c.2014 Mr. Parker's Coodercaster

Update September 2014: I've updated this blog post entirely!

I built this Tele-style guitar for Mr. Parker up in Burlington and I've finally sealed it up and it's ready to get some play. It's been an on-again, off-again project and the last time out the flag-scheme paint job was much more of a bold, direct experience. Since the last build-up that's been oversprayed and sanded down for a mellower effect and I've also reworked the bridge to be more like a Tele bridge but, at the same time, its own thing.

The parts on this guy are: Warmoth vintage-style Strat neck with Gibson-y frets, original 70s Goldfoil pickups, new compensated brass Tele saddles, cut-down humbucker Tele bridge, good quality pots and a giant polyester cap and 4-way switch for that extra series wiring position. The body was given to Mr. Parker free but it turned out to be a decent mahogany 2-piece slab with just the right amount of pockmarking to make it vintagey in feel. 

Requests were for a fast-feeling, vintage-vibe instrument and it's certainly quick as heck but the Goldfoil pickups give it a quite different sound from an actual Tele: it's more like a 50s Dynasonic Gretsch in sound to me with a bit of that mahogany Les Paul bloom going on in the midrange. The pups are a bit microphonic, too, which means that the bridge pickup which is mounted on a brass plate really does have a 40s/50s lap steel sort of sound to it that's, frankly, kinda awesome or the twang thang.

These pickups are pretty hot, too, which means that they drive the amp with a toasty sort of sound.

I finish new necks with a wipe-on poly "gel varnish" substance which I really, really like a lot. It gives a satin look that pops the grain out "just enlough" while at the same time feeling like bare wood. It's so good for summertime playing as your hands don't get stuck.

I kept the brass/chrome alternating look from the pickups all the way through the bridge: there's brass screws in the chrome section and chrome ones in the brass section. The actual "bridge" part is cut down from a Tele humbucker bridge. The extra width suited the pickup's extra length side to side. The brass plate that the pup is mounted to and the bridge is mounted on is cut from an old brass door handguard.

The silver stars really catch the light in pics but they're a bit more subdued in person.

Vintage-style Gotoh tuners hold pitch nicely.

...and you can't really argue with an electrosocket jack.