Fender CBS and Pre CBS guitars
This guitar was a lucky punch. A great player and a real lady soundwise! Profound 3 dimensional sound that never molest your ears with harshness as maple necks and ash bodies tend to do.
I had waited over 2 years to go for a real 50-ies Strat. There are not many around and of these that are around I didn't really like any of them that much. I felt that this one was IT and I was lucky to have support in buying. This one really did the trick for me. Thanks Paul you made it happen!!
Here the exact the description from Fiesta Finishes USA:
"1958 Fender Stratocaster. This guitar features a Swamp Ash wood body, and hence, originally came from the Fender factory in 1958 as a Blonde guitar, as Ash wood was used at that time exclusively on Blonde guitars.
The guitar features a body refinish in nitro lacquer, translucent Blonde, by Fiesta Finishes™. The neck features original finish on back and headstock, with a very old, light overspray, which has checked and looks original. The fingerboard has been refinished, along with a nice, pro refret. There is one tiny dent on the neck which has a small amount of filler. There is also a small chip in the wood near one of the tuner ferrules.
Original electronics include pickups, pots, 3 way switch, tone cap. Original plastic includes pick guard, pickup covers, knobs, switch tip. Original hardware includes, bridge, saddles, trem block, trem claw, jack plate, Single Line Kluson tuners, neck plate, strap buttons.
The trem bar and trem covers are reproductions.
The neck date is 7-58, body date is 9/58. Nice matched original pickup set measures, Neck to Bridge, 5.7K, 5.7K, 5.8K Ohms. The guitar features a very light Swamp Ash body, and weighs just over 7 lbs (3.17kg). Remove the trem arm and trem cover, and it dips to 6.9 lbs (3.1kg!)
Really nice neck on this guitar, measures .791" at 1st fret and .949" at 12th fret. Not like the V necks of '56-'57, and not like the thinner necks in '59-'60. More like a '54-'55 neck.
The guitar comes in the original '58 Tweed case. This case is structurally sound. no collapsed wood or bad corners. Latches and hinges work fine. The tweed, and leather is quite worn, and it appears that the original gold lining was tinted to be red. A sturdy, if worn looking, tweed case."
1Pot had to be replaced and the middle pickup was rewound by haensler-electrics.ch due to malfunction. The frets were replaced for more playing comfort by Matzguitars.ch
A killer Strat with the warm vintage sound one can only dream of!
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I had the chance to try one or two Jazzmasters in my life. They sounded dull and dead to me. I then had the chance to hear a musician play his Jazzmaster side to side with a CS MB Tele. Again this sound that didn't resonate and integrate in the mix. That's why I never was tempted to buy one. I thought that was the way they sounded. So I came across this elderly musician Walter who had played his Jazzmaster a lot in the 60-ies. It was cool at that time to have a 9-string Jazzmaster which explains the filled holes in the neck. The first in a series of "crimes" he did to his beloved babyblue 64 Stratocaster and this 63 Jazzmaster. Since he did his biggest errors on his Strat (refret that killed the neck and refinish from a car dealer). The Jazzmaster in consequence was only misstreated with a white car laqueer refinish. The neck was kept with run down frets, almost non existent, a horrible refret from 9 to 6 strings and the whole guitar smelled horrible of humidity. Since he had good contacts to the musicscene someone recommended Dragan Milosevic from Fine Art Guitars to restore this guitar. Walter wanted it refinished in the old colour. Dragan told him with selfconfidence that he wouldn't do such poor finishes as they used to do back in those days. New frets, restored fretboard and .... a fantastic new finish. He spent 1'100 Euro, more than he had payed for this guitar when he bought it. I contacted Dragan and he was so kind to give me the pictures before restauration and pictures of his restoration process. I am a sucker for Vintage guitars. But when it comes down to unplayable instruments that suck in every respect and sell for over 20'000 Euros I must confess that this has nothing to do with music and my love for old guitars. They should better collect Superman Comics! That would keep the price down and give us musicians access to unreached sounding instruments! Guitars were not made to be hanging in a vitrine. The good ones like this "Walter" Jazzmaster sound so tremendously good that no new built guitar can touch them. But Dragan's restoration really changed my view on this vintage hype.
I am now the proud second owner of a refinished but mostly original pre CBS built Jazzmaster restored into a an amazing sounding and playing beauty. Even the radius is more comfortable now and adjusts to the modern player. No way that any masterbuilt and (many original?) Jazzmaster can get even near this. She sounds so full with the 009-strings on it. I am planning to replace the original bridge with a mastery bridge and set it up with 010-strings...
