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Product H71823

Epiphone Worn 1966 Wilshire with Tremotone Electric Guitar  

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Like an SG guitar, the Wilshire's double-cutaway mahogany body with a glued-in mahogany neck that joins the body at the 22nd fret gives you ultimate ...Read More

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OVERVIEW

One-of-a-kind sound from Epiphone's glorious past!

Like an SG guitar, the Wilshire's double-cutaway mahogany body with a glued-in mahogany neck that joins the body at the 22nd fret gives you ultimate upper fret access. Lightweight and comfortable, the Wilshire has excellent resonance and natural acoustic tone - even unplugged! Featuring Epiphone's LockTone™ Tune-o-matic/stopbar combination, the transfer of string vibration is improved even more giving this guitar excellent sustain and clarity. But here's what separates the Wilshire from the SG. Most early Epiphone guitars including the Wilshire were equipped with mini-humbucking pickups and Epiphone carries on this tradition. With its smaller size, narrow magnetic field and unique design combination, the mini-humbucker produces bright and focused output while retaining famous humbucker "hum-free" performance. A replica of the originals, they feature adjustable pole pieces, enamel wire, bar ceramic magnets and rounded nickel plated covers set in an original style black mounting ring with height adjustment screws.

n 1957 Gibson purchased New York's Epiphone Guitar Company and moved production to Kalamazoo, Michigan. With plans to expand retail distribution by differentiating Epiphone dealers from Gibson dealers, Gibson began production of a new line of "Kalamazoo-made and designed" Epiphones in 1959. For over a decade, Epiphone solid body guitars and basses were produced right alongside Gibsons. These Epiphone guitars represented some of the highest quality and best sounding instruments of their generation. They provided unique shapes, pickup arrangements, and tonal signatures not seen on comparable Gibson models of the day. Under appreciated at the time of their release, numerous artists through the years have recognized the unique appeal of these guitars. Jimi Hendrix, Johnny Winter, Paul Gilbert and Steve Marriot are but a few of the artists that have embraced the tone and build quality of these Kalamazoo built Epiphones. One such Epiphone instrument was the Wilshire.

Now with IMPROVED Tremotone!
There's been a lot of tremolos developed over the years but few as unique and distinctive as Epiphone Tremotone with it's Rosewood insert and metal "E" insignia. Introduced in 1961, it was optional equipment on many classic Epiphone models. Epiphone engineers have taken that same, great design and improved it with a spring-loaded return system that allows for ultra-smooth operation and excellent return-to-pitch characteristics.

Cool Retro-Looks!
Also unique, the Wilshire features Epiphone's own "batwing" headstock. A classic design that improves tuning ease and accuracy by offering a straight string-pull design, the headstock is adorned like the original with the vintage "Epiphone" logo in gold. Other features include a 1960's SlimTaper (TM) neck profile with Rosewood fingerboard, premium 14:1 die-cast tuners and individual Volume and Tone controls for each pickup. And to give it that worn-in look and feel, Epiphone tops it all off with a thin satin finish.

It could last a lifetime! As with all Epiphone's, the Wilshire is backed by Epiphone's Limited Lifetime Warranty and 24/7/365 Customer Service. Only 398 original 1966 Wilshires were produced and are selling today for $10,000 or more depending upon condition. If you're not fortunate enough to own an original or can't afford that kind of cash, here's your chance to own one with the same classic 1966 Epiphone vibe and tone. Cool!

FEATURES
  • Body Material: Mahogany
  • Neck Material: Mahogany
  • Neck Shape: 1960's SlimTaper™
  • Neck Joint: Glued-In
  • Truss Rod: Adjustable
  • Scale Length: 24.75"
  • Fingerboard Material: Rosewood with mother-of-pearl Dot Inlays
  • Bridge Pickup: NYT Mini-Humbucker
  • Neck Pickup: NYT Mini-Humbucker
  • Controls: Bridge Volume, Neck Volume, Bridge Tone, Neck Tone, 3-way pickup selector (toggle)
  • Fingerboard Radius:12"
  • Frets: 22 medium-jumbo
  • Bridge: Redesigned Tremotone™ System
  • Nut Width: 1-11/16"
  • Hardware: Nickel

Order yourself a Wilshire—it's uncommonly good.

