NGD: Road Worn Vintera 50s in Lake Placid Blue

jim232777

TDPRI Member
Joined
Oct 15, 2020
Posts
95
Location
Charlotte, NC USA
Obligatory NGD post. Mentioned this the other day in another thread, but as is said, "if there aren't any pictures, it didn't happen.

The short version of the story is I have a 2001 Player Tele, that I think is incredible bang for the buck. However, I've seen numerous people here rave about vintage-size necks. I found a Road Worn Vintera 50s at the local GC and tried it. Let's just say I'm a convert!

Thought about the standard Vintera, but I don't like gloss necks, so I was either going to be sanding the finish off a neck, or getting a Road Worn. A nitro finish isn't my on my "must have" list, but it is a nicer feel so I found a RW on Reverb at a little discount, from someone who bought one for one show. When it came, I rounded off the fret ends a little, tweaked the truss rod (neck was almost straight!), put on a set of my favorite strings, and set the intonation. I also used a Scotch brite to remove a bit of the artificial aging crud from the back of the neck, as it was almost sticky. After that, I'm very pleased with the result!

It definitely has a darker, vintage sound. The neck pickup is almost competing with my humbucker guitar for warmest sound. I might even switch from my usual pure nickels to nickel plated. I'm not crazy about relic'd guitars, but this is mild so I don't mind. In fact, the hardware is hardly aged at all...mostly the chrome has just lost some of its shine. (The one I played in the store actually had rust on the knobs.) The color is a bit odd for something inspired by 50s guitars, but I love Lake Placid, especially with a black guard, so I'm happy. By the way, comes in at about 7 lb, 7 oz.

A few pics below, including some of the relicking. Guess I'll be putting a mint LPB Player series up for sale.
 

Attachments

  • vintera1.jpg
    vintera1.jpg
    88.2 KB · Views: 257
  • vintera2.jpg
    vintera2.jpg
    183.3 KB · Views: 258
  • vintera3.jpg
    vintera3.jpg
    76.7 KB · Views: 236
  • vintera5.jpg
    vintera5.jpg
    71.5 KB · Views: 232
  • vintera8.jpg
    vintera8.jpg
    100.8 KB · Views: 255

jim232777

TDPRI Member
Joined
Oct 15, 2020
Posts
95
Location
Charlotte, NC USA
I love mine!

Since you have one, a couple questions:

How was the aging on your neck? The darker section of both mine and the one I played at GC was *not* smooth/slick. As mentioned above, it used a Scotch Brite pad to take a little of the black off. Now it plays very nice and still has the aged look. I didn't panic at the one in the store because I knew it could be sanded if needed, but it was curious.

Second, what are you comments on the pickups? I made some observations above that they're darker than others. I'm comparing mostly to the 2021 Player series. Both Player pups are brighter, I'm assuming primarily due to the alnico V magnets, but I'm not an expert there. My partscaster has Fralin pickups, an Unbucker in the neck that is a fairly "mid-rangy" humbucker, and a Blues Split Blade in the bridge. The Split Blade is quite a bit brighter than the Vintera bridge. The Unbucker seems somewhere near the Vintera, but to my ears has more mids whereas the Vintera neck is heavy on the bass end of the spectrum.
 

OmegaWoods

Tele-Afflicted
Joined
Nov 10, 2020
Posts
1,475
Age
54
Location
East TN, USA
I also hit mine with a Scotch Brite. I don’t have much to compare it to as far as pickups. It’s the only Tele I’ve played for more than a few minutes. Sorry I don’t have much basis for comparison.
Since you have one, a couple questions:

How was the aging on your neck? The darker section of both mine and the one I played at GC was *not* smooth/slick. As mentioned above, it used a Scotch Brite pad to take a little of the black off. Now it plays very nice and still has the aged look. I didn't panic at the one in the store because I knew it could be sanded if needed, but it was curious.

Second, what are you comments on the pickups? I made some observations above that they're darker than others. I'm comparing mostly to the 2021 Player series. Both Player pups are brighter, I'm assuming primarily due to the alnico V magnets, but I'm not an expert there. My partscaster has Fralin pickups, an Unbucker in the neck that is a fairly "mid-rangy" humbucker, and a Blues Split Blade in the bridge. The Split Blade is quite a bit brighter than the Vintera bridge. The Unbucker seems somewhere near the Vintera, but to my ears has more mids whereas the Vintera neck is heavy on the bass end of the spectrum.
 

