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help! tele or strat?

Discussion in 'Telecaster Discussion Forum' started by youngmanjr2, Feb 19, 2012.

  1. youngmanjr2

    youngmanjr2 TDPRI Member

    Dec 20, 2010
    paragould arkansas
    I have been looking for a new guitar and thought that I wanted a Strat but every time I pick up a tele it just feels good. I have a squier Strat and wanted to upgrade but I cant decide what I want. I have narrowed it down to a highway one Strat or tele, what do you guys think? I went into the store to find a new strat but now im not sure. Do any of you guys play a highway one? What do you think about them?
  2. czook

    czook Tele-Afflicted

    Jan 5, 2011
    NW MO
    This is a Tele site, the answers may not be objective :)

    Personally I would choose a tele style guitar every time. Strats are far more common, but a Tele with a maple fretboard is a work of art.
  3. caferacer

    caferacer Tele-Afflicted

    Jul 3, 2011
    phila pa
    no more strats for me
    it is TELE's all the way for now
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  5. KevinB

    KevinB Doctor of Teleocity

    Mar 4, 2007
    New Jersey
    What a silly question!

    On this forum anyway :eek:
  6. Albionic

    Albionic Tele-Meister

    Nov 4, 2011
    United Kingdom
    buy a tele and upgrade the squire
  7. caferacer

    caferacer Tele-Afflicted

    Jul 3, 2011
    phila pa
    for real answer all kidding aside
    the highway 1 guitars are nice
    so are the mexican ones
    the squire stuff? not so great

    I would, (speaking for myself)
    trade in the squire strat, plus the money you would spend on a highway 1
    and buy a Mexican Strat AND a Mexican TELE, then down the line you could upgrade the pickups, my Mexican TELE with some better pickups is every bit as good as a made in the USA guitar, (and yes I own several made in the USA fender's)
  8. Rolling Estonian

    Rolling Estonian Friend of Leo's

    Aug 23, 2009
    Bethesda, MD.
    I wonder what kind of answers you'd get if you posted this on a Strat forum? Go with a tele, no brainer.

  9. tele12

    tele12 Friend of Leo's

    Dec 2, 2006
    Mexican Fenders aren't that cheap and Highway Ones aren't that expensive to make this work.

    Get a HWY while you still can, they are being discontinued, great guitars, they are a step up in almost everyway from a MIM Standard, and I do have both.
    The Teles and Strats are both nice.
  10. gitlvr

    gitlvr Friend of Leo's

    Aug 18, 2008
    Northern Va.
    I'm going to play devil's advocate here.
    Other than the fact that you want to upgrade the quality, is there anything you don't like about a strat that a tele would fix?
    I like teles, they're a great guitar. But the most comfortable guitar I've ever played, hands down, is a strat. They just feel like home to me. They are also very versatile(not that the tele isn't). Get one you like, that's a comfortable weight, setup to play well, and they're a dream. Hard to beat. MHO.


    Nov 6, 2006
    Wilmington, Delaware
    Tele or Strat?

    I fought that battle for years and there was only one solution for me.

    (I'm sure you can guess)

    It doesn't matter which you acquire first. Take it and make it your own, use it to express those spiritual impulses that only a (Strat/Tele) can enable. It may take a while to find all of the things you never knew were in you. and THEN you go after the other. If you start with a STRAT and wring out all of the SRV, Hendrix and Glen Campbell (and everybody else's) licks, then you can buy a TELE and start on the Roy Buchanan, Danny Gatton and Brent Mason (and everybody else's) licks!

    I'm recommending this because one of my other interests is shooting long range rifle (bench shooting-competition) and there's an old saying among shooters: "Fear the man who has but one gun". A man with one rifle will learn how to hit the target at any distance, but a guy with more money than time (or a dilettante who masters nothing but buying things then bragging about them) who owns many rifles may never master a single one. And every good guitar I've owned brought out different sounds and licks that never surfaced when I was playing a different axe.

    I bought a used '74 Tele in the mid '80s but I sold that great sounding axe (while I played a KRAMER-I needed a trem in that band and the other guitarist played a Kramer too) and I will always regret it.

    So, now, I have a Tele and a Strat and the universe finally has some meaning again.

    The thrill of my new American Standard Tele will keep me happy as I finally modify my MIM Strat to my personal preferences. I'm changing it from a FAT STRAT (humbucker and two single coils) to 3 single coils, I'm having the frets dressed and ordering a new pick guard and a stainless steel neck plate and matching SS plate screws. (The original, .060-thick Mexican Strat neck plate is actually bending at the corners from the screw tension. Of course excessive tension from the Micro Tilt® may have caused that. The new, .075-thick plate in hard stainless steel will solve that problem) And, the ACME TONESHAPER I installed a couple of years ago is really great for tone and hum suppression, and I can easily change the pup wiring to other configurations. So, needless to say, I can hardly wait to put it all back together.

