Best Custom Shop?


TDPRI Member
Jan 9, 2020
New York
I’ve been putting my collection together for better part of 20 years now. Took some time to figure out what was good what I liked. Always trading up, this and that.

Fender Custom Shop Dual Mag ii ☝🏻.
Roasted body and neck.
This guitar has great pickups. Combination of Alnico 5 - 2 pickups.
The guitar came to me with a pin straight neck, zero relief. Low, low action. Buzzed all over. I set the neck relief to .10” and raised the action to 4 64ths across the 12th fret. Still buzz.
Set the neck pin straight again, put more pressure on the string tree by lowering it. Decked the bridge, 4 64ths across. No buzz. Guitar plays great. Killer tone. I love this guitar. Medium chunky C shape profile. Fret work has some high spots up high. Guess that’s normal, they’ll level out with some playing. She sounds great unplugged too. Love this guitar. 7.2 pounds.


Gibson Custom Shop 1963 SG Junior ☝🏻.
No issues with first setup. Great fret work. This guitar can do everything. Any amp, any pedal. Country, Rock n Roll Soft or Heavy. 50s style, whatever.
A beast. I can chop your head off with this thing. I love this guitar, it plays itself. Chug on this, no buzz. Killer rhythm, leads.
Unplugged its thin sounding but plugged in, unbelievable. They set the neck tenon the way they did it in the old days. I’ve had several SGs over the years, this is the best one. 6.5 pounds.

Custom Shop G&L ASAT ☝🏻.
I think I’m the third owner of this guitar. I bought it a few years ago from a kid downtown Manhattan. $1200. He said his uncle gave it to him. There was a receipt in the case from a Guitar Center in the Midwest, used $1500.
Guitar wasn’t played. The fret work perfect. Guitar weighs 6.5 pounds.
Swamp Ash. I changed the bridge out for a solid steel one and threw on some Glendale saddles. Put an NOS 60s cap in the harness. The neck on this guitar has a Modern Classic profile (might be the best neck ever). Killer guitar. She can do anything. No buzz anywhere. This is a CS guitar, not custom ordered.
What a score. Love this guitar.

Knaggs Severn X Trembuck ☝🏻.
I got this guitar on a trade, at the time I knew nothing about the builder.
I traded a CS SG for it, they were valued about the same. The guy owned it for less then a month. I don’t think he realized what he had. I had no idea.
It’s by far the best guitar I’ve ever had.
I’m not exaggerating, I really mean it.
Mahogany neck and body. She has perfectly leveled evo gold medium jumbo frets. A compound radius ebony fretboard. I’ve played this thing for 5 years now, hours and hours no fret wear. I believe it has a long neck tenon too. She’s vibrates.
Seymour SB4 bridge Jazz neck pickups.
She can do anything. Cleans, heavy rock. Just gorgeous tone. This is my gigging guitar. Would never leave home without it. There’s just something about this guitar. It’s magic. 8 pounds. Always in tune.

They’re all great guitars, each one has its own thing, of course. If I had to rate them in order.
1. Knaggs
2. Gibson
3. G&L and Fender tied.

Took many years to figure it out but I’m pretty darn sure I got it right.
✊🏻 Best of luck.
Last edited:


Apr 30, 2010
Sydney, Australia
Glad you got this worked out. I've not heard much about Knaggs guitars - I love its simplicity.

I can never consistently rank my guitars - even when gigging I agonise over which one to take.

I've just started spending more time with Gibson style guitars after a lifetime of playing strats and tele's. I'm enjoying the extra drive and sustain but the cleans are not quite the same.

Thanks for posting.


TDPRI Member
Jan 9, 2020
New York
The Knaggs just has a grind to it that I love.
Unbelievable tone. It really is special.