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> Would Like Some Help Please, Looking at maybe getting a Fender
rokchik
post Jun 15 2007, 10:58 PM
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Hi Everybody

Lately I've been having this overwhelming desire to get a new guitar. I had originally thought about a PRS but after some thought and talking to a few people I've decided that I would like to get a Fender.( I have a Gibson LP Standard now.)

I've at least narrowed it down to a Stratacaster but what model? There seem to be many models and I'm not that familiar with the brand. I played a Strat standard when I bought my Gibson and liked it but it's the only strat I've played. Now I'm not a shedder. I play mostly Zeppelin, RATM, RHCP, Who that kind of stuff. So I'm hoping that someone with a bit more Fender knowledge could help. I'm looking at about a $ 1000-1500 USD price range but that could go higher or lower depending on the guitar. I have no music store where I live and won't be getting the axe until Aug when I'm on vacation so I'm basically looking for suggestions on which strats to check out and which to stay away from...if there is any to stay away from.
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Brad
post Jun 16 2007, 03:18 AM
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QUOTE (rokchik @ Jun 15 2007, 04:58 PM) *
Hi Everybody

Lately I've been having this overwhelming desire to get a new guitar. I had originally thought about a PRS but after some thought and talking to a few people I've decided that I would like to get a Fender.( I have a Gibson LP Standard now.)

I've at least narrowed it down to a Stratacaster but what model? There seem to be many models and I'm not that familiar with the brand. I played a Strat standard when I bought my Gibson and liked it but it's the only strat I've played. Now I'm not a shedder. I play mostly Zeppelin, RATM, RHCP, Who that kind of stuff. So I'm hoping that someone with a bit more Fender knowledge could help. I'm looking at about a $ 1000-1500 USD price range but that could go higher or lower depending on the guitar. I have no music store where I live and won't be getting the axe until Aug when I'm on vacation so I'm basically looking for suggestions on which strats to check out and which to stay away from...if there is any to stay away from.

ld go to a lo
It really depends on how much money your willing to drop in, I would try to go to a music store, if you can find one that isn't to far away, and try different one's out and see which you like the best. Then try ebay to see if you can't get it a little cheaper.
'Course if you want my honest opinion, go grab yourself a G&L Legacy ("the better strat" wink.gif )
Thats the one I'm currently looking to buy...

http://www.glguitars.com/instruments/instr...rcode=Legacy2HB (not in baby blue though lol)
http://www.glguitars.com/instruments/instr...prcode=LegacyHB

http://www.glguitars.com/instruments/ for more of their guitar types

If your like me this sorta decision keeps you up at night hehe.
All that being said I don't want you to feel like I'm telling you not to get a Fender, they are nice guitars as are G&L's.


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rokchik
post Jun 16 2007, 04:44 AM
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QUOTE (Brad @ Jun 15 2007, 11:18 PM) *
ld go to a lo
It really depends on how much money your willing to drop in, I would try to go to a music store, if you can find one that isn't to far away, and try different one's out and see which you like the best. Then try ebay to see if you can't get it a little cheaper.
'Course if you want my honest opinion, go grab yourself a G&L Legacy ("the better strat" wink.gif )
Thats the one I'm currently looking to buy...

http://www.glguitars.com/instruments/instr...rcode=Legacy2HB (not in baby blue though lol)
http://www.glguitars.com/instruments/instr...prcode=LegacyHB

http://www.glguitars.com/instruments/ for more of their guitar types

If your like me this sorta decision keeps you up at night hehe.
All that being said I don't want you to feel like I'm telling you not to get a Fender, they are nice guitars as are G&L's.


