Abel Axe Guitars Fan Site: History and Specs

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"Simply the Best"

Abel Axe guitars were conceived by Jeff Abel of Wyoming and designed/engineered by James Jones. Abel Axe LLC manufactured them from 1994 - 1996, and again in ~2001 with body slots instead of holes. Less than 250 1994-1996 Abel Axe guitars exist -if even that many. Specs can be found in their brochure with the following additions from my own observations and from conversations with Jeff Abel:

  • Body Styles: Small Strat-type body (with holes) available with a trem or fixed bridge. You'll notice subtle differences in hole beveling, spacing, and drilling depth if you examine the pictures closely. There was a single humbucker Abel Axe made with slots instead of holes (see Gallery). It appears to have come with a 21-fret Strat-head neck and a Kent Armstrong pickup. I don't know how many of these one-hums comprise the '94-'96 run.

  • Pickups: The very first batch (a dozen or so less) were released with DiMarzio humbuckers: PAF Pro in the neck position and Tone Zone in the bridge position. These were replaced almost immediately by Kent Armstrong pickups (at one point manufactured by Sky pickups): HRE-1 in the neck position and HSDE-1 in the bridge position. These pickups are now called WPU10CLOSE|CLOSED COVER/BLACK and WPU11CLOSE|CLOSED COVER/BLACK and are sold through www.wdmusic.com

  • Nut: I've seen graphite, bone, and the locking nut that goes with the Kahler trem.

  • Tuners: Sperzel Trimlok locking tuners.

  • Frets: Available in Dunlop 6100 or Dunlop 6105 sizes, nickel silver composition.

  • Bridges: The vibrato bridge was a Kahler flatmount (also called Kahler pro) patent number 4457201 DS. The fixed bridge was model WD101 sold by WD Music Supply OR a different one (brand not known) with more screws into the body.

  • Neck:
    From 1994-1996, the necks were custom made by Musikraft, Inc. (the owner at the time was Gulab Gidwani). Rosewood or maple fret boards on quarter- sawn hard rock maple. Circa 2000, Warmoth necks were used. From 2007-present, necks are made by Delaney Guitars. Scale length on all necks: 25.5".

  • Price: An entry in the Guitar Player 1995-96 Guitar and Bass Buyer's Guide indicates a list price of $1395 or $1495 with the trem. 

  • Finish: The aluminum guitar bodies came anodized (electrochemical finishing process for aluminum) in many different colors. There were only three done in grass green and about twenty done clear (i.e. silver-looking). They made them in red, black, blue, violet, gold, teal, and multicolor combos (see Guitar Shop review).


The Abel Axe (with the holes) with the Kahler trem weighs ~9 lbs and has a small body measuring 15.5" x 11.25" x 1". It is extremely well-balanced and its rounded edges and super thin body make it comfortable to hold. The neck joint allows excellent access: the heel flange is only ~3/16" thick.


Abel Axe also used a slot body pattern for their production in 2000-2001, in 2007 (through Delaney guitars), and thereafter. The anodizing method was changed to a thicker coating with more vibrant colors and used Warmoth necks. The price was $2500 for single-color, $2700 multi-color: see the Gallery.

Current Official Abel Axe Sites:

Note: Abel Axe guitars are not to be confused with the Rogue Aluminator. Rogue Aluminators used a slot routing scheme for the body, a hum/single/single pickup configuration, three mini switches, tilt-back headstock, non-locking tuners and no trem option. The bodies are lighter than the Swiss-cheese-routed twin hum Abel Axe. The only connection between the two is that Abel Axe made the bodies for Rogue, but the necks were made off-shore. A favorable review of the Rogue Aluminator appeared in a 1998 Musician's Friend catalog.

 

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