I couldn't wait and put 0.10 strings on it. To me it plays a lot better now and the sound improved as it was to expected. I am still waiting for the mastery bridge to get one step closer to Tone Nirvana.
A KILLER GUITAR!!!! 3,7 kg
By the way: This guitar changed my opinion towards finishes. If someone like Dragan Milosevic (www.fineart-guitar-workshop.de) does the job then it is not necessary to have them reliced to improve the sound. Be carefull from whom you will make a refinish. Dragan is a great pro to do this job!
I installed the Mastery Bridge and was dissapointed. Everything sounded very clear but also harsh. It destroyed the great vintage sound. I contacted Woody from Mastery Bridge to check with him if he had made similar experiences with Vintage gear. Never got a response. Probably didn't like critical comments on his products. Since good tone is my quest I hoped to get a helpful answer. So I put the old bridge on which is perfectly in tune and sold the Mastery Bridge and feel happy with this wonderful instrument.
This well documented Tele comes from the Pre CBS era and is a wonderfull instrument. Everything is original, minus the body refinish, frets and the pickguard. The PU's sound great, the instrument has been professionally refretted and plays fantastically.
I didn't like those 60' saddles, so I replaced them with Glendale ZZ-Top saddles. Tremendous difference. Original saddles are safely packed up in the case for Vintage nerds. As a player there is no question to what saddle sounds massivly better.
After Matz-Guitars.ch finetuned the instrument, it is an immense pleasure to gig this instrument. Great sound and sustain.
The neck feels just perfect not too thin not too thick with the necessary beef.
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A dream come true for a guitar player. Imagine a 64 with outstanding sound, playability and resonance. This is the holy grail for players. All that have played this guitar including myself state that this is one of the best vintage 60ies guitar they have ever played. This is not a partscaster although some parts have been replaced, including the middle PU (70ies PU). All CS instruments on this page are superiour instruments but this guitar beats them all in sound and resonance. .....this is as good as it gets! 7.47 pounds!! Now professionally refretted and improved by Matz-Guitars.ch Plays like butter!!!
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Sold as original by Gregor Hilden.
It is known that building quality in the CBS period was aimed at massproduction. There were good guitars, there were mediocre guitars and then there were lots of bad guitars, especially towards the end of the 70ies. This one is a 72 guitar with a fantastic neck that is comparable to a 63 or even slightly chunkier without having a baseball feel. It plays with a fantastic feel. This guitar sounds as great as it looks. It is very resonant acoustically and sounds full of life plugged in. No weak spots, well balanced. She plays as she looks, superiour! Gregor Hilden who sold it to me and claimed that it was the best 70 ies Stratocaster he has played. I believed him and didn't regret it :) It has that vintagetouch that so many of the CBS guitars are missing.
I had this guitar set up by MatzGuitars.ch
The instrument had been professionally refretted with 6150 Dunlops by Matz. The fretboard radius is 9.5" (modern Fender spec) as bought from Greg. This makes it a dream to play.
You will have a hard time finding an equally great playing Vintage Strat.
Update 2016: I had to replace the inputjack. Matz did this for me.
This early 1972 Telecaster was a lucky punch. It was bought from a Luthier in the 90-ies. So it is a good instrument from a luthiers point view which must not be identical with a player perspective. But the ingredients are fine. Since he is one of the most reknown Vintage expert, I could be sure that there are no surprises according to original accuracy. Since he had it sold and rebought from a customer the guitar became the whole luthier treatment, from finetuning to the refret. This Tele plays and sounds simply awesome. Very resonant and keeps easily up or overpasses any maple mid 60ies I have played so far. Great guitar!
This is an exceptionally resonant light weight guitar. It has been stripped but seems to be otherwise original (check certificate), bought in a german vintage store. It looks as if the guitar has been really beaten up. This Tele has all the playing feel and soul after restauration (refretting, new bridge, adjustments) that makes it a top notch vintage guitar. A guitar that will make you love it and that you don't want to put away.
It has a great neck very similar to the 1968 Tele below. It is extremely comfortable to play. The pickups sound really sweet and balanced unlike the newer ones. The bridge pickup sound (68) is really nasty and cuts through steel without sounding harsh.
The frets are now replaced and the guitar professionally set up. I changed the bridge for a Wilkinson WT3 for more sustain and accuracy. Original bridge is included. Killer guitar for vintage lovers!
This Tele is a fantastic player. I never played a better neck than this one. The only one to beat my Haar necks!! The Dunlops 6105 make it play like butter. The guitar sounds very acoustic and warm in neck and middle position. The bridge position has great twang.