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Old May 14th, 2011, 12:05 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Hardtail Strat Club

Since Hardtail Strats are kind of rare, I think this should include ALL of them- vintage, recent American, Robert Cray (both Custom Shop and MIM) and Tom DeLonge Strats.... and any others I've forgotten.


I have a Black Tom DeLonge (MIM) that I converted to an S/S/S configuration, with a white pearloid GFS pickguard.
I'm not a fan of Tom DeLonge or Blink 182- I just wanted a hardtail for not too much money!!! When it came on sale for $395 at a time I actually had that much cash, I snagged it.
Fortunately his name isn't on the headstock, just on the neck plate, which I swapped for one that has a Fender "F" on it.
It has the higher-output of the two GFS strat-sized Tele-ish pickups in the bridge. It has a brass inductance plate under the bridge and sounds great.
I bought some closeout ceramic pickups from GFS, and the middle sounded great with the Teleish bridge pickup. After trying several other neck pickups, I recently tried one of the non-RSRW pickups from that set in the neck position, and I think it's the one. Probably too dark for a regular Strat, but balances out the brightness of the hardtail nicely. I like the sound of the ceramic neck pickups with covers on the MIM Standard Telecasters, so I'm thinking of adding an inductance plate to it too.

Why did I get a hardtail???
I love the sound of Teles, but prefer the way a Strat looks and feels- this way I can get a different sound, but be totally comfortable with the control layout and the comfort bevels. Since I've got it together, I love the way the neck and middle pickup sound alone, and I also love the blends, which are more jangly than quacky. It's also very articulate, and when I do a bend against a non-bent note, the result is very clean because the bridge is rock solid.

Problems:
First, the stock Seymour Duncan Invader was so powerful as to be ridiculous.
Just could not do clean- until I put it in another guitar and accidentally split the coils when I installed it. Split, it sounds very much like a hot Tele bridge pickup- but since I already have a GFS version of that flavor, I have kept it in my MIM Standard Strat.
Then, with single coil pickups, the hardtail seemed to emphasize the low strings to the point where it was hard to compensate by adjusting the angle of the pickup. Then one of the cast bridge saddles stripped an adjustment screw. On a whim, I tried 3 vintage style saddles from a MIM where one of the stock saddles had also stripped an adjustment screw. The resulting combination of vintage saddles on the wound string and cast saddles on the plain strings looks a little odd, but sounds REALLY good, very nicely balanced.

So, what's YOUR hardtail Strat story????

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Old May 14th, 2011, 12:28 AM   #2 (permalink)
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I don't have a hardtail, but I'm GASsing pretty hard for one. Looking forward to seeing the pics and reading the stories!
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Old May 14th, 2011, 08:43 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Does my pink Hello Kitty Strat count? It's a string through hardtail.
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Old May 14th, 2011, 10:47 PM   #4 (permalink)
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LOL- yes, I guess it DOES count. It's actually pretty similar in concept to the Squier Tom DeLonge Strat, which they had for a while- one volume, one humbucker... I thought about going that route, but the neck wasn't thrilling, and there were no routs for neck or middle pickups. I knew someone else that had done the conversion on the MIM Tom DeLonge, so I knew it had the routs. The ease of the conversion was definitely a plus for me... I did NOT do that well in woodworking shop class!!!
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Old May 14th, 2011, 11:23 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I have a bullet HH hardtail.

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Originally Posted by mkgearhead View Post
Does my pink Hello Kitty Strat count? It's a string through hardtail.
Thats sexy.
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Old June 4th, 2011, 12:28 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I'm a happy owner of a R.Cray MIM tobacco burst ~2007 model.
Though now I have 3 Strats, the Cray was my first and favorite.
Mods are an R.S. guitar works Vintage elect upgrade kit, w/ a Jensen PIO .047 cap, a Fralin blender pot and a 3 ply white pearloid pick guard. I really love the stock pup's and the slightly different strat tone due to no trem route.
It's hard to put it out of tune no matter how radical I bend the strings
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Old June 4th, 2011, 08:06 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I scored mine on ebay about 2 years ago.

it's a Robert Cray 3tsb body with a Fender CS neck and Lindy Fralin vintage hot pickups. when i got it, it sounded very muddy so i put a 500k volume pot on and it just made that guitar come alive.
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Old June 4th, 2011, 09:12 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mkgearhead View Post
Does my pink Hello Kitty Strat count? It's a string through hardtail.
oh yeah it counts, and it has mojo. I bet you can get John Mayer tone
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Old June 4th, 2011, 09:49 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
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oh yeah it counts, and it has mojo. I bet you can get John Mayer tone
I can get any tone I want now. It goes to 11.

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Old June 5th, 2011, 01:50 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Though I have never owned one, SX used to make a strat-style guitar with a tune-o-matic/stop tail setup that I always though was cool. This one has p90's too, how's that for something a bit different!
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Old June 6th, 2011, 08:39 AM   #11 (permalink)
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I have a black Fender Tom Delonge which I bought off this site and I actually bought it because I grew up listening to Blink 182, I love the stupid power of the Invader and its a pure punk rock guitar.