Hey man that is a nice guitar.
I really wish we had a music store here so I could just go and sit down and play all types of guitars and see what I like. I did like the strat I played when I bought my Gibson which is why I sorta decided to lean towards a Fender. I also played a friend of a friends Eric Clapton sig model and loved it but I think that's a bit out of my price range. Really I'm just looking to learn a bit more about them so when I do get to the store I'm a bit more knowledgable. I have the Fender site worn out I think but they are a bit bias.
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fkalich
post Jun 16 2007, 07:59 AM
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QUOTE (rokchik @ Jun 15 2007, 04:58 PM) *
Hi Everybody

Lately I've been having this overwhelming desire to get a new guitar. I had originally thought about a PRS but after some thought and talking to a few people I've decided that I would like to get a Fender.( I have a Gibson LP Standard now.)

I've at least narrowed it down to a Stratacaster but what model? There seem to be many models and I'm not that familiar with the brand. I played a Strat standard when I bought my Gibson and liked it but it's the only strat I've played. Now I'm not a shedder. I play mostly Zeppelin, RATM, RHCP, Who that kind of stuff. So I'm hoping that someone with a bit more Fender knowledge could help. I'm looking at about a $ 1000-1500 USD price range but that could go higher or lower depending on the guitar. I have no music store where I live and won't be getting the axe until Aug when I'm on vacation so I'm basically looking for suggestions on which strats to check out and which to stay away from...if there is any to stay away from.


If i was spending that much, i would look at this.

http://www.musiciansfriend.com/product/Fen...itar?sku=511311

I would not pay that much, i would go to the fender site and talk to one of their sponsors. This is the link. Also great for advise, much better than you will find anywhere else.

http://www.fenderforum.com/forum.html

I got my Gibson 58 Reissue, all costs considered (including next day shipping) for $600 less than what musicians friend was selling them from, from a very reputable dealer who is a sponsor of the les paul forum. I expect that you can do similar with the fender sponsors.

I don't buy into the "need to try them first" mentality. I have never done so, have 7 electrics, and all of them are fine. But i do care what it looks like, and the dealers will send you pictures. And you could always ship it back if you did get one you have issues with. By law, they have to take it back so long as you don't damage it. Musicians Friend and those types will even send an exchange and pay shipping. But as I said, they are not the cheapest.

Now i also could not live without a strat, i got a real pretty tri color American, you know, the basic american with the standard pickups, for $783 total cost with shipping. around christmas. I don't worry so much about shipping on a fender, pretty indestructible. for a gibson, i would prefer 1 day so bevis and butthead don't get their hands on it at the loading dock. The strat was perfect, and very pretty. I am very satisfied. If you look around, you can find deals. I bet you can get the Eric Johnson a lot cheaper somewhere. That is the one i would want, but i would look for a good deal. But i do think you might be satisfied with a strat like i have. I am.

This post has been edited by fkalich: Jun 16 2007, 08:12 AM
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Andrew Cockburn
post Jun 16 2007, 03:08 PM
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Tired of your LP, or just looking to expand your collection?

I don't think you need to spend a fortune to get a decent Strat - once you are out of cheap fake territories, most Strats are much of a muchness in build quality etc. IMO you should pay more attention to the pickups etc - maybe buy a bottom end USA strat and spend some money on a pickup upgrade. If you are after a really authentic sound there are various re-issue pickups from Fender that will help you get it.

Assuming you are going this to get a Strat and not to replace your LP as a main instrument, don't be tempted by the HSS configuration - it adds versatility but you may lose the essential strat-ness of the guitar.

I have a Strat Plus, it has horrible Lace Pickups in it - I think I will re-fit it with '54 or '69 vintage pickups - I think Dave Gilmour used the '54s for a while. That way you get closer to the classic Strat sound.

If I were going to spend a lot on a high end model I agree with fkalich's pick - the Eric Johnson model.


