Blackmachine B2 inspired custom (Manninen)

Krisse Regular
Nov 20, 2015
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Hello everyone!

I wanted showcase this Blackmachine B2 inspired custom 7-string built by a Finnish luthier Juho Manninen. I’d been dreaming of a Blackmachine since 2007 and had contacted several luthiers/manufacturers throughout the years about building something like this. Many declined to imitate the Blackmachine headstock and some either couldn’t or wouldn’t build it according to my specifications. Manninen was the first one willing and able to make it all happen.

-7-string (27" scale)
-Satin finished open grain 2-piece European ash body (35mm)
-Brown-stained 3-piece maple bolt-on neck with titanium reinforcements
-Brown-stained maple fretboard (16" radius)
-24 stainless steel jumbo frets
-Aluminum ring side dots
-BKP Aftermath set
-5-way switch, volume pot
-Hipshot bridge and tuners
-Schaller S-Locks
-Black TUSQ nut
-3,460g / 7.63lb

Some notable differences between this and the B2, are the wood choices (no endangered/threatened species), body form, 5-way switch (thus the backplate also) and a completely brown-stained neck and fretboard. I’d outgrown the Blackmachine body form and wanted something more “Ibanez’ish”. The headstock isn’t a 100% identical either, though it’s very close.

Finished guitar:

Some build photos:
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Overall the neck has been the biggest positive characteristic. It looks and feels amazing. I’ve never played so effortlessly especially at double drop tunings before and it’s the brightest sounding guitar I’ve ever owned (albeit the most expensive one too). The only problem is it's too bright actually 😅 I've had the Aftermaths on 3 different guitars and I still really like them, but I think they might be too mid emphasized and bright for this one, to the extent of getting dry so to speak. Then again, I chose the woods and pickups, so that’s on me.

I’ve dealt with a lot of customer service in my life and I can safely say that dealing with Manninen has been one, if not the best customer experience I’ve ever had. He was very professional, helpful and open to ideas, and would always respond very switfly. All the little details were attended to and he sent step by step build photos right from the start. In addition, I couldn’t believe how fast this all happened: I sent the first email on the 28th of April, and picked up the guitar on the 7th of September.

Highly recommended: Manninen Custom Instruments

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