N(U)GD: Aviator guitars Predator 7 Evertune

Discussion in 'Sevenstring Guitars' started by Xykhron, Jul 8, 2018.

  1. Xykhron

    Xykhron SS.org Regular

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    Hello.

    There's a lot of time since I don't post a NGD thread, so here's the first of the summer (will post more soon :) ). This is an Aviator Predator 7 string.
    As you may know, Aviator is a young company of Czech Republic that makes full customization of theiur models based on clients needs. In my case, I didn't ordered one, I just bought one secondhand just to try the brand and their quality before ordering one based on my preferences.

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    The specifications of this beauty are as follow:
    - Honduran mahogany body (satin back)
    - Flamed maple top with a beautiful dark blue burst high-gloss finish
    - 5 piece neck: mahogany and flamed maple with scarf joint
    - Black ebony fretboard, with 17" radius and 19 mm thickness at 1st fret
    - Truss rod cover and electronics cover made of ebony wood. Plastic bridge cover
    - Neck spacer made of ebony
    - Bolt-on construction (5 bolts)
    - 25.5" scale length
    - Ivory binding on body, neck and headstock
    - 24 jumbo stainless steel frets
    - Evertune bridge
    - Hipshot in-line locking tuners
    - Black TUSQ nut
    - Schaller straplocks
    - Bare Knuckle Juggernauts pickups in white coil bobbin finish
    - 3 way toggle switch
    - 1 push-pull metal dome master volume knob (I don't know the brand)
    - Weight: 4339 grams
    - Pearl & plastic lydian mode sketch inlay
    - Side luminlay dots
    - Finished on December 2016

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    The neck profile is a modern C (for me more like a D) very flat and thin compared to what I'm used to: Mayones, Skervesen, Caparison, Ran... That's the first I noticed when I grabbed it, and I thought: "this is made for speed". The second I noticed was the weight. I was aware of the approx. weight by the seller, but it was every heavier than what I was told. Not a big problem for me (I have 6 string Mayos that are on the same weight range), but not the most comfortable one to be on a one hour gig. Again, not a big problem, because I bought this with one idea in mind: tuning stability for tracking rythmn guitars in studio, where I will be sit down most of the time.


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    The heel it's a bit strange in shape, and I don't know if I really like it, because it's very comfortable to me when I play sitting down but not as much when I play on feet, because I can't access as easy to last frets with my shorty finger. Why?. Because I play different on feet than sitting down, where I stand the guitar in a classical position. In this position, the guitar is more on my left and with a certain angle that allows me to reach easily to last frets, even to 7th string ones. But when I play on my feet, the guitar is positioned more on my right side of the body and my left hand thumb hits the heel and is not as easy as before to reach the 24th frets. I have to work on my playing positions to solve this.



    After these two facts that I noticed when I received the guitar, I started examinating it to see building construction. One thing that I was worried about was the black "space" among body and neck at the heel. After talking to Jan, head of Aviator guitars, he told me that it was an ebony wood spacer he used to "improve the adjustability of the action height, as setting up the Evertune can be quite tricky because of all the moving parts" (exact words). I never saw this on a modern guitar builder (I saw it on some Ibby of the 90s) but makes sense.

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    Apart from that uncommon detail, the rest of the guitar is awesome built. Very nice and clean work on inlays and side dots positioning. Good job on binding even with the arm rest bevel. Perfect in-line string from the nut to the tuners. Same space from 1st string to fretboard edge that 7th string to its fretboard edge. One thing that after almost three weeks is that fret ends are a bit sharp. Nothing to be worried, but as I have a very sensitive fingers I notice it. Of course I don't feel it when I play, just when I caress the neck up and down without playing. As a note, I live in a high humidity climate and some of my high-end guitars had problems with sharp fret ends: Strandberg, some Skervesen, my Ormsby custom, etc, but after 3 or 4 weeks, the wood usually stabilizes and I don't notice those sharp edges, so I'll give another week to this one.

    The major feature of this guitar, and the main reason I have purchased it is the Evertune bridge. This is a love or hate bridge. I know a lot of people that don't like it and also a lot of ones that love it. I have had a VGS with Evertune in the past and didn't like it too much because I couldn't adjust it properly and I ended selling it after a guy from Evertune itself told me that some of those guitars had the bridge bad positioned from factory. Having that explanation in mind I decided to give another opportunity to this device, but this time on a high-end guitar. I was thinking on the new ESP E-II Horizon NT-7 Evertune or maybe asking for a custom build from Skervesen or Vandermeij, but this one came and as I was following closely Aviator Guitars works and liking most of their builds I deciced to try. And I must admit that this time the Evertune works fine. It does what it was built and designed for: perfect tuning stability. After adjusting it to my action and tuning perferences, I tried it very much and now it works. One thing that I heard from other people with this bridge is the metallic noise-like when making palm mutes and choking the note, and I must admit that this one has a slightly metallic noise when performing that palm mutes. It's barely noticeable, but there it is.

