I love my Hamer USA ’90 Centaura and ’80 modified Special (and ’89 Peavey Vandenberg)


1) Beautiful appearance. I’ve gone in the room I’m keeping it just to look at it several times since it arrived on Friday

2) The trem stays in tune

3) Wonderfully versatile sounds, from single-coil quacks to bridge HB distorted metal

4) I feel like I can play faster/cleaner on the maple fretboard, even though the necks is slightly chunky (not a skinny shredder’s neck at all)


1) Awesome, beautiful, wonderful, amazing, full, rich tone

2) Trem stays in tune (I complained about extremely slight tuning problems earlier…but it improved after a few days. humidity change?)

3) The Kahler trem is excellent for bend/hold licks. Meaning: If I bend up the b-string, it doesn’t cause the e string to drop in pitch

4) The shorter scale makes a huge improvement in the feel of the action. Again, I feel like I can play faster/cleaner on this guitar than others (even though it has a rosewood fingerboard), but different than the Centaura.

5) Have I mentioned the awesome, beautiful, wonderful, amazing, full, rich tone?

I know this isn’t news. It isn’t important. It is probably not unique among Hamer players. But I couldn’t restrain myself from gushing. I could probably be happy with just these two guitars, along with the ’89 Vandy that I love cuz of its ebony fingerboard and the Kahler 2700 trem (because of its auto-latch AND string-through locking studs).

That realization creates some inner turmoil, because:

1) I have a Hamer Diablo I bought from SteveB that I haven’t even had time to get tuned up and fall in love with yet

2) I have a yellow/black granite Centaura that I may have to sell (worse cosmetic condition, no advantage in sound, repaired crack in headstock)…but I’m greedy and don’t want to let go of any USA Hamer

3) I still want to buy the Aztec Gold ’93 Hamer USA FM Special for my birthday, if possible (the seller hasn’t told me he canceled our agreement). But will it be different enough from the ’80 Special to be worth the cash? It will be more cosmetically beautiful, true, and it will have the fixed bridge…

4) What does this mean for my handful of remaining imports?

4a) I love the appearance, tone, trem, and fretboard of my Hamer Slammer Series Cali

4b) I love the boomers on my Korean import Cali

4c) I love the tone and fixed bridge with the 24 frets of my XC Cali

4d) I love the appearance, tone, and feel of my Amber Burst flamed XT SATF The little bit o’ cash I’d get for the remaining imports probably isn’t worth the hassle, plus the angst of getting rid of guitars I like so much.

The cash I’d get for the repaired Centaura would be nice, and would counter the cash I pay out for the FM Special.

The Diablo is beautiful, too, so I won’t have any regrets keeping it…if I don’t play it much, it just makes it that much easier to keep in near-pristine condition.

I’ll probably end up selling the granite/damaged Centaura, and the red Vandenberg (because it has the licensed Floyd Rose trem, as opposed the black Vandenberg I will keep that has the Kahler 2700 trem), but I’ll wait until I have played them all much more.



Filed under guitar, Me

2 responses to “I love my Hamer USA ’90 Centaura and ’80 modified Special (and ’89 Peavey Vandenberg)

  1. Rishi Gajria

    Floyd Rose vs Kahler comparison. I believe there is another big player on the block. Cannot recall the company but it is a guitar manufacturer perhaps Ibanez. The Tremolo design that is capable of doing anything a Floyd can.

  2. Rishi Gajria

    You need a better amp. The Peavey is nice but… The Roland Micro sounds great but c’mon, it is a simulator, not a real amp. And you should try a heavier gauge of strings.

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