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Chinese Aliexpress Necks

Discussion in 'Squier Strat Forum' started by McNeish, Nov 2, 2017.

  1. elliotj26

    elliotj26 Strat-Talk Member

    Age:
    25
    31
    Oct 21, 2017
    indiana
    Except its against ebay policy to sell fake items and they can be removed, if reported.
     
    altar likes this.

  2. Ravenmore

    Ravenmore Strat-Talker

    Age:
    50
    196
    Oct 9, 2017
    Cedar Park
    I don't know, I'll be honest copying the head stock shape doesn't really bother me a whole lot. Maybe it should but it is a rather simple shape and they are not putting the Fender logo's on it.

    I used to collect watches and this sort of thing was pretty much accepted as long as they didn't stamp their product with another brand. In fact such watch copies are often referred to as a 'homage' are deemed acceptable. An example is the Rolex diver watch - just about every watch brand out there has one that looks like it. In fact Rolex itself derived theirs from another brand's watch.
     
    vid1900 likes this.

  3. vid1900

    vid1900 Senior Stratmaster

    Nov 25, 2016
    USA
    Same thing with AliExpress
     

  4. fezz parka

    fezz parka Wiggler of Sticks Strat-Talk Supporter

    If you owned a copyright on something, or any intellectual property, you'd whistle a different tune. ;)

    Look around on Alibaba. Gibsons Gretsches, Martins, Fenders, Rickenbacker...all for sale as the real deal. All fakes. All forgeries. All bogus. As Spicoli said "We'd better get some rules...pronto...or we'll be bogus too."
     

  5. Ravenmore

    Ravenmore Strat-Talker

    Age:
    50
    196
    Oct 9, 2017
    Cedar Park
    I do have some stuff copyrighted. A think there is a degree of severity that should be considered. Copying a head stock without any labels - meh. Now copying a whole guitar especially if trying to pass it off as an original - that no es bueno.
     

  6. fezz parka

    fezz parka Wiggler of Sticks Strat-Talk Supporter

    Do you earn money from them ? Would you be pissed if someone else was earning money from them, and not compensating you?

    Back in the 80's, Schecter got dinged by Fender for the head stock shape. Their factory in Van Nuys was in the same industrial complex where I had a rehearsal studio. The dumpsters were full of necks with no headstocks . When they were band sawed off, a rep from Fender took all of the headstocks with them when they left. They obviously didn't think it was "meh".

    I don't like driving the speed limit across Kansas. The State Troopers feel differently. :)
     
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  7. Ebidis

    Ebidis Most Honored Senior Member Strat-Talk Supporter

    Age:
    51
    Nov 14, 2013
    Alabama
    Ok, so of the stuff that you have copyrighted, what is ok for someone else to use without your permission?
     
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  8. Ravenmore

    Ravenmore Strat-Talker

    Age:
    50
    196
    Oct 9, 2017
    Cedar Park
    I have a Casio Marlin dive watch that is a close copy of a Rolex Submariner. It is clearly labeled 'Casio' though and has a Marlin logo on it. Even Rolex doesn't have a problem with it. And pretty much any watch manufacturer has a watch that is darn close in appearance to a sub mariner. However they are making no claims that their product is anything but their own. They are clearly branded as something other than the Rolex product. No one is going after anyone for copyright infringement (that I've heard of - of course if they did Rolex would have to answer for copying the Fifty Fathoms). And this is just one example. IMO watches are far more complicated devices than head stocks or even guitars for that matter.

    If we want to carry on even further we can go down comparing stuff like all the Les Paul clones out there sold by big name legitimate guitar manufacturers. Sure head stocks might be a little different on them but the body style is the same right down to the controls. So is it ok to copy the body style but not the head stock? C'mon... I know Gibson has had legal rows with various companies like PRS and Ibanez about exactly this, but the point is pretty much everyone here thinks these guitars are fine ethically.

    My point here is that they are not trying to pass their product off as the Fender product. And that's why to me, and it is just my opinion, I personally just don't care that much about it. Yeah it would be cool if they'd change it just a bit and probably more appropriate, but I'm not going to lose sleep over it. If they were trying to sell it as a Fender product that is clearly crossing a line. Now by the letter of the law copying the head stock is probably technically illegal in the US. So if Fender wants to spend money going after them - go for it. I personally don't think it's worth the effort to go after them but it's not my opinion that counts. However good luck going after them in China where the copyright laws don't exist.

