Stratocaster or partscaster?

Discussion in 'Stratocaster Discussion Forum' started by 18andWorried, Dec 21, 2020.

  1. 18andWorried

    18andWorried Strat-Talk Member

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    That's really bad man, I never thought guitars that are so expensive went so bad, I mean I dont know what the issue was, but it is really bad to see that happen to your instruments.

    It seems you can jump between everything, I've played some 60s strats, and a 59 that felt lovely, the neck was a little bit too oval for me, but I must say the guitars just sounded awesome, but thanks for the info man
     
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  2. 18andWorried

    18andWorried Strat-Talk Member

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    My God that guitar looks lovely! It must be a dream to play definitely. I've also been thinking about making the guitar with some custom shop parts, like the body, and the pickups, but I'll order the neck from warmoth, made to spec probably, so 10 inch radius, and also jumbo frets with a v shaped neck, so maybe I'll post it here and share it with you
     
  3. HJB1432

    HJB1432 Strat-Talker

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    I’m sure you’ll love it. It’s absolutely rewarding to build it yourself. I look forward to see you progress. Have fun!
     
  4. 18andWorried

    18andWorried Strat-Talk Member

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    I hope so, I've been thinking a lot about the specs I like, so I will probably do that. Thank you a lot for the inspiration, when it is done I'll show everybody here, and a demo trough my super reverb
     
  5. BuddyHollywood

    BuddyHollywood Strat-O-Master

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    With your budget you could have MJT make your custom guitar with nitro. I haven't done this but a friend of mine did and his guitar feels like a vintage 60s Strat. You can find Fender decals on eBay if you really want one. https://www.mjtagedfinishes.com/
     
  6. 18andWorried

    18andWorried Strat-Talk Member

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    Thanks for the link, I never knew about this page, as I know these are like original nitro finishes? And about the fender branding in the headstock, I'll just put one and call it a day
     
  7. BuddyHollywood

    BuddyHollywood Strat-O-Master

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  8. MGW-AB

    MGW-AB Strat-Talker

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    ^^^
    This is a perfect statement. It is short but it hits the nail directly on the head.
    I view it like an axiom.
    I would add the following, more as an interpretation or application than anything else:

    - If you are looking for a keeper for the rest of your life and you have no intention of selling once you have found your perfect Strat then building your own really is the only way to fly. You can take your time, decide exactly what you want down to the most minute detail and build the guitar that will cure you of GAS. That is the path I took and the more time goes by the less I need other guitars and my collection continues to shrink with time.

    - If you enjoy GAS and buying/selling/trading gear is more of a pastime than a means to an end, if the revolving door of gear is what you love, if wide ranging diversity is more important to you than zeroing in on the perfect axe, then a parts guitar will be a quick way to squander a significant amount of money and you should probably stick to off-the-rack guitars.

    The way I see it, if you are wrestling with this question your first step should probably be to determine which personality you are.
     
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  9. stevierayfan91

    stevierayfan91 DEEPLY SHY.

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    Possibly putting Fender decal is frowned upon here.
     
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  10. ibdrkn1

    ibdrkn1 Senior Stratmaster

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    I also agree with these statements. I have real bad gas & am also a modder at heart. So I do have a revolving door of gear & I mod most of them. The biggest mistake many modders make is thinking that because they have invested whatever amount of money on a guitar after buying it is that the guitar is now worth that much more money. In most cases it is the opposite. When you personalize a guitar you limit the number of people that guitar appeals to. Even if you include all of the original parts & have been careful to choose drop in "upgrade" parts, the posibility of returning the guitar to stock represents work most players can't do by themselves. Full on parts guitars have even less appeal on the used market.

    Most the money & effort is "a labour of love" where your payment was the satisfaction of doing the work & having something your way.

    Like mentioned, if the goal is to have something that is exactly what you want & you're going to keep it long enough to justify the time/money you'll invest, then it's partscaster all the way.

