London I want to try out their ES355 clones. The AV3 looks very interesting.
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Re: Wilkinson guitars, didn't expect that.

Postby Dave B » Thu Nov 29, 2012 9:41 am

The Vintage range are excellent VFM. Wonkey Wabbit had a cheap LP and did some upgrades to the hardware to get it very close to his full LP (Jimmy Page version iirc). The Lemon Drop is a great guitar too for the money. If I do need a cheap strat to fit a gk to, it will be a V100.

Dan and I went through a couple of years of chatting to Trev Wilkinson at trade shows - lovely bloke who has worked very hard to get consistent quality levels. We've discussed this stuff round here before, but the general feeling is that for most users, these are pretty much ok out of the box. Trev reckons to change the pots. Wonks did the tuners and bridge. Pickups are fine but most people would change them anyway to suit tastes.
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Re: Wilkinson guitars, didn't expect that.

Postby Random Guitarist » Thu Nov 29, 2012 11:12 am

No, not even the vintage, the one I set up is the set neck LP copy that is floating around for about £200 in various shops.

Regards,

Grant.
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Re: Wilkinson guitars, didn't expect that.

Postby Dave B » Thu Nov 29, 2012 1:15 pm

? Vintage is the name that the Wilkinson guitars are branded under. Certainly the cheap ones.

The more expensive ones are Fret King. But I think you'll find that the V100IT is a 'Vintage' brand guitar ..

http://www.gak.co.uk/en/vintage-v100it- ... -tea/17936
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Re: Wilkinson guitars, didn't expect that.

Postby Random Guitarist » Thu Nov 29, 2012 4:44 pm

Yes sorry, brain fade, Vintage guitars. I meant to say it's not one of the high(er) end models, only one step up from the bolt on neck LP copy.
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Re: Wilkinson guitars, didn't expect that.

Postby Folderol » Thu Nov 29, 2012 9:45 pm

... talking of which I totally misread the title

The guitar I had was a Wilson ... No 'kin'
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Re: Wilkinson guitars, didn't expect that.

Postby SecretSam » Fri Nov 30, 2012 9:09 am

Just by the by: has anyone had their hands on a semi ?

Let me rephrase that.

Has anyone tried one of the Vintage f-hole electrics ? Which ones and what were they like ?
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Re: Wilkinson guitars, didn't expect that.

Postby Stef Andrews » Fri Nov 30, 2012 12:00 pm

Sam, I tried one of their 'Lucille' copies a number of years ago now. Seem to remember it being about the £250 mark. Bloomin marvellous. Easily up there with something like an Epi Sheraton (which I happen to be rather fond of) that came out the factory on a very good day! It sat right, it played beautifully, felt really well built. Pretty much the same as every Wilkinson guitar i've played.

At the price point they're at, I'd be tempted (were I in the market for a new guitar in that range at the mo) to just buy one online and send it back if it's not right!
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Re: Wilkinson guitars, didn't expect that.

Postby SecretSam » Fri Nov 30, 2012 1:11 pm

Thanks for that, Stef. The shipping to the arse end of Africa is a bit pricey, so I will wait until I can bring one here myself. Wil have a look at the Sheraton, too.

Cheers
Sam.
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Re: Wilkinson guitars, didn't expect that.

Postby Goddard » Fri Nov 30, 2012 1:23 pm

Do like Trevor's hardware (have one of his "lawsuit" locking trems), but have never tried his guitars, so dunno about the Vintage f-holes, although I am hoping for the chance to try out an Epi Wildkat soon:

http://www.epiphone.com/Products/Archtop/Wildkat.aspx
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Re: Wilkinson guitars, didn't expect that.

Postby IvanSC » Fri Nov 30, 2012 6:47 pm

I bought one of the les paul junior-alikes last year and had the opportunity to compare it with a mates new faded Gibson version, which cost him about £500.

Neither of them are anything like as good as a proper LP Jr but there sure as hell wasnt £350 worth of difference between the two "new" ones.

The Vintage actually played MUCH better than the "real" one, too.

"Real " one did have a slight edge in terms of grunt though.
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Re: Wilkinson guitars, didn't expect that.

