Parts for telecaster

Discussion in 'Tele Home Depot' started by Dpalms, Jun 12, 2019.

  1. Dpalms

    Dpalms TDPRI Member

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    I posted a thread a week or 2 ago about building my first telecaster, now I am looking to start buying parts for the build.
    What are some good quality parts I can get. I see alot of parts on ebay and Amazon very cheap, but usually cheap means cheap parts. I don't see any point on doing all that work only to put low quality parts in the guitar. Im Not looking for the best parts around, but something decent, I have a mim strat that I'm pretty happy with, what kind of parts are in that guitar? I'm thinking that some thing like that should be good enough for me.

    If this topic has already been covered please point me in the right direction.
    Thanks
     
  2. Jim_in_PA

    Jim_in_PA Tele-Meister

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    As a new builder myself, I've put some thought into that question. I chose to go with "not base level hardware", but also not to spend a fortune, either. I chose to buy new that seemed to have good reviews, etc., but folks have often mentioned acquiring used Fender parts from the "big auction site" and other sources and that probably has merit. The challenge might be if they are authentic or not. You might also post in the classifieds here as people who upgraded things might be interested in selling original, serviceable parts.
     
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  3. G.Rotten

    G.Rotten Tele-Holic

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    MIM bridges are fairly inexpensive. I prefer the modern feel vs vintage ashtray style (to each their own preference). I bought set of locking tuners off Amazon for $40 CAD all in that I'm very impressed with. Will likely order a couple more sets.

    https://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B07MZWCT83/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o02_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

    https://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B0...392-182d8c1e93fc&pf_rd_r=J2F3EWHQ0PV2XFV99W8X


    Most pickups I've bought from G.F.S. have been great bang for your buck, but I wouldn't buy any bodies or necks. I'm sure there are good ones, but what I've bought so far has been junk.

    G.F.S. is still good for filling the missing pcs (hardware, pickguards, etc....).
     
  4. davenumber2

    davenumber2 Friend of Leo's

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    Wilkinson hardware is a good value for bridge and saddles. CTS pots, switchcraft jacks and switches. For tuners I like Gotoh and Kluson. All reasonably priced.


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  5. TRexF16

    TRexF16 Friend of Leo's Vendor Member

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    If your Tele is going to be of standard configuration and not something unusual, I can strongly recommend the Wilkinson Vintage Bridge. IT is both inexpensive and excellent quality, and fits the vintage Tele hole configuration.
    http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-5...0001&campid=5338148343&icep_item=221693966058
    For your pickups consider Bootstrap. I have not yet installed mine but they are getting rave reviews from others.. They are hand wound in the USA and very inexpensive. There's a thread on them on the Just Pickups TDPRI forum.
    Don't scrimp on Pots and switch. Get a CRL switch (consider 4-way wiring - that'd probably be an Oak Grigsby switch) and CTS pots. No need to spend big bucks on some fancy NOS cap.
    Also best not to go too cheap on your tuners. Gotoh vintage staggered tuners are not too expensive and quite popular.
    http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-5...0001&campid=5338148343&icep_item=292006584333
    The switchplate, string tree(s) and pickguard can be el cheapo's if you like, or you can spend a little more for genuine Fender.

    Cheers,
    Rex
     
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  6. theprofessor

    theprofessor Friend of Leo's

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    So far, I've put together two Teles from parts, and I'm about to assemble another. I have Amazon Prime and Stew Max at Stewart MacDonald, so that means free shipping both places. I get Fender bridges, control plates, control knobs, string trees and neck plates from Amazon. From Stew Mac, I get Stew Mac strap buttons, string ferrules, and vintage tuner mounting screws, along with CTS solid-shaft control pots. I have resistors and capacitors and cloth pushback wire from amp building. I also get an Electrosocket and a Switcraft 1/4 jack, either from Amazon or from Stew Mac. Finally, I try to find Gotoh vintage split-shaft tuners used, but if not, I get them from Amazon. Then I decide on the appropriate pickguard and pickups. Various and sundry #4 and #6 screws and internal-toothed lock washers come from my stash or from the local hardware store. Oh, and copper tape and pickup-mounting springs comes from Stew Mac.

    The only place where I really spend a bit of extra money is the bridge saddles: Rutters.

    For pickups, I recommend Cavalier. If you're really on a budget, Bootstrap.
     
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  7. jvin248

    jvin248 Poster Extraordinaire

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    .