    Food for thought:
    So, anyway about 7 years ago I ordered a MIM FAT STRAT w/ FLOYD ROSE (the FR trem is made by PING and it's excellent-as good or better than the original and don't let anyone tell you different. And, they actually produce vibrato not a tremolo effect but who's arguing?) but later I realized that I wanted a traditional Strat sound (you know, like Hendrix and Gilmour-heh heh) and I shouldn't have allowed myself to be influenced by my Strat-style Kramer with humbuckers. In fact, if I had it to do over I'd have ordered it without the FR trem, and then if I didn't like the MIM STRAT style trem I could have replaced it with a better one. (The string spacing is different between an American and a Mexican Strat so an American STRAT trem is not the answer. But there are great trems from other companies that will fit.)

    I'm writing this in case you aren't already aware of it so you don't find it out after you buy the axe. It was frustrating for me to learn about the incompatibility after I bought the guitar. Of course there are things on different models of American Fenders that aren't interchangeable. So, it's not just incompatibility between American made and Mexican assembled instrument parts.

    If you can only afford to support one guitar at a time (emotionally if not financially-you know, like a wife) then consider this: Unless your music makes a tremolo mandatory (or you want a TELE with a tremolo tailpiece-another personal choice and some folks love them) then buy the guitar that says, "I've been waiting for you and now that you've found me will you puleeze take me home?" And each time you pick it up you'll be glad you did!

    EDIT: Some of the guys on another FENDER website swear by their HIGHWAY ONES!


    Nov 6, 2006
    Wilmington, Delaware
    Good answer, good answer. I'm gonna be keeping my eye on you! :)
  13. DKoor

    DKoor TDPRI Member

    Dec 23, 2009
    Listen to the clean sounds of both guitars, and particularly those types that interest you.
    I find it VERY revealing...
  14. PeterVV

    PeterVV Tele-Afflicted

    Sep 14, 2011
    South Wales, UK

    Oh hell, I meant Tele.......

    I think...

    I have a HWY1 Strat , and a Baja Tele. The strat is easier to play, BUT.......... the tele is the one I always reach for.

    No flippin help am I ?:rolleyes:


    Nov 6, 2006
    Wilmington, Delaware
    Strat or Tele? (A Question For The Ages)

    An intelligent and well reasoned reply, my friend. And, I'm modifying my MIM Strat right now because I share your high opinion of them.

    Only two things keep me from selling my Squier: It's one of the greatest playing axes ever, and Jeff Healey played a reworked Squier. I've actually used mine to record some rhythm tracks and it sounds fine with a properly adjusted amp and a direct line into the recorder.

    BUT, when Healey played with Stevie Ray (it's on YOU TUBE) I could sure hear a diff in their tones. Of course SRV used real heavy strings (and his fingers were strong enough to bend them all at once! A man's man if there ever was one) and that could definitely have accounted for Stevie's chunky, satisfying tone.

    But, Healey's tone was fine and he never had to apologize for it.

    I may just put my MIM pickguard on my Squier once I complete the project on my MIM FAT STRAT.
  16. jefrs

    jefrs Doctor of Teleocity

    Nov 20, 2007
    Newbury, England
    I got a stratoclone and a tele and a tele and a semi and a ...

    And I normally end up playing one of the tele.

    But tonight I'm playing the Gretsch.

    Look, you've got a strat, so you need a tele, there's no point having two identical guitars, is there.

    And playing a different instrument usually improves your playing on the first one.


    Nov 6, 2006
    Wilmington, Delaware
    Speaking of the Gretsch, Ed Roman sent several of the early 60's Country Gentleman models back to have them refinished from walnut to black just as George Harrison did. And, I'm afraid to call and ask "how much?".

    I owned one when I was a kid for about a month. (until the cops took it and me away-turns out it was stolen. Who knew?) And, I'd sure like to have another.
  18. adjason

    adjason Friend of Leo's

    Jan 9, 2010
    The only thing I prefer the strat for is the middle neck combo pickup postiion. For everything else I take the tele every time.
  19. zimp

    zimp Tele-Meister

    Mar 27, 2009
    Easy, buy a CV tele and a CV strat. Best of both worlds!
  20. stilesg57

    stilesg57 Tele-Holic

    Oct 20, 2011
    Central NC
    Easy: Gibson something :D
  21. Mur

    Mur Tele-Afflicted

    Jun 30, 2004
    I never liked all the plastic in Strats. And the headstock is goofy.
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