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Post new topic lap steels in Europe
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Author Topic:  lap steels in Europe
Chase Brady


From:
Ohio, USA
Post Posted 17 Apr 2017 10:16 am     Reply with quote

I'm toying (really, just toying) with the idea of moving to Europe, most probably Portugal. As far as I can tell, the cost of transporting musical equipment there is prohibitive. If someone knows a cheap reliable way to do it, that would be great. The alternative would be to sell what I've got and replace them in Europe. How difficult is it to find decent quality lap steels in Europe? I'd be interested in a 6-string and an 8-string electric, a biscuit bridge squareneck resonator, and possibly a Weissenborn style. Any info appreciated.
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Jeff Mead


From:
London, England
Post Posted 17 Apr 2017 10:49 am     Reply with quote

Steels of any description as far scarcer and far pricier than in the US and I am in the UK which is probably better in that respect than elsewhere in Europe. Just look at eBay.com and compare it to eBay.co.uk

My wife relocated from the US to Europe around the turn of the century and used a shipping company to ship all her stuff over. It took a while as it came by sea but wasn't prohibitively expensive. I even snuck in a few guitars enabling me to avoid customs and import duties as they were (effectively) my wife's personal property.

In fact, you could maybe buy a few guitars before you move and sell them in Europe to offset the shipping costs of your stuff.
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James Kerr


From:
Scotland, UK
Post Posted 17 Apr 2017 11:03 am     Reply with quote

Major Companies (include all the biggest brands you know here) refer to the UK as Treasure Island where you can charge what you like and get away with it. I have no reason to think Europe (which we are about to leave) is any different.

James.

Forgot to mention the Government at the top of the pile who charge 20% Tax on purchases.
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Roman Sonnleitner


From:
Vienna, Austria
Post Posted 17 Apr 2017 2:03 pm     Reply with quote

Thomann is the largest European online dealer for musical instruments - here is their selection of lap steels:

https://www.thomann.de/gb/steel_guitars.html?oa=pra&sw=lap%20steel
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Lee Holliday


From:
United Kingdom
Post Posted 18 Apr 2017 7:53 am     Reply with quote

There are quite a few lap steels (used) that frequently pop up on ebay.co.uk, Europe (mainland) tends to be more expensive but there is still free trade around europe for the next year or two (UK to Portugal).

Portugal is a lovely country so I can see the attraction.

I just this weekend acquired a B6 for £550 which is cheap even if you transfer it to Dollars so there are options.

Personally I would ship or bring my favourite guitars with me, an option is to travel with your cargo as some cargo ships take passengers, so explore that option for an adventure.
Lee
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Paul Seager


From:
Augsburg, Germany
Post Posted 20 Apr 2017 7:22 am     Reply with quote

Vintage steels come up on ebay Germany quite a lot. Back in the 60's / 70's several German manufacturers made steels and you will regularly find old Framus and various east German names ... these are not super instruments but they're generally reasonably priced and come up often. Old Stringmasters etc. are very expensive in comparison to the US. Expect to pay 1500 - 2000 for a D8.

As mentioned elsewhere in this thread, Thomann is probably the biggest on-line music store with extensive European coverage. They only have one top-notch lap steel which is the very pricey Duesenberg, the rest are pretty much Chinese mass produced. You pays your money, you takes your choice! Resonators are the same names but less variety that you would find in the US but generally higher in cost.

I travel a few times each year to the US and generally take a lap steel on board with me. I often see people with acoustic guitar cases and depending on your airline, you can charm the crew into putting these cases somewhere safe!

\ paul
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Stefan Robertson


From:
London, UK
Post Posted 20 Apr 2017 8:22 am     Reply with quote

Correction Thomann do a great Harley Benton 8 string Lap Steel Guitar.

However you will have affordable options a plenty in the US. Over here not much. Also moving over here is moving away from the Lap Steel Guitar market, environment and moving toward a DJ market predominantly.

The live music scene is a lot less and options for Steel in Portugal Oooh I shudder to think even less than London. If its more a retirement decision to enjoy life and play steel leisurely at home go ahead.