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rokchik
post Jun 16 2007, 04:10 PM
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I will never REPLACE my LP...I'm gonna be cremated with that... laugh.gif

As you said Andrew I'm just looking to expand my collection. I agree with what you said about the HSS configuration, I wasn't much interested in that at all. So is it fair for me to say that most of the Fender models are all pretty comparible in structure.. ie body and neck...and that the real difference is in the pick ups? ( that might be a very unfair statement but I'm not to familiar with Fender) Like LP's have two different style necks...the baseball bat like 50's style and the slim 60"s, does Fender do this as well or are they all pretty slim? I kind of like your idea Andrew of may be going for a less expensive model and then upgrading the pick ups...I've been eyeballing some seymour duncans on ebay for my LP...but why mess with perfection biggrin.gif

@fkalich: That Eric Johnson is a beaut. and thanks for the link to the Fender Forum....tons of info thanks again

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Andrew Cockburn
post Jun 16 2007, 04:58 PM
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QUOTE (rokchik @ Jun 16 2007, 11:10 AM) *
I will never REPLACE my LP...I'm gonna be cremated with that... laugh.gif


That's what I thought smile.gif I heartily applaud the idea of collection expansion to get a different tone or feel for different types of plying

As far as different necks go, I don't think they vary a lot, but there are differences between the necks over the years that are reflected in the various re-issues - probably best to ask these questions in the Fender forum as I am no expert smile.gif

Oh, and I say no to the SD pickups in the LP! Just my opinion, but you said it, why try to improve on perfection! I'll definately get an LP one of these days, but I have my eyes on a Jem 7v next - hopefully around September smile.gif


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rokchik
post Jun 16 2007, 05:21 PM
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QUOTE (Andrew Cockburn @ Jun 16 2007, 12:58 PM) *
Oh, and I say no to the SD pickups in the LP! Just my opinion, but you said it, why try to improve on perfection! I'll definately get an LP one of these days, but I have my eyes on a Jem 7v next - hopefully around September smile.gif


I was only toying with the idea..I don't think I'll ever do it. I was very much an acoustic player before I bought my electric and now I'm just fasinated with all the different tones and sounds I can get out of it. I have a cheap Peavey Raptor that I just want to take apart and restructure....new pick ups and such maybe even a new neck. Oh the fun to be had. Morello is turning me into a monster....oh the boyfriends visa will be racked by the end of the summer I can see it. biggrin.gif
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Smikey2006
post Jun 17 2007, 02:52 PM
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im selling a fender right now biggrin.gif 100 bucks canadian haha, actualy i would recommend it, its a fender strat squire 20th aniversary addition, 22 frets, white all standard fender electronics. lol im not big on fenders myself, there are so many copying brands of the fender it just seems very mainstream, i know that the stratocaster is a great guitar though, and model will do, i especially like the 79's if you can find one. but other than that all i can say is good luck and if you want a fender for next to nothing biggrin.gif buy mine smile.gif


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rokchik
post Jun 17 2007, 07:56 PM
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QUOTE (Smikey2006 @ Jun 17 2007, 10:52 AM) *
im selling a fender right now biggrin.gif 100 bucks canadian haha, actualy i would recommend it, its a fender strat squire 20th aniversary addition, 22 frets, white all standard fender electronics. lol im not big on fenders myself, there are so many copying brands of the fender it just seems very mainstream, i know that the stratocaster is a great guitar though, and model will do, i especially like the 79's if you can find one. but other than that all i can say is good luck and if you want a fender for next to nothing biggrin.gif buy mine smile.gif


Ya never know man...August is only like a month and a half away so if I can't find what I really want I may take you up on that...but I do kind of have my heart set on the Strat. I've been doing a lot of research on Fender and the more I sees, the more I likes. biggrin.gif

I have never mentioned it before because I didn't want to sound like I was bragging...even though I am now... tongue.gif But I actually had Eric Claptons "Blackie" in my hands a few months ago after it was sold at auction for $1,000,000. It was going across the pond for a display or something and the boys from Guitar Center were bringing it through...I was too scarred to play it (because I suck) and I was too afraid I'd drop it. I love my job even though I couldn't get a pic as was in uniform....damn rules and Regs. Since then I've been on a Strat kick even though I toyed with the idea of a PRS.

This post has been edited by rokchik: Jun 17 2007, 07:59 PM
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FretDancer69
post Jun 17 2007, 08:04 PM
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I own a cheap Fender Squier Strat, i really dont like fenders (im planning getting another guitar).

