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My thoughts on Fender Custom shop

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by 6String69, Dec 24, 2020.

  1. 6String69

    6String69 Tele-Holic

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    I just received a Fender Custom Shop 62 P bass. I purchased it in July and got it yesterday. It is my fourth FCS. My first one was a FCS Jazz bass that I bought used and ended up selling. I am more of a P bass guy. I also had a 2014 FCS 64 Jazzmaster that I ended up selling but only because I like having 22 frets. My current FCS Jazzmaster has an American Professional JM neck on it for that very reason. I decided to get parts, make a partsmaster, and sell the FCS Jazzmaster. Which will leave me with this beaut:

    5A6B521C-5D38-4835-97BD-7C9F9238F1DD.jpeg

    I love this bass. Here is the floor traveler:

    27C26B04-A172-4CB5-9710-090B0C2A2E1B.jpeg

    I sold a 63 AV and also a Hallmark guitar to buy it.

    So my thoughts on FCS:

    You get into the area of diminishing returns. i.e., Is it better than the American Original or American Vintage counterpart? Yes. Maybe. But only a little. The diff between this and the AV is roasted neck, quartersawn, roasted body, journeyman relic. Is is worth almost double or more than double the money? Up to you. Probably not. But in time, you will recover and forget it. lol. Then yes it is.

    A FCS sells for the price it sells for because it sells. Fender sells these things like hot cakes. If you find one that is just what you want, pull the trigger if you can. It is quite a hit to the old bank account no doubt. But they are damn cool. And you can always make more money etc.

    I will end up playing my partsmaster instead of my FCS Jazzmaster because it suits me better. But I am keeping the bass. I think. Pretty sure. It is too perfect. For me.
     
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2020
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  2. IMadeYouReadThis

    IMadeYouReadThis Tele-Meister

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    That is a nice P bass. I don't own any FCS guitars, but they definitely have a cool factor to them.
     
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  3. nojazzhere

    nojazzhere Doctor of Teleocity

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    I've never played a Custom Shop guitar or bass, so anything I may say is out of ignorance.....but I simply can't imagine how an instrument can be so much better than a less expensive version to justify the cost. A couple of my friends both own older Jazz Basses (64-65-ish) and they sound amazing.....but those two would sound great on my 1993 Korean Fender Squier P-Bass. I understand that the Custom Shop can build a guitar to my exact specs, but so can Ron Kirn, Bob Logan, or any number of custom builders, for a LOT less money.
    But it's your money.....and that IS a beautiful bass. ;)
     
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  4. Electric Warrior

    Electric Warrior Tele-Holic Ad Free Member

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    That's beautiful and I bet that it feels great. I've had a couple CS and share your impression regarding diminishing returns...although they were very high quality and the little bad that I would say about them comes down to personal preference. Hope you enjoy that for a long time.
     
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  5. Coloradotwanger

    Coloradotwanger Tele-Meister Silver Supporter

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    GORGEOUS!!!!!
     
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  6. teletimetx

    teletimetx Doctor of Teleocity

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    Congrats! That is a fine looking bass.

    The custom shop approach confuses me a little - but only when I see people go that route, wait some period off time, then toss that guitar to the winds for various reasons. Not my business, really, but sort of puzzling.

    It's also absolutely none of my business what other folks spend on their instruments Go for it, as far as I'm concerned. Similar vein, ain't no one's biscuits what I spend. I might go high end one of these days, who knows. Not likely, but might.

    I guess the confusing part is that I see the custom shop approach as getting exactly what you want. Exactly. Why else would it be custom? So in that vein, hey, maybe the money is worth it. But if you got exactly what you want, then why would it get chucked overboard? That's the part that makes me tilt my head, like my dog does when he hears something but can't quite cotton to what it is.

    anyhow, best of luck and I hope you keep it. I don't see how anything can be too perfect and hopefully it'll grow on you.
     
  7. Peegoo

    Peegoo Poster Extraordinaire

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    Beautiful bass! I like the CS stuff.


    "Pickup Route"


    Really, Fender? Are you driving around the neighborhood picking stuff up?

    XOXO,
    Mr. Ped Antic
     
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  8. GGardner

    GGardner Friend of Leo's

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    That might be nicest looking bass I've ever seen.
     
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  9. Fender-guy

    Fender-guy Tele-Holic

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    Beautiful bass!! I’m on the hunt right now for a 60’s custom shop pbass. I have American vintage, American original and custom shops in my collection. Say what you want about the higher price tags on the CS stuff but to me you’re paying extra for the fit and finish, the case, etc.

    Those true nitro finishes that are already sinking into the grain just looks wild. I love the American vintage series also but the finish still being 100% nitro on those still isn’t up to the CS level finish.
     
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  10. DougM

    DougM Poster Extraordinaire

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    The thing that kills me about CS guitars is that the vast majority of them are relics, and I don't like banged up guitars, especially artificially banged up ones. And, I would certainly never pay more for one. Thankfully, I don't have to worry about it, because I can't even afford MIA production Fenders anymore, let alone CS ones.
     
