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Fender Classic Series 50's Telecaster Lacquer

Discussion in 'Telecaster Discussion Forum' started by big jimmy, Nov 29, 2016.

  1. big jimmy

    big jimmy Tele-Afflicted

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    Will this one scratch my itch for the classic telecaster?

    If you have one have you swapped pickups or saddles?

    My neighbor let me hold his real 58 white guard that he got for a steal and now I got to have one (as close

    as I can get with the funds I will have)..

    I will need to liquidate My JL inspired casino to do it.
     
  2. Clarkj734

    Clarkj734 Tele-Meister

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    In my opinion, yes it will scratch it. Also in my opinion, its the best value out there.

    Absolutely great guitar. I went to the store fully intending to buy an AV52, then on a whim I pulled my Classic 50's Lacquer off the wall....

    I left with the Classic 50's. I actually preferred the neck on the Classic, and maybe I got lucky but the fit and finish was just as good as the 3 AV52's I played at the store in comparison.

    Personally, I like the pickups just fine but I know that some feel they need upgrading. The bridge pickup is slightly bright, but it blends perfectly with the mellow neck pickup in the middle position. I really love the neck pickup, and the bridge pickup sounds great to me with the tone rolled down.

    You will no doubt get other opinions. In my mind when you combine the price, quality of the instrument, included case, etc its the best Tele value in the market right now if you like vintage specs. And I love vintage specs.
     
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  3. BorderRadio

    BorderRadio Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    Yep, this one will do it. Doesn't need new pickups until you start thinking about it. Almost all spec's are vintage, which is why I bought one, and mine is fading nicely. Only think twice if you don't like a 7.5" radius and low vintage-style frets. Grabby.

    The bridge pickup lacks a baseplate, but now the story is this doesn't matter much for the sound. I say the jury is still out, because the coupling of a steel pickup baseplate to steel screws to a steel bridge plate contributes to Tele-ness--just ask my barely-potted, slightly microphonic pickups :)

    Getting sidetracked, but yeah get one, you won't be disappointed, and it's under a grand too.
     
  4. Twang Tone

    Twang Tone Friend of Leo's

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    Change that bridge pickup to a Fender OV, or SD Broadcaster, and you're good to go!
     
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  5. LKB3rd

    LKB3rd Friend of Leo's

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    I have one totally stock that I love. I find that adjusting the pickups and tone controls, including on the amp, was time well spent, and I don't feel the need to upgrade it. Noiseless pickups occasionally tempt me, because 60 cycle hum annoys me, but to me the stock pickups sound like a Tele.
     
  6. boris bubbanov

    boris bubbanov Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

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    Jimmy, the saddles can be changed so easily, I wouldn't be put off if guys recommend you buy some slant compensated brass Fender saddles from Darren Riley and try those. You can't hurt a Tele doing that! :^)

    The neck pickup is fine and I've seen the bridge made to work by enough people, only time will tell if you decide to stay with it. I have a MIM Classic 60s "Palo Escrito" and it still has the stock pickups just like yours. However on my MIM Classic 50s Esquire (which has almost exactly the same bridge pickup) I felt obligated to change that one out. One thing is for sure, the bridge pickup is not garbage so the decision to replace it could be a real close call. More of a personal choice than something at all mandatory.
     
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  7. bo

    bo Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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    I have the nonlacquer version and it scratches the itch just fine. IDK if the lacquer version has different pickups, but mine needed new ones. After that it's great.
     
  8. Horsin Hank

    Horsin Hank Tele-Meister

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    Ok Jimmy. I have one I bought new about a year ago. Its great. After about 6 months I bought a pair of CS pickups and put them in. A vintage 58 in the bridge and a 52 in the neck. The stock pups werent all that bad but the bridge was alittle spikey and trebly for my taste. Other than that, I havent changed a thing. I do hit the back of the neck with a green scotchbright pad every now and then to thin out that lacquer finish. Its a bit sticky.
     
  9. absurdocaster

    absurdocaster Tele-Meister

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    As others have said - yup it will more than do the trick. I have a 52 hotrod, have played many 52 reissues and the lacquer compares very favourably. I had the lacquer but sold it to fund an ES 339. The 339 was a dream guitar for me so it was a sale that I could justify but in hind sight I really, really wish I would have just saved for a little longer. I very much miss the fender.