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    The guitar came with 0.10-0.56 string gauge, very light for my taste. I normally use 0.10-0.64, and I'll tune the guitar with that gauge in a near future, because with the on-line tension calculator available at Evertune website I know that this gauge works fine with regular ET saddles. Then the guitar will sound beefier as I prefer, because with this gauge the guitar sounds thinner than I was expecting from this woods conbination. I'm not a big fan of Juggenauts, due the mids scoop on frecuencies that I like and high-frecuecies boost that I don't like and the guitars I have with this pickups sound all thinner to me than other with Black Hawks or Aftermaths, my favourite pickups of the BKP catalog for the music I play.



    Summarizing, this is a very good guitar. Well built, with nice details as magnetic electronics cover, "hidden" jack input, comfortable neck profile, a very beautiful burst, etc. I think I'll keep it for the studio recordings, but I'll probably change pickups. For live shows, I don't think I'll carry it due the weight, which is my main complain on this guitar.

    Am I satisfied with the purchase?. Yes, totally!.


    Thanks for reading!

    Note: the pictures were taken before adjusting string height or even clean the guitar.

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  2. DudeManBrother

    DudeManBrother Hey...how did everybody get in my room?

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    Nice looking guitar man. The jack placement and routing looks great, and he did a real nice job on the burst too. Hopefully you can get some Blackhawk’s soon and ditch the Juggs if they’re not doing it for you. HNGD
     
  3. Xykhron

    Xykhron SS.org Regular

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    Hi!, thanks. Now, it's time to save some money for the upcoming guitars (a Skervesen and a Ran)...then I'll change pickups, hehehhe.

    By the way, if the pictures don't work, check the full album here: https://imgur.com/a/4NkP9WE
     
  4. AC.Lin

    AC.Lin SS.org Regular

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    Really nice guitar !
    I've been looking at Aviator Guitar for quite a while now, and the designs and build quality are very pleasant.
     
  5. Chiba666

    Chiba666 SS.org Regular

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    Love the jack placement.
     
  6. Xaios

    Xaios Foolish Mortal Contributor

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    Nice guitar, but what's up with the neck? In this picture it looks like the fretboard is actually angled upwards compared to the body.
     
  7. Xykhron

    Xykhron SS.org Regular

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    Yeah, it seems so. I don't know the reason.
     
  8. pylyo

    pylyo SS.org Regular

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    I can’t see a single pic...
     
  9. Xykhron

    Xykhron SS.org Regular

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    pylyo likes this.
  10. Sogradde

    Sogradde SS.org Regular

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    The neck is shimmed but in the "wrong" direction. Sometimes, when a manufacturer offers the same guitar with different bridges, necks need to be shimmed (i.e. the neck needs to be angled towards the back side with an piece of wood/paper/tape depending on how cheap the manufacturer is) in order to provide a low enough action. This is often the case with non-recessed TOM bridges. In this case, the neck seems to be shimmed towards the front and the only reasonable explanation would be, that the Evertune bridge is so low in the body, that the neck needs to be angled upwards to avoid the strings sitting on the frets. I wouldn't mind it too much, as long as it's playable and the action is good without buzzing. Looks pretty well done.
     
  11. Xaios

    Xaios Foolish Mortal Contributor

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    The reason is because Imgur blocks access from all forums that have classified sections, including SSO.

    Hmm. I was aware of of the shimming that was necessary to angle the necks of some guitars with TOMs back, but I must admit, I've never seen the opposite. It's understandable, although it doesn't look like it sits *that* low in the picture. :shrug:
     
  12. BusinessMan

    BusinessMan SS.org Regular

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    It looks great. Very nice. I've been looking at all the warbird models as well and those look awesome.
    Also if anyone is having trouble, what I do to see the pics is quote the message and insert into a reply and look at them that way.
     
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  13. Xykhron

    Xykhron SS.org Regular

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    Nice trick. It works perfectly, thanks
     
  14. oneblackened

    oneblackened CROAKIES! CROAKIES!

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    How have I never heard of this?

    HNGD OP.

    Also is it just me or are the fret ends kinda rough looking?
     
  15. Xykhron

    Xykhron SS.org Regular

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    Today I decided to correct the neck angle, so after loosing the strings, I un-bolted the neck and with a 100 grit paper sand I started to un-shim (does it exists?) the neck, sanding the part towards the tuners. Then I mounted all back and discover that the back angle was still there, so I unmounted all again and I discovered that the metal insert nearest the tuners was not perfectly flat against the neck base, so that was causing the back angle. I carefully hammered it (I didn't want to damage the threads) until it slightly entered into the hole, mounted the neck, retuned and even when the angle isn't now perfectly flat (I didn't apply too much pressure to the hammering), it has been corrected a bit, so now the back angle is barely noticeable, and the action is fairly lower than before from 12th to 24th frets, so I'm happy with the result and I don't need to order a new set of larger action screws from Evertune, which would cost me $2x7=$14, but $60 on shipping....
     

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