Is buying a Strat that weighs 7 pounds likely?

Discussion in 'Stratocaster Discussion Forum' started by Digiplay, Jun 13, 2020.

  1. dogletnoir

    dogletnoir V----V Strat-Talk Supporter

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    @Ronkirn, i've been meaning to ask you this question for some time, and i hope that you won't take it the wrong way.

    You are in the business of making custom guitars, and every guitar is unique because every bit of wood is unique.
    There are good ones, there are great ones, and then there are some that are just duds, i think we all can agree on that.
    OK, we'll posit that this has nothing to do with weight, or 'tone wood' because every piece of wood (even when cut from
    the same tree) will be different, and there's really no accurate way to predict how a guitar will sound before it is assembled.
    We do know from experience that a guitar can be more than the sum of its parts, and that at times it can also be much less...
    so let's say you have built a guitar to your own ideal specs because i said to you: 'build me the one you would build for yourself'
    but at the end of the process, it turns out to be a relatively sonically dead and lifeless thing... because it just happened that way.
    Will you start over, or sell me that guitar that you built for me?

    BTW, i would like to acknowledge that your book, 'The Homespun Telecaster', was a huge influence and that
    it started me on the path to putting together my own T and S type guitars, and i love seeing your builds.
    The nice thing about making them for yourself is that you have only one person to please,
    and if you're not happy with the results, it's relatively easy and painless to tear a guitar apart and start over again,
    but that's not a good for-profit business model, so...
     
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2020
  2. Wayfinder

    Wayfinder Strat-Talker

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    The listed weights are just for general reference. It's established science that a guitar gains significantly in weight the longer you hold it on stage. ;)
     
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  3. pikers

    pikers Strat-Talk Member

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    I recently purchased a Robert Cray strat and it's VERY light due to the string through body hardtail design, like a tele. No need for springs or the larger/heavier floating trem hardware. I don't have an exact weight but it was noticeably lighter than any of the other strats I tried (American pro, Clapton strat, Vintera 50 & 60). I wasn't looking for a light guitar, it was the neck and hard tail design that won me over but it may be worth a look.
     
  4. afireinside

    afireinside Strat-Talker

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    My 2011 ash sienna sunburst is 7.3lb super light love it
     
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2020
  5. bbigd0

    bbigd0 Strat-Talk Member

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    I saw a MIJ Strat on Reverb a year & 1/2 ago. A '71 Strat reissue from 2013. I couldn't believe my eyes when it said: 6lbs, 13oz. It happened to be in the large city near where I live at a small Guitar shop I had never heard of. It also looked beautiful, an aged natural finish.
    The moment I got there & picked it up, I knew it was the absolute lightest Strat I had ever touched. The neck also felt very good. The guy at the shop warned about the sound of the pickups but I didn't care as I changed them out. It is now one fine guitar. Best Strat I have ever had.
     
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  6. Ronkirn

    Ronkirn Most Honored Senior Member

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    ..

    It never gets far enough so the quandary isn't a factor..

    Guys want to quantify everything.. ya cannot do that.. there is an art to making a guitar... some luthiers are artists, They, allow the "force" to be with them, always, and some "Luthiers" are purely technical, they're little more than assemblers..

    The artist is constantly using their awareness as the guitar is progressing... if the "wood" just doesn't "have it" it can be detected by a skilled luthier as it's being worked... for the technician, it's just wood, ya shape it and move on to the next phase...

    While that Luthiers artistic interpretations cannot tell ya what it will sound like once completed, it CAN stack the deck in your favor.. But, and again, the technical assembler, is slave to the how the card fall..

    SO the "short answer" No, I'm not gonna ship ya a dog, but it's not an issue, it just doesn't get to that point..

    In the past 30 or so years, I can only remember one that once it was all together, sucked... but the guy lived in close proximity, came by, plugged in and loved it... Who Knew???

    when working with a luthier, you probably have selected them because of their reputation... When you buy "off the rack" you haven't a clue who did what to the guitar, or if they even had enough "time in the saddle" to even recognize a potential for sonic disaster as they're sanding the thing.


    r
     
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2020
  7. dogletnoir

    dogletnoir V----V Strat-Talk Supporter

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    That's what i figured.
    :thumb: :thumb:
     
  8. Stratoman10

    Stratoman10 Dr. Stratster Strat-Talk Supporter

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    Look at an EJ semi hollow body
     
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  9. SAguitar

    SAguitar Senior Stratmaster

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    I'll never understand this preoccupation and focus on weight. Heck, I can go out for dinner and wake up the next morning 2-3 pounds heavier. I have some lighter weight guitars and a few Les Pauls that are behemoths, but I have never actually weighed any of them. If they play well and have a nice resonance then I keep them and play them.