    For under $25 you can buy all the big brands of control electronics that are in $10,000 guitars. Fender uses CTS pots but I like Bourns (used in the EVH $13,000 limited run model a few years back that he toured with, so there's some durability). Switchcraft jack, Oak-Grigsby 4-way switch.

    Stainless steel frets

    Electrosocket jack mount.

    Pickups you can really buy any price point you want. I've had great luck with ebay $15/set and terrible luck (muddy) with the favorite big brand pickups everyone will pile on this thread telling you to get. Part of the reason for 'any pickup' is that you can swap pots and caps to alter the pickup tone output even when the controls are wide open. Which is what I do these days. Don't be afraid of ceramic magnets -- they are just create a stronger field so you can lower them further from the strings than alnico for similar output or raise them for more dirty blues drive on that amp.

    Critical to having a guitar that you will enjoy is the fretwork and final setup. I'd suggest paying a local guitar tech to do a full level crown polish and setup (usually around $100) after you get the guitar assembled. That will tune out any bugs in the build. I'd rather buy a $50 beater and a $100 fret level than even most new guitars upwards of $800 (that some have needed a level).

    .
     
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  8. nojazzhere

    nojazzhere Poster Extraordinaire

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    I whole-heartedly recommend Wilkinson for bridges and tuners.(vintage style on both) I use Bootstrap pickups, for quality, price and customer service. Good quality pots and switches are pretty reasonable, as are pickguards. But, whatever you do....don't skimp on the strap buttons!.....you don't want your baby crashing to the stage in the middle of your big solo! :)
     
  9. Old Deaf Roadie

    Old Deaf Roadie Tele-Holic

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    I personally spend a little more on tuners only because binding, slippage, or flat spots frustrate me to no end, and I only want to do one installation. That strategy has served me well. I also like to put on proven brand-name pups, if only to add perceived value if I choose to sell it. Shopping around certainly pays off if you are purchasing online, and the Prime & StewMax programs will save a bunch of money in the long term.
     
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  10. Freeman Keller

    Freeman Keller Tele-Afflicted

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    Go to StewMac.com. In the search box type "telecaster bridge". Look thru the options and select one you like. Then do "telecaster tuners" and do the same. Then all the other little figity bits, ferrules and strap buttons and trees and....

    Pickups are harder - that is the sound of your guitar. I've actually been pretty impressed with the StewMac Golden era pups but you may not like them.

    Their wiring kit will get you everything you need in one package.

    You can buy all that stuff elsewhere but I've built entire guitars with one box from SM.

    I like LMII for wood but that may be a problem for you shipping across the boarder. Probably best to buy local.

    Warmoth is the gold standard for necks if you are not going to build your own. Potential problems with some woods and CITES. Warmoth is good for bodies too but anyone with a router can make a body so there are lots of choices.

    In general price is an indicator of quality, I stay away from the really cheap stuff. I have a cheap Chinese bass neck on my workbench right now for a guy - its going to cost him more in time getting the frets right than if he'd bought a nice Warmoth neck. I like Gotoh, Grover and Waverly, either SM or LMII's truss rods, and I've used pickups from a whole lot of sources. The nice thing about a tele is that everything is "standardized" and you can change any part later.

    Time to get building.
     
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  11. stefanhotrod

    stefanhotrod Tele-Meister

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    The question is what kind of quality you want. I‘ve experienced hardware as a huge tonal factor.

    26580259-F5CD-4E7D-ABDF-3C34A49A09D6.jpeg
     
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  12. RickyRicardo

    RickyRicardo Friend of Leo's

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    For us here in Canada, Stew Mac and similar vendors are fairly expensive. We have to add on at least 35% to the items and shipping due to exchange. So reasonable isn't something I think of when buying from the U.S. and only do when I can't go anywhere else.

    Since this is your first build I highly recommend going the cheaper route just to get your feet wet. You'll be bitten by the bug after the first and you'll want to go with something a little better for the next one.

    Start with bezdez on eBay - https://www.ebay.ca/str/bezdez. I buy truss rods, string trees, control plates, knobs and tuners from him. He's in Canada so the pricing is right. He used to sell the Wilkinson compensated Tele bridge which I think is great, but no longer has it. He does have some Wilkinson tuners which are pretty good for the price.

    For electronics I buy from Nextgen - https://nextgenguitars.ca/ - I get fretwire, CTS pots, CRL switches, Switchcraft jacks from them. Also in Canada.