Ive kept it completely stock apart from replacing the neck plate for a better condition original one. Other than that it wears its battle scars with pride and regularly attends band practice with my mates Delonge Strat and guitar lessons too.
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Old June 13th, 2011, 03:46 PM   #12 (permalink)
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i have a billy corgan strat in the flat black... sweet axe!
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Old June 14th, 2011, 08:10 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Ive got a violet Robert Cray that I installed a set of CS-69s in...ditched the mint pickguard, and sold the stock RC pups to Fenson.



...its not as cool as Hello Kitty, but I like it lol
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Old June 28th, 2011, 09:51 PM   #14 (permalink)
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I just bought a Robert Cray Strat and will post pics as soon as it gets here. In the meantime, I have this hardtail. Not a stock Fender of course, but a great guitar.

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Old June 29th, 2011, 02:29 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Hey, finally a club I can totally get into! My first one was a '77 that's long gone. Here's my current 2. '99 Am Std Inca Silver and a Musikraft Shell Pink body with an '07 Hwy 1 neck.

The '99 is absolutely bone stock and is my #1. It is THE best guitar I have ever played, period. It also has an interesting story.

I bought it off eBay from a guy in Seattle back in January of '03 for $650, absolutely mint. 6 months later I was forced to put it on eBay cause I had lost my job and we were flat broke and were forced to move from Chicago to Georgia to live with relatives. Yep, it was that bad. I got a couple of bids on it and just before the auction ended someone came in and snagged it. I go to see who the winner is and find out it's a friend of mine that went on there and basically saved it for me, I knew nothing about it! I brought it over to his house that night and he gave me the money and said it would be under his bed waiting for me when I got the money, he wasn't even a guitar player!

Months and months passed and things still didn't improve for us and then he needed some money. I told him to go ahead and sell it cause I had nothing and I couldn't make him wait for me any longer. My Dad, who had worked with this guy and I at the oil refinery found out about it and went over and bought it off of him and then put it under his bed!

Literally 2 years or so went by and my Mother who was also living down in Georgia was diagnosed with cancer. My parents had been divorced many years but my Dad called down to talk to her and see how she was. The one thing she asked of my Dad was would he give their son his guitar back, he needed it now more than ever (I was guitarless for those 2 years). The guitar arrived in Georgia a week later. This was summer of '05.

Mom died in January of '06 and we were still struggling in Georgia. To condense this story a little bit this guitar was pawned no less than 4-5 times in the next year and a half. It was literally in the pawn shop more than it was in my possession. I decided to move back to Illinois in June of '07 and we literally had to go and get the guitar out of pawn the day we left. 2 days later we got back to Illinois and the guitar went right back to the pawn shop! Unbelievable, it was the only thing of any value that I owned.

Within a few weeks we got decent jobs and things started to go forward for a change. I got the guitar out of the pawn shop in August of '07 and it hasn't been back since, AND IT NEVER WILL.

Sorry about the length, but it is quite a story.
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Old July 10th, 2011, 02:55 AM   #16 (permalink)
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hardtail

hi Guys, this is my first post. Bought a hard tail and a trem strat back in 1974. I purchased at the Fender Sound House in Sydney. I originally went in to buy a trem strat when this beauty caught my eye. The sales guy said their was not much call for hard tails, bit hard to sell, in saying that, he made a deal I could not refuse. So I bought both. Oddly enough the strat (trem) and the hard tail were 40 numbers apart a bit rare I thought as a lot of guitars were shipped all over the place, and finding 2 guitars with numbers that close. I did only one mod to each, I added a switch so I could select the in between pickups. They had the 3 position switch. I cant remember the colour names. I regrettably sold them back in 1990, due to finances, by the way I bought both for $980. at the time the strats were worth $650 each with hard case. so I'll post a couple of pix that were taken back in 1974.
cheers guys
p.s hard tail had heaps of bite
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Old July 11th, 2011, 08:19 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Oh my what I would give to have that blue one!
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Old July 12th, 2011, 10:47 AM   #18 (permalink)
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I own a relic'd 2000 black squier bullet 3 pup hardtail, I just got it on the 3rd or 4th of July. I say relic'd because there is no nice way of saying it was played hard and put away wet. I love the fact that it is sorta beat up gives it some character. It has a great neck (better then any other strat I have ever played). I have owned more then a few guitars in the past from various manufacturers, but the indo squier is something else. Can't wait till my camera is fixed so I can post some pics of it and it's brother a dakota red affinity strat.
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Old July 12th, 2011, 10:22 PM   #19 (permalink)
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I have a rare 3/4 size MIM with a hard tail. Very different tone. And more sustain.
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Old July 12th, 2011, 10:24 PM   #20 (permalink)
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I have a rare 3/4 size MIM with a hard tail. Very different tone. And more sustain.
those aren't rare, just uncommon and people who have them generally don't wanna get rid of them unless you pay them an arm and a leg.
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