Petra 33's and other Hartman guitars

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Petra 33's and other Hartman guitars

Post by LivingRock » Wed Oct 26, 2011 2:10 pm

I know there was a thread about this several years ago, but it kind of got off topic...

Anyway, I was doing a little jamming the other night and I found myself wondering, who else here owns a Petra 33 Commemorative or any other Hartman guitar? What do you like/ dislike about them, and how do they compare to other guitars you've played?

What I wish is that Bob would have kept the write-ups and pictures he used to have on his site about the other guitars he made. There was one called the John 3:16, another called the Excalibur, and I remember one called the Black Mamba as well. There were others, but I can't recall them right now... somebody can chime in if they know. I remember I really wanted an Excalibur back in the day, because of the white finish and gold-colored hardware. Really nice looking guitar. My 33 is the standard blue one, but if I'm not mistaken they also came in black and dark green.

A few days ago, I stumbled on a youtube video of someone playing a Petra 33, which I thought was nice because there aren't very many of them. I was pretty impressed by the sound. (being a VERY amateur guitar player, it's always interesting to hear the sound of the same guitar in the hands of a good player! :roll: )

I see that Bob has some new Hartman Guitars up on his website, anyone planning on getting one of those?
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Re: Petra 33's and other Hartman guitars

Post by axelegend » Wed Oct 26, 2011 3:09 pm

I, too, own a blue Petra 33. I bought one from Bob when we hosted Petra in Youngstown, Ohio on its Farewell Tour. It's a decent guitar, but I very rarely play it - partly because it's autographed by everyone in the band at the time, and also because it's not as versatile as the other guitars I own. I was, however, impressed with the Strat-esque sound quality. I also wish Bob would have kept the pages with the models he used to make - I was interested in the one that had the Les Paul-style body with the flamed maple top and Floyd Rose tremolo (I forget which name he gave it, though).

I'm personally a fan of Carvin guitars, and currently own 4 of them (with a 5th one being built right now). I have 3 Carvin solidbody electrics - a double-cutaway DC400C built in 2001, an Ultra V built in 2006, and a new 7-string DC727C built this August. I also own a Carvin Cobalt C850T dreadnaught acoustic guitar. After using Carvin guitars on the road and in the studio for the past 10 years, I'm still super impressed with their sound quality, playability, construction quality, versatility, and appearance. I've performed and recorded everything from power and progressive metal to blues to classic rock to country-esque music with them, and have yet to be disappointed. If you'd like to know some more specifics or see some pics of any of them, I'll be happy to share those in a PM. 8)
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Re: Petra 33's and other Hartman guitars

Post by LivingRock » Wed Oct 26, 2011 4:43 pm

I'm actually not too familiar with Carvin guitars, so a couple of pictures would be great, if it's not too much trouble! I'm always interested in hearing about different guitars and how they compare to each other. What kind of amp do you play them through?

I sort of remember that flamed maple top guitar, although the name of it escapes me as well... maybe someone else can clue me in!

I am glad that Bob kept all the samples of different guitars on his website though, a few years ago when I started playing it really made me aware of the different sounds from various guitars through the various amplifiers. Nice for quick reference!
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Re: Petra 33's and other Hartman guitars

Post by axelegend » Wed Oct 26, 2011 5:39 pm

At the risk of sounding like a Carvin salesman (haha), here's a little background information: Carvin is what many people call "the best kept secret" in guitars, mainly due to the fact that you cannot buy new Carvin instruments in typical music stores. You can only get them directly from the factory (either by phone sales, carvin.com, its mail order catalog, or at its few stores in California), which is a good thing because factory direct prices are usually much cheaper than music store prices for comparable quality instruments. The company is celebrating its 65th anniversary this year - and it's owned by the sons of Lowell Kiesel, who originally founded it in 1946 (he named the company after his 2 sons Carson and Gavin). Carvin's probably best known for its custom-built guitars and basses, but it also makes most of its own electronics, such as guitar and bass amps, power amps, mixers, speakers, etc. All of its electric guitars, basses, amps, and most of its electronics are built at its factory in San Diego, CA.

One of the things I love about my Carvin guitars is that they are neck-through body construction, where the neck goes entirely through the body. This creates some amazing sustain, and also gives super easy access to the 24th fret. It seems to be rare these days to see this feature on guitars. I'm also a fan of Carvin's pickups - and especially its active/passive electronics, which provide endless combinations of tonal options.

Some of Carvin's current endorsers include Steve Vai (amps), Yngwie Malmsteen (acoustic/electric guitars), Joe Walsh (guitars and amps), Timothy B. Schmit (basses), and many others.

An interesting little tidbit of information: on the inside front cover of all of its catalogs, Carvin prints Psalm 98:4-5.

Below are links to some pics of my Carvin electrics:

My 2001 DC400C:

http://electricshockmusic.com/images/dc400c_12.jpg
http://electricshockmusic.com/images/dc400c_15.jpg


My 2006 Ultra V:

http://christopherlee.electricshockmusi ... _large.jpg
http://christopherlee.electricshockmusi ... _large.jpg
http://christopherlee.electricshockmusi ... _large.jpg
http://christopherlee.electricshockmusi ... _large.jpg


And my new 2011 DC727C 7-string:

http://christopherlee.electricshockmusi ... C_0104.JPG
http://christopherlee.electricshockmusi ... C_0106.JPG
http://christopherlee.electricshockmusi ... C_0111.JPG


As for the amplifier that I use, about 13 years ago I very heavily modified a Guild Thunderbird amplifier from the 1960s. I bought it used from my great uncle for $75, and it had sustained a lot of wear and tear from the 20+ years of his road use. It still has the original (2) 12" C12N Jensen speakers, but I replaced several capacitors and modded the head's original electronics and tube configuration, plus painted the head and re-covered the cabinet. After I made the modifications, I discovered that it's actually a rare amplifier these days and worth a decent penny - but it looks and sounds amazing! :mrgreen:
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Re: Petra 33's and other Hartman guitars

Post by LivingRock » Wed Oct 26, 2011 6:42 pm

Wow, now those are some nice guitars! Sounds like something worth checking out, I'm have to keep that name in mind the next time I get the urge to go guitar hunting. (Which probably won't be for a while; I'm using my 33 as a "practice" guitar before I let loose on the dollars...)

