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  1. #1
    Hot For Teacher The Captain's Avatar
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    12.14.17 @ 04:06 PM
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    Why did Kramer Guitars go out of business?

    Does anyone know? Was it because Eddie left them for Ernie Ball? Or was it because of bad management they assumed some enormous debt they couldn't play off? Or was their another reason?
    Wasn't nearly every hard rock and heavy metal guitarist back in the 80's playing Kramers cause Ed was? You would think they would be thriving.

    The 5150 guitars were so cool. I want one!

    If Eddie ever tours again with Dave/Sam/Gary, he should bring the 5150 guitar outta retirement! I bet it would get some roars of approvol!

    Please respond
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  2. #2
    Emperor of VHLinks.com Brett's Avatar
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    12.15.17 @ 12:30 AM
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    Company went bankrupt. I have 6 old US Kramers, they can be had on Ebay, but the prices are going up.
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  3. #3
    On Fire smithtone's Avatar
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    09.20.17 @ 05:22 PM
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    Check out vintagekramer.com for the company history, including the downward spiral in the late 1980s.

    http://www.vintagekramer.com/story.htm

  4. #4
    Atomic Punk BREW CREW's Avatar
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    08.27.17 @ 09:39 AM
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    I thought Kramer moved to Japan and went to hell then. That 5150 "Kramer" was the shit IMO...better than the Ernie stuff.
    Just go for it!

  5. #5
    Emperor of VHLinks.com Brett's Avatar
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    12.15.17 @ 12:30 AM
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    Gibson bought it for a while, then sold it. That company Music Yo bought the nameplate, and puts our cheap crap (minus that 1984 thing) that is an insult to the Kramer name. The real Kramer died in 1991.

    The all-Japanese JK Kramers from the 80's (not to be confused with the Japansese Focus, Strikers, etc. that we had here in the 80's) that had a lot of ESP parts are GREAT guitars, play every bit as well as the American-made ones. Just swap out the pick-up and the Floyd and they're great, and they never were sold in the US.
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  6. #6
    Pope Of Greenwich Village SuckaInA3Piece's Avatar
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    08.28.17 @ 03:27 PM
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Captain
    Does anyone know? Was it because Eddie left them for Ernie Ball? Or was it because of bad management they assumed some enormous debt they couldn't play off? Or was their another reason?
    Wasn't nearly every hard rock and heavy metal guitarist back in the 80's playing Kramers cause Ed was? You would think they would be thriving.

    The 5150 guitars were so cool. I want one!

    If Eddie ever tours again with Dave/Sam/Gary, he should bring the 5150 guitar outta retirement! I bet it would get some roars of approvol!

    Please respond
    Ed did break out the 1984 guitar when I saw them in Philly. And the 5150 guitar went out on the road too, but I don't believe it saw any action. Having spoke to his tech last year during an interview, he said the 5150 was pretty banged up. He did some repair work and said it played like butter. Great fuckin tone. But just waaay too many issues with it.
    "It's always a Catch-22 situation. They hate you if you're the same, and they hate you if you're different."
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  7. #7
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    08.06.08 @ 04:31 AM
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    BTW, MusicYo *is* Gibson. They still own the Kramer name.
    If the Stienberger line is any indication of the quality of the instruments coming from that MusicYo/Epiphone line of Gibson, they're not paying attention to those instruments when they make them. Quality control is pretty poor. The wood selection is so/so and the Floyd Rose units they're putting in the > $500 guitars are the cheapest of the cheap. Inexpensive guitars aren't all bad (the OLP MM-1 comes to mind) but keep in mind that you're probably going to put another $100+ into it and a bit of time to bring it up to snuff.

    I know that at this past NAMM show, MusicYo's display contained *new* versions of the original Baretta. That was encouraging to see, however, MusicYo is notorious also for dragging their feet (it literally took years for the 1984 model to actually go on sale). That 1984 guitar is now way overpriced for what you get (stripe it up and maybe its worth that much).

    If anyone has bought one of thier inexpensive Baretta series, I'd love to see an honest write up on them ( I don't own one, personally - but I've got one of their Steinbergers which comes from the same plant).

