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Post new topic Opinions on Imperial Guitars - Weissenborn
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Author Topic:  Opinions on Imperial Guitars - Weissenborn
Dave Sky

 

From:
Columbus, Ohio, USA
Post  Posted 6 Apr 2016 5:41 pm    
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I am interested in getting a Weissenborn and came across the Imperial Guitars website. They have a model called the Classic T that looks good to me. However I know nothing about this company. I thought that there were some members who had a Weissenborn from Imperial Guitars and I hope that you could share what you think of them. Thanks!
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Mark Evans


From:
Colorado, USA
Post  Posted 7 Apr 2016 4:40 am    
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I've never played an Imperial, but will my is an off shore build. Not keen on guitars with that barn door EQ panel. If you want to test the weissenborn waters (highly recommended!) it would probably be ok, but I'd suggest saving a few hundred more and hold out for a small shop build. Lazy Rivers come used for a little more. Tho he only builds a few each year, Larry Pogreba's unique lap steels are reasonable.
All that said I'd venture that they sound ok for entry level.

Mark
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Larry Pogreba Baritone 'Weissenheimer
Lazy River mahogany
Michael Dunn koa weissenborn
Larrivee OM5
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Larry Carlson


From:
My Computer
Post  Posted 7 Apr 2016 6:10 am    
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I have their Royal Hawaiian Limited with the deep body.
Is it a high end guitar? Of course not.
However it is a perfectly good little guitar and it has great tone. I love the sound and when plugged in the EQ works very well.
It's build quality appears to be good and it is a nice looking guitar. I've had mine for about a year now.
I bought it because I don't need a $3000 guitar.
The only down side is I get the guitar snobs pointing and laughing while they fondle their Iseman's etc.
I alternate between open 'D' and open 'G' tuned down to FACFAC.
I bought it as an entry level guitar and it has been more than adequate.
Great tone, plays easily, no problems and with the roping and finish it is actually rather pretty........... Very Happy
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Sometimes it doesn't.
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Erv Niehaus


From:
Litchfield, MN, USA
Post  Posted 7 Apr 2016 7:24 am    
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Larry,
I have the same guitar and think it's great.
I hate guitar snobs!

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Mark Evans


From:
Colorado, USA
Post  Posted 7 Apr 2016 7:38 am    
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Since I am the only other responder in this thread, and I do not own or play an Imperial... I want to make sure that the term 'snob' is not being directed in my direction.

The US made, all solid, recovered Honduran mahogany, with antique Honduran coin fret markers and burl rosewood head stock overlay built by the always curious Larry Pogreba somewhere in the hinterlands of Montana... is a guitar that cost me a shade more than 1/4 the cost of the Iseman.

the key is... if you get a kick out of the Imperial, and want to step up... there are upgrade paths that aren't necessarily $2500-4000 more.

More power to the humble Weissenborn!

Mark
_________________
Larry Pogreba Baritone 'Weissenheimer
Lazy River mahogany
Michael Dunn koa weissenborn
Larrivee OM5
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Erv Niehaus


From:
Litchfield, MN, USA
Post  Posted 7 Apr 2016 8:07 am    
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Mark,
My posting wasn't directed at you. By snobs, I mean pickers who judge all guitars by the name on the key head. I have a guitar player that accompanies me who has the pick of the litter in my guitar collection, including Gibson, Martin, Fender, Gretsch and etc.
However, I have a couple Samick guitars and one of these is his favorite, go figure! Very Happy
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Dave Sky

 

From:
Columbus, Ohio, USA
Post  Posted 7 Apr 2016 1:40 pm    
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Thanks for the information! I should have said that I wanted it for playing it on the front porch. Playing steel is a hobby that gives me enjoyment. An entry level instrument is all that I need. I have found some youtube videos on open D tuning. I tune my lap steels to Am11 and thought it would be fun to have something different. Since I am 65, I doubt if I will be forming a rocking teenage combo anytime.
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Erv Niehaus


From:
Litchfield, MN, USA
Post  Posted 7 Apr 2016 1:43 pm    
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You're never too old to be a star! Whoa!
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Alan Brookes


From:
Brummy living in Southern California
Post  Posted 7 Apr 2016 1:52 pm    
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Imperial was the Chinese answer to National. I don't have one of their Weissenborn-shaped instruments, but I do have their three-resonator version of the National Tricone and the workmanship is excellent. I've played that and the National instrument right next to each other and I cannot tell the difference.