Reviews
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Review Snapshot®

by PowerReviews
EpiphoneWorn 1966 Wilshire with Tremotone Electric Guitar
 
4.1

(based on 23 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (12)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (7)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (2)

87%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Good tone (15)
  • Fun to play (13)
  • Good feel (13)
  • Good pick up (9)
  • Solid electronics (8)

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Jamming (13)
    • Practicing (13)
    • Small venues (11)
    • Recording (7)
    • Rock concerts (4)
      • Reviewer Profile:
      • Experienced (8), Professional musician (7)

    Most Liked Positive Review

     

    Excellent rock n roll guitar

    Overall, a fantastic little guitar, especially for this price. Team it up with a good amp (try a Fender Deville, its been working for me) and you won't be disappointed.Read complete review

    Overall, a fantastic little guitar, especially for this price. Team it up with a good amp (try a Fender Deville, its been working for me) and you won't be disappointed.

    As something of a badass mini-bonus, I found out after purchasing this guitar that the late 1960's Wilshire with mini-humbuckers was used by Wayne Kramer of the MC5, while the band's other guitarist, Fred "Sonic" Smith (later married to Patti Smith), used a 3 pickup version called the Crestwood. If that ain't the coolest pedigree ever, I don't know what is. Kick out the jams, MFers \m/
    A fantastic guitar for playing any sort of rock n roll. The two mini-humbuckers produce a somewhat sharper, more focused tone than do full sized humbuckers, but retain the tonal characteristics that make those pickups so popular; they handle distortion/fuzz/gain very well, but without the clarity issues I generally associate with regular humbuckers.

    The neck is a lot of fun to play, especially with the worn finish. It is noticeably flatter than a typical Gibson/Epiphone or Fender neck on the underside, and the lack of the sticky glossy finish on similarly priced guitars allows for more freedom of movement as one slides one's hand up and down the neck. Not only does this worn finish serve this utilitarian purpose, but it is rather beautiful as well. The matte finish shows off the wood grain, and on the Worn Black guitar translates to a beautiful dark black/brown color.

    The Tremotone is a fun little tremolo unit as well. Somewhat reminiscent of a Bigsby in its looks, it turns out to be easier to handle while changing strings. Return to pitch is relatively good (this is touted as a selling point in the MF description), but as with other tremolos of this sort, keep a tuner handy.

    The Wilshire is also extremely light, a great characteristic if you need to play it with a strap. And although the neck does dive the slightest bit, it is a well-balanced guitar.
    While certainly not a super expensive, top-of-the-line guitar, the quality of this particular offering from Epiphone caught me off guard in a good way. Having in the past owned an Epiphone SG copy (the G400), I was expecting something along those lines as far as build quality and the feel of the guitar. I was pleasantly surprised to find myself with an instrument that feels great just to hold and was put together with far more care than the typical Epiphone version of a Gibson guitar. I hope to see Epiphone doing more of these cool vintage reissues, especially if they can continue to do them so well.
    For a brand new guitar around the this price, I don't this you can go wrong with this one. It's a fantastic little guitar for the price, seemingly inhabiting that obscure and difficult to find region of stellar price-to-value ratio.

    VS

    Most Liked Negative Review

     

    Bad tremolo design

    Nice 24 3/4" scale guitar, comfortable to play. The String spacing at the Nut is rather too narrow - will replace with a recut wider spaced Tusq Nut. Mini Humbuckers are...Read complete review

    Nice 24 3/4" scale guitar, comfortable to play. The String spacing at the Nut is rather too narrow - will replace with a recut wider spaced Tusq Nut. Mini Humbuckers are nice and clear sounding. But the big disaster is the TremoTone Vibrato. It has various different radius sizes for each string, with an attempt to render equal pitch drops on all strings, but the High E sits too tall leaving the Tremolo roller, with very little downward pressure on the Bridge makes the High E have no sustain and always falls off the roller Bridge Saddle after every strum - Really terrible deign(hint: Richard Akers at Epiphone needs to correct this terrible Tremolo asap)
    I plan to remove the stock Tremotone vibrato, and install a period correct Gibson Vibrola from Allparts. I was going to return this guitar to MF, but the hidden fees for restocking/returns on used gear killed those plans - so I'll try to make this work

    Reviewed by 23 customers

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    5.0

    Glad I Got This One

    By JC

    from San Diego, CA

    About Me Experienced

    Ask me a question

    Pros

    • Fun To Play
    • Good Feel
    • Good Tone

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Jamming
      • Practicing
      • Recording
      • Small Venues

      Comments about Epiphone Worn 1966 Wilshire with Tremotone Electric Guitar:

      This was among the first SDotD buys I went for. It was an impulse order and I didn't have a lot of expectations for quality. I was surprised how nice the guitar really is. Comfortable weight and easy playing neck/fingerboard. It has a neat look. The tremolo bridge does not take it out of tune, a likely improvement over the 1966 original. Great for playing surf guitar, Link Wray, and lots of other stuff (even Bo Diddley, believe it or not). I have quite a number of guitars, but this seems to be the most practical one to just have around to pick up and mess around. Sounds fine even unamplified. I put a nice strap on it and keep it in a Gator case, where it fits great. It was manufactured in a plant on the other side of the Pacific, but was set up and inspected in Nashville. While I would prefer the whole operation be American, I see nothing inferior in the quality. It is well made. I gave it 5 stars for the class of this instrument based on cost. At the price point, it is way beyond nice.