But what can i tell you about this one, well, its really a great guitar (never tried a real stratocaster), sounds great and it looks great. Plus i think its perfect for Zeppellin, The Who, etc.

I see that you have alot of money to spend, so i think you should get a real stratocaster, if thats what you want. It kinda sucks not having guitar stores making it unable to try the guitars out.


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rokchik
post Jun 17 2007, 08:24 PM
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QUOTE (FretDancer69 @ Jun 17 2007, 04:04 PM) *
I own a cheap Fender Squier Strat, i really dont like fenders (im planning getting another guitar).

But what can i tell you about this one, well, its really a great guitar (never tried a real stratocaster), sounds great and it looks great. Plus i think its perfect for Zeppellin, The Who, etc.

I see that you have alot of money to spend, so i think you should get a real stratocaster, if thats what you want. It kinda sucks not having guitar stores making it unable to try the guitars out.


It REALLY sucks not haveing a store. Not just for trying guitars but for everything...strings, picks you name it I have to order it in or wait until i can get out to a store. But yeah I have my heart set on the strat so that's what I'm gonna shoot for.
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moles
post Jun 18 2007, 01:07 AM
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the difference between a squier "fender" and a real fender is huge. tongue.gif

my friends brother owns a Fender American Strat, 650 quid i think? but he replaced the pickups with dimarzios
sounds great and the neck

it feels... unreal. i fell in love with it =P
i actually want one so bad



but not as much as a esp M-II rolleyes.gif
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rokchik
post Jun 18 2007, 01:29 AM
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QUOTE (moles @ Jun 17 2007, 09:07 PM) *
the difference between a squier "fender" and a real fender is huge. tongue.gif

my friends brother owns a Fender American Strat, 650 quid i think? but he replaced the pickups with dimarzios
sounds great and the neck

it feels... unreal. i fell in love with it =P
i actually want one so bad
but not as much as a esp M-II rolleyes.gif


Yeah I starting to notice that through some of the stuff i read. The more I look into the Strat the more I want one.
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Andrew Cockburn
post Jun 18 2007, 02:46 AM
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QUOTE (rokchik @ Jun 17 2007, 02:56 PM) *
I have never mentioned it before because I didn't want to sound like I was bragging...even though I am now... tongue.gif But I actually had Eric Claptons "Blackie" in my hands a few months ago after it was sold at auction for $1,000,000.


That definitely gets you some bragging points smile.gif


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fkalich
post Jun 18 2007, 03:36 AM
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QUOTE (rokchik @ Jun 16 2007, 10:10 AM) *
necks...the baseball bat like 50's style....

@fkalich: That Eric Johnson is a beaut. and thanks for the link to the Fender Forum....tons of info thanks again


What Gibson calls 50's style is certainly not as fat as the real 50's, such as you see on the 58 and older reissues. I understand it is also a bit more tapered than on the 59. I would reserve the term baseball bat neck for the 58 and earlier. I think i prefer the fatter necks a bit. But any of the Gibson necks are fine with me.

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Lurgen
post Jun 18 2007, 06:00 AM
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I'd avoid comparing Squiers to proper Fenders - very similar design (basically the same template) but different factory, quality, materials, etc. Squiers are beginner hardware and not much more...

If you're determined to get a Fender, and like the Strat sound/shape, the US made Highway One is where I'd suggest heading. Very much a minimalist design, and bottom of the US made range, but a great guitar either way.

The main differentiating factors between Fenders seems to be where they are manufactured. The US-made ones seem to have better build quality and materials. I bounced between the Highway One and the Deluxe series. After playing both quite a bit, I could see the differences but couldn't justify the extra $ between the two models to settled on the Hwy One. This applies equally to pretty much all Strats - the higher priced models are only tiny little steps up from each other despite being many hundreds (sometimes thousands) of dollars more than the entry-level ones. If the higher-end model is simply some upgraded pickups, that's better done yourself after buying it instead of paying a 150% premium.

