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Author Topic: Horrible PDF60  (Read 18809 times)

Offline sybersitizen

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Re: Horrible PDF60
« Reply #15 on: February 05, 2015, 09:48:07 AM »
That import line came into being when US Music Corp bought Parker Guitars.

The P series started showing up in the 2001 catalog, under Ken's watch. Aren't those imports?
'01 Fly Deluxe|'69 SG Standard|'69 EB-3|Pignose Strat|Savannah SGO-16CE|Fishman Aura Spectrum|Roland Amplifiers

Re: Horrible PDF60

Offline Paul Marossy

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Re: Horrible PDF60
« Reply #16 on: February 05, 2015, 11:16:06 AM »
That import line came into being when US Music Corp bought Parker Guitars.

The P series started showing up in the 2001 catalog, under Ken's watch. Aren't those imports?

I wasn't aware of that because I have only seen the 1993 and 2000 catalogs, but I can say that it was under different management at the time and it was probably a desperation measure by Ken Parker and/or Korg (right?) to make the company more profitable. Parker seems to have gotten lost under the USMC umbrella and it's just a numbers game for them, "just business". Around 2006-2007 or so I remember there was a big push for several new guitar models (acoustics and such), with all them being imports. That's what I mainly remember, not positive about the dates, but it was somewhere around that time.

Re: Horrible PDF60

Offline sybersitizen

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Re: Horrible PDF60
« Reply #17 on: February 05, 2015, 11:35:57 AM »
I wasn't aware of that because I have only seen the 1993 and 2000 catalogs, but I can say that it was under different management at the time...

I think not. See below.

Quote
... and it was probably a desperation measure by Ken Parker and/or Korg (right?) to make the company more profitable.

I can't say if Korg ever exerted pressure, or what the exact pressure might have been, but they seem to have not been involved at all in 2001. According to marvin jensen, Korg fronted money to help start the company, but Ken and Larry eventually bought them out. Korg's exit apparently occurred in 2000, before the imports officially appeared:

http://forums.parkerguitars.com/index.php/topic,15365.msg136022.html#msg136022

http://forums.parkerguitars.com/index.php/topic,2682.msg21332.html

Desperation is a strong word. Did Fender and Gibson start offering imports as a desperation move? Are they still so desperate that they need to keep offering them to stay afloat even now? Beats me, but it seems like a pretty common practice among major guitar makers in the modern age.

Quote
Parker seems to have gotten lost under the USMC umbrella and it's just a numbers game for them, "just business".

Well, at least they are still in business - something we all know Ken's original plan had considerable difficulty with.
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Re: Horrible PDF60

Offline Paul Marossy

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Re: Horrible PDF60
« Reply #18 on: February 05, 2015, 12:30:20 PM »
I can't say if Korg ever exerted pressure, or what the exact pressure might have been, but they seem to have not been involved at all in 2001. According to marvin jensen, Korg fronted money to help start the company, but Ken and Larry eventually bought them out. Korg's exit apparently occurred in 2000, before the imports officially appeared

You might be right about that timeline. I do know that Korg was mainly the source of funding. I remember Marvin, he's helped me out on a couple of things for my Flys. I'm glad that once in a blue moon he pops in here and offers some revelation to us.

Desperation is a strong word. Did Fender and Gibson start offering imports as a desperation move? Are they still so desperate that they need to keep offering them to stay afloat even now? Beats me, but it seems like a pretty common practice among major guitar makers in the modern age.

I think in Ken's case it was. I remember him saying something like they were "building $10,000 guitars and selling them for $2,000" or something like that in an article about him and his guitars. I do remember the 10K part of it anyway. In any case, that would seem to reflect that the company was just having trouble being profitable. Knowing how he was a hands on kind of guy, I'm sure in a perfect world he would not have wanted to do that, but you need cash flow to keep a business going. As far as these other manufacturers, I'm sure it's about the bottom line - offer some $300-400 models and you've increased the number of potential buyers, and hence your profits. I'm not a fan of this kind of thinking, having import cheapos at the bottom and very expensive USA gold plated stuff at the top. It's like a double standard to me.  :-\

Well, at least they are still in business - something we all know Ken's original plan had considerable difficulty with.

Yeah, I suppose you could look at it that way.

