I Grabbed a Johnson Today!

Discussion in 'Other T-Types and Partscasters' started by pblanton, Dec 13, 2019.

  1. pblanton

    pblanton TDPRI Member

    Age:
    55
    Posts:
    10
    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2019
    Location:
    Black Forest, Colorado
    I spotted a "Johnson by AXL" telecaster at a local pawn shop today. They wanted $99 for it, but I talked smack about it, and picked it up for $74. It looks brand new. There are no pick scratches at all on the pick guard, not even light ones. The high E string was missing, and there were a few scratches on the back of the body, in two areas that are clearly not buckle rash. There are also kind of deep scratches in the neck mounting plate.

    The body looks to be three-piece ash (I could be wrong about that but the grain looks like ash) with some pretty nice figuring. The natural finish is also very nice. The neck is solid maple with some light figuring. One of the knobs had some light pitting in the chrome on top, but it all came out and shined back up with some fine steel wool.

    The neck was had a little too much relief in it, but I went over to the tool area and dug through the allen wrenches until I found the right size. About 3/4 of a turn straightened it right out, plus it validated that the trussrod works. The nut is cheap, plastic ****. The slots are clearly molded in and never touched by a file. Plus it appears to be installed slightly crooked, with the low-E side a bit too high. the tuners are cheap, but functional. The five strings on it tuned up fine and seemed to stay in tune as I punished them for losing their little brother.

    All of the electronics worked, but the pickups were terribly microphonic. Especially the bridge pickup. I took it apart this evening, and as expected the pots are the tiny, cheapo, dime-sized Chinese pots. The pickups are pretty cheap, ceramic crap, so they'll be replaced. I'll pry keep them for a cigar box or oilcan guitar project, but they aren't good enough for a real guitar.

    The frets all looked good, but they didn't spend much time on them at the factory. They were level and even but the ends were sharp and the edge of the fretboard wasn't rounded well. I dressed the fret ends with a file, and used various grits of sanding blocks to clean the edges of the fretboard up. It's smooth as velvet and feels great now.

    The bridge is one of the cheaper ones that also serves as a tailpiece. It is not strung through the body.

    I have ordered a new tusq nut, and some ferrules so that I can do the string-through body thing That was ~$20. I also installed copper shielding in the cavities

    ToDo:
    I need to order new pickups, and new pots. I may also order an anodized aluminum scratch-plate if I can find one in a dark bronze. I am also looking for a bridge/control plate set in a dark bronzey color that will match the scratch-plate.

    Here are some pics that I took at a local hamburger restaurant after picking it up, while waiting for my wife to join me for lunch.

    IMG_20191213_143113.jpg IMG_20191213_143100.jpg
    IMG_20191213_143125.jpg IMG_20191213_143129.jpg
    IMG_20191213_144120.jpg IMG_20191213_143133.jpg
    IMG_20191213_143204.jpg IMG_20191213_143141.jpg
     

    Attached Files:

  2. Fretting out

    Fretting out Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    28
    Posts:
    1,769
    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2019
    Location:
    Land of Mary
    “I punished them for losing their little brother”

    That’s classic

    Now let’s talk about your thread title;)

    Happy new guitar day , looks like a good foundation
     
    howardlo, Kebmel and pblanton like this.
  3. YALCaster

    YALCaster Tele-Meister

    Age:
    21
    Posts:
    361
    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2017
    Location:
    Tulsa
    I love Freddie’s. Nice guitar
     
    pblanton likes this.
  4. Dan German

    Dan German Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

    Posts:
    9,019
    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2008
    Location:
    Left of the Left Coast
    Wow, you did even better than I did. Oh wait, that’s US dollars. I guess we’re even. And I came home with six rusty strings, so maybe I win.

    Nice score, anyway!
     
    pblanton likes this.
  5. Loaded Goat

    Loaded Goat TDPRI Member

    Age:
    67
    Posts:
    84
    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2019
    Location:
    Ohio
    Very nice...excellent find!! I have an Xaviere XV-820 butterscotch telecaster I've only had a few days. Still thinking about what I might want to do to it.
     