    For Gotoh tuners and bridges I get them from https://www.woodtoworks.com/https://www.woodtoworks.com/. I haven't found Gotoh tuners or bridges cheaper in Canada then there. Their main product is wood but they sell guitar parts and are great to deal with. All of these places are.

    I do go to GFS as well - https://www.guitarfetish.com/. Even with the exchange the prices aren't too bad and that's where I buy the Wilkinson bridges and cheap vintage tuners.

    Also - https://guitarpartsfactory.com/index.htm. In the States and sells lots of Fender parts with okay prices if you don't mind the exchange.

    All that being said, I always check eBay and Amazon first. I get lots from eBay and very little from Amazon but once in a while you'll see a smoikin' hot price. I bought Gotoh SD91's on Amazon last fall for $35 CDN. With Prime it was a bargain.

    Make a parts list, do a lot of searching and price out each item in CDN and US dollars and you'll see what I mean.
     
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  13. Itchyfeet1000

    Itchyfeet1000 Tele-Meister

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    Another vote for Wilkinson. My last three Tele builds have used their P90s and half bridges. Also used their tuners and been very impressed with the price/quality balance.

    IMG_20190123_010609.jpg
     
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  14. 4 Cat Slim

    4 Cat Slim Friend of Leo's

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    I compare putting together a partscaster to assembling or rebuilding a '32 Ford Street Rod or restoring a classic '64 Mustang.

    You can spend a lot of money on individual parts or components and a lot of time trying to get them to work together.

    For me, I focused more on the finish on my build, because I wanted something that Fender didn't offer at the time.
    I generally upgraded components, within reasonable limits. Electrosocket jack cup? Yes, definitely. Volume/Tone knobs machined from billet aluminum? No, not at this time. For machine heads, I went with basic Klusons. My idea was, I wanted to complete the build in a reasonable amount of time at a reasonable cost. I figure I could always upgrade later, if I found some change that I absolutely had to have ( I wound up changing the pick guard, after a year or so).

    Good luck, my friend!
     
  15. RickyRicardo

    RickyRicardo Friend of Leo's

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    My mistake. bezdez does have the Wilkinson Tele bridge.
     
  16. old wrench

    old wrench Tele-Holic

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    Lot's of good advice so far :).

    You might take a close look at the necks from AllParts. They are a good value and in my experience, are consistently good quality.

    Gotoh vintage tuners have already been mentioned; they are also a good value and good quality. I've switched over to using the ones with the staggered height posts and found that I can eliminate using string trees.

    So, if you don't mind finishing the neck yourself, you can have a very nice quality neck with good quality tuners for around $150 bucks U.S.. That's pretty hard to beat ;).

    I've put together several guitars using those parts and they are every bit as good as Fender's top American made line.

    I hope you get as much enjoyment from putting together your own as I have :).





    Best Regards,
    Geo.
     
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  17. theprofessor

    theprofessor Friend of Leo's

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    Hallo Stefan! Would you please elaborate on your experience with various qualities of hardware? I'd love to hear your thoughts.
     
  18. stefanhotrod

    stefanhotrod Tele-Meister

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    You‘re welcome!
    Most cheap and mass produced bridges are made from 1010 steel which is a more or less soft metal (compared to 1018 cold rolled steel or stainless steel) that causes poor sustain, feedback problems and may bend under string pressure. Same for neck plates.

    Cheap string retainers may cause friction and too less pressure on the nut.

    Bridge saddles are one of the main tonal influences on a Telly. I would always recommend high quality bridges, machined from (billet stock) materials that supports your tone (brass for smooth heights, alu for twangin‘ basses and so on).
     
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  19. TRexF16

    TRexF16 Friend of Leo's Vendor Member

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    IN order - How on earth could string pressure cause a bridge that was stamped from 1010 "bend?" How would having been stamped from 1018 make any difference? How does the addition of .08% carbon accomplish this? What part of a Telecaster bridge is even subject to string pressure? And how could this possibly be "Same for neck plates?"

    And certainly Leo Fender did not concur that Tele bridges should be "machined for billet stock." I'm not saying a machined from billet stock tele bridge would not sound fine, it's just that it would be unlikely to sound like a tele, since that's not how tele bridges are made.

    Sorry for the rant but remember the OP is looking for advice on good parts to use for a first Tele build.

    Regards,
    Rex
     
  20. rjtwangs

    rjtwangs Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

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