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

Looking for a new tele - American Pro vs Road Worn ?

Discussion in 'Telecaster Discussion Forum' started by Riversider, Nov 3, 2017.

  1. Riversider

    Riversider Tele-Meister

    Mar 25, 2013
    Bristol UK
    I’m looking at a new tele as I’m currently without one, shockingly, but having some trouble picking one….

    I’ve previously owned these three types –

    Baja (great pickups and overall package, but I never 100% bonded with the neck, both the thickness/shape of it and the sticky feeling I got from the glossy finish on the fingerboard)

    American Special – love the feel of the satin back neck, the satin fingerboard finish, the pickups, but couldn’t really get used to the huge frets after owning it for a while…

    Baja 60s – nice pickups and bought on a great deal, but eventually tired of the too-thin neck

    For the above reasons (yes I’m picky!) these teles all fell by the wayside.

    However I seriously want another tele, having recently tried an impressive 50s Road Worn out – I loved the feel of the neck on it (great finish front and back) but not mad keen on 7.25 radius as I seem more comfortable with 9.5. The relic thing also doesn’t do a lot for me and seems expensive for a MIM compared to the value in a Baja, say. Nitro finish is certainly cool though, that’s the first tele I’ve ever held that has it.

    So I am looking at a couple of options, potentially, a Special Edition Road Worn with a 9.5 radius (in Europe we currently have a Hot Rod Special Edition with a Seymour Duncan 59 in the neck – here’s a link, if it works - )

    I can’t try one of these out without a few hours drive though and have heard some people say the neck pup is a bit of a mismatch with the bridge?

    Alternatively I’m considering an American Pro, approximately £300 more ($390 or so), but looks like a lot more instrument really, all things considered.

    Olympic White would be my pick if I have to go rosewood, but for owners of the maple board American Pro, how does the gloss finish compare to other teles? I don’t like the thick sticky gloss on most maple Fenders I’ve tried, like that Baja - if there was a satin option I’d buy maple in a heartbeat, assuming the step up in cost is worth it in other areas over that Road Worn…..

    Last edited: Nov 3, 2017

  2. bluzkat

    bluzkat Tele-Holic

    Feb 20, 2011
    Lansing, Michigan
    The neck on the American Pro isn't glossy (maple or rosewood). You owe it to yourself to try one, I love my American Pros. Here's one:

    Mystic Seafoam Tele.jpg

    larsjen, badfish_lewis and brbadg like this.

  3. rze99

    rze99 Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

    Feb 26, 2014
    South London UK
    Why not build one with all the parts that are right for you?

  4. 8barlouie

    8barlouie Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

    May 9, 2015
    Seekonk, MA
    You might want to consider the Fender Mod Shop. They start with a Pro, and you can choose colors, two different neck profiles, fingerboard, three different pickup configurations and more. It’s about a $200 or $300 upcharge.

  5. Strato50

    Strato50 Tele-Holic

    Mar 30, 2017
    Port Arthur TX
    I can build you one better than what Fender is putting down.
    TeleTown, DaphneBlue and Anode100 like this.

  6. Old Tele Hack

    Old Tele Hack Tele-Meister Silver Supporter

    Mar 31, 2017
    Have you looked at the American Elites? The compound radius neck & fretboard profiles on that guitar are very pleasing to me, and the 4th gen noiseless pickups, while not Lollars, ain't half bad.
    You could probably build yourself a VERY nice playing guitar with everything exactly the way you want it for $500 less picking stuff outta the Warmoth catalog, and that would include boutique pickups. It won't have the resale of a "real" Fender - but, it'll be yours and play just like you want it to.
    Quinn23 likes this.

  7. rze99

    rze99 Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

    Feb 26, 2014
    South London UK
    Not available to UK customers - I asked.