      Comment on this review

       
      4.0

      Has some flaws.

      By The CRB

      from Avon CT

      About Me Professional Musician

      Ask me a question

      Verified Reviewer

      Pros

      • Good Feel
      • Good Tone
      • Light Weight
      • Light Wieght

      Cons

      • Tremolo

      Best Uses

      • Jamming
      • Practicing
      • Rock Concerts
      • Small Venues

      Comments about Epiphone Worn 1966 Wilshire with Tremotone Electric Guitar:

      This a great looking light weight guitar that needs certain modifications if you want to use it . The factory installed Tremolo is flawed and when ever you use it the guitar goes out of tune.I replaced the Tremolo with a B50 Bigsby Tremolo which helped. I also had to replace the Nut for wider string spacing.One of the volume pots needed to be replaced as well.Once you make these modifications you have a great guitar with a classic sound and look.

      Comment on this review

      (2 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

       
      1.0

      Bad tremolo design

      By Elantric

      from San Luis Obispo, CA

      About Me Professional Musician

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Fun To Play
      • Good Tone

      Cons

      • Tremolo

      Best Uses

      • Small Venues

      Comments about Epiphone Worn 1966 Wilshire with Tremotone Electric Guitar:

      Nice 24 3/4" scale guitar, comfortable to play. The String spacing at the Nut is rather too narrow - will replace with a recut wider spaced Tusq Nut. Mini Humbuckers are nice and clear sounding. But the big disaster is the TremoTone Vibrato. It has various different radius sizes for each string, with an attempt to render equal pitch drops on all strings, but the High E sits too tall leaving the Tremolo roller, with very little downward pressure on the Bridge makes the High E have no sustain and always falls off the roller Bridge Saddle after every strum - Really terrible deign(hint: Richard Akers at Epiphone needs to correct this terrible Tremolo asap)
      I plan to remove the stock Tremotone vibrato, and install a period correct Gibson Vibrola from Allparts. I was going to return this guitar to MF, but the hidden fees for restocking/returns on used gear killed those plans - so I'll try to make this work

      Comment on this review

      (1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

       
      2.0

      Disappointed

      By Fazon

      from Mission Viejo, CA

      About Me Experienced

      Pros

      • Fun To Play
      • Good Feel
      • Good Tone
      • Unique

      Cons

      • Cracks In Finish
      • Weak Neck Joint

      Best Uses

        Comments about Epiphone Worn 1966 Wilshire with Tremotone Electric Guitar:

        Received and returned 3, all for cracks in the finish around the neck joint indicating possible weak neck joint that flexes more that the finish can take and may eventually break. Low rating is for the described problem only. Customer service was very good, resolved issue satisfactorily.

        Comment on this review

        (1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

         
        4.0

        Nice axe for the price.

        By Heffster Slideman

        from Shoreline Wa.

        About Me Professional Musician

        Ask me a question

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Fun To Play
        • Good Feel
        • Good Tone
        • Nice And Light

        Cons

        • none yet

        Best Uses

        • At My Blues Jams
        • Jamming
        • Practicing
        • Small Venues

        Comments about Epiphone Worn 1966 Wilshire with Tremotone Electric Guitar:

        Needed an inexpensive alternative to my more expensive Axes to take off the work load.Got it as a SDOTD. Great value.

        Comment on this review

        (0 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

         
        4.0

        Worn 1966 Wilshire

        By Texascat2

        from Baytown, Texas

        About Me Professional Musician

        Ask me a question

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Affordable First Guitar
        • Fun To Play
        • Good Feel
        • Good Pick Up
        • Good Tone
        • Solid Electronics

        Cons

        • None

        Best Uses

        • Jamming
        • Practicing

        Comments about Epiphone Worn 1966 Wilshire with Tremotone Electric Guitar:

        I would give it five stars but I bought it for my brother. He loves this guitar, I did not play it but the reviews were darn good, so we gave it a try!
        The bridge is tuned and set up very nice out of the box.
        I did buy this as The Stupid Deal of the Day, got a great price! So, if your not getting the Stupid Deal email, I suggest you submit your email address.
        I've been buying from Musicians Friend for over ten years. Always great bargains and fantastic customer support.
        If your just starting or a serious novice, you will like this guitar!

