Sometimes they find us... S2 NGD (belated)


Knows the Drill
May 4, 2012
West Michigan
We all know this story - go to the shop, grab a guitar to try something else with, and next thing you know, there's a guitar stuck in your head!

Well, that's how it happened to me. Was at the shop trying a pedal a few weeks ago, grabbed an S2 594 just for something familiar, and just couldn't stop thinking about that guitar afterward. It seemed to sustain forever on the open strings. Went back last week to give it another shot, yep - something very special about this one, the sound was great, and the setup was dialed right in to what I liked. I tried it along with a couple others on the wall, including one with a killer cherry burst top, but there was just something to the sustain and sweetness, and feel, of that one I'd tried before. Visually, I wouldn't call it plain, it looks good, but it certainly wasn't the standout of the bunch. Which kind of relieved me, that I was able to get past the look and really hear what was best.

Don't get me wrong, there wasn't a lot of variance between them, we're talking single digit percentage difference in most regards.

I've been hoping to find a "beater" 594 that I can take out with less worry when the occasion calls for it. Between the hot/cold extremes going in and out in Michigan winter, and the potential for a guitar to mysteriously walk away in seedier places, I'm not too keen to take my AP/WL 594 out in every situation. Mission accomplished!

My constructive criticisms of the S2 are, one, that the "S" version pickups don't have the fidelity of the USA models, and two, the finish has a lot of swirling and micro scratches when the light hits it right. Personally, I don't care too much about point 2, I didn't buy it to look at it. Just an observation. In all other regards, the attention to detail is excellent!

So, if you don't believe this stuff finds us... the pickups did it, too. There's a fairly well known boutique pickup company that I recently learned is within a stone's throw of my office, and I've been wanting a guitar to put their pickups in, all my other guitars have PRS pickups that I'm very happy with. They have the old winders that wound the pickups for the vintage Gibson guitars, you know, the 59's and all that - major cool points! Their website states shop tours by appointment, so I was pretty excited to check it out. Phone call... oh, yeah, no shop visits since COVID started, and the guy had about as much enthusiasm to talk to me as a wet sock. No shop tour, I can deal with that (although, it's been almost 3 years guys, maybe update your website???), but if my inquiry to buy a $600 set of PAF's is a nuisance to you, hard pass. So, called the shop where I got the guitar, let's try something a little different... Thornbuckers! Should be in from their warehouse in a couple days. Those days pass and I call, and "oh, we had a little kerfuffle with those, we don't have a neck pickup and we don't know when we will." Ok, well what do you have? Do you have any of the 58/15LT sets?

You bet your @$$ they did.

It's supernatural gear, I'm telling you, this stuff was out to get me.

The new pickups definitely solved the fidelity issue, I'm hearing everything in the signal that I hear acoustically. This 594 has more twang to the notes, almost tele-like in some regards, whereas my core version is smoother on the note attack. Both are good things, just application dependent. The S2 also has an astonishing sustain on the open strings, I swear you'd think it's starting to feed back on itself even unplugged! It definitely out-sustains the core model on those open strings, but it's not all bad for the core, because it starts to win the sustain game moving up the neck. Pretty cool to have both personalities of 594, I really can't say one is definitively better than the other in sound, just different.

Yada yada yada... pics.


With the LT's (and Schaller S locks)


With big brother

The brisket I made New Year's Day, because I know you want to see it. Am I just adding it to this thread to keep your attention, like Sweetwater does with their little bags of candy? Absolutely. Maybe I'll start my own online shop, except I'll give out smoked meat instead of candy.
I love it was this kind of thing happens. Cool guitar, and great looking slab ‘o meat! Bummer about your experience with that particular pick up company. I had a set of one of their pickups in a 594. They were all that. I only put them in that 594 because I had two. Looking for something a little different
You're about due for a family photo upgrade, aren't you? There have been a few additions to the stable...
You're probably right... just like with actual family photos, I never think about that stuff! Fortunately my wife is good about scheduling the annual family photos.

This does not imply that you're my forum wife.

Or maybe it does, if it means I get to play that new private stock!

So sweet when that connection happens. Great story, and now I'll have to go fire up the smoker...
Definitely do it, and don't be afraid to show and tell!

Congrats man! And honestly, I think the top on the S2 is pretty cool - sure, not as nice as the Core, but pretty sweet in its own right. Nice score!
It really is a pretty good top for an S2, obviously the figuring isn't as deep as a core model, but it does have a nice and fairly symmetrical figure to it, and that's all I would ask for on an S2. No complaints!
I guess everything is subjective but that guitar looks great! Enjoy it OP I sold my thinline and now I'm in the market for another go figure...sometimes you have to be apart to know what you had...enjoy!
We need more meat in our threads.

Ok first things first TWSS!

Now that’s oot the way. Andy that’s a great score and such a great lead up to the punch line.

Glad it all worked out for you, eventually.

Someone scribbled on the top of your Sweet 16 though! I’ve just bought a Miracle Cloth, which will scrub that right up.
I picked up some 58/15 LT to put in my SE Hollowbody II Piezo. Can't wait to install them. Probably going to have a professional do it. I've never done any electronics on a hollow/semi-hollow before.

Sweet 594!

The LT’s were harder to install than I thought, I was expecting the simple, single tap wire as in my core 594, but they have the multi wire setup for the 5 way blade, which gets complicated mentally, and physically when the soldering iron enters the equation. Fortunately they sound better than my soldering job looks!

Kinda surprised I got it hooked up correctly on the first try, thanks to @Simon Says for helping me with that.
Someone scribbled on the top of your Sweet 16 though! I’ve just bought a Miracle Cloth, which will scrub that right up.

I’m still mad about it. Last I heard they still haven’t fired him.