Dan Armstrong User Review - Clark
Overall Rating: I still see the Dan Armstrong plexiglas guitar as a curiosity, not so much a player's guitar. As cool looking as I thought it was, I never warmed up to it and the guys in my band actually hated the flat sound it had! Judging by what the other reviewers are paying for it in recent years, it seems the public at large has never warmed up to it, either. A guitar as rare as this that hasn't been made for thirty years selling for under $1000?? Hey, that's downright embarrassing!
Features: US made guitar, 24 fret maple neck with rosewood fingerboard, plexiglas body, made circa 1970. Grover tuners, two removable pickups, worthless bridge, stock hardshell case.
Sound Quality: My DA came with two removable pickups. These were labeled "ST" and "RT". One was a humbucker, the other single coil. I traded off with a Les Paul through a Marshall half stack and the DA consistently had roughly half the cutting power. As soon as I started a solo, it was like somebody threw a blanket over my speaker cab. I think the plexiglas body proved itself to be detrimental to tonal quality and projection.
Reliability/Durability: I never had any reliability issues with my DA. I always figured that in time the plex would become brittle and the neck joint would probably crack. I'll bet there are some broken ones out there!
Customer Support: When it became obvious that the DA was never going to have the projection I needed to play live, I wrote to a well-respected Bay Area guitar tech, Dan Torres in San Jose. Dan told me he was aware of the thin sound the Armstrong pickups had, and if I so desired, he could wind me a Gibson style high-output humbucker pickup and seal it in a plastic mold that would install right into the DA's pickup slot. I didn't ever get around to doing that, but I was very impressed that he could do it!
Purchased From: People's Music, Sebastopol, CA. , 1977
Price: $275.00 USD USED