  8. Riversider

    Riversider Tele-Meister

    Mar 25, 2013
    Bristol UK
    I'd rather not build one. I'm sure there's one in the lineup that's right for me, just need to find it. The Road Worn looks and feels nice, but for the extra £300 I think I'd try to go for the American Pro. Lots of nice refinements that look good, plus way better pickups, it seems. I managed to get myself an American Pro strat at the start of the year and the neck is nice on that one, but I went for a rosewood board. If the maple boards arent too gloopy on the Am Pro teles that's probably what I'll end up with, once I get the funds together....

  9. joshthepilot

    joshthepilot TDPRI Member

    Nov 2, 2017
    Ocean City, Md.
    I've never put my hands on a Road Worn Tele, but I can tell you this. Up until a week ago, the best Tele by far that I had ever played was my 2008 Nash TC-63H medium relic. Then.....I tried the 2017 Fender American Professional Tele. I still like Bill Nash's work, but I was extremely happy to get back into "Fender Land". The American Pro still has just a touch of stickiness to the back of the neck, but nowhere near as bad as say....a 2010 American Deluxe Tele. Bottom line for me, the American Pro Tele has restored 100% of my faith in Fenders ability to make a KILLER instrument.

    I need to take some better pics. 20171101_193246.jpg
    larsjen, DaphneBlue and Heyitsmejoeg like this.

  10. markjames

    markjames TDPRI Member

    Mar 27, 2017
    I have a 50s Roadworn..... and it is a BEAUTY!

  11. IronSchef

    IronSchef Tele-Holic Platinum Supporter

    RWs really are VERY comfortable to play. I have a 60s RW strat that is (for me at least) "perfect"!

    I am about to put a RW 50s Tele neck that I just traded for together w/ an MJT Tele body I just won on eBay -- pretty stoked for that one!

    With that being said, comparing an Amer. Pro to a RW is really not really an "apples to apples" comparison -- the Pro is at another level entirely.

  12. graybeard65

    graybeard65 TDPRI Member

    Jun 30, 2016
    Rochester, MN
    3ECE7AA8-99C9-451D-9ADE-59C3E7F35DCB.png 14D54309-CAC6-427B-81B1-75CE88A9A843.jpeg I played a bunch, wrestling with the same concerns you’ve got. My final choice was the American Professional - the neck carve and radius felt right to me, the pickups had the warmth and the spank, I loved the compensated brass saddles, and the bridge was really comfortable.

  13. hrstrat57

    hrstrat57 Tele-Afflicted

    Nov 21, 2016
    Rhode Island
    IMHO American Pro are a home run for Fender.

    Agree sounds like a partscaster is your ticket tho

  14. Rythameen

    Rythameen Tele-Meister

    Jun 24, 2017
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    I bought a 50s Road Worn earlier this year, I had never played under a 9.5 radius, mostly 12 radius guitars, but the neck on the Road Worn is so comfortable and just feels so right it has become my number 1.
    Chicago Matt and t guitar floyd like this.

  15. MMARSH

    MMARSH Tele-Meister

    Jun 21, 2015
    The Am Pro is a great guitar. My number 1.

  16. rich815

    rich815 Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

    Aug 22, 2016
    San Francisco Bay Area
    Me too. It’s really something special. Feel, tone, resonance. Very impressive. Try one if you can.

  17. t guitar floyd

    t guitar floyd Tele-Holic

    Feb 4, 2016
    sw US
    Lol! Sounds suspiciously like bragging. :) You know what they say . . . pictures or it never happened. :D Oh yes and, how much do you charge?
    joshthepilot and Strato50 like this.

  18. noname_dragon

    noname_dragon Tele-Meister

    Jan 13, 2010
    North east coast
    50's Roadworn is great, my #1 now. The frets are tall, and if you are used to short frets you will have to lighten your touch to avoid squeezing it out of tune.
    Quinn23 and Chicago Matt like this.

  19. Strato50

    Strato50 Tele-Holic

    Mar 30, 2017
    Port Arthur TX
    I have built and sold probably 10 or so...I use All Parts..price depends on what you want...

    here is a vid of one in action.

    t guitar floyd likes this.

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