Fender Custom Shop guitars.....

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by lv, May 22, 2006.

  1. lv

    lv Supporting Member

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    Took the long drive out to Music Gallery in Highland Park, IL to check out some different neck profiles for a custom order I'm placing soon....played MANY guitars, 50's relic/closet classic teles and strats and was blown away by the consistently great tone. I was very surprised. Every one of them was loud and lightweight. They all played well also, though this is more due to George MacPhail's great setup work. Just wanted to say, I know they don't always have the rep for consistency, but everything in Frank's shop seemed to ring like old wood.
     
  2. Rusty G.

    Rusty G. Member

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    If you were playing Fender Custom Shop Teles and Strats, then I'd agree that they're consistently GOOD! I.M.H.O. . .The problem comes from the regular production stuff, be it American, Mexican or Japaneese.
     
  3. lv

    lv Supporting Member

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    Another note, as great as the EJ guitars are (I owned one, and played one he had in the shop) I do not think they ring as nicely as the custom shop stuff did. I only bring this up as some have said they think the EJ is up there with custom shop stuff - I thought that too until I a/b'd them.
     
  4. gtraddict

    gtraddict Member

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    I know with the reg production models quality is always an issue but I guess you have to really consider that the custom shop starts at about double of the american standard series
     
  5. Unburst

    Unburst Member

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    One of the worst put together guitars I ever owned was a Fender CS.

    Just sayin'...
     
  6. lv

    lv Supporting Member

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    Yea, I had a couple older ones that had questionable build, that is why I was so surprised...maybe they have gotten lots better recently, or maybe the good stuff goes to Frank's shop, he is one of the biggest custom shop dealers. Then again maybe he sends a lot back.
     
  7. corgiears

    corgiears Member

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    Got this one a while back and it's a great guitar:

    [​IMG]



    And this one should be here this week - can't wait:
    [​IMG]


    Both came from Fat Sound though, so I'm sure that having a great shop behind them makes a difference......
     
  8. seanc

    seanc Member

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    i have played a lot of nice fender cs shop guitars but i found everything and more from a prs. however nothing beats a good old fender cs vibe. that is something that cannot be denied.
     
  9. matte

    matte Senior Member

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    I've owned a shitload of FCS guitars. I'm still looking for one of Yas's 2 tone Strats.
     
  10. michaelprice83

    michaelprice83 Member

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    Yeah there are a lot of great apples out there, but man, i tell ya what, I've found oranges to be far superior. I still do like apple juice now and again.......
     
  11. Mrgearguy

    Mrgearguy Member

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    I guess anything can happen, but every CS Fender I've played was pretty much ready to go out of the box. Played a shitload down at L&M and they were all worthy and gig ready. The Nocasters were super nice.

    Gearguy
     
  12. Troubleman

    Troubleman Silver Supporting Member

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    Corgiears - that Tele sure is purdy...:D

    The only CS guitar I've owned was one of the first Relics - a Mary Kay Strat. It played and sounded great. Alas, I did figure out that I'm far more partial to alder than ash-bodied Strats, so I sold it. I've played lots of them and have found them to be consistently better than production stuff - attention to detail, fit and finish, and in general - sound. I have played a couple that looked great but were only "good" not great sounding. (one of those cool "HoloFlake" color Strats being among them - gorgeous finish, very average sounding (although it felt good) guitar.

    I looked at a bunch of 'em at Washington Music Center yesterday. Tough decision - puchase a CS Strat, or "invest" in a mid-70s Strat with all original parts, even though I'm not a big fan of 3-bolt "bullet-head" Strats?

    I'm leaning towards the CS....

    Peace,

    jb
     
  13. malabarmusic

    malabarmusic Member

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    Music Gallery is aces, and I say that not just because I live 5 minutes away and they indulge frequent visits from me and my 8-year-old son. :)

    - DB
     
  14. Ogre

    Ogre Member

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    Most of the Fender custom Shop guitars I have played(lately) have been good to superb. I brought home a limited edition Esquire last month. It is a sunbusrt w/ rosewood neck, 9&1/2" radius and bigger frets. It sounds as good as the 1960 Esquire I owned many years ago. Wildwood has a few of them. Highly recommended!
     
  15. VaughnC

    VaughnC Supporting Member

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    I've owned about a dozen FCS Strats and have played maybe a dozen or so others. Compared to my old '64 Strat, they were all dogs....but I'll have to admit they all did sound good in their own way. Just not what I seek in Strat tone. If you've ever played a good example of a mid 60's Strat maybe you can relate to what I'm saying?

    However, while I've never been to Music Gallery, the Nocaster I purchased from them a few years ago was the best guitar I ever played, even though Tele's generally don't work for me in a gigging context. I miss that guitar dearly.

    Every once in a while I call Frank and ask him to keep me in mind if a killer '65 FCS Strat ever shows up at his store but nothing heard from him for a while. Maybe he thinks I'm too fussy ;). However, the Limited Edition thin skin AV'62 Strat I recently purchased, to me, sounds better than any FCS Strat I've laid my hands on to date.

    Based on my experience, the Fender Custom Shop guitars are kinda like their regular production guitars in that you have to play a bunch to find the gems. The FCS Teles seem more tonally consistent though for some reason.

    I should take a trip sometime to Music Gallery to see what they have....maybe they have an insider at Fender that cherry picks for them!!
     
  16. B Vance

    B Vance Member

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    What is the color of that Tele called? Is it candy green sparkle? It's making me green with envy.
     
  17. corgiears

    corgiears Member

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    LOL - good one! They are both Sherwood Green, but taken with different cameras in different light. The Tele is actually NOS, so it looks brand new, but the strat is a relic, so it may have a slightly darker, more "worn" finish. The strat arrives tomorrow - I can't wait.
     
  18. stevieboy

    stevieboy Clouds yell at me Gold Supporting Member

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    '63 Relic

    [​IMG]
    Very light weight, plays great. Made me completey forget I like fat necks, flat radii, and big frets.
     
  19. B Vance

    B Vance Member

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    Sherwood Green...that color is amazing. And you have two to boot. That tele is killing me. Ever thought about putting a pearl pickguard on her?
     
  20. corgiears

    corgiears Member

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    You know, that sounds like a good idea! Here's another pic:

    [​IMG]
     

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