    It is a great guitar and will serve you well so I don't think you need to hesitate in pulling the trigger.

    For the cash it is hard to imagine better and I'd hazard a guess that blind folded many would be convinced it is a far more expensive guitar.

    I saw no need to swap the pickups but I liked that it was brighter than my other teles. The saddles are fine - they are the later 50's style steal so they do contribute to the Bakersfieldesque tone of the guitar. I don't see the need for comp saddles on most of my teles so I left them stock. As said before, such a swap is an easy one to play with if you so desire.

    Happy hunting!
     
  10. boris bubbanov

    boris bubbanov Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

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    I just wanna add, I waited about 9 years before I took the stock steel saddles off and replaced them with the compensated brass. It just makes it easier for me to get the intonation fast - but it wasn't like it ever sounded wrong the way it was. Guys just like to mess with their guitars.
     
  11. Dongotto

    Dongotto Tele-Meister

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    How does the classic 50's laquer compare with a early (2003) HWY 1 ?

    Thanks
     
  12. Clarkj734

    Clarkj734 Tele-Meister

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    Very different I think.

    The HWY 1's that I've played had medium jumbo frets, where the 50's lacquer has smaller vintage style frets. The HW1 I believe is a 9.5 radius fretboard where the 50's is a vintage 7.25 radius
     
  13. Corgitodd

    Corgitodd Tele-Meister

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    Lots of teles lack baseplates: MIM standard, and older American standards circa 2012. Maybe some Squiers also. I toyed with adding a baseplate to a Classic 50s but I like the brighter tone. Not quite Albert Collins ice pick bright, but bright.
     
  14. ecosse

    ecosse Tele-Meister

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    I've had one for a year or so. I liked the tone of both pickups, but they're not a good match at all. Too many tone adjustments to make between pickup selections. I put an OV in the bridge and haven't really looked back.

    I did put a set of compensated brass saddle on, but only left them on for one string change. I prefer the sound of the steels (zingy but fat) and they intonate fine.

    While it's nice having a hard case in tweed, the hardware is crap on it. The locking tabs both broke on mine. Fender sent out more, they broke too. I've managed to cobble them together and will replace them with nicer ones once they fail. This guitar is gigged regularly and its moved to and from everywhere in this case.

    Here's a pic of the beginning of some wear. And one in its case with a lacquered Bakelite pickguard. [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  15. Controller

    Controller Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    Love mine, poly version, black with white pearloid pickguard.

    Neck is one of my favorites and the pickups sound great for my purposes. My choice for the single coil sound.
     
  16. boris bubbanov

    boris bubbanov Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

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    You question was answered well above, unless you were asking specifically about the finish.

    An early Highway One basically got the hard poly undershell just like all MIM Classic 50s, but then the top coat is just matte "furniture lacquer". Cheap, fast and dirty application, no factory buffing at all. It is pretty fragile - rusticates way too easily for some guys. It can be sanded and polished but it is super easy to blow through the finish down to the undershell. The later Highways had a better quality lacquer, more durable.

    The Lacquer on the 50s Lacquer is top flite, glossy stuff that's carefully applied and nicely polished out from the factory. Still can be marred, but IMO much more durable than either Highway finish. Not a "hard" finish as that would craze too easily, but hard enough to get the job done for a while.
     
  17. klobasa

    klobasa Tele-Holic

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    Are these white 50s lacquer MIM teles basically the same color how original blackguards used to be in the fiftees? The yellowing of blackguards came by age and it was not done in factory?

    I just ordered a second hand 50s lacquer MIM and I might get a black bakelite pickguard to it. Possibly to Esquire it as well.
     
  18. LKB3rd

    LKB3rd Friend of Leo's

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    Yes I think the whiter shade of Blonde was the original color in the late 50's, and it yellows with age. It may be whiter than the early 50's Blackguard Blonde.
    I have a 50's classic lacquer from 2013 and it has tan lines from yellowing if I take off the pickguard.
     
  19. Corgitodd

    Corgitodd Tele-Meister

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    Does the lacquer chip, crack or craze like the PV/AV series?
     
  20. kohoutec

    kohoutec Tele-Meister

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    Mine has a few small chips yes, no crazing yet
     
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