    I had back problems in my late 20s and ended up with a chiropractor who was looking at my X-rays asked me what I had been doing to my spine. I told him I played a Les Paul and he said, "Oh, that makes sense." After a few months of treatments I improved considerably. Then I started working on building some guitar straps that went over both shoulders, distributing the weight much like a backpack. I made 3 of those straps and now that I'm 70, I have played over 45 years with them and have no back or neck pain related to guitars.

    Sorry if this is off topic or comes off as a rant, I just don't see guitar weight as a major issue.
     
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  10. bstabley

    bstabley New Member!

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    I own a wide variety of guitars and many are very heavy. I’m not too far behind you in years (61) and was feeling the weight of some of the Les Paul types and the ESP. I bought a strap that is cushioned with air bubbles underneath the strap and it’s made quite a difference in the fatigue factor. You almost have a ‘bounce’ in it. Sounds a little strange but it has worked well for me.
     
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  11. Robins

    Robins Dr. von Loudster Strat-Talk Supporter

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    My Blackmore is 7.9 my Antigua is 7.7
    My EVH is exactly 8
    My white Charvel is a fatty at 8.8 but it ****ing screams

    My white Flying V is a feather weight at 7
    My lightest is my SG JR. at 6.4

    All the best,
    Robin
     
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  12. Jam Handy

    Jam Handy Strat-Talk Member

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    I have a 1995 G&L George Fullerton Signature model (basically a Legacy minus the PTB tone circuit and has a soft vee neck) that weighs 6lbs 6oz including the Dual-Fulcrum vibrato, but that's rare to be that light.

    Since G&L is a much better company (and is the REAL Fender as it was Leo's last company), you can still order exactly what you want through a dealer and specify "as light as possible" in the build. You'll get a better 3xSC guitar from G&L than rolling the dice with a Fender, and your chances of getting a light one are much better since you have a (sort of) direct line of communication from the dealer to the front line worker dealing with G&L. -- Add a couple zeros to the price if you expect the same phone call getting through to Fender.

    Plus with G&L you have more choices for pickups...
    - Comanche - Z-coils
    - Legacy - regular alnico 3 x SC's (or they have an HSS version)(or an HH version if that's your thing)
    - Legacy Special - twin-blade humbucker pups single-coil sized
    - S-500 - their "MFDs" with adjustable pole pieces

    As for me and my house, if I were to walk in and buy something S-body or T-body brand new and take the 30% depreciation as soon as I walk out of the store... I'd run right past Gibson, PRS and Fender and give the G&L dealer a list of exactly what I want and place an order. They also have a custom shop for fancy woods and such but I wouldn't waste my money on that. The guitars they send out after a special order are the best made on the planet, and usually when I order one, its unique enough to be most likely the only one to exist, unless someone else completely by chance ordered the exact same combination down to the finish color, pickguard, knobs and a Saddle Lock hardtail instead of the dual fulcrum... and several other things I order that most likely no one else is going to be doing the exact same thing.

    As far as Fenders and Gibsons I'll let somebody else take the hit for 30% depreciation and buy them used/mint for way less. And as far as PRS, they can keep their over-priced everything, I'm not impressed or do I or have I ever wanted a PRS USA-anything. I might give $400 for a used SE of some kind... But I refuse to support PRS-USA even used, as IMHO, it was Paul's fault we now see over-priced guitars from every maker. One of his shades of greenish or blueish 10-tops have got to be some of the most ridiculously gawdy and over-done guitars I've ever seen, with an equally ridiculous price. But of course I never liked the Porsche 911's either... I always thought they looked like a very ugly frog... and that's still me opinion of certain years of them... butt ugly items for people to brag and masturbate about.

    Used is the way to buy... IMHO, let some other fella or gal take the 30% depreciation when they plop down the new money, walk out of the store and it's instantly a used guitar worth several hundred less... but buy a used/mint guitar for (say) $800... and expect to get all 100% of your money back if you ever decide to sell.