        Comment on this review

         
        5.0

        Vintage look & feel

        By lugnut111

        from Indiana

        About Me Experienced

        Ask me a question

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Fun To Play
        • Good Feel
        • Good Pick Up
        • Good Tone
        • Solid Electronics

        Cons

          Best Uses

          • Jamming
          • Practicing
          • Recording
          • Small Venues

          Comments about Epiphone Worn 1966 Wilshire with Tremotone Electric Guitar:

          The Epiphone Wilshire is a great little guitar. Made overseas but set up in the American factory. Set up was perfect out of the box. Just tuned it up & couldn't stop playing. The satin finish provides a very comfortable & fast neck. The cut away of the body horns & the small heel on the neck joint provide superior upper fret access. Love the mini humbuckers! Very unique sound. This is one of those guitars that makes you want to try & play new & different things. The switch feels solid, the volume & tone pots feel good. The jack for the cord is very good. The guitar stays in tune, unless, you use the tremolo. The tremolo is not the best. I rarely use it myself. It's not bad if you use it very lightly, but any tremolo use above that, and you will be re-tuning the guitar. To be fair, I haven't tried to adjust or tinker with the tremolo to try & improve it's ability to stay in tune yet. The guitar has a roller bridge & a large spring similar to a bigsby tremolo. Even with the tremolo issue this guitar is just plain fun to play. This is something different & unique compared to all the Strats, Teles & Les Pauls out there.

          Comment on this review

          (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

           
          4.0

          Has its Qualities its not for Everyone

          By Sal

          from Southwest Florida

          About Me Professional Musician

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

          • Fun To Play
          • Good Pick Up
          • Good Tone

          Cons

          • Bridge Saddles
          • Tuning Keys

          Best Uses

          • Jamming
          • Practicing
          • Small Venues

          Comments about Epiphone Worn 1966 Wilshire with Tremotone Electric Guitar:

          I really wanted to like this guitar. It was a bargain SDOTD so I gave it a shot. Out of the box I was impressed with the Craftsmanship. The action was slightly high but overall,very nice. Very light guitar. Amplified the pickups delivered a nice tone and when I added some overdrive I got a cocked Wah tone all the way up and down the fretboard...Awesome. The tones were all there! The fretboard was finished nicely and the neck felt great. Attempting anything more that slight use of the tremolo would result in retuning. Understandable at this point. The machines felt a little below average to me. If I would have kept this guitar I would have replaced the machines. Anyway, So I lower the action slightly and String bending immediately became an issue. The strings would pop off the bridge saddles ...ugh. Unacceptable. Many Players could have zero issues with this depending on their playing style. For me, It was deal breaker. too bad, the guitar had some nice positives. FWIW I've been playing a while and have some nice guitars but I'm not a gear snob. I love inexpensive gear that delivers. I would still reccommend it to certain players. This guitar would certainly work well for someone who doesnt keep their action very low or rhythm players, begginers or someone that doesn't play such "enthusiastic" leads. Unfortunately, I had to send it back. YMMV

          Comment on this review

           
          5.0

          Worn 1966 Wilshire with Tremotone Electr

          By TP klone

          from Bakken formation

          About Me Experienced

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

          • Fun To Play
          • Good Feel
          • Good Pick Up
          • Good Tone
          • Lightweight
          • Solid Electronics

          Cons

            Best Uses

            • Jamming
            • Practicing

            Comments about Epiphone Worn 1966 Wilshire with Tremotone Electric Guitar:

            cool guitar for three bills on a stupid deal...love the tremotone whammy....works great and stays in tune without the benefit of locking at the nut :)

            Comment on this review

             
            4.0

            Funky Fast

            By Uncleknubs

            from Pacific NorthWest

            About Me Experienced

            Ask me a question

            Verified Buyer

            Pros

            • Fun To Play
            • Good Feel
            • Good Pick Up
            • Good Tone
            • Solid Electronics

            Cons

            • None For The Price

            Best Uses

            • Jamming
            • Practicing
            • Recording
            • Rock Concerts

            Comments about Epiphone Worn 1966 Wilshire with Tremotone Electric Guitar:

            This is a fast and funky little guitar, the one I purchased with the tremolo is very well put together nothing cheap about it especially for the price.

            Comment on this review

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