My "creamy", in more ways than one, Strat!

Discussion in 'Fender' started by Les Paulverizer, Sep 22, 2017.

  1. Les Paulverizer

    Les Paulverizer Senior Member

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    I've had this Strat for about 3 years but hardly ever played it, never live and only occasionally for recording purposes, however further to a conversation with a friend of mine I went back listening to some 70s Fusion Jeff Beck, Narada Michael Walden, Stanley Clarke (all featuring the wonderful Ray Gomez on guitar) and people of that ilk, and that kinda rekindled my interest in this instrument, so I've been playing it more regularly for the last 5 months and it really is a wonderful guitar!

    I've only made few modifications, when I bought it I didn't want a "super Strat" as much as I wanted a "better Strat" hence I avoided fitting yer typical humbuckers & stuff like that.

    First I fitted locking tuners, they're made in China ones they're as good as any I've ever fitted; Sperzel, D'Addario (my favourite actually) you name 'em, I got 'em.
    Then 2 roller string tress which really help in keeping the guitar in tune
    After that I fitted a brass nut (love it) then it came to the neck & bridge pickups; a DiMarzio Fast Track 1 in the neck position and a Chopper at the bridge.
    What I really like about these DiMarzio's is that they still retain the original character of the Strat; in other words even though they're full humbuckers it still sounds like a "Fender Strat"(!) not like when you have a Jackson, an Ibanez or similar instruments where it could be any guitar (I mean, I played them all on a regular basis, I know what I'm talking about...)
    The two Tone pots are push-pull so the middle one allows me to split the neck pickup whereas the bottom, while also acting as Tone on the bridge pickup, allows me to split it; the tonal variety is immense and more than fulfils my live & recording needs!

    The best part is that this is a MIM instrument, and not even a top of the range one, just a standard 70's model which could be a reissue of some sort if it wasn't for the flat radius fingerboard, which of course greatly helps playability, and it really does sound wonderful; I've owned an original '65, a '75, an '82 JV Squier plus few assorted ones in between, but this one beats them all!
    The drummer I'm working with at the moment is also a serious guitar fanatic and has quite a collection; few months ago he bought an American Standard which I thought looked & felt extremely nice, however he compared them back-to-back and went "yours sounds better!" and didn't look too happy...! He's since sold his... IMG_1161.JPG
     
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  2. Benjammin

    Benjammin Senior Member

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    great guitar for playing Jeff Beck :thumb:
     
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  3. Kris Ford

    Kris Ford Senior Member

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    '70's RI has big headstock and bullet..no?
    20170724_165026_HDR.jpg
     
  4. Les Paulverizer

    Les Paulverizer Senior Member

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    Yes probably, to me a Strat is a Strat but it's just the headstock that being big said "70's!" to me.
    A bullet truss rod would be nice though, and easier to adjust.
     
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  5. scozz

    scozz Senior Member

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    Wait...what?

    That isn't a 70s headstock...that looks like a standard MIM headstock. KF headstock photo is a 70s.
     
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  6. Les Paulverizer

    Les Paulverizer Senior Member

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    Oh, I thought that there were only two types of headstock, the small Pre-CBS one and the bigger CBS/70s one....I didn't know that the MIMs had their own headstock...? Whatever, it's cool.

    One thing I know though is that, in my experience, more mass at that end gives a little more "sound" & resonance, that's why Robin Tower specifically asked for a bigger headstock on his Signature Strat, on top of Mr. Trower being a big 70s icon himself!

    Years ago I replaced the standard Kluson tuners on a Les Paul with bigger, heavier Sperzel locking tuners, I did the job myself and straight away I noticed an improvement in the sound, and the same again happened when I replaced the standard tuners on this Strat with bigger, heavier locking ones; it's not like they magically transformed it into another guitar(!) but albeit slightly there's definitely a noticeable difference, and for the better.

    This guitar sounds awesome anyway, the more I play it, the more I like it and I have to say that in spite of my love for the Les Paul (I mean, my name says it all!) the Stratocaster is altogether a much better piece of engineering, a case study in ergonomics (not a sharp edge anywhere & the controls right where you need them), playability, performance, and its shape reminds me of Wonder Woman(!) which means it's always a pleasure to hold!!!!
     
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  7. Benjammin

    Benjammin Senior Member

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    yours has the pre-CBS headstock with the CBS-era logo
     
  8. Les Paulverizer

    Les Paulverizer Senior Member

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    Wow, they really know how to mix & mess things up, don't they??????? ;-)
     
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  9. Benjammin

    Benjammin Senior Member

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    damn MIMs, always have to stand out as non-MIAs :laugh2:

    I agree with your other post about mass at the headstock, I replaced the tuners on my MIM with Fender staggered locking tuners, which are definitely heavier, and I thought it made a noticeable improvement in overall sound (and I have had this guitar for years before and after, so I don't think it's just me being crazy) I noticed the same thing replacing other stock tuners with heavier Grovers. Hurray for mass!
     
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