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So you like guitars with a bit of history?

Andy Eagle

Experienced
That was a player guitar ,New nut new frets and a bridge pickup swap (old sd hot rails :eek:.) Not really a surprise choice if you didn't want to rout 35 years ago. Great stuff. I've played quite a lot a rockstar guitars over the years (Jimi Hendrix, EVH, Gary Moore, Peter Green, Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck, David Gilmore, and a ton of not quite as famous. The one thing most had in common was that they weren't particularly good right down to dreadful .
Most were being sold (not all) and not Iconic apart from one or two, the Woodstock white Strat and I didn't get to play it but I did handle it. The nut was all over the place with the spacing. The left hand conversion looked like it was done by a four year old.
 

Knobs McGee

Inspired
Fascinating stuff. I wonder, at what point in his career he installed the Hot Rails. Just goes to show how this veteran session guy views his trusted axe as a tool, not a jewel.

I disagree with their "expert" on the value of the guitar, without the history. If it weren't modified, maybe $35k.

How did you come to play all those "Rockstar guitars"?
 

Andy Eagle

Experienced
I do auction valuations, authenticating them checking provenance. Some I worked on for the artist. Some I look after in collections.
 

Knobs McGee

Inspired
Sounds like an interesting gig. It's a pretty specialized field. Not like evaluating early Roman empire currancy. 😉 Are you a collector as well?
 

Andy Eagle

Experienced
Not really but I have all the guitars I want (20 at the moment) and have owned about 200 over the years. High end vintage is only interesting to me as a commodity mostly because they are so bad to play and you can't alter them. Im a repair tech 95% of the time this is a bonus because people started to ask me to work on collections. I once had to tell a guy out of his 7 pre CBS Fenders none were right, the best was 50% original and refinished and most where parts fakes with the odd right piece. In the world of vintage Fender there are some fantastically accurate fakes and really good relic paint jobs .
 

Knobs McGee

Inspired
WOW, beautiful! Are these built from parts or were necks & bodies from scratch. Either way, you're obviously a very talented luthier.

I'm with you about owning valuable vintage instruments. I've owned a few but they weren't vintage yet...nor was I.

The dude you broke the news to about his prized Fenders must have been devastated...emotionally and financially. It's sad to know that there are that many con artists out there.
 

Andy Eagle

Experienced
I have someone with a CNC who cuts to my speck and the rest is me.
The hardware is from a variety of sources,( micrometer right ) and the pickups are Abby hand wound replicas built to the year speck.
50 broadcaster 53 Tele and 54 Strat. Note the different shape on the plastic parts on the strat. They are two piece off centre joined bodies painted the old way on nails . I did light relics so I could paint them super thin with only the absolute minimum of grain filler . Fender can do you one like this but it's $8K.
 

Andy Eagle

Experienced
Once you have handled as many vintage Gibsons and Fenders as I have over the years you can spot all but the best fakes immediately and then there are a few that even get NOS centre labs pots and the old shape CRL switch then gas the solder and put the whole thing in a sun bed to fool blacklight. Those almost deserve to pass.
 

Andy Eagle

Experienced
Old Fender plastic is polystyrene not bakelite and is makes a sound when you rattle the parts together in a bag that NOBODY has copied and the smell. Everything else is out there so accurate you really have a hard time even next to the real thing with a glass and micrometer.
 

Sleestak

Power User
.
Most were being sold (not all) and not Iconic apart from one or two, the Woodstock white Strat and I didn't get to play it but I did handle it. The nut was all over the place with the spacing. The left hand conversion looked like it was done by a four year old.
I have played that guitar. I worked for Experience Music Project (now "MoPop") in Seattle, and was in the room where this guitar was first unpacked after being purchased at auction. It definitely wasn't an exceptional example of 68 strat. If someone handed it to you off the rack at Gruhn's or something, you'd put it back and keep browsing. Still, I felt very fortunate to handle it, and play it (very gently).
I was there when all of the guitars in the Guitar Gallery were installed, and was among the last people to handle some of them. There is a 1957 Gibson Flying V in there (!). Yes, a 1957. It's a prototype and not from the first production run in 1958. It's a little paradoxical to me to see all those really beautiful guitars sitting behind museum glass cases like ancient objects from a royal tomb. Guitars with history have undeniable mojo, and I am glad they're in a place where the public can view them. While we were putting those guitars in place, it was all Spinal Tap, all the time:

Look... still has the old tag on, never even played it.
Don't touch it!
We'll I wasn't going to touch it, I was just pointing at it.
Well... don't point! It can't be played.
Don't point, okay. Can I look at it?
That's it, you've seen enough of that one.
 

