Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups

Changing a USA 52 RI to Honey/Nocaster Blonde

Discussion in 'Finely Finished' started by piptronic, Jan 3, 2009.

  1. piptronic

    piptronic TDPRI Member

    Sep 27, 2008
    New Zealand
    Hi There,

    What are peoples thoughts on changing a standard Butterscotch Blonde USA 52 RI to the nocaster/honey blonde? I just don't dig the Butterscotch, but I can't quite see myself forking out for a Custom Shop Nocaster... even though I REALLY love them. A 52RI can be picked up for well under half the price, if not a third of the price, of the Custom Shops... although I know they will not hold the same sort of value.

    Firstly, were the Tele's of this particular year/model actually produced in this colour?

    Secondly, will it destroy the value/integrity of the guitar... ie am I being sacrilegious!?!?!?

    And lastly, does anybody else see the value in doing this?

    It is purely an aesthetic thing.

    I am not too keen to get a Japanese/Mexican reissue and do it to that, as it just doesn't seem the same to me.

    Let me know your thoughts, as I would really like to know what you think.

    Thanks :)


  2. Wayne Alexander

    Wayne Alexander Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

    Refinishing a 52RI is not easy, and if you pay someone else to do it, not cheap. Either one destroys the resale value of the guitar if that matters. If I were you I'd get a used Nocaster. They tend to be lighter, have thinner finishes, and be more resonant than the 52RI, and they have a thicker, nicer shaped neck. You should be able to find a used Nocaster for not much more than a 52RI.

    Despite all that, if you own a 52RI that you love enough that you'll NEVER sell it and want to refinish it, feel free.

  3. piptronic

    piptronic TDPRI Member

    Sep 27, 2008
    New Zealand
    Wow. Good advice. One thing I should point out is that I live in New Zealand, and I have never seen a Nocaster second hand locally. A lot of US sellers on ebay won't ship to NZ... so it makes it a little harder to pick one up, other than brand new. The only Nocasters I have seen have been well above US$2000, and that seems a lot more than the 52RI.

    However, maybe I just have to save the pennys for a Nocaster!

    Last edited: Jan 3, 2009

  4. Gone Fission

    Gone Fission TDPRI Member

    Or get a replacement body finished the way you want. Really good option if you're attached to the 52RI neck.


  5. madmark

    madmark Tele-Afflicted

    Nov 18, 2007
    New York
    I agree. I wouldnt mess with the 52 Finish... or sell your 52 body


  6. Lostheart

    Lostheart Tele-Afflicted

    Nov 26, 2005
    I stripped my 52 AV RI and I don't feel sorry one bit.
    There was enough polyurethane for three guitars under the nitro.



    Too many projects have kept me from refinishing yet, but it's next in line...gonna turn it into a 57 whiteguard repro...

  7. Buckocaster51

    Buckocaster51 Super Moderator Staff Member Ad Free Member

    Jan 6, 2005
    Iowa USA
    Admin Post
    If you think it will make you happy, do it.

    Those guitars pretty near enough grow on trees.

    If the top coat truly is some sort of lacquer, and the base coat is truly some sort of plastic übersealer, then you should be able to get rid of the color coat with nothing but acetone/lacquer thinner and paper towels.

    I wouldn't even hesitate to do it...if you are sure that is what you want.

    There is probably no way you can get it on that side of the equator, but


    Champagne Frost would probably do you well. :)

    You may have to mix your own.

    But then I make up most of this stuff as I go along.

  8. tweeet

    tweeet Tele-Holic

    Oct 2, 2008
    HI.Did you strip it just using the heat gun or did you use a lacquer stripper of some kind as well ?

  9. Lostheart

    Lostheart Tele-Afflicted

    Nov 26, 2005
    Only the heat gun on the lightest out and take it easy and you won't scorch the wood.

  10. boris bubbanov

    boris bubbanov Telefied Ad Free Member

    Welcome, piptronic!

    Save the AV52 body and finish a USA Custom Guitar body in light ash instead.

    BTW, I got a new old stock NOS No-Caster last year in great shape, very little shopwear, for $ 1,432.00 without the silly cases. Keep looking; they ARE out there. Current in store asking price in USA for AV52s is $ 1,349-1,499, so No-Casters are not that much more once depreciation is factored in.

IMPORTANT: Treat everyone here with respect, no matter how difficult!
No sex, drug, political, religion or hate discussion permitted here.