    :)
     
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2020
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  13. bandmaster

    bandmaster Strat-Talker

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    If you look for comfort on a Strat the balance is also a factor. I have a Strat that is 7.3lbs, but around the neck my 7.5lbs feels lighter. I think it is how the body vs neck weight balance out.
    So light weight alone doesn't mean more comfortable. I had a real light weight Tele that was not comfortable at all. It was very neck heavy and it really bothered me. Last year I got a CS MB Telecaster which weighs 6.3 lbs but it balance nicely, not neck heavy at all.
     
  14. Jam Handy

    Jam Handy Strat-Talk Member

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    I have a 2009 Epiphone EB-3 Bass (long 34" scale) (Made in Korea) and it is very neck heavy. As soon as you strap it on the neck dives for the floor. I've heard this is "nature of the beast" for that SG bass body style... so I live with it... I've never considered guitars could be that kind of neck-heavy before... most anything I've ever owned was pretty much balanced. The EB-3 I have is ridiculous, LOL. I mean, like the strap slips and the neck heads for the floor ridiculous... haha
     
  15. Joe R

    Joe R New Member!

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    HOLY PIZZOLI!
    You got me to thinking about Strat weights. I just bought a MIM Deluxe Player's strat with the noiseless pickups (hate them, but that's another story) and thought it was rather heavy. It's a rare one-piece ash body with a beautiful grain. So I hopped on the scale with the guitar, and then weighed myself without it. HUH!!! I did it again to make sure. My new Strat weighs 9.5 pounds. I'm thankful I only play it sitting down and don't use it to gig with. My other two strats are 6.9 and 7.5 lbs. I'm switching out the noiseless for some Texas Specials, keeping the 7-way switching. Good grief is that guitar heavy. Heavier than my Les Paul.

    I'm not into body building using musical instruments. I know the one-piece guitar body is special, so after the pickup switch it's a keeper. It also has a gorgeous grain to the pao ferro 12" radius fingerboard. What amazes me is that you would think that a Stratocaster would be essentially like any other Strat. But not so, there are so many differences, weight being an important one. From what I have found both by playing and reading specs, is that the American Strats are often lighter than their MIM counterparts. Great thread.
     
  16. freddairy

    freddairy Strat-Talker

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    This is great. I have a hard time buying into the fact that a guitar is going to wreck your back and you sir have made proof of that. Straps, taking care of yourself, etc should make it so a 7lb strat and an 8lb Strat don't make much difference for you.
     
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  17. Kiwi59

    Kiwi59 Strat-Talk Member

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    You could always get what you like/feels good/sounds good to you and take some weight off under the pickguard if too heavy.
    Wood is so variable in weight due to density it can be a bit of a lottery.
    And some folk wouldn't dream of messing about with guitars, but some do. OTY.
    My VG Strat is lighter by a tad because of the missing wood to accommodate the electronics.
    My Avatar one is heavier because it's got twin 3" speakers despite missing wood.
     
  18. apm1991

    apm1991 Senior Stratmaster

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    I'm not allowed to talk about guitar weight... our bass player weighs about 140 lbs... and our lead guitarist who's been a bass player his entire life, he's 54 yrs old about 150lb guy and he's played shows with a 6 string bass
     
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  19. Torvald

    Torvald Strat-Talker

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    That's really pretty amazing! I just put together a strat type,( Candlenut wood strat body and Peavey neck), and the body weighed 2 lbs, 5 oz.. The complete guitar weighs 6 lbs, 2 oz., so the paulownia body must weigh less than a pound and a half? And I thought the Candlenut wood was exceptionally light! Unless yours is a hardtail. I have a Wilkinson trem with the solid steel block.
     
  20. Antmax

    Antmax Strat-Talk Member

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    The Paulownia bodied guitar just has the stock Squier HSS Vintage Modified parts and electronics. So cheap vintage tuners, bridge with skinny non steel block. So mostly cheap pot metal parts and mini alpha pots, switches etc. Thin coat of Lacquer without a thick poly finish.

    I imagine your big block adds quite a lot of weight compared to what came with the squier. Judging by the Callaham bridge I put in my MIM strat, a steel big block is a lot heavier.