I am a home player and enjoy learning and playing different styles. I've had a few electrics over the years, currently own a couple of decent mid-range guitars. I bought this kit as I wanted something different and to put my own mark on it - it was also a 'lockdown' project to keep me busy!
Arrived very well packaged. I immediately ignored all instructions and focussed on working on the body. My objective was a natural type finish, not too glossy, so I went with Tru-oil. Youtube vids were helpful, it took a lot of sanding over many days and I am really pleased with how it looks. The body is obviously constructed out of pieces, so it was never going to look totally amazing, but I am very happy with it and the graining does look nice. Tru-oil does not darken the wood a great deal, so with hindsight I might have lightly stained it too before Tru-oiling, maybe I'll do that on my next guitar.
The neck is really good straight out of the box. I was very impressed - unlike the body it is already nicely finished and silky smooth. I did paint the headstock black and lacquer it, which makes it look much nicer. I also gave the frets some attention, levelling and polishing. I always fret polish new guitars, makes them feel smoother for string bending. I also adjusted the truss rod, which was a little out. The nut looked like it might be an issue, the slots were wide and not cut very deep, but after assembly it doesn't seem to cause any problems.
It took me a couple of weeks to prep the body and neck. It was then that I picked up the manual...
Assembling the guitar took two or three hours. The neck fitted the body absolutely perfectly, no need to adjust. As others have noted, the instructions on fitting the pots are terrible, impossible to make out from the photo which way around they go, I was lucky to get it mostly right first time but the pickup selector switch I put in upside down but easy to correct. When I got to fitting the pickups it all became clearer which way the pots should go - maybe I should have read forward in the instructions first.
It was not clear which screws to use for which purpose - some were longer than others - although not a major problem I ended up with long screws for the truss rod cover and I actually think they were the wrong ones so I'm just going to find some spare small ones and use those.
Once stringed up it all looked really good. Everything lined up well, I adjusted the action and as soon as I played without going through an amp I was really impressed - it sounded really nice and resonant. It actually felt like a good guitar, which was a huge relief! I then plugged it in to my amp and again I was really impressed with how nice it sounded without much adjustment - I haven't yet fine tuned the setup such as intonation and pickup height and I'm not even sure I need to.
In summary, I really enjoyed this project and am delighted with the results. There were no significant issues at all with the kit I received, everything fitted well and worked. I definitely recommend these kits - for the money they really are excellent and overall exceeded my expectations. For that reason I have given it a 5 star review.
I did have an Epiphone SG a few years ago - to be honest I prefer the HB kit. I might even upgrade some of the components over time.
Really fun and rewarding project
Everything fitted well and worked straight off
Tuners do the job but some very stiff
Instructions for fitting potentiometers are vague
This might be a new addiction, I immediately want to buy more kits!!