The official Eric Johnson Strat Appreciation Thread

telecrazy

Member
Messages
289
Had a sunburst/maple neck many years ago. Nice guitar, but didn`t quite bond with it. But then I tried RW version, what a killer guitar. Would love to have a turquoise one day!
 

Neon Trotsky

Member
Messages
630
Sandpaper the neck with 1200 grit, tape off the top and bottom first. Sanding the neck will make it play faster and feel like an old friend.

I think it's the fretboard itself - that thick thick lacquer combined with the (foolishly chosen imo) low frets - even more than the back of the neck that really slows things down.

Finger drag can be unreal on these guitars once your fingers get even the slightest bit moist or dirty.

I've gotten two fret level C & P out of the frets on my EJ so far, enough for me to justify to myself that next time I'll have it refretted with either 6100's or 6105's.
 

daacrusher2001

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
6,773
I had a first year EJ, 2TSB with maple - I had it for 3 or 4 years. I think they are great guitars. I was trying different guitars at the time, but I wouldn't mind owning another one someday. The ones I've played recently had super sticky necks. I don't recall mine being sticky. The neck shape was awesome, and I liked the pickups and 12" radius.
 

F#m7

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
483
Great Strat. But the quartersawn neck does play stiff. I've owned several over the years, and they were all this way. The nitro neck never bothered me. I actually really like it.
 

iamdavea

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
9,288
Can someone tell me if the Rosewood EJs have the same goopy fretboard lacquer problem as the maple necks? Many Thanks!
 

Neon Trotsky

Member
Messages
630
Can someone tell me if the Rosewood EJs have the same goopy fretboard lacquer problem as the maple necks? Many Thanks!

Uh, well it's a rosewood fretboard... so... no lacquer. (Maybe you're thinking of Ricks?)

It will have the nitro lacquer on the back of the neck, but you just take some steel wool to that and 30 seconds later, it feels like a satin finish.
 

corbeano

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
605
I sent mine off to relic a little and remove the lacquer off the neck. They also put SS 6105's on her as well. Fralin blues special in the neck position. I played it a lot till I got my Dano... Now I'm thinking Lentz.. Might be selling the EJ.. Great strat.
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iamdavea

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
9,288
Uh, well it's a rosewood fretboard... so... no lacquer. (Maybe you're thinking of Ricks?)

It will have the nitro lacquer on the back of the neck, but you just take some steel wool to that and 30 seconds later, it feels like a satin finish.
Thanks! Sorry if it was a dumb question; I honestly didn't know.
 

The Opera Panther

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
3,166
So, I had a maple-necked EJ for a while. I bought it sort of on a whim- I love strats, and thought it might be a good compliment to my rosewood-necked partsostrat. It was a really nice guitar. And, the sonic difference to my partsostrat (similar neck profile, similar (Klein S-7) pickups) was... negligible. I a/b'd those two for hours. If you blindfolded me, I would not have been able to tell the difference.

On the bright side, it confirmed my partsostrat was a really good guitar. I ended up selling the EJ, as it garnered more $ than a partsostrat would. I don't have room to have multiple examples of the same guitar. It was a really nice guitar, though.
 

Neon Trotsky

Member
Messages
630
I sent mine off to relic a little and remove the lacquer off the neck. They also put SS 6105's on her as well. Fralin blues special in the neck position. I played it a lot till I got my Dano... Now I'm thinking Lentz.. Might be selling the EJ.. Great strat.
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Dude, if you do decide to sell this, if there's any way you could keep me in mind... I'd be ALL OVER this, you did the PERFECT mods to make an EJ perfect imo.
 

Lewguitar

Senior Member
Messages
5,663
My favorite pickups are real '62 or '63 vintage Fender Strat pickups.

My favorite new ones are Duncan Surfers and Fralin Vintage Hots. Usually with Fralin SP43 bridge pickup.

I could not get used to what seemed like weak pickups on the Fender EJ models I owned: two maple and two rosewood.

I thought he rosewood ones would do it...but over time they didn't.

