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I was talking with a coworker and he said that his first guitar was a Northern and believes that it was made by Fender. It was a Strat-like type of guitar. Can't find anything on the web. Anybody knows anything about these? Were they like their Squire line today (made somewhere else in the world for cheaper labor and or materials)?

Just curious.
 

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The only time I saw someone play one of these was when I saw the Rheostatics. Martin Teili (sp?) was playing a Northern Les Paul. I asked him about it after the show and he said he wouldn't be playing it anymore!

I've seen them in pawnshops from time to time. I don't think Fender had anything to do with them. Most likely a Japanese import, sold under different names . . .

TG
 

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There were a Japanese import brought into the Canadian market specifically.

Soem of them are excellent quality on par with the tokais and Ibanez lawsuit guitars.

I can't recall which factory produced them (Maybe affiliated with Yamaha somehow IIRC).
 

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Made by YAMAKI in Japan search DAION also rare now and very well bult should have a maple leaf inlay on the headstock try the paulabecker.com site
 

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You are correct in saying they were imported to canada as a "private label" instrument. I think around 74-75 I own an acoustic Northern model D-350. Exactly like the Yamaki YD 35. These are of course exact copies of the Martin Dreadnought D-35. Bought it new 30 yrs ago and still play it daily. Bullit proof build and tons of sound.
 

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Howdy all, first posting...
I've got a Northern Strat (ash body with maple fretboard,) no leaf on headstock or inlays (just plain black dots) and the serial number indicates it was made in 1983.
In trying to research it I found the name 'Northern' was used by a company called Music West to import Ibanez guitars into Canada. Not sure if that's true but when I looked at an old Ibanez RS100 Roadstar Standard it was identical to mine in every way except the headstock on the Northern is 'Fenderesque' in shape though a little oversized...
Didn't cost much ($275) but has a sweet tone than none of my other more pricey guitars can come close to....
 

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DoomLad said:
Howdy all, first posting...
I've got a Northern Strat (ash body with maple fretboard,) no leaf on headstock or inlays (just plain black dots) and the serial number indicates it was made in 1983.
Wow. Is it in still good condition? How does it sound? I need answers!!!!
 

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My first post too.

I just stumbled onto this forum tonight while trying to dig up some images on Google. Someone was curious about my guitars and a picture's worth a thousand words but I still haven't gotten around to buying a digital camera.

Anyway, can't answer your question, MahoganyM, but my first was a Northern Les Paul - solid maple sunburst. Got it when I was 9 years old back about '74 (seemed like the bugger weighed more than me!) and I've still got it after 30+ years. Almost all original too - aside from the strings, of course, and in great condition. I have to say "almost" since on an ill advised whim as a teenager, I replaced the bridge with an oddball aftermarket whammy deal. The original's probably still around somewhere, but I haven't bothered looking as yet since I've never been interested in selling it or anything.d
 
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Prom Music in Sudbury carried them in the mid 70's. I owned a 335 copy I wasn't terribly fond of. I played a Les Paul copy though that was excellent. I really miss that axe and I miss that brand name. Some of their stuff was quite good and inexpensive.
 

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I had a Northern EB-3 bass copy, but with a maple bolt up neck. Very well made, sounded great. I now have an Epiphone set neck EB-3 bass and the Northern was actually better.
There was a Northern hardtail/string through body Strat at Encore for a long time. Maple fret board, big headstock, ash body, looked nice. I picked it up a few times and thought it felt really nice, never plugged it in so I don't know how it sounded, but it did appear to be very well made, except the Maple Leaf fret markers were stickers (peeling off) not inlays!
 

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I was talking with a coworker and he said that his first guitar was a Northern and believes that it was made by Fender. It was a Strat-like type of guitar. Can't find anything on the web. Anybody knows anything about these? Were they like their Squire line today (made somewhere else in the world for cheaper labor and or materials)?

Just curious.
I also have a Northern Les Paul Custom and did quite a bit of research. From what I understand, mine was built by Kasuga of Japan around 75-77. I bought it in around 77. They were imported under the Northern name by a company in Burlington, Ontario for the Canadian market.
Mine is a mahogany body with a beautiful figured maple tobacco burst with a buttery maple neck. I wasn't real happy with the pickups and decided to have them changed this past summer (Seymour Duncan 59 neck and SD JB (Jeff Beck) bridge. Then I went all the way and had all the electronics replaced and had a fret dressing as well. WOW. This is a great guitar. It rivals my new Gibson Les Paul. Doesn't have the same sustain but is great to play. I'll never sell it.
http://s936.photobucket.com/albums/ad209/dleth/?action=view&current=DSCF0619.jpg
http://s936.photobucket.com/albums/ad209/dleth/?action=view&current=DSCF0618.jpg

These pictures were taken before the mods and polishing.
 

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I have a Northern strat that I bought new in highschool - 1977 or so. Natural wood finish, white pick guard. It has a good sound for what was an affordable guitar. I think I paid around $250. for it back then. I don't like the neck though, I find the fret board too barrow at the nut. It's probably just me. I was wondering if it would be practcal to change the neck as I can't justify buying a new guitar. I did buy some used japanese fender tuners for it that I hope to install soon.
 

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I was in the Burlington warehouse for Northern instruments in 1977, picking up another order.
All I saw were Strat and Les Paul types, half and half with maple leaf inlays and dots.
I picked up a few to try and get a feel and they seemed okay.

Now I'm seeing "Beaver Creek" guitars, with maple leafs etched around the soundhole, made in China.

I've got a picture of the Northern franchise owner in the store from when I picked up my order,
but I haven't been able to do pics here yet.
 

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I remember Northern guitars. Trev Bennet Music in Kitchener sold them in the late 1970's and early 1980's. I thought the Strats were very good for the money at the time. I even remember a poster they had hanging in the store advertising Northern Strats. I think the slogan was "When You're Better Than the Original, You're No Longer a Copy". That may be pushing it a bit but they weren't bad guitars.
 
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