Pay close attention to the finish when you're comparing models. Something Fender does is offer surprisingly large differences between models in terms of finish. My Hwy One has a satin finish, very thin, with woodgrain showing clearly through. I haven't seen the satin finish on anything else. Each model seems to come with its own selection of colours. The Fender website lists most of them, but obviously availability will vary based on location. I also have noticed that the satin finish is showing signs of wear - not damage, just smoothed out areas where it touches my body. I actually like the well-loved look, but it's not for everybody.

I'm glad the HSS issue was already talked about too - yeah, it's an interesting configuration but even now I pick up my Strat instead of my MS2000 just to get that Strat sound. HSS would have eliminated that option.

All that said, I'm not sure I'd buy another Fender guitar. The factory setup was awful, and I'm not convinced you're getting much value for your money. Sure, they aren't as ridiculously priced as Gibsons, but they're still overpriced (particularly in Australia). That's why I chose a Maton recently - cheaper than a Strat Deluxe, better build, better (imho) sound, etc. Possibly not an option outside of Australia though!

On models to avoid, I'd avoid the cheaper models that are made in Mexico. Nothing specific against Mexico, just that they have a reputation for being of lower quality to the US versions. Avoid the Squiers (as said earlier), they're the newbie series and worse than the mexican strats. I'd also be sure to get it properly setup after purchase... no sense getting home and realising you have a big challenge ahead of yourself setting it up (unless you are comfortable doing that bit yourself).

Finally, I won't ever buy a guitar without being able to play it first. Since getting my Strat I have played two other Highway Ones. Neither feels or sounds the same as the one I chose (one was a little better due to upgraded pickups, one was much worse).


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rokchik
post Jun 19 2007, 12:18 AM
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QUOTE (Lurgen @ Jun 18 2007, 02:00 AM) *
I'd avoid comparing Squiers to proper Fenders - very similar design (basically the same template) but different factory, quality, materials, etc. Squiers are beginner hardware and not much more...

If you're determined to get a Fender, and like the Strat sound/shape, the US made Highway One is where I'd suggest heading. Very much a minimalist design, and bottom of the US made range, but a great guitar either way.

The main differentiating factors between Fenders seems to be where they are manufactured. The US-made ones seem to have better build quality and materials. I bounced between the Highway One and the Deluxe series. After playing both quite a bit, I could see the differences but couldn't justify the extra $ between the two models to settled on the Hwy One. This applies equally to pretty much all Strats - the higher priced models are only tiny little steps up from each other despite being many hundreds (sometimes thousands) of dollars more than the entry-level ones. If the higher-end model is simply some upgraded pickups, that's better done yourself after buying it instead of paying a 150% premium.

Pay close attention to the finish when you're comparing models. Something Fender does is offer surprisingly large differences between models in terms of finish. My Hwy One has a satin finish, very thin, with woodgrain showing clearly through. I haven't seen the satin finish on anything else. Each model seems to come with its own selection of colours. The Fender website lists most of them, but obviously availability will vary based on location. I also have noticed that the satin finish is showing signs of wear - not damage, just smoothed out areas where it touches my body. I actually like the well-loved look, but it's not for everybody.

I'm glad the HSS issue was already talked about too - yeah, it's an interesting configuration but even now I pick up my Strat instead of my MS2000 just to get that Strat sound. HSS would have eliminated that option.

All that said, I'm not sure I'd buy another Fender guitar. The factory setup was awful, and I'm not convinced you're getting much value for your money. Sure, they aren't as ridiculously priced as Gibsons, but they're still overpriced (particularly in Australia). That's why I chose a Maton recently - cheaper than a Strat Deluxe, better build, better (imho) sound, etc. Possibly not an option outside of Australia though!

