Help Me Restore 55' Esquire

Discussion in 'Vintage Tele Discussion Forum (pre-1974)' started by telesaxter, Jul 10, 2019.

  1. Blue Bill

    Blue Bill Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

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    I agree with Viking. That beat-up finish looks awesome. A pickguard will cover the routes. Find a neck you like, and a vintage-sounding pickup, and Bob's your uncle. Refinishing will remove 90% of the mojo.
     
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  2. sammy1974

    sammy1974 TDPRI Member

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    Make that 3.
    It's gorgeous.
    Pretty sure there are folks who would pay someone to have a body come out like this.
    And if the hidden large route doesn't compromise the back...
     
    Fretting out, Antoon and telesaxter like this.
  3. Antoon

    Antoon Tele-Holic

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    And another thing, I am curious to know if you hear any difference in acoustic sound before and after you fill the routes. Nobody believes me but I am convinced that I once ruined the 'sound' of a vintage tele body by glueing in a piece of ash to fill a large hole in the neck pocket area. And this was CNC routed so the piece fitted exactly. I would leave the body as is, with perhaps a heavily used black pickguard and a maple board neck. I would also keep the neck HB. A bit like Keith Richards' Sonny.
     
  4. Adam Wolfaardt

    Adam Wolfaardt Tele-Meister

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    You're correct about the neck route but the previous comment that I assume you're referring to refers to the two tiny little screw holes to screw the neck pickup in. On an all original esquire you will find a virgin neck pickup route with no holes for the pick up screws
     
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  5. Adam Wolfaardt

    Adam Wolfaardt Tele-Meister

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    I would definitely "restore" it. It will never be a real 50s guitar but it will probably sound great. I wouldn't fill the routs though. I can't imagine it sounding as good with big pieces of wood glued in. It's all hidden anyway
     
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  6. Festus_Hagen

    Festus_Hagen Tele-Holic

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    I 4th it. :)
     
  7. Velorex

    Velorex Tele-Meister Silver Supporter

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    Routing,maybe?
    why not make the bad routing job professional
    with a machine, or even make a smugglers tele
    would be nice lightweight guitar.
    By the way my 69 had a similar humbucker hole
    luthier glued a piece of wood in, sounds fine.

    velorex
     
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  8. tombob

    tombob Tele-Holic

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    I have to agree with the “make a player out of it” folks. It would cost more to put all original 55’ Esquire parts on it than a parts guitar is ever going to be worth. You sold the neck pickup so put it towards rebuilding. If that’s a 1962 neck even shaved down you might get something out of it.
    I’d get a vintage style Warmoth neck with my favorite frets/profile etc. I wouldn’t worry about making it a single pickup if you like having a neck pu.
    I don’t think you will ever have a collectors piece but you could make a very good player out of it.
     
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  9. nortally

    nortally TDPRI Member Silver Supporter

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    FWIW, I would want to fill the route on the horn. (Create routing template, smooth sides & bottom, trace template to create plug out of ash or similar to fill it tightly.) And no, I wouldn't do it myself, this one I'd take to a top-notch luthier. But I totally agree about the finish, let it be. As for the neck, find one that makes you want to play -- you can always swap it for an authentic part when your ship comes in ;-)
     
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  10. telesaxter

    telesaxter TDPRI Member

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    Neck arrived today. I will do a preliminary assembly and post photos and report on how it plays.
     
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  11. monkeybanana

    monkeybanana Tele-Meister

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    mmhmm
    Can't wait to see how this will evolve!
     
  12. J.Rodney

    J.Rodney Tele-Meister Silver Supporter

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    No way that I would refin that body, I like it the way it is. Buy a great neck and electronics and whatever else it needs and then just play the heck out of it. Love the color and mojo.
     
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  13. Quacky

    Quacky Tele-Meister

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    Gotoh makes a nice relic'ed bridge with period correct saddles on the cheap $50 -60 but of course it won't have the Fender logo. A few people have mentioned Mark Jenny and I think he sells some reliced bridges and other parts as well. Worth a look at least, good luck on the project.
     
  14. telesaxter

    telesaxter TDPRI Member

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    So the neck I purchased was a bit wide at the heel and would require sanding and I decided against doing a preliminary build.

    Good news is I was able to source a 52 lap steel pickup which I am currently having converted to be used in bridge position.

    I decided to have body patched up and refinished as to bring this guitar back to it's original state. From there I plan on playing the living daylights out of it!

    Will post photo updates as I go.
     
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2019
    Adam Wolfaardt likes this.
  15. Bones

    Bones Telefied Ad Free Member

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    So, whatever happened with this?
     
  16. Stratwrangler

    Stratwrangler Tele-Meister

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    So please correct me if I am wrong but following this post we have the following ,
    A possible 55 body
    In very suspect condition .
    No other period correct parts.
    Electrics could be from anything .
    None original neck .
    So basically a possibly old abused body that could of been made last week .
    Even if and its a big if where do you stop or start .
    Ok so you put an old lap steel pick up in it , still don't make it a 55 esquire not now not ever .
    And why later spend a load on a proper 50 s neck it s a shadow of its previous self .
    Sorry to be the sevils advocate
     
  17. Stratwrangler

    Stratwrangler Tele-Meister

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    Devils advocate sorry.
    But my point stands I don't know what you paid for this 55 but you basically got a badly finished body that unless you find all era correct parts the main part being the neck .
    Its still just a very over priced and not great parts caster , the whole point of those guitars is the pickups and neck or am I wrong ?
    So if I build a guitar around a 62 strat Bridge I have I can call it a 62 because it was once on a 62 strat no I don't think so.
    Build it how you want but please don't ever call it a 55 esquire because that's just a lie imo.
    Sorry not being a kill joy or an ass but being honest that is no more a 55 fender than my squire CV 50s .
    If you want to do it justice you need the dollars to do it, ie full body repair , pickups , and hard wear to match a 55 and a 55 neck neck and guard and a pro refinish or its just a bit of badly refinished wood with loads of random not correct parts on it.
     
  18. telesaxter

    telesaxter TDPRI Member

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