Yamaha SA700 Super Axe Persimmon Red 1977
Yamaha SA700, persimmon red, made in Japan 1978. It's always a good day when we pull one of these out of the box, they're such lovely guitars. The Super Axe was Yamaha's late 70s take on the Gibson ES335, so you get a thinline laminate maple body with a centre block and mildly chunky 59 style neck profile, although the horns and headstock are a slightly different shape. As with all the Yamaha stuff out of Japan from this era, the build quality is scrumptious. It's reassuring and sturdy in the hands, with all the little details exactly right, from finish to frets to hardware. The neck is not super skinny without being a tree trunk, it's very intuitive and works well with the body shape. The body offers superb natural resonance and heaps of unplugged volume, so this feels very alive in the hands. Plugged in, this has a certain defined, percussive quality which really brings your notes to life. The pickups are a warm and full with a whole stack of complexity through the midrange, it's such a pleasing thing to hear. The red finish lets the tasty grain show through, it certainly hits the curves of the body just right. This won't surprise any of the serial Topshelfers out there: I love this!
Model: Yamaha SA700 Super Axe
Made: Japan, 1977 (serial 001422)
Finish: persimmon red (PR), gloss poly
Body: laminate maple with centre block, thinline depth
Neck: one piece mahogany, rosewood board, 12" radius, 24.75" scale
Mods: tailpiece repalced
Pickup: Yamaha PAF-style humbucker x2
Case: basic non original gig bag
Cosmetic condition notes: mild finish wear. Headstock has some minor marks on the end. The neck is clean and smooth in the hands, minor dimples on the back only. The back has a handful of minor scuffs, no major marks. The sides have no major marks, just a couple of very light scuffs on the horns. The front has some extra screw holes and a smudge from a previous tailpiece, aside from that it's just a couple of dimples in the elbow area and play wear on the guard and horn. Overall: very good condition (8/10).
Playing condition notes: Neck is straight, intonation is good, action is low, truss rod works. All electronics tested and working properly. Frets have minor wear, they're in reasonable shape for their age, 7/10 for fret life left. Setup with fresh 11/49 Moonshiners strings.
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