Anyway whatever your deciding factors are don't expect much in ways of steel. Get all you can get over there before you come. Cause over here its usually 25% markup of the going value then they just convert the dollar amount to pounds/euro then add 20% on top.
_________________
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Bill Hatcher custom 12 string Lap Steel Guitar
E13#9/F Bebop Tuning

Head & Hands to Steel your Heart.
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Stefan Robertson


From:
London, UK
Post Posted 20 Apr 2017 8:31 am     Reply with quote

https://www.wunjoguitars.com/music/music/other-instruments/lapsteels

Here is a little taste of the prices

The Console Double Neck used to be £800 then £1000 now £1200 and its not even playable. Its rusting and needs at least a solid clean and de-rusting.

Get a steel from the US. Don't chance it.
_________________
http://ilapsteel.wordpress.com
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Bill Hatcher custom 12 string Lap Steel Guitar
E13#9/F Bebop Tuning

Head & Hands to Steel your Heart.
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Stefan Robertson


From:
London, UK
Post Posted 20 Apr 2017 8:35 am     Reply with quote

The other side of the street had a triple neck for that price and a double for £700.
The double was a Gibson and the triple was a Fender I believe.
When I last popped in the double neck costs nearly £1000 now.

All of them were in a state of heavy neglect. I've played ALL the Lap Steel Guitars in Denmark street as its near my work and its sad to see them rot and become more expensive.
_________________
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Bill Hatcher custom 12 string Lap Steel Guitar
E13#9/F Bebop Tuning

Head & Hands to Steel your Heart.
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Jeff Mead


From:
London, England
Post Posted 20 Apr 2017 8:44 am     Reply with quote

Stefan Robertson wrote:
https://www.wunjoguitars.com/music/music/other-instruments/lapsteels

Here is a little taste of the prices

The Console Double Neck used to be £800 then £1000 now £1200


And don't forget these prices are GB Pounds - £1200 is about $1500
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Chase Brady


From:
Ohio, USA
Post Posted 21 Apr 2017 5:42 am     Reply with quote

Thanks to all who responded! Sounds like if I decide to go, I'll need to do some shipping.
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Paul Seager


From:
Augsburg, Germany
Post Posted 22 Apr 2017 7:22 am     Reply with quote

If you do move to Portugal, you may become the first ever lap steel fadista! Very Happy
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Chase Brady


From:
Ohio, USA
Post Posted 23 Apr 2017 6:08 pm     Reply with quote

I understand Blues is fairly popular there. People often compare it to Fado.
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Stefan Robertson


From:
London, UK
Post Posted 24 Apr 2017 1:37 am     Reply with quote

Blues is popular here in festivals and a few bars for sure. Jazz, Rockabilly and country are in a few bars but considerably less popular.

Hawaiian is non-existent but I'm sure there is an event once in a while.

Not sure in Portugal but I know elsewhere in Europe and UK the above rings true.
_________________
http://ilapsteel.wordpress.com
https://www.facebook.com/ilapsteel

Bill Hatcher custom 12 string Lap Steel Guitar
E13#9/F Bebop Tuning

Head & Hands to Steel your Heart.
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website
Paul Seager


From:
Augsburg, Germany
Post Posted 24 Apr 2017 6:38 am     Reply with quote

Chase Brady wrote:
I understand Blues is fairly popular there. People often compare it to Fado.

Speaking as someone that was once locked in a Fado bar (the owner, barman and cook were the performers) I can only say it gets emotional.

The Portuguese Guitar is a beautiful instrument and Fado instrumentals are wonderful. It's the singing that is heavy. Fado is sad, really sad and the singers reflect sadness with their dramatic performance. After 2 hours it was a little strenuous on the ears!

It's a question of taste of course but blues it ain't!

\ paul
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Stefan Robertson


From:
London, UK
Post Posted 24 Apr 2017 6:42 am     Reply with quote

Paul Seager wrote:
Chase Brady wrote:
I understand Blues is fairly popular there. People often compare it to Fado.

Speaking as someone that was once locked in a Fado bar (the owner, barman and cook were the performers) I can only say it gets emotional.

The Portuguese Guitar is a beautiful instrument and Fado instrumentals are wonderful. It's the singing that is heavy. Fado is sad, really sad and the singers reflect sadness with their dramatic performance. After 2 hours it was a little strenuous on the ears!

It's a question of taste of course but blues it ain't!

\ paul


LOL Laughing
_________________
http://ilapsteel.wordpress.com
https://www.facebook.com/ilapsteel

Bill Hatcher custom 12 string Lap Steel Guitar
E13#9/F Bebop Tuning

Head & Hands to Steel your Heart.
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website

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