On models to avoid, I'd avoid the cheaper models that are made in Mexico. Nothing specific against Mexico, just that they have a reputation for being of lower quality to the US versions. Avoid the Squiers (as said earlier), they're the newbie series and worse than the mexican strats. I'd also be sure to get it properly setup after purchase... no sense getting home and realising you have a big challenge ahead of yourself setting it up (unless you are comfortable doing that bit yourself).

Finally, I won't ever buy a guitar without being able to play it first. Since getting my Strat I have played two other Highway Ones. Neither feels or sounds the same as the one I chose (one was a little better due to upgraded pickups, one was much worse).


Thanks Lurgen....your post was very helpful. I have a question though. I was speaking to the guy at the guitar store I usually go to and he has an HSS Highway One out there that he's willing to give a pretty good deal on. ( enough off so I could upgrade the pick ups and not be out any money) I'm not too keen on the humbucker in a Strat idea so what I'm wondering is can you replace it with a single coil pick up even though it's formated for a humbucker? ( I know I'd have to get a new pickguard) I meant to ask him when I had him on the phone and forgot...besides I trust this site a lot more. biggrin.gif

And also a friend is thinking about replacing the neck on his strat and was wondering if all Strat necks were interchangeable or do only certain ones fit certain models. He has an American with a 22 fret maple neck. I believe it's a 2005 model but not sure. (I wish he lived closer too so I could try his out it's a very nice guitar...lots of use)
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Lurgen
post Jun 19 2007, 01:54 AM
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QUOTE (rokchik @ Jun 19 2007, 09:18 AM) *
Thanks Lurgen....your post was very helpful. I have a question though. I was speaking to the guy at the guitar store I usually go to and he has an HSS Highway One out there that he's willing to give a pretty good deal on. ( enough off so I could upgrade the pick ups and not be out any money) I'm not too keen on the humbucker in a Strat idea so what I'm wondering is can you replace it with a single coil pick up even though it's formated for a humbucker? ( I know I'd have to get a new pickguard) I meant to ask him when I had him on the phone and forgot...besides I trust this site a lot more. biggrin.gif

And also a friend is thinking about replacing the neck on his strat and was wondering if all Strat necks were interchangeable or do only certain ones fit certain models. He has an American with a 22 fret maple neck. I believe it's a 2005 model but not sure. (I wish he lived closer too so I could try his out it's a very nice guitar...lots of use)

You could almost certainly swap the HSS pickup over for a single-coil, but you'd end up with a messy result. There would be a hole where the extra pickup was sitting, and you might need to drill a little. It's probably not a direction I'd be heading in without some serious research first. I'd also be curious about whether or not the HSS has a different tone circuit hiding inside it.

I believe the necks all follow an identical mounting template, but I'm interested in hearing what some of our strat experts here think.


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Guitars: Fender American Vintage 1957 Stratocaster, Fender American Highway One, Maton MS2000 Deluxe
Amps: Fender Hotrod Deluxe, Roland Cube 60, Fender Frontman 25R
Effects: Boss BD-2, OS-2, DD-20, TU-2
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rokchik
post Jun 19 2007, 02:33 AM
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QUOTE (Lurgen @ Jun 18 2007, 09:54 PM) *
You could almost certainly swap the HSS pickup over for a single-coil, but you'd end up with a messy result. There would be a hole where the extra pickup was sitting, and you might need to drill a little. It's probably not a direction I'd be heading in without some serious research first. I'd also be curious about whether or not the HSS has a different tone circuit hiding inside it.

I believe the necks all follow an identical mounting template, but I'm interested in hearing what some of our strat experts here think.


I never thought about a different circuit...that is a very good point. I was just wondering about the swapping thing as I saw on ebay that someone had a strat body for sale with a HSH design and it stated that it would accomodate any configuration of pickups (ie: 3 single coil, humbucker with 2 S.C. or two HB with 1 S.C.) I just kinda thought that with the void space of where the other pickup should be would take something from the overall tone of the guitar.

And yes I'm interested too about the necks. Not just for my friend but also where I'm looking at getting a strat it would be nice to know in case further down the road I decide to do same.
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