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Old February 17th, 2010, 11:53 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Eric Johnson Strat question

Hey, new guy here. I've got a couple of questions, and if this is the wrong board, please delete it, or move it.

I'm looking at buying a supposedly Eric Johnson strat from a guy I work with. I've seen the guitar, but it was at a party about 6 months ago. It has an EJ neckplate, but the pups have been replaced w/ hotrails. Why? I have no clue. Also, I seem to remember that the "original contour body" sticker on the headstock was worn and coming off.

My questions: Isn't the sticker on the headstock under laquer? And, if it is a legit EJ, how hard would it be to find EJ pups? Also, if there are any sure fire ways to tell if it is an original, that'd be helpful. I plan on checking the serial number, but the guy could've slapped a EJ neckplate he got from somewhere on the guitar.

From memory, it looked like an EJ...staggered tuners, no back cover, ect...

Just looking for tips, as he sounded like he wanted to rid himself of it quickly and possibly for a very low price.

Thanks in advance.

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Old February 18th, 2010, 12:40 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Serial number would probably be your best bet!
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Old February 18th, 2010, 05:44 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Don't know about the guitar, but EJ pups are up on ebay pretty regularly, either in sets or individually. Klein also makes the S-7 set, which are reverse-engineered EJ pups.
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Old February 18th, 2010, 07:53 AM   #4 (permalink)
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EJ Strats are parted out constantly on Ebay - the individual parts are very desirable. It is not unusual to find different PUPs in them.

eric johnson, Parts Accessories, Electric. Great deals on eBay!

A few things to look for -

Neck and Body stampings -






The Belly contour is very pronounced - looking down from the top while playing the body is very thin at the mid point above the pups.

No Screw Holes in the back by around the cavity.

On the Trem - there should be no paint where it rests against the body

No string trees or holes where they may have been - the carve on the headstock is deeper than most.

Case - a Blond G&G case with Black cap ends and black interior

A vintage type thin strap with a gray cable.

An Ashtray bridge cover is included

On a very glossy thick paper there is a PUP wiring sheet.
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Old February 18th, 2010, 08:03 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Also no string tree on the headstock - the headstock angle is also a little different than a typical strat - that's how they get away with no string tree.
The lack of screw holes for the trem plate is also a dead giveaway.
And as stated above EJ p'ups can be found on Evilbay all the time, but it might be more economical to go the Klein S-7 route for around $170 or so - I'm a big proponent of the S-7's (as the video demo on the Klein website is me...)
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Old February 18th, 2010, 08:31 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Keep in mind EJs come with no Trem Cover or holes pre-drilled for one.

However the Trem cavity holes can be filled and then the body repainted, the existence of holes is the give-away that chances are the body is not an EJ. That said I have seen a few players put Trem covers on their EJs.

In that this is a modded guitar - the seller should have no trouble pulling the neck for you, if he does walk.
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Old February 18th, 2010, 09:02 AM   #7 (permalink)
 
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All good advice. Take that guitar apart to have a look at all the cavities. There are lot's of EJ neck plates being sold as well...........the decal is actually over the lacquer so it may flake off. The neck is quartersawn which to me makes it very obvious............you can check with the end-grain or just see it on the fingerboard.
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Old February 18th, 2010, 09:19 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott L View Post


On the Trem - there should be no paint where it rests against the body
In the photo above, it looks like there is paint where the trem rest on top of the body. Where exactly is there no paint?
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Old February 18th, 2010, 09:30 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BadBrad View Post
In the photo above, it looks like there is paint where the trem rest on top of the body. Where exactly is there no paint?
Actually where the paint is missing is supposed to be between the bridge plate and the bridge block - I don't believe the body is supposed to be missing any paint at all...
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Old February 18th, 2010, 10:22 AM   #10 (permalink)
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ToneRanger View Post
Actually where the paint is missing is supposed to be between the bridge plate and the bridge block - I don't believe the body is supposed to be missing any paint at all...
That is correct.........I checked on my EJ when I got it! (that's how anal I am)
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Old February 18th, 2010, 12:17 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Sorry - mental fart... yes is the bridge plate / block.

"The bridge is a vintage tremolo with the floating fulcrum. It has six screws that serve as the pivot point with no paint between the base plate itself and the block"

The above is a nice write up on the EJs

Eric Johnson Fender Stratocaster - Kelly Industries - Sales & Information

You may also want to take a look at calling Wildwood Guitars | (303) 665-7733 | Our New Arrivals Page is Updated Daily! they have a used Palomino Gold Rosewood Neck on the site and they have new Limited Run 3 Tone Sunbursts in stock that are nicely discounted if you call.

Wildwood Guitars | Fender | Artist Series Eric Johnson Stratocaster #EJ09451 Three Color Sunburst
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Old February 18th, 2010, 10:15 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Thanks for the help guys. I bought the EJ tonight. It is def. real. I checked the serial number out last night and fender confirmed it was made on 12/16/06. Most of the stamp under the neck is worn, but I can make out the 689 of the part # for the body. Also the EJ stamp is in the cavity.

It is well used, and doesn't have the EJ pups, but I bought it for $300.00. I consider that a deal.

Thanks again!
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Old February 18th, 2010, 10:22 PM   #13 (permalink)
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I wish I could run in to deals like that.
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Old February 18th, 2010, 11:06 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Look at the base of the trem block (where the springs attach) the string ball ends should be quite close to the surface whereas on a standard USA trem block the ball ends will be well down into the block. Also the block should have EJ stamped in it. Here is a link to what I mean:

http://www.chrisguitars.com/fen-buddyguy-bw-mint4.jpg

Yes, I know it's a Buddy Guy block but the EJ is the same.
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Old February 19th, 2010, 12:19 AM   #15 (permalink)
 
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Wow.......$300 for an EJ is a great deal!! Even without the original pups, the neck alone is worth almost twice what you paid. Let's see some pics.........
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