Ovation Breadwinner Limited

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In the early ’90s I attended a guitar show in Ohio with a friend. I brought along a bag of odds & ends worth about $200 with long-shot hopes of trading for something better. Eventually I came across an Ovation Breadwinner Limited. The guy running the stand saw me looking at it and asked in disbelief, “you actually like that thing?” I showed him what I had to trade. The guy says, “yeah, I’ll trade you for all this”. He even threw in a gig bag. My friend’s eyes about popped out of his head when I strolled up and showed him what I had.

The pickguard was always a bit of a mess as someone had swapped the lead pick-up with a larger one and then put the original back in. They had hacked up the guard to get the replacement in. Years later, while using it for a project called A.M. Gold, I cracked it even more by accidentally putting stress on the jack.

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Recently I dusted it off and decided it was worthy of a make over. I found a guy on eBay that had Ovation new-old stock pick-guards for this model. I picked one up and re-wired it all from scratch with new components. I had never really cared for the active electronics in this guitar and it always seemed a lot quieter than my other guitars, so I gutted the active circuitry, wired the pick-ups as passive and it became a much better guitar in my opinion. After working on synthesizer circuits so much lately the guitar wiring seemed pretty trivial, which was nice. My favorite tone on this guitar is using both pick-ups but out of phase. I swapped out the knobs but still have the originals.

I’m quite happy with how it turned out. It is a really pleasant guitar to play.

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