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  11. jrblue

    jrblue Friend of Leo's

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    I find CS stuff to indeed be on its own level. Fender is very careful to compromise the bottom-line quality and feature set of its "regular" models in order to create this gap between production and CS (which is mostly production-line stuff, though batch made) quality. They're equally determined to maintain a gulf between the production line CS stuff and the Master Builder stuff. I find it disgusting, personally, that what were once standard Fenders--say, your basic 1963 Fender Strat as built in 1963--made on the shop floor are now Custom Shop products. A brilliant consumer success story--Leo creating an instrument that could be factory made yet fantastic--has been rewritten so that the same instrument is now, somehow, a Custom item. I loved my CS Strat to play, as it was just great, but it pissed me off too much to really enjoy it. I have plenty of expensive (and a few very expensive) guitars, but none of them are just factory designs done right, which is what the CS largely is now. The guitars are great, but I am not a fan of this way of operating.
     
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  12. KATT

    KATT Tele-Meister

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    About 7 years ago, I had been using a 90's Japanese Fender Precision that had been lent to me. I was starting to do more bass gigs so decided to treat myself to a Precision of my own. Generally, I have tried for many years to buy the best that I can afford, but only if it is noticeably better than a cheaper model.

    I tried an American Professional first, then American Standard, then American Deluxe, then American Vintage. All were very good and I definitely noticed the difference between them. The American Vintage was the best, but still didn't blow me away. I then tried and bought a custom shop P Bass. It was used and the same money as the American Vintage new. It just felt and sounded special and better than the others I tried. It was also a custom order so was unique!

    I still have that Precision and have never thought about buying another one.

    I went through the same process with other Fender guitars too. There are a lot of people that seem to hate custom shop Fenders or say they are overpriced. For me though, I found my favourite Precision Bass and will probably never buy another. Saves a lot of money and/or effort in the long run rather than continually buying, selling and modifying lesser instruments. I have a Tele, Strat, Precision and Jazz Bass that are the best I've ever played and have ended my search for each of those models. All happen to be Fender Custom Shop.
     
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  13. 6String69

    6String69 Tele-Holic

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    I hear ya. I sold the first two for the same exact price I bought them for. The second one I even sold to the same owner so it was like I borrowed it. They definitely hold a good deal of their value on the used market.
     
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  14. telleutelleme

    telleutelleme Telefied Silver Supporter

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    Congrats. I went to Corona in 2012, toured the factory and enjoyed seeing the custom workshop. Met a few of the artists and met Abigail Yabarra. I ended up buying an American Design Stratocaster. Basically you pick the finished body, neck and pickups and they build it out. It was more than any production models but way less than a full blown CS. I got special case candy, COA and Abigail's initials on the pups. The serial number is the build date. I agree that it isn't better than any other Strat, just a whole lot prettier.
     
  15. ab2012

    ab2012 Tele-Holic

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    I’ve had a few Custom Shop guitars. They were great. But the production line guitars such as the 70th anniversary Broadcaster and Esquire. Eric Johnson Stratocaster. Signature and reissue guitars are all of high quality.
     
  16. Fender-guy

    Fender-guy Tele-Holic

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    Yes nothing wrong with any of the higher end or even mid grade production line fenders. They are all great. Still with the prices of these higher end production line guitars climbing higher and higher you’re getting into used custom shop ranges. I’ve also had a Eric Johnson Strat in white blonde, just beautiful. Nice neck but I didn’t really like the sound. I’ve also yet to find a used broadcaster that didn’t feel like a 10 pound monster. The 4 used ones I’ve run into at my local shops may have all been returned for that reason.
     
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  17. Axegrinder77

    Axegrinder77 Tele-Afflicted Ad Free Member

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    Meh, supply and demand.

    I guess a top of the line fender guitar is simply worth $3000+

    In a way, it's good for the rest of us. The American standard/professional guitars are great, and affordable.

    Mexican made are good now too, and any kid can get their hands on one.

    Play music!
     
  18. Jared Purdy

    Jared Purdy Friend of Leo's

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    I frequently visit the FCS site to see what their offerings are. I have 2011 CS Strat Deluxe in three colour sun burst.

    It's a beautiful instrument, and the profile of the birds eye maple neck is to die for. Fits my hand like a glove, and I love the tone from the Master designed PUs.

    It's a bit of an odd ball though. I don't mind the modern, locking tuners, or the modern, 2 point custom classic temelo. What I find really odd about it is that it's got a urethane finish. I've never understood why they would put a urethane finish on such an expensive instrument.

    When I bought it, I was new to electric guitars, and what sold me was the neck and the tone. I found out later about the finish. Of course, there's as many arguments about nitro vs poly finishes as there are about sitka vs Adirondack spruce. What's also interesting, is that it has an ash body (beautiful grain). I cruise the FSC site to see it there's a late 50's or early 60's incarnation that catches my eye. Almost all of them are reliced, which is not my thing. A custom order would be pricey.
     
  19. FenderLover

    FenderLover Poster Extraordinaire

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    Haven't owned a CS guitar, but they seem like a good piece of steak - you get what you pay for, and how much you are willing to pay is your own business.

    My own builds use selected bits that I want for each guitar, price no object, and always use american Fender necks. I feel like they are quality builds and I won't see an identical one off the rack anywhere. Now that's custom.
     
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  20. aleski

    aleski Tele-Meister

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    Wise words. A stunning P; enjoy it!
     
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