    Later

  8. #8
    On Fire smithtone's Avatar
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    09.20.17 @ 05:22 PM
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    Quote Originally Posted by SuckaInA3Piece
    Ed did break out the 1984 guitar when I saw them in Philly. And the 5150 guitar went out on the road too, but I don't believe it saw any action. Having spoke to his tech last year during an interview, he said the 5150 was pretty banged up. He did some repair work and said it played like butter. Great fuckin tone. But just waaay too many issues with it.
    EVH played the 5150 Kramer with a Charvel neck in Hershey, PA in 2004.

  9. #9
    Good Enough EJC's Avatar
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    12.12.17 @ 01:24 PM
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    I was attending college about 15 miles from their Neptune, NJ plant in 1991. I remember meeting a kid who lived there and he told me when the plant closed down, they were just throwing brand new necks and bodies off the loading dock into the dumpster... I was pissed I didn't know about it, or I would have been "dumpster diving" for sure...

  10. #10
    5150
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    04.02.10 @ 06:19 PM
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    Quote Originally Posted by BREW CREW
    I thought Kramer moved to Japan and went to hell then. That 5150 "Kramer" was the shit IMO...better than the Ernie stuff.

    have you ever played a ernie ball to make that statement cause they are to completly different guitars. one is a homemade straight foward guitar and the otehr is a custom shop like high end guitar. there isnt a neck that feels like the ebmm on the market.

  11. #11
    Atomic Punk BREW CREW's Avatar
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    08.27.17 @ 09:39 AM
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    Quote Originally Posted by winston5150
    have you ever played a ernie ball to make that statement cause they are to completly different guitars. one is a homemade straight foward guitar and the otehr is a custom shop like high end guitar. there isnt a neck that feels like the ebmm on the market.
    I was comparing the tone and the look of the guitar as far as the way Eddie played it. I have played an Ernie Ball and I liked the feel of it, but it just didn't seem to be the shit for me. I like Ibanez Jems and my Kramer Focus 6000. Two very different necks, but my hands can handle the neck on the Kramer. I actually had to adjust to the Ibanez thinner neck more than the Kramer.
    Just go for it!

  12. #12
    Eruption nitefly5150's Avatar
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    05.18.16 @ 10:01 AM
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    Quote Originally Posted by EJC
    I was attending college about 15 miles from their Neptune, NJ plant in 1991. I remember meeting a kid who lived there and he told me when the plant closed down, they were just throwing brand new necks and bodies off the loading dock into the dumpster... I was pissed I didn't know about it, or I would have been "dumpster diving" for sure...
    I have a stagemaster (I think its really a stagemaster II) that is the result of a dumpster diving expedition. Some luthier in NJ put it togeter.

  13. #13
    Emperor of VHLinks.com Brett's Avatar
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    12.15.17 @ 12:30 AM
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    Yeah I wasn't sure Gibson owned Music Yo, I couldn't remember. Thanks for clarifying. In any event, anything put out now with the Kramer name on it is a POS. You want a real Kramer, look on Ebay.
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  14. #14
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    11.27.17 @ 03:32 PM
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    With all due respect...

    ...I know there are a lot of Kramer "purists" here, and its possible that in comparison to the USA Kramers of the 80s, the "new" Kramers might be considered to be a "POS" by some, but I can vouch from direct personal experience that they are at LEAST as good as an OLP MM1, which is a guitar that has received much MORE than a fair shake from people on this site.

    I have had experience with nearly every price range of the so-called "POS" Kramers (the only exception being the admittedly overpriced "new USA" models), and I will vouch for their quality.

    In fact, from the lowest end "Focus," on to the midrange "Pacer," and up the upper-middle "Baretta," I have had these guitars arrive at the proud new owners homes properly INTONATED, SET UP, and IN TUNE even after a week-long jaunt through the UPS system. Much more than can be said for the two OLP MM1s I have had experience with.

    "POS" might be a bit harsh. I have a black "Infinity Sustainer" Baretta which, aside from the damn square edges, is an outstanding instrument for the price paid, and something I get out when I'm feeling uninspired. Please don't knock the "new Kramers" until you've tried 'em.

 

 

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