Trade Discussion Cabronita vs ProTone

MentalDekay

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Oct 25, 2012
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All,

I have a 96/97 ProTone Fat Tele. I've had it since ~2000. It's getting old, it ain't perfect, but it has a fair amount of sentimental value (first non-crap electric). There's a couple of cracks in the body's clear coat. The some of the frets have flattened. The electronics are still original (scratchy and needing cleaned, at least). And the thing weighs somewhere between a short ton and a long ton. I saw a couple on Reverb listed at 600. That seems bonkers.

A music store has a 2013ish Squier Cabronita. Fidelitron and tele bridge PU with the Bigsby. Black with a maple neck. It's obviously used and has been "on the lot" for more than a year, maybe 2. Their price is ~500, which seems a tad rich. I'd classify it as being in VG to near mint condition. It was a model I drooled over before getting my Gretsch.

The salesman said to come in after xmas; the manager might consider a swap. I have a Gretsch with their black top PUs and a Bigsby already. I was considering redoing the the ProTone's circuitry ... P-Rails neck, Fender Superswitch..

1. Would you pursue this trade? Which side is light?
2. What are your thoughts on the Fidelitron? I saw a trolly-comment excoriating them.
3. What are your thoughts on a refresh of the ProTone?

-des
 

bgmacaw

Doctor of Teleocity
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ProTones have a great reputation and the supply of them isn't that high so it's not surprising they're selling at a premium price. $600 does seem like a bit of a stretch though unless it's one of the rarer models/colors in near perfect condition.

The Cabronita with the Bigsby is also a sought after model that's not easy to find in a near mint, unmodified, condition. I think an even trade should be good, if you want to go that direction. They might ding your guitar for the frets and finish cracks, depending on how obvious they are. But, since you already have a Gretsch with a Bigsby, that would make me lean towards keeping the ProTone.

I've installed some of the lower end Gretsch pickups and their clones on partscasters and cigar box guitars. I thought they sounded decent enough. Of course, the vintage authentic ones will sound closer to the classic Gretsch sound.

So far as modding the ProTone goes, keep the original parts just in case you sell or trade it later. Otherwise, you may lose some value. You may find that after you replace the pots and switch that you like the stock pickups. As I recall, the pots and switches were one of the few weak points on these guitars. A fret level and crown job will probably take care of that situation and will be worthwhile if you plan to keep and play the guitar.
 

THX1123

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1. Would you pursue this trade? Which side is light?

I wouldn't trade. You may miss the Pro-Tone. I think your guitar is worth more.

2. What are your thoughts on the Fidelitron? I saw a trolly-comment excoriating them.

No clue, but I like Filtertrons and there's always TV jones etc.

3. What are your thoughts on a refresh of the ProTone?

I'd do it if it were me.
 

MentalDekay

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Thanks for the thoughts. I wish i wasn't forced into the "this one or that one" conundrum (really peeps, 9 stringed instruments isn't a lot when you need 2 acoustics (once heirloom quality, one beach quality), a 4 and 5 string bass, a strat or two, the PT, the gretsch, and a uke..while still missing out on a baritone and fender IV and a proper LP and a fretless bass and my latest obsession - a LP double cut with P90s.)

So in that light I will probably look to keeping mine and refreshing the electronics. IMHO, the HB is a quite mushy sound without a good topboost kind of effect or amp. 2 consecutive, agreeing opinions on an internet thread is statistically significant, right?
 

bender66

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This is the 2nd thread today mentioning the Fidelitrons lacking. I have the Squier dual Tron version your speaking of. All I did was added a 500k pot to that guitar to make me happy. I think antiguatele also tested that set in his work. As I recall they tested quite well as far as his data.

As much as i ogle that Bigsby version I wouldnt do that trade. That's a more recent guitar that can be found more easily than your fat tele. That's always my gauge.
 

McGoldTopp

Tele-Meister
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ABQ
The Squier is a $400 geetar used.

Its a nice geetar that I would like to own, but the trade is not in your favor.

but I have made trades not in my favor and been happy with the results.
 

Hodgo88

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Most of my sentimental stuff collects dust, waiting for my wife to find it and ask if we really need it.

I'd make the trade!
 

ricardo1912

Friend of Leo's
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Kent, UK
I've got two of the mim Cabronitas with the same pickups and I really like them. They're pretty sensitive to height and need different amp settings to normal teles, but they're a lot of fun.

That said, the Cabs aren't especially rare. I think I'd be keeping what you've got already. I've sold guitars that I've had a long time and almost always regretted it
 

2HBStrat

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Four Rivers Area of Middle America
Both guitars are rare and sought after. I have a Cabronita now and I wish I had bought at ProTone when they were new, So...My recommendation would be to keep the ProTone and figure out some way to buy the Cabronita outright. They won't trade even up with you anyway. I bet they'll probably ask $150-200 difference. And, fwiw, I love the Fidelitron pickups. If I see another Cabronita, Fender OR Squier, I'm buying it immediately.
 




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