First Impression: JLS Model SSH Columbus NE

Now, working as JLS Guitars, Jim L. Schmidt makes electrics that are devoutly ofthe S-style, but with a twist in the form of his chambered ash bodywith figured maple top. Plugged straight into a Top Hat Club Royale Mk II, the SSH revealed a warm, round neck pickup for good bluesy excursions or sweeter rock ballads, and an open and balanced tonality overall, with admirable definition. Read on to know more about it.

Toms Country Music Ctr
(402) 564-6253
2409 11Th St
Columbus, NE
Types of Instruments Sold
Guitars & Fretted Instruments

Data Provided by:
Millard Music House
(402) 895-1221
5053 S 136Th St
Omaha, NE
Types of Instruments Sold
Band & Orchestral, Drums & Percussion, Sound Reinforcement, Recording Equipment, Guitars & Fretted Instruments, Print Music, DJ Equipment

Data Provided by:
Kittle'S Music
(308) 532-2911
106 E 5Th St
North Platte, NE
Types of Instruments Sold
Digital Piano, Electronic Keyboard, Band & Orchestral

Data Provided by:
Schmitt Music Center
(402) 391-5588
7355 Dodge St
Omaha, NE
Types of Instruments Sold
Acoustic Piano, Digital Piano, Electronic Keyboard, Band & Orchestral, Drums & Percussion, Sound Reinforcement, Recording Equipment, Guitars & Fretted Instruments, Print Music

Data Provided by:
Midwest Sound & Lighting
(402) 731-6268
4318 S 50Th St
Omaha, NE
Types of Instruments Sold
Sound Reinforcement, Recording Equipment, DJ Equipment
Instrument Repair Information
Pro Audio Repairs, speaker re-coning
(amps, mixers, processing, analog & digital recorders, keyboards, guitar amps, etc.)
Hours
Monday through Friday 9am-6pm
Saturday 10am-5pm
Sunday closed

Data Provided by:
Columbus Music Co
(402) 564-9431
2514 13Th St
Columbus, NE
Types of Instruments Sold
Acoustic Piano, Digital Piano, Electronic Keyboard, Organs, Band & Orchestral, Drums & Percussion, Sound Reinforcement, Recording Equipment, Guitars & Fretted Instruments, Print Music, DJ Equipment

Data Provided by:
Dale Matousek Music Shop
(308) 754-4928
407 Howard Ave
Saint Paul, NE
Types of Instruments Sold
Band & Orchestral, Drums & Percussion, Sound Reinforcement, Recording Equipment

Data Provided by:
Oasis Music Store
(308) 762-8224
211 Box Butte Ave
Alliance, NE
Types of Instruments Sold
Drums & Percussion, Sound Reinforcement, Guitars & Fretted Instruments, Print Music

Data Provided by:
Kucera Accordian
(402) 986-1645
2162 Road 13
Howells, NE
Types of Instruments Sold
Acoustic Piano, Electronic Keyboard, Band & Orchestral, Sound Reinforcement, Print Music

Data Provided by:
Barbour Music
(308) 632-3833
1712 Broadway
Scottsbluff, NE
Types of Instruments Sold
Band & Orchestral, Drums & Percussion, Sound Reinforcement, Guitars & Fretted Instruments, Print Music

Data Provided by:
Data Provided by:

First Impression: JLS Model SSH

JLS Model SSHJim L. Schmidt openly admits that his raison d’etre circa 2009 is to outgun his fellow California guitar maker – and former employer – at offering an affordable, bolt-neck, U.S.-made electric with three pickups and a vibrato tailpiece. Schmidt worked first in the lumber selection room before moving into final assembly during his tenure with Fender in the late ’70s and early ’80s.

Now, working as JLS Guitars, he makes electrics that are devoutly of the S-style, but with a twist in the form of his chambered ash body with figur ed maple top. Denoted by the workmanlike names SSS Model and SSH Model (differentiated by single-coil or hum bucker in the bridge; each $1,024 including shipping), the line is assembled from start to finish by Schmidt himself in his workshop in Folsom, California, using some original components, some bought in from other suppliers. As a custom builder, Schmidt points out that he can also provide many options regarding the pickup configurations on his guitars.

Schmidt makes his own bodies, routing ten narrow chambers (plus control cavity and pickup routes) in a solid ash back, then capping it with a two-piece, book matched maple top, and marrying it to necks purchased from another manufacturer. The one-piece maple neck on our review sample carried 22 jumbo frets, courtesy of a small fingerboard extension that provided room for the extra fret beyond the 21-fretvintage norm. All frets were smoothly filed and polished, and the neck played extremely well from nut to neck-body joint. The hardware complement on all JLS guitars includes a gold-plated Warmouth vintage-style Stratocaster vibrato and enclosed 16:1 ratio gold-plated Gotoh tuners. Pickups are Fender American Standard Stratocaster single-coils, with the option of a Seymour Duncan Pearly Gates hum bucker in the bridge, as on this example.
Schmidt’s chambering keeps the guitar’s weight down to a little over 7lbs, and also allows the inclusion of an elegant f-hole in the maple top, a surprising “Thinline-inspired” feature on an S-style electric. The routing work revealed by this particular f-hole shows just the tiniest bit of wood furring in evidence in the ash beneath, but workmanship is very good overall. The SSH is finished in a thin, water-based satin lacquer. The overall look, to some players, might break into that ’70s trend for stripping guitars to natural, and others might feel a figured top such as this deserves a polished gloss finish. I like the overall vibe in the hand, though, and it’s hard to argue with the environmentally friendly aspect of the water-based finish, or the likely fact that it won’t constrain the guitar’s resonance unduly.

Plugged straight into a Top Hat Club Royale Mk II, the SSH revealed a warm, round neck pickup for good bluesy excursions or sweeter rock ballads, and an open and balanced tonality overall, with admirable definition. The in-between settings still capture much of the Knopfler-esque quack that many S-style players are hooked on, while switching to the Duncan in the br...

Click here to read the rest of the article from Guitar Player


Guitar Player is a trademark of New Bay Media, LLC. All material published on www.guitarplayer.com is copyrighted @2009 by New Bay Media, LLC. All rights reserved