I sold my EJ's and made a rosewood fingerboard, swamp ash bodied sunburst partscaster from USA Custom with the pickups I like.
 

stratplexi

Member
Messages
1,129
I thought about one but the stiff feeling neck with the stick finish and smallish frets were not for me. If Fender would go to 6105 frets and satin finish on these they would sell a lot more.
 

LReese

Member
Messages
2,237
I've played my EJ (sitting in storage for a year or two) pretty much exclusively over the last few weeks - admittedly not playing not as much as I should.

Swapped in a set of Suhr pickups I had sitting around - used a V54 in the neck and 2 neck V60LPs - all same polarity. Floated the bridge and polished the neck down - 1st with polish from an old bottle of Meguiars #7, then a swab down with Naptha. Also lowered the slots in the nut to about the minimum - I'll carve a real bone nut later for it.

Its not so stiff anymore and while sticky for the 1st couple of times I played it since the neck polish, Its not sticky. But then its 11 years old, the lacquer should be as cured as its going to get.
 

mattmccloskey

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
5,802
Mine feels great, not sticky, not stiff feeling to me. I love the pickups. It's a comfy lightweight Strat and the neck is rock solid stable. Only mod I did was a full pickguard shield and a washer on the input jack.
 

Stratburst70

Member
Messages
6,201
I've owned my black EJ Strat for two years and I still really enjoy playing it. It has that classic Strat tone that I enjoy.

Tonight, I was playing it through my mini pedalboard (Boss TU-2 tuner -> Wampler Tweed '57 -> Xotic SP Compressor -> Boss DD-500) into my Tech 21 Trademark 30 and I was loving the sound. Now that I've had it a while, I found the nitro neck has sorted itself out and it no longer feels sticky when I play it.

Quibbles? The neck and frets could be bigger, but that's a minor beef.
 

TCMx3

Member
Messages
2,505
To me, they seem to be on the level of the Fender custom shop offerings

can't say I agree with that. nice guitars but not perfect (the overspraying of the lacquer on the fretboard is a definite knock, IMO the pick guard could be improved, neck flame maple has gotten significantly less flamey over the years).

I sold my EJ when I got my 1960 reissue.

and are an amazing guitar for the money.

that I can agree with. I think I paid 1300 shipped for mine from Dave's. only guitar I ever bought that even got close to that kind of value/money was when I got a really nice price on my danocaster.

I have two of them and really want to trim things down and sell one, but I love both of them. I like the features as in the quarter sawn, V profile neck and 12" radius, the specific EJ approved pups, the staggered tuners with no string tree and the 2 piece Alder lacquer painted body. Mine are the earlier maple neck style with maple slab fretboards. One is a two color burst and the other a blackie. Each guitar has it's unique tone ... a little bit different EQ if you will.... but both very resonant and fun to play.

What are the favorite EJ strats that you've played or own / owned?

Mine was 2tsb. Really liked the color. The specs are nice, I liked the neck carve quite a bit.
 
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Neon Trotsky

Member
Messages
630
...
I sold my EJ when I got my 1960 reissue.
...

You done goof'd son. Every self-respecting TGP'er knows that if you're gonna get a strat, ya gotta have at least two strats - one with RW and one with a maple fretboard.

I got a CS '63 reissue, it KILLS my EJ in terms of playability, but I AIN'T selling my EJ man, it's with me for life, warts and all haha.
 

TCMx3

Member
Messages
2,505
You done goof'd son. Every self-respecting TGP'er knows that if you're gonna get a strat, ya gotta have at least two strats - one with RW and one with a maple fretboard.

I got a CS '63 reissue, it KILLS my EJ in terms of playability, but I AIN'T selling my EJ man, it's with me for life, warts and all haha.

It's ok I bought an amp with that money.

Obviously the EJ strat is a very nice guitar. The fact that the man himself plays them says a lot, I think. I just found that like most guitars the closer you look the more you can tell how much it cost to make.

Also I'd rather have two rosewood strats instead of one maple and one rosewood (and in fact, I do).
 




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