I like where the volume knob is on that Ultra V, my only complaint about the 33 is where the volume knob is located, it's too easy to nudge down when I'm playing. That may be just my technique, however!

I'd love to have a chance to try one of those guitars with my Zoom Tri-Metal TM-01 pedal, probably get some killer sound out of that.
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Re: Petra 33's and other Hartman guitars

Post by ricanrolear » Wed Oct 26, 2011 9:15 pm

i have a blue Petra 33 , and also bought a black one that i sent to my brother in mexico.. and i also have THE EXCALIBUR!!!!!!!!!! awesome i know, i found it on ebay, i think it was a bit cheaper than Bob was selling it, thats why i bought it, .
i really love the sound of the PEtra 33, has a very strat sound-like , i just put some wilkinson locking tuners so i can use the tremolo and it works great. the excalibur came with Lace sensor Holy grails, sounds amazing, and what i love the most is that the pickups are noiseless, i installed a pre-amp in it so i can have an estra bite when i need it.
and for the ones who were wondering the name of Bob's Les Paul guitar, i think it was Jekyll and Hyde, i remember he just made 3 of those. its the one He played on the Farewell album.
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Re: Petra 33's and other Hartman guitars

Post by LivingRock » Thu Oct 27, 2011 7:13 am

If I'm not mistaken, ricanrolear, yours is the video clip I saw with the Petra 33! Am I right? If so, beautiful sound coming through that thing! Yeah, I've heard a lot of people mention that the 33 is a Strat sound-alike.

Now that you mentioned it, I do remember Bob's website mentioning the Lace Holy Grail pickups, I always wondered what they were like... how do you find the Excalibur sounds in comparison to the Petra33?
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Re: Petra 33's and other Hartman guitars

Post by executioner » Thu Oct 27, 2011 10:38 am

I always wanted a Petra 33 gutiar, but seemed never able to spring the extra cash when needed; I really liked the white and I believe remember seeing black one that was Sharp.
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Re: Petra 33's and other Hartman guitars

Post by pmal » Thu Oct 27, 2011 1:55 pm

I wanted one bad too, especially the green one. oh well ...
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Re: Petra 33's and other Hartman guitars

Post by ricanrolear » Thu Oct 27, 2011 8:12 pm

LivingRock wrote:If I'm not mistaken, ricanrolear, yours is the video clip I saw with the Petra 33! Am I right? If so, beautiful sound coming through that thing! Yeah, I've heard a lot of people mention that the 33 is a Strat sound-alike.

Now that you mentioned it, I do remember Bob's website mentioning the Lace Holy Grail pickups, I always wondered what they were like... how do you find the Excalibur sounds in comparison to the Petra33?
yean i have a video of me playing a cover with my Petra 33, maybe thats the same one you saw, it does really sounds great. actually i think i like a little more the sound of the P33, cause and its a guitar more versatile to me, since has 2 single coils and humbucker, i can have the clarity and nice clean sound of a strat and the power with the humbucker and some gain, the Excalibur has more cleaner sound and the great thing is that tha Holy grail are noiseless, but when i step on my overdrives doesnt have the same power i need, thats why i installed a preamp in it.
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Re: Petra 33's and other Hartman guitars

Post by LivingRock » Sat Oct 29, 2011 1:38 pm

That's what I really liked about the Petra33 the first time I saw a picture of one, was the single coil/ humbucker configuration. Like you said, a really nice variety of sounds, from almost electric acoustic to full-on rock. I use mine with a little 65 watt Crate amplifier and it sounds fantastic.
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Re: Petra 33's and other Hartman guitars

Post by Dan » Sat Oct 29, 2011 1:47 pm

I really want the J&H guitar that Bob made.. I was about to order it, then it was gone. Anyone want to sell me theirs?
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Looking to buy Petra 33 guitar

Post by Woolard2 » Sun Sep 27, 2020 5:11 pm

My husband was lucky enough to buy a Petra 33 guitar years ago but sold it to help pay for my breast cancer treatment.

I feel horrible about it and would love to find one to buy as a thank you. He loved that guitar and it broke my heart that he sold it without me knowing. I never would have let him.

He has been to 60 Petra concerts! Can you say obsessed?

Please pass my email on to anyone you know that may be willing to part. My email is [email protected]
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Re: Petra 33's and other Hartman guitars

Post by curt » Mon Sep 28, 2020 2:40 pm

It seems Bob still makes new guitars now and then so it might be worth contacting him by mail (findt it here: http://bobhartmanguitars.com/) and ask if he would be willing to build one for your purpose. It would not be the 33 (I guess). But if it was made for this purpose, it would have quite a history right from the start.

This is nothing more than a suggestion. I was moved by your story and thought if there was any way I could help, I would love to. I do not own the 33. Nor do I know of anyone who does.

I have not tried any of his guitars but when I look at the specs and read what those who have tried them have to say, I get the impression his prices are absolutely fair and that the quality is very, very good.
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Re: Petra 33's and other Hartman guitars

Post by Rich K. » Sun Mar 07, 2021 3:57 pm

He's building one for me right now, which should be ready some time in May. I'll post updates, if everyone is interested...
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