    Not that it matters but my copyrighted material was photographs as I was a professional photographer for a number of years. If someone used my photos without my permission (which did happen a couple of times) to go back to my watch analogy it would be more like Casio taking a Rolex and labeling it as a Casio and then selling it without giving Rolex any money to do so. Of course that analogy makes no sense economically but it would essentially be the same thing. Or taking a genuine Fender neck and selling it branded as something else.

    Anyway I'm staying out of this from here on. Ya'll have a good night. ;)
     
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  9. simoncroft

    simoncroft Most Honored Senior Member Strat-Talk Supporter

    Age:
    61
    May 30, 2013
    SE England
    I am generally an ardent defender of intellectual property, but I feel we have to take a proportional view of what constitutes infringement.

    1. If I manufacture, let's say, a guitar that is superficially identical to a Les Paul Standard and I have branded it Gibson, given it a bogus serial number, and have the bare-faced cheek to copy the MADE IN THE USA stamp on the back, am I a counterfeiter? Absolutely! While some end users of the product might be savvy enough, there is a clear intention to deceive, and some naive buyers might believe they believe they have received genuine product. Not only does that deprive Gibson of revenue, it damages the reputation of Gibson if the purchaser then says, their guitar isn't very good.

    2. If I manufacture, let's say, a guitar that is superficially identical to a Les Paul Standard and I have branded it Tokai am I a counterfeiter? Well no, because I've put my own brand on it. However, it is likely there will need to be a discussion between Gibson's lawyers and mine...

    3. If I manufacture, let's say, a guitar that is superficially similar to a Les Paul Standard... Provided you've changed enough details, you'll probably be OK, but you might want to chat with Paul Reid Smith first...

    4. If I manufacture a guitar that is only approximately like a Les Paul in many engineering specifics, but has a book-matched flame top. Please see question 3. It depends how much market share you've acquired.

    And so it goes on.

    Am I making a 'non Fender' if I change the headstock shape slightly. Legally, that seems to be about correct.

    So let's look at this from the consumer perspective.

    I own a few non-Fender, but Fender-type guitar necks, of which only the Warmoth is 'Fender Licensed'. Some of the others use the headstock outlines but wouldn't pass for Fender in a million years! So the guys who made these necks really owe Fender money? Am I a criminal for buying those necks? If so, you should have maybe banged me up in the 1970s when Japanese copies of US-made instruments were available in stores everywhere.

    Crack down on counterfeiters? Yes! But don't please beat up on people who buy products made to similar specifications.
     
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  10. Bluestrat83

    Bluestrat83 Strat-O-Master

    Age:
    34
    614
    Jan 17, 2016
    Ecuador
    Hey guys, I’m a little bit lost here because there is a tokai club in this forum and I see knock off guitars every day in ST.
    I know tokais, grecos, burnys etc are better than most of the stuff in Ali express but for the sake of this argument what’s the difference? What’s the deal: ones are better because we like them and the ones we don’t are doing something illegal against fender?
     
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  11. jaybones

    jaybones Most Honored Senior Member

    I was going to point out the first not being worth a whole lot. And to point out that stuff I bought online from that corner of the globe took as long as a slow boat from....

    There's that, but I'm more concerned about sweatshop child or political prisoner labor.

    Glad it worked out for the OP! I've gotten 3 unbranded necks from China and they all exceeded my expectations.

    22 fret maple cap vintage tint Canadian maple neck finished my Blackie clone (black Fender body, loaded Hot Gold PG, Callahan big block trem, Fender roller trees and chrome tuners. I realize the real Blackie didn't have some of these features, but I was influenced by the current EC sig model).

    Black lacquered (poly really) neck with RW FB. Listing and pics weren't clear it was RW, so emailed seller and got full refund. Again, frets perfect. The only problem I had was excess finish in the tuner holes but a few minutes with a step bit cleaned that up.

    Third was all black lacquered (again poly) 22 fret neck, including FB. Biggest complaint I had with this one is that they'd obviously used a machine to roll the fret ends as both sides of the neck had a white line where the poly had been lightly sanded. Looked sort of like a bound neck, but a black Sharpie took care of that. Seller gave partial refund.

    Rolled the dice three times and did OK each time.
     

  12. jaybones

    jaybones Most Honored Senior Member

    I was going to point out the first not being worth a whole lot. And to point out that stuff I bought online from that corner of the globe took as long as a slow boat from....

    There's that, but I'm more concerned about sweatshop child or political prisoner labor.

    Glad it worked out for the OP! I've gotten 3 unbranded necks from China and they all exceeded my expectations.

    22 fret maple cap vintage tint Canadian maple neck finished my Blackie clone (black Fender body, loaded Hot Gold PG, Callahan big block trem, Fender roller trees and chrome non-locking tuners. I know some of these features weren't on the original, but I was inspired by the current EC sig model).