My only hesitation in buying a Chinese instrument would be that they don't pay their workers as much as we do over here in the west, so it's an unfair competition. However, in recent years wage rates in China have been increasing, so that soon will not be a concern.


Last edited by Alan Brookes on 7 Apr 2016 2:09 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Larry Carlson


From:
My Computer
Post  Posted 7 Apr 2016 2:16 pm    
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Dave Sky wrote:
Thanks for the information! I should have said that I wanted it for playing it on the front porch. Playing steel is a hobby that gives me enjoyment. An entry level instrument is all that I need. I have found some youtube videos on open D tuning. I tune my lap steels to Am11 and thought it would be fun to have something different. Since I am 65, I doubt if I will be forming a rocking teenage combo anytime.


Well, I'm 72 and I'm not a front porch player. I stick to my music room and I enjoy mine very much.
As for a rocking teenage combo, I don't even have groupies.
Well, unless you count my dogs passed out on the floor while I practice. Very Happy
_________________
I have stuff.
I try to make music with it.
Sometimes it works.
Sometimes it doesn't.
But I keep on trying.
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Brad Bechtel


From:
San Francisco, CA
Post  Posted 8 Apr 2016 7:05 am    
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I've removed a couple of posts that were not relevant to this discussion. Please stay on the topic at hand.

Carry on.
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Brad’s Page of Steel
A web site devoted to acoustic & electric lap steel guitars
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Erv Niehaus


From:
Litchfield, MN, USA
Post  Posted 8 Apr 2016 7:14 am    
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Thanks, Brad! Very Happy
BTW: There is also the Superior Weissenborn. That one is sold through Berkley Music in California and I have one of those. I am very well pleased with that guitar also.

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Dave Sky

 

From:
Columbus, Ohio, USA
Post  Posted 10 Apr 2016 6:09 am    
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Thanks everyone!
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Alan Brookes


From:
Brummy living in Southern California
Post  Posted 10 Apr 2016 2:11 pm    
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Brad Bechtel wrote:
I've removed a couple of posts that were not relevant to this discussion. Please stay on the topic at hand.
Carry on.

Now you've piqued our interest into which ones they were. Laughing Laughing Laughing
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James Craft

 

From:
California, USA
Post  Posted 30 Jul 2021 7:58 am     Imperial Guitars offers way more than build quality and valu
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I would like to chime in on this admittedly vintage thread.
I owned a Classic T and now have the larger LTD.
Both offer excellent value and build quality, AND they sound much better than their price would imply.
I performed often with the Classic T, and while the piezo-electric pickup is not up to the quality of the Fishman Presys in the LTD, the smaller body size minimizes low end feedback.
The LTD, being considerably larger, excels in resonant, crisp bass performance and sustains quite well.

I can't praise Imperial Guitars enough for their pre and post sale support. They patiently responded to all my questions and gave great advice.

When I had an issue with my classic T MONTHS AFTER THE WARRANTY EXPIRED, they offered to swap it for one of their demo model Classic Ts AND ALSO offered a demo LTD.
I only had to pay shipping on my returned Classic T and the "demo" LTD (~$70).
The quality of an instrument is more than just materials and workmanship - it's the company that stands behind it
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Glenn Wilde

 

From:
California, USA
Post  Posted 31 Jul 2021 6:34 am    
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I played one at a local store and was very impressed, it would be here now if we could've came to a good trade arrangement. I'll add this in though, some of the old Oahu's like the 66k are still bargains, you can own an original from the golden age for around the same price as a new Imperial if you look around. I own a 66k and having played it and the Imperial would give it the edge, but who knows how the Imperial will sound when its 85 years old... Oh Well
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