Re: Horrible PDF60

Offline sybersitizen

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Re: Horrible PDF60
« Reply #19 on: February 05, 2015, 02:04:37 PM »
I remember [Ken] saying something like they were "building $10,000 guitars and selling them for $2,000" or something like that in an article about him and his guitars.

It was the New Yorker article from May 2007: 'We were building ten-thousand-dollar guitars for twenty-five hundred. I thought that people would naturally gravitate toward them because they played really, really well. But that wasn’t the case.'

The hard lesson Ken learned is that there were simply not enough buyers of his great top-end guitars to sustain the business he built... so he, like a lot of guitar makers who have a full factory and employ workers, had to offer alternatives that made some financial sense to a larger user base. The re-adjustment started as early as 1996 with the introduction of the NiteFlys, which cost much less to build and sell. Perhaps Ken could have sold his original pure Flys for $10k each in very small quantities, working for himself, and been successful. Teuffel is doing it, and Ken himself is now doing it with $30k guitars. It's a whole different thing.
'01 Fly Deluxe|'69 SG Standard|'69 EB-3|Pignose Strat|Savannah SGO-16CE|Fishman Aura Spectrum|Roland Amplifiers

Re: Horrible PDF60

Offline Paul Marossy

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Re: Horrible PDF60
« Reply #20 on: February 05, 2015, 02:37:21 PM »
Yeah, that's the quote. At first I was thinking $2500 but I couldn't remember for sure.

Anyway, I'm happy that at least Ken Parker has found a niche with his archtop instruments. Those things are like functional art and they sound so nice too.

Re: Horrible PDF60

Offline TinMachine

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Re: Horrible PDF60
« Reply #21 on: December 08, 2015, 09:05:58 AM »
Just picked up a nice taxi yellow 2014 pdf60. This guitar rails.  Well worth the $350 I paid for it. Is it on par with a USA Parker of any version? Of course not, as it's more of a standard guitar build. Perhaps their quality has gotten better over the years since the radial series was first introduced. 

Re: Horrible PDF60

Offline willross

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Re: Horrible PDF60
« Reply #22 on: December 12, 2015, 05:43:48 PM »
I can appreciate poorly made, inexpensive, import models affecting overall brand perception. QC aside and I hear of US fretboard issues now and then, lefties only have the import line to live on... I'd pay 3k - 4k for a USA, but was told that Paul McCartney would have to want one first. Most brands have an import line. However, my PM20 didn't need much:




Cheers,

Will

Re: Horrible PDF60

Offline DavidRavenMoon

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Re: Horrible PDF60
« Reply #23 on: April 07, 2016, 10:35:24 PM »
I'd pay 3k - 4k for a USA, but was told that Paul McCartney would have to want one first.

He might want one, but I'm not sure that Paul has paid for an instrument in a very long time! Most are given to him.

I have a Korean P-38 I got used. It's a very nice guitar. The only thing I changed on it was the pickups.

That first P series were the last guitars Ken had a hand in developing.

Regarding are ends sticking out; this is a common problem even on brand new Fenders. When I guitar comes from a home humid environment to a dryer on, the fingerboard wood shrinks, and the fret ends, that were once flush, pop out.

I'm a luthier, and this is one of those things I repair all the time.


Re: Horrible PDF60

Offline neilderemer

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Re: Horrible PDF60
« Reply #24 on: April 08, 2016, 07:25:35 AM »
I also have a 2004 p-38 and the quality on it is so good it's close to my 98 nfv4. The only reason I prefer the nitefly is the stainless frets and carbon glass epoxy fretboard - the grover tuners on the p-38 and the wilkinson tremolo are great the guitar stays in tune as well as the nitefly. You can pick them up for about the same price as a mexican used strat 300 on ebay and it's a much better guitar. I have owned it for 12 years and you would never know it to look at it other than the frets are worn from playing it so much!! As for fret ends mine are smooth as butta. I would not be hesitant to buy another in an instant. I have since also swapped out the 2 single coils for seymour duncan ssl-1s and I love the guitar even more.

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Offline TinMachine

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Re: Horrible PDF60
« Reply #25 on: April 08, 2016, 01:00:58 PM »
I've got 5 maxxfly pdf from Indonesia and they are all really nice.