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Discussion in 'Fender Custom Shop Tele Forum' started by 1hoofer, Aug 2, 2013.
Makes me wonder if living 5 minutes from a very well stocked Fender dealer is good luck or bad luck.
I bought a team-built custom shop strat 6-7 years ago from Wildwood. I bought it online, sight unseen. The nut was significantly misaligned and hanging over the edge of the neck. I had to have it reset.
I don't know how both the custom shop and Wildwood would not notice this obvious defect before shipping it out.
No problem with my custom shop tele from around the same period.
There are a couple of threads over on the main board where people are unhappy with their recently acquired custom shop guitars. To be fair I am happy with mine but it seems there is a lot of inconsistency.
This term "custom" is tricky. What is our goal: the nicest guitar ever? Or a guitar bespoke for a specific customer.
The biggest difference between most FCS guitars and actual Custom guitars ordered from smaller guys is, the other guy will wanna know in advance what kinds of setups his customer normally runs and what works and what doesn't for this specific client. Because a guitar can be divine yet not well suited for a certain player, you know, with small fingers or arthritis or an inclination to overplay the guitar or whatever.
I do remember a Robert Cray CS in Jackson that was stupefyingly bad. I have no idea why anyone would ship such an awful guitar. But in contrast, when FCS seemed to be churning out CS No-Casters in 2006 they could do no wrong. I played scores of them and mine was better for me but some of the others were still incredibly nice.
Everyone likes a different setup, we say. But the vast majority of us can easily play the guitar with the "average" setup. Not trying to put anyone on the spot, but some guys like weird setups and if their "custom" guitar comes to them meant for the average guy but they like a bunch of things very much different, the guitar is not
Not to them.
But whose "fault" is that?
Had an acquaintance named Keith Backlund ( died last year ), and Keith made wooden kayak paddles. He'd ask you to send on paper an outline of your hand so he could craft a paddle that should by rights fit your hand very well. And they did, almost perfectly. Which Fender Custom Shop models feature this kind of fitting to the customer's playing hand? None.
In Australia, our Maton guitars has a true custom shop experience, affordable too.
+1 to Boris' comments.
I've had 2 CS Gits!!! both great guitars!!
After all that I bought a custom shop 1952 NOS Fat Tele today (can't prove it. I have searched for instructions on how to post photos on this site but failed miserably). This guitar has real Tele "brang" and sounds wonderful. It sounds better and feels better than two Masterbuilts I tried. What I found interesting was the next best guitar of 7 or 8 Teles I tried was a 52 American reissue which was not custom shop built. No doubt someone else trying the same guitars would come to different conclusions.
Interesting, I wouldn't mind seeing pics. I opened a flickr account, upload my pics then post the url of the image from flickr by clicking on the insert image icon.
Went to the Maton site. Incredible guitars. That's custom.
As far as FCs go, I don't care so much for them. Got Andersons here that are as much custom as one can get for the price. From Fender what I would like to have is listed under their production lines -- which are very good.
For the most part, the custom shop is just an upmarket production line of limited run guitars.
You can call Fender and get order specifically what you want. That how the Custom shop started before they offered any production models. I got one of the first 50 or so they made custom. I ordered what I wanted and it was all hand built by Jay Black who was their builder then.
No doubt, but these days my favourite dealer has around 130 custom shop fenders, all ordered/specced/chosen by the dealer.
I would never pay 6 grand for a guitar without a truss rod. No thank you lol
All I have to add here is that if I shelled out the scratch for a CS guitar, the fit and finish had better be perfect. That's what the "custom" in Custom Shop is supposed to mean: attention to detail.
If you want to make certain you're getting your money's worth, I say build your own from quality parts. It will be unique and built just the way you want it. I personally feel the CS guitars have lost their quality. If building one is not your forte, look for a Used one built by Chris Fleming, you will be happy !
I would agree. I've A/B'd a little and found that the '52 AVRI compares very well with the CS teles.
I can go either way with this.. I'm pretty freaking happy with my 52 AV right out of the box.. First time I tried one I went home with a 2007 Nocaster, there was also a new Nocaster that I considered bringing home. Also a few I passed up.. 6 months later I ordered a 52 AV from austinbazaar.. Out of the box that guitar plays better than any production model guitar in the house but it takes a back seat to my CS guitars.. The big difference is the configuration of the CS guitars..