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2019
    pblanton likes this.
  6. zeedoctour

    zeedoctour Tele-Meister

    Posts:
    375
    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2018
    Location:
    Texas
    I played a couple of AXL "strat style" guitars that were really not bad at all. A little heavy for my taste (I like lightweights) but good value for the dollars they were asking. I still prefer my partscasters which look better, play WAY better, and were cheaper to build. Plus I'll never see another just like any of them. Don't know why that matters, but I like it.
     
    pblanton likes this.
  7. pblanton

    pblanton TDPRI Member

    Age:
    55
    Posts:
    10
    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2019
    Location:
    Black Forest, Colorado
    I little click-baity, I know; but it kind of wrote itself!
     
    Deathray likes this.
  8. pblanton

    pblanton TDPRI Member

    Age:
    55
    Posts:
    10
    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2019
    Location:
    Black Forest, Colorado
    What's not to like about Freddies!?!
     
    YALCaster likes this.
  9. Zepfan

    Zepfan Poster Extraordinaire

    Posts:
    9,221
    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2013
    Location:
    Horn Lake, MS
    I got a Strat made by them that sounds pretty good. The pickups were made for them by EMG(Passive ceramic mag types).
    Got it for free while haggling with a pawnshop owner that wouldn't lower the price on a M72 Bluesbird I wanted. They had it listed for $40, but it's worth more than that IMO. Just as good as the 07' Squier Bullet Strat I picked up recently.
     
  10. Chunkocaster

    Chunkocaster Poster Extraordinaire

    Posts:
    8,865
    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2018
    Location:
    In space with Ziggy
    Good score. Kudos for the rock out with your Johnson out pics in the burger joint too.:)
     
    pblanton likes this.
  11. jbensaab

    jbensaab TDPRI Member Silver Supporter

    Age:
    67
    Posts:
    15
    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2019
    Location:
    Albuquerque
    Not bad!
     
    pblanton likes this.
  12. Peegoo

    Peegoo Tele-Holic

    Age:
    59
    Posts:
    726
    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2019
    Location:
    USA
    I would comment, but that would be no different from standing next to a total stranger at a line of urinals and saying, "That's a nice watch."
     
  13. getbent

    getbent Telefied Silver Supporter

    Posts:
    37,532
    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2006
    Location:
    San Benito County, California
    they'll grow on you... if you are lucky and have the right touch.
     
  14. Rufus

    Rufus Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,437
    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2004
    Location:
    NW Atlanta
    I seem to be the only one that assumed that a thread entitled "I grabbed a Johnson today" was NOT about guitars but instead a new lifestyle announcement...
     
  15. Frodebro

    Frodebro Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    Age:
    50
    Posts:
    15,112
    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2012
    Location:
    Seattle
    Nope, you're just the only one that articulated it in a post.
     
    Deathray likes this.
  16. Frodebro

    Frodebro Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    Age:
    50
    Posts:
    15,112
    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2012
    Location:
    Seattle
    I see what you did there, Blind Lemon Jefferson...
     
    jrblue and drlucky like this.
  17. Rufus

    Rufus Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,437
    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2004
    Location:
    NW Atlanta
    So now you're "coming out" about it?
     
  18. getbent

    getbent Telefied Silver Supporter

    Posts:
    37,532
    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2006
    Location:
    San Benito County, California
    it seemed to have reared his what appears to be angry helmet... and who knew about the whole deutchland thing!
     
    Rufus likes this.
  19. Frodebro

    Frodebro Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    Age:
    50
    Posts:
    15,112
    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2012
    Location:
    Seattle
    Oh my
     
  20. getbent

    getbent Telefied Silver Supporter

    Posts:
    37,532
    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2006
    Location:
    San Benito County, California

     
    drlucky and pblanton like this.
IMPORTANT: Treat everyone here with respect, no matter how difficult!
No sex, drug, political, religion or hate discussion permitted here.


  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.