    Because I have real bad G.A.S. & I'm a modder all my new guitars are used guitars. I usually just snag something under market value, have my way with it and either sell it with mods (for also under stock value) or return to stock & sell for actual market value.
     
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  11. EC Strat

    EC Strat Senior Stratmaster Gold Supporting Member

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    They do go quickly
     
  12. EC Strat

    EC Strat Senior Stratmaster Gold Supporting Member

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    Partscaster for me - my Clapton Strat is more partscaster than anything now.
     
  13. Tguitarfloyd

    Tguitarfloyd Strat-Talker

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    That's a good budget for a quality Strat and I wish you good luck in your quest! My experiences have been very different from some of the posters here. I started playing Strats in 1963 and over the years I played professionally at night and worked days in guitar shops. As a result I've owned and played over 100 Fenders. Never had the issues that some others have had on the contrary, my Fenders have always been the best instruments along with many Gibsons I've owned. As the older Strats, Teles and Jazzmasters became more valuable, I'd sell or trade and at the moment I'm playing a 56 RI and 50s AO. Both are excellent guitars with no issues, both bought new and shopworn for a reduction in price. I play onstage weekends with a local Blues band and I can grab either guitar and not worry about the sound or playability. The 56 RI is 50s specs with 7.25 radius and vintage frets weighing in at 6.9 lbs and is my favorite (perhaps ever). The AO is a close second place, weighing 7.8 lbs and having a 9.5 radius neck with tall frets and I love that neck just as much. It had a pretty thick nitro finish which used to get a bit sticky under the stage lights, but I took some 400 and 600 grit sandpaper to it between the frets and on the back just enough to thin it down (more like the vintage ones felt) and it is superb! I too am a lover of the Fender logo on a Strat headstock and, while that has nothing to do with playability, it has much to do with my own soul satisfaction. Since I worked in stores and shops for many years, I've also built lots of guitars...mostly Strat and Tele style. Some from commercial parts and some from scratch (used to have drill press, bandsaw and routers) and am now building a partscaster with a one piece rosewood neck and a pawlonia body, both from Guitar Mill in Murfreesboro, Tennessee and with Fender 54 RI pickups and vintage style bridge. I always put my Floyd logo on my builds, designed to somewhat resemble a Fender one (hand painted). With a couple of Fender Strats and a nice partscaster on the way, I'm feeling kinda like the cat who ate the canary haha! All said...I'm of the belief that, more than likely you would do just fine with an AO 50s or some kind of Fender Vintage Reissue. Don't have any fretwear on either of mine after 2 and a half years of steady playing.


    But....now I'm gassing for a nice vintage style 59 Les Paul. (Sigh).
     
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  14. df1953

    df1953 Strat-Talk Member

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    Its all about the neck. tonebomb.com. Tell them exact neck specs you want, fret size, radius, radius, profile ect. less then $300. Look at Guitarfetish.com. XGP finished or unfinished bodys. They are 62 strat specs. $90 Twilight.com for the loaded clapton noiseless pickups, $300. tuners $50, nice bridge and knobs $165. $930. Twilight.com Has probably 50 different types of Fender loaded prewired pickguards, custom shop quality premium parts. Just screw it onto your body and solder the bridge groung to output plug. You can build one that plays and sounds as nice as Fenders $4,000 Clapton model. Your resale however is dirt. You would be lucky to get $500 if you ever wanted to sell it..lol But I doubt that would be the problem. Fetish's finishes are Nitro and nice also. I call this brownie. Not a Clapton strat but mine. Tonebomb neck with a 10-16", $300 radius, Vintage Fender frets like claptons, Pickups however are Lindy Fralin High outputs. Bridge is a Schaller adjustable roller $140, Body was unfinished from guitarfetish, I did the finish myself, its a coconut pearl. Had pearl block inlays on the neck to match pear top gold knobs. Gold Fender locking tuners also. My go to strat because its me. I own a Fender 2000 hotrod, a 2016 Les paul standard. Brownie still my Favorite.(Tip buy the finished body, or add a $150 and your labor to the $930) I have done it both ways. Finished body much easier.
     

