Thursday, 21 June 2012

Revamped 1979 Jolana Diamant

The Jolana Diamant was - and still is, since the brand has been revived - a Czechoslovakian copy of a Les Paul, and for me it has the special vibe that also have Japanese copies from the 1970s - it's difficult to tell why but they are almost more attractive than original Gibson models! 

Anyway, as you can see this model has been retrofit with contemporary gear - not as cool as the original stuff that you can see here - in order (I assume) to keep it playable. And though a vintage Diamant is a very nice guitar, I prefer to see it renovated and played than original and in a museum (or a basement). What do you think?

Bertram D

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  1. Good to hear they're reviving the brand. Although I must admit ( I didn't even vaguely recognize anyone in their Artists section )

    Prefer the original PU selector switch but overall, nice upgrades. Were those two circles under the bridge really necessary? If so there had to be a more aesthitc way of dealing with it?

    1. I wonder if the body is actually hollow - as on some of the cheaper Les Paul copies from the 1970s - and the "circles under the bridge" are solid wooden posts for the bridge to sit on. This guitar has almost certainly been refinished - I expect it was black originally; you wouldn't have seen the circles under the bridge.

    2. Oh... I'll bet you're right. Another one of those things the restorer can't know until..? Here's to hoping it wasn't his wife's ( which is usually when that sort of thing happens )

      My experience has been, when it comes to refinishing anything that's been painted black, stay the course. Will the Jolana's be available in the U.S anyone know?

  2. I saw a Diamant in restoration process, it is actually hollow, and I think that black was by far the most common finish... for me I though that the wooden circles were filling of previous holes meant for the original bridge - bigger than the new tune-o-matic - but you're right, they must be posts.

    1. Not that those exposed posts are a deal breaker by any means. You'd be surprised what can grow on you? But you might grow tired of having to explain it. I think it's great Jolana elected to go that route. When it comes to "The list of guitars you'd -least- want to get HIT with!"

      The 'semi-acoustic' Les Paul tops mine...

  3. Nice pickguard, my Epi's looks like a big white nose, can't stand it. This one is much more refined. The original is nicer , nice painted brown with no bridge circles. Nice knobs. I wonder how hard it would be to fake a switch like the original

  4. It ain't no Disco...

    The finish reminds me of those Gretsch G branded 6121 Roundup solid bodies.

    nice and warm.

  5. Anyone know what kind of wood that is? It looks like pine or something, cheap and ugly lol. Yet somehow the axe manages to exude a very strong aura of coolness. Interesting guitar.

  6. As someone currently rebuilding one of these, I can tell you this:

    As far as I know, the guitar isn't hollow. The two circles below the bridge piece is probably because the restorer drilled out the original holes since they were too large to hold a standard tune-o-matic, and afterwards glued in wooden pieces (large new wooden pieces = stronger bond). I'm also fairly convinced that many of these Diamants actually have spruce tops, something I've never seen on a electric guitar before. The body itself appears to be mahogany though, still fairly light weight due to i being rather thin. It IS rather cheap wood though, the top on my example has a few gnarls.

    Also, all of the original electronics, hardware etc is pure garbage. The bridge system is flimsy and likewise are the tuners, glad to see that both things have been replaced on this. The pickups do have some kind of charm though.



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