Martocaster

Tele-Meister
Joined
Dec 27, 2019
Posts
125
Location
UK
Since you have one, a couple questions:

How was the aging on your neck? The darker section of both mine and the one I played at GC was *not* smooth/slick. As mentioned above, it used a Scotch Brite pad to take a little of the black off. Now it plays very nice and still has the aged look. I didn't panic at the one in the store because I knew it could be sanded if needed, but it was curious.

Second, what are you comments on the pickups? I made some observations above that they're darker than others. I'm comparing mostly to the 2021 Player series. Both Player pups are brighter, I'm assuming primarily due to the alnico V magnets, but I'm not an expert there. My partscaster has Fralin pickups, an Unbucker in the neck that is a fairly "mid-rangy" humbucker, and a Blues Split Blade in the bridge. The Split Blade is quite a bit brighter than the Vintera bridge. The Unbucker seems somewhere near the Vintera, but to my ears has more mids whereas the Vintera neck is heavy on the bass end of the spectrum.
I have the same guitar too and pretty much the same experience. I love the finish on the neck and its chunky dimensions, but I also did the scotch bright thing on the back and generally cleaned it up. One of the first things I did was to remove all the strings (I prefer 10's anyway and I think they come with 9's?) gave the fretboard a clean too and polish the frets. It didn't change any of the 'aged' look but it played so much better afterwards. Before it didn't feel so much an aged guitar as a dirty one!

As far as the pickups are concerned I really like them. I agree the neck sounds a bit fatter than a traditional tele but I tend to think of it as having more mids rather than bass. I guess it might depend of the rest of your set up. I switch between this and a Strat and definitely find the neck on the tele to have a smooth mid 'hump' in comparison to that. The bridge I would like to have a bit more output but it does seem to pair well with the neck pickup and both respond well to tweaks of the volume / tone controls. Before I bought it I was pretty sure that I would swap out the pickups for a twisted Tele in the neck but I've found I like it just the way it is.

I know it's not exactly a cheap guitar but I do think they're excellent value and damn enjoyable to play.
 

jim232777

TDPRI Member
Joined
Oct 15, 2020
Posts
95
Location
Charlotte, NC USA
I like those Road Worn Vinteras. The LPB and black guard look great. Congrats.
Yes, a great combination. I have a LPB Player series with a white guard that I was planning on for a project. I was close to changing to black just because I like the look, but hadn't yet. This guitar is now the keeper and I'll let the Player go, complete with it's white guard.

I'm not quite sure why Fender put LPB in a "50s" version as I think that color didn't come out until at least 1960 if I recall correctly. One of my favorite Tele colors, though.
 

Electric Warrior

Tele-Holic
Joined
Jan 7, 2018
Posts
945
Location
Midwest
I bought the Sonic Blue and had a similar experience. Took the scotch brite pad to the neck. I gave it a little fret level, crown and took care of the sprout and sharpness. Did some nut filing. It came out really nice and was worth it because I love the feel and profile of the neck. I took a more abrasive 3m pad to the cheesy relicing along the edges to get rid of the serrated look.

It started finish checking around the neck pocket when I took the neck off and put it back on. So I got the bug in me and got the body to check by, I kid you not, banging the bottom edge of the lower bout against a kitchen counter. I don't suggest doing this. I also subjected it to some freezing temperatures and a bathroom with a hot shower running which really started the checking going. YMMV
 

Electric Warrior

Tele-Holic
Joined
Jan 7, 2018
Posts
945
Location
Midwest
Braver is a kind way of putting it. The neck pocket is purely from removing the neck, the rest was my own foolishness to see how it would react. Having gone this far, I plan to keep pushing it.
 

Attachments

  • 20220416_233945.jpg
    20220416_233945.jpg
    96 KB · Views: 44
  • 20220416_233937.jpg
    20220416_233937.jpg
    45.7 KB · Views: 43
  • 20220416_233645.jpg
    20220416_233645.jpg
    78.8 KB · Views: 45
  • 20220416_233600.jpg
    20220416_233600.jpg
    71.8 KB · Views: 47




Top