    Next was a black lacquered (poly really) neck, RW FB. Listing didn't say and pics were close enough to see it was RW. Emailed seller got full refund kept neck. If I had a complaint it was there was excess finish in the tuner holes, but a few minutes with a step bit made those right. Only had to take some of the edges of finish off, not into the wood.

    Third neck was another black lacquered (again, poly) neck including FB. This one the only complaint I have is the ends were rolled by a machine. Obvious white scuff marks in the black poly running both side of the neck. Looked like it was bound. No matter, a little Steinway touch up pen (black Sharpie down both sides, couple times to make sure I had good coverage, and if it starts to wear I can always reapply).

    So I rolled the dice three times and was relatively lucky. I would have been happy if I'd had to do some fretwork on the necks, but not so.
     

  13. rich815

    rich815 Strat-Talker Strat-Talk Supporter

    o_O:confused::rolleyes:
     
    altar likes this.

  14. McNeish

    McNeish Strat-Talk Member

    35
    Jan 19, 2016
    UK
    Wow, didn't think I would create this kind of stir.

    It actually arrived 10 days after order which I was surprised at. Expected delivery was two weeks from now.

    Anyway you can all relax. During the neck install I dropped it, headstock first onto a concrete floor and badly chipped the finish. No structural damage but a court may rule in my favor that it now no longer violates copyright laws. ;)

    Mint PG also arrived.
     

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  15. stratman323

    stratman323 Dr. Stratster Strat-Talk Supporter

    Age:
    57
    Apr 21, 2010
    London, UK
    True. Except that they don't get removed. eBay don't care - they take their 10% on all sales whether the guitar is kosher or a fake. And although Fender used to take action when you informed them of a fake, they don't seem to bother in the last few years. They don't seem to care.
     

  16. stratman323

    stratman323 Dr. Stratster Strat-Talk Supporter

    Age:
    57
    Apr 21, 2010
    London, UK
    "Knock off" is a highly provocative term! If Fender were so annoyed with Tokai for making these "knock offs", they wouldn't have approached Tokai in the early 80s to discuss with them the possibility of Tokai making Fender Japan guitars. In fact this didn't happen till the mid 1990s but the point is still the same - Fender trusted Tokai to make guitars carrying their branding because they knew how good they were.

    The high quality, lovingly made copies of the late 1970s showed Fender the error of their ways, & the company was reformed as a result. If it wasn't for Tokai & other Japanese manufacturers, Fender might still be making Strats weighing 10 pounds with sloppy neck joins. Perhaps Fender has a soft spot for Tokai?
     
    bloomz likes this.

  17. stratman323

    stratman323 Dr. Stratster Strat-Talk Supporter

    Age:
    57
    Apr 21, 2010
    London, UK
    If you make a guitar & brand it "Tokai", you are a counterfeiter because you have used Tokai's brand name on a guitar they didn't make. You might well hear from Tokai's lawyers rather than Gibson's.
     

  18. stratman323

    stratman323 Dr. Stratster Strat-Talk Supporter

    Age:
    57
    Apr 21, 2010
    London, UK
    The decision on exactly what is covered by copyright was decided by courts in the USA many years ago. IIRC, Fender's headstock shape silhouette was covered, whereas the Strat's body shape silhouette was not (someone please correct me if I'm wrong). Whether we agree with the court's decision or not, there seems little point in re-hashing the court case all over again.
     

  19. Bluestrat83

    Bluestrat83 Strat-O-Master

    Age:
    34
    614
    Jan 17, 2016
    Ecuador
    We had this discussion about terminology in the past (and very heated discussions) but I agree with what you say about the quality of tokai guitars. So how would you call them: Lawsuit era guitars? What would be the correct term? What would be a non provocative term to refer to these brands that borrowed Gibson and Fender designs? Really honest question here, at the end English is not my native language and sometimes I name things how I think or heard as common terminology.
    Anyway, the point I was trying to make is that Ali express can sell controversial items but as far as I know they are different dealers trying to sell their thing so maybe we shouldn’t judge all of them as the guys that sell chibsons as the real deal. As far as I recall they are not the only site that sells fender body’s and necks with copyrighted headstocks and as far as I know only one or two brands are really licensed by fender. In this forum we have praised lots of partcasters, tokais, grecos, etc that use same design features like Gibson/Fender so why all this copyright/license talk now?
     
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2017

  20. Bluestrat83

    Bluestrat83 Strat-O-Master

    Age:
    34
    614
    Jan 17, 2016
    Ecuador
    Sorry about that! Your guitar is looking good, I’m glad everything is coming out well!