Postby Dr Huge Longjohns » Sun Dec 02, 2012 4:37 pm

Epi Wildkat


I have to say that I think the Epiphone semis/hollows are pants. I got a brand new Casino a few years back from Thomann and have regretted it ever since. Quality Control is not the byword, to put it mildly. Instead of just selling it straight away/returning it, I did that daft thing of trying to improve it...first I replaced the tuners, the originals wouldn't hold tuning for more than a nanosecond, even with 11s. Then I replaced the pickup guts, the originals were so feeble and characterless it was embarrassing. Got Bare Knuckle to wind me some genuine 60s spec Casino P90s. So, already a lot of dosh spent trying to get it half decent. The fingerboard is awful, as smooth as a hedgehog, the frets are lumpy, the hardware is that glaringly shiny chromed rubbish so did a bit of relicing to try and make it look more presentable. I've played several Epi semis/holows since and was not impressed by any so I don't think mine was a friday afternoon job. So, don't bother with the cheap end of the Epiphone line. Get a Vintage!
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Re: Wilkinson guitars, didn't expect that.

Postby Goddard » Mon Dec 03, 2012 11:50 pm

Huge Longjohns wrote:
Epi Wildkat


I have to say that I think the Epiphone semis/hollows are pants. I got a brand new Casino a few years back from Thomann and have regretted it ever since. Quality Control is not the byword, to put it mildly. Instead of just selling it straight away/returning it, I did that daft thing of trying to improve it...first I replaced the tuners, the originals wouldn't hold tuning for more than a nanosecond, even with 11s. Then I replaced the pickup guts, the originals were so feeble and characterless it was embarrassing. Got Bare Knuckle to wind me some genuine 60s spec Casino P90s. So, already a lot of dosh spent trying to get it half decent. The fingerboard is awful, as smooth as a hedgehog, the frets are lumpy, the hardware is that glaringly shiny chromed rubbish so did a bit of relicing to try and make it look more presentable. I've played several Epi semis/holows since and was not impressed by any so I don't think mine was a friday afternoon job. So, don't bother with the cheap end of the Epiphone line. Get a Vintage!

Well, my experience with Epiphones, at least the Korea-made ones from the '90s/early '00s, has been quite the opposite and I've a number which I gig with, although I will admit the controls and switches can be pretty poor quality, and the neck on a LP once needed a bit of tweaking to get the relief right. I've a brace of Epi LP semi-hollows, lovely to play and very well made (except for the controls). Changing controls out for better is not much of a chore on a soldibody, but it's a big hassle on a semi-hollow. Thinking back now, I may have replaced the Kluson clone tuning machines on my Epi SG with original Gibsons.

Don't have any Epi's with P-90s, only buckers, which sound fine. That said, I did play a recent Casino (or maybe it was a Sheraton) last year and was not at all impressed. Don't think it was a Korea-made one though, maybe they are making Epi's in China now.

As said, I like Wilkinson hardware, just have never had a chance to try the guitars. When I get the chance. In in the market for a blues/rockabilly axe with whammy, hence the interest in that Wildkat model.

Heh, I once asked Seymour Duncan to provide replacement P-90s, but he hadn't added them yet at the time, so I ended up repotting my Gibsons and they've been squeal-free ever since.
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Re: Wilkinson guitars, didn't expect that.

Postby Music Wolf » Tue Dec 04, 2012 5:01 am

I bought a Chinese made Casino, with Bigsby, from Thomann. When it arrived the set up was shocking and the fret board could only be described as sticky. After a proper set up it plays like a dream but it could benefit from some better pick ups.
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Re: Wilkinson guitars, didn't expect that.

Postby JPH » Tue Dec 04, 2012 8:32 am


"Just by the by: has anyone had their hands on a semi ?

Let me rephrase that."

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Re: Wilkinson guitars, didn't expect that.

Postby JPH » Tue Dec 04, 2012 8:41 am

Have to say that although I did consider a Wilkinson when going on an acquisition trail last year, after seeing an Andertons video on YouTube, I ended up going for one of the special edition 355's. And, in all fairness, Im absolutely delighted with it, cant pick a fault with it anywhere. Really pleased with it. And, I've noted as well, the 335dot is consistently reviewed very favourably by the likes of Music Radar and their subsidiary magazines. I actually thought that over the last 3 years or so that Epiphone had turned a corner, Where QA is concerned.

Wilkinson and the Vintage line in particular, as far as I was aware have always had a good name for excellent value for money and had I seen an equally well reviewed 355 before I saw the Epi, chances are I would have gone for it.

Still might get one of their Precisions, yet....
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