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  15. jackietreehorn

    jackietreehorn Strat-Talker

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    I’ve done both. The positives of a partscaster is you get exactly what you want. The negative is resale value sucks if you move on and a guitar is essentially a one piece machine made up of a bunch of parts. Sometimes when you combine the parts, for whatever reason, it just doesn’t sound great. I sold my most recent parts caster. I ordered a warmoth neck which felt great but was too small. (Their “standard” is not as fat as Fenders). I was going to build a new one but I found a stock strat that spoke to me. My advice, if you can’t find what you’re looking for, build it, but if there is a stock strat that with a couple mods can get you where you want to be, that’s probably the better option.
     
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  16. libertarian

    libertarian Strat-O-Master

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    You’re asking the right questions I think and only you can answer what your preferences and priorities are.
    It all starts with the neck and the frets for me. And I’m not even picky as far as specs go. I play all sorts of stuff that isn’t a V neck. Slightly bigger and rounder is good for me, radius can be anything if set up right and with attention to detail when it comes to frets. For Strats I have a mid 90s CS version of the American Standard (modern C, 9.5”, fantastic instrument that I bought new back then and I would buy one from that same series used again - not “vintage” at all and with poly finish) - my second one is an all original 58. We all know the specs on those in theory and it’s pure magic. No artificially banged up recreation is the same or really close. Though those are great guitars in their own right for those who like that thing.

    All my other guitars I bought new and never relic’d.

    Here’s the thing: im kind of in the same boat as you for a Tele that I eventually want. I personally think that none of the current Fender non-Custom Shop guitars quite cut it. They lack attention to detail, the woods have become cheaper (not entirely Fender’s fault), the frets these days are mostly horrible (and they still don’t offer stainless steel) and sharp fret ends are common even on the more expensive stuff. I don’t care if it’s poly or whatever is called nitro these days (not the same as in the olden days anyway) and O don’t like anything relic.

    Not much available then even from the off the rack custom shop as most are relic and some attempt at recreating the old ones. I’d rather have something more modern then. So a partscaster is not a bad idea -not necessary cheaper though, don’t hold any value, and lots can go wrong.
    That leaves you with finding perhaps a used CS to ones liking or another manufacturer. For another strat I would seriously consider the PRS (I don’t like PRS otherwise much) or a Ernie Ball MusicMan. Or a Suhr.

    I’m personally considering Suhr for
    The Tele - or maybe suck it up an order a one off from the CS - and even then you’ll need a Master built to get stainless steel frets which is ridiculous. Another one to consider might be the Eric Johnson model. That was really the only production line strat of recent that I liked and has nice necks.
     
  17. siegeld

    siegeld Strat-Talk Member

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    If you're considering the Silver Sky, try and get your hands on the PRS 305 first. I like the Paul's edited version of the strat (the 305), better than John's (Silver Sky). The set neck of the 305 gives the instrument an incomparable feel and it is just more of a pleasure to listen to and play. The trem, tuners, neck and fret work -- all tops on the 305, and its can get every vintage start sound.
     
  18. SanDiegoHarry

    SanDiegoHarry New Member!

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    A friend of mine just went through this very process.

    We went to the local high-end store and test drove several nice strats. A Custom Shop Fender (two, actually), a Suhr, a Silver Sky and a few other high-end (upward of $2k) strats. He settled on a silver sky. Said that it felt the best. The thicker neck and 7.25" radius felt good for him, and the quality of construction is top notch (PRS does not muck around).

    Let me suggest that you try very hard to ignore how a guitar looks and go by feel. Feel is critical when learning. So find a store and check them out.
     
  19. AGK13

    AGK13 Strat-Talk Member

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    Have you considered a Nash Guitar? I just ordered one and can’t wait!!!
     
  20. Scott Baxendale

    Scott Baxendale Senior Stratmaster Gold Supporting Member

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    Just buy a vintage Strat, there are thousands of them.