Knobs McGee

Inspired
Wow, you guys have seen some s#!+ then. I can't believe someone would go to such lengths to turn parts into $25k. If they'd only use their powers for good instead of evil. 👹

Beautiful work on those guitars, Andy. I don't suppose your shop is in No-Cal, is it?

Think you fellas have got the wrong idea about Jimi's 68'. With Fuzz Face on 10 and enough purple micro-dot in your system, she's a great machine.
 

Andy Eagle

Experienced
Jimi played new guitars and amps and the "Woodstock" strat is a pretty ordinary strat.
Even the most iconic guitars are usually more about sentiment than instrument IME. The guitars I own are the best guitars I have ever played there are plenty out there as good but none better. If you want to play the best of the best you have to forget about history and sentiment or do what I did and make your own versions that fix the shortcomings of the originals or in some cases just stumble upon examples that have no issues and buy those. Oh and the best guitars that have ever been made are being made now.
 

Andy Eagle

Experienced
On a tech note the Fender replicas above all have flat radius fingerboards (16") and Jescar 57110 SS frets. I got tired of people telling me that you can hear SS frets . This is not strictly true as they were never comparing like with like. A vintage strat to a Suhr for instance. If you keep all the rest the same and only change ONE thing the difference is vastly reduced. You also need to test a fret of similar size to hear the real comparison. The SS fret has a fraction more weight and stiffness but I guarantee that if I put one SS fret of identical size in a vintage strat you wouldn't be able to hear it.
As for radius nobody ever said that the radius on a Les Paul was too flat to play comfortably. It is a myth that curved is more ergonomic . Lots of die hard 7.25" players have played my replicas and the response is "Can you make my strat/Tele play like this?" The simple fact with the geometry is that the flatter the fingerboard is the more next fret clearance there is at the same action at any point on the instrument. The bending geometry is the same direction.
 

TD77

Member
That was a great episode of that show. Guy got a nice piece of change for that guitar! Just the idea of it being on so many records is intriguing. When the Play It Loud exhibit was at the Met in NYC I went and spent hours just staring at everything on display. Seeing SRVs guitar up close was a high point. This thing was beat to shit and every scratch and road wound had a story to itself. Something tells me this thing wasn’t easy to play. lol
 

Attachments

Muad'zin

Fractal Fanatic
Jimi played new guitars and amps and the "Woodstock" strat is a pretty ordinary strat.
Even the most iconic guitars are usually more about sentiment than instrument IME. The guitars I own are the best guitars I have ever played there are plenty out there as good but none better. If you want to play the best of the best you have to forget about history and sentiment or do what I did and make your own versions that fix the shortcomings of the originals or in some cases just stumble upon examples that have no issues and buy those. Oh and the best guitars that have ever been made are being made now.
Makes sense. Building techniques keep on improving and CNC eliminates for a lot of human error.

That was a great episode of that show. Guy got a nice piece of change for that guitar! Just the idea of it being on so many records is intriguing. When the Play It Loud exhibit was at the Met in NYC I went and spent hours just staring at everything on display. Seeing SRVs guitar up close was a high point. This thing was beat to shit and every scratch and road wound had a story to itself. Something tells me this thing wasn’t easy to play. lol
He played like what, 0.13 strings? I'm amazed it was playable at all.
 

Andy Eagle

Experienced
But a custom set , quite close to a set of 11s with a 13 on top and tuned down to E flat. Then he would go lighter during the tour if it got hard on his fingers. Now add 6100 frets (easier to play) and it's not so crazy.
 

TD77

Member
The crazy thing for me is that more time has gone by since SRV's death than the guitar was old when he died.
Sad. Still remember hearing the news on the radio (yeah we listened to the radio back then lol). I was devastated. Such a loss. Anyway seeing this guitar up close was an experience.
 
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