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The yearly NAMM Show in LA allows guitar builders to launch a host of new models – Yet for the Fender Custom Shop team, it is more a case of releasing a run of highly spec’d Limited Edition models,  from their 50’s and 60’s golden era  – With current prices in excess of the cost of a nice German motor, few of us have access to an original 1958 Strat, but thankfully the guys at the Fender Custom Shop facility pay tribute to guitars from the golden era – Coupled with a few modern features that are designed to enhance the playing performance, this Strat captures the mystical magic of a good old ‘un – So let me introduce you to a new Namm Limited Edition Fender Custom Shop 58  Heavy Relic Strat, with a seriously aged ‘faded chocolate 3 colour sunburst’ finish  – Nostalgia will always ensure we’ll find something of interest in an old original model, but your hands, ears and indeed your wallet, will appreciate all the attributes that this Custom Shop Strat possesses – The late 50’s was somewhat of a transition era, as the 2 tone sunburst finish was morphing towards the 3 tone burst version – And only a year later the rosewood fingerboard was due to make an appearance – This Strat is seriously loaded with options from the Custom Shop ala carte menu, like a one piece, 1/4 sawn AA grade figured maple neck/fingerboard, as well as a set of hand wound pick-ups

Aged vibe :- Unashamedly this Strat looks like it has played more than its fair share of gigs in a smokey bars – Plenty of played in character with a ‘faded dark chocolate 3 colour burst’ finish   that sits on a vibrant alder body – Like wise the nitro finish on maple neck has been cut back, so that you experience that played in character from day one to enhance the overall playing experience – No need to ‘break’ this Strat in or indeed give it the kids glove treatment as it is spec’d to be played and played and played – All hardware, knobs, pick-up covers etc are aged accordingly – Note a subtle amount of glamour with a AA grade maple neck – Nothing to look ‘tarty’ but enough to add a touch of character

Playing performance :- The early 50’s started of with a big chunky neck – By the time we got to the early 60’s the neck had slimmed down to the classic 60’s Oval C profile – Far slimmer but certainly not thin – As such a number of transition models ensued – This Strat is spec’d with a custom ’59 Esquire C profile – More meat than a 60’s version, yet less depth than a 10/56V or 54 U profile from the early/mid 50’s – So comfortable depth without feeling chunky – The nitro finish has been fully ‘cut back’ for that ‘played in from day one’ character, with wear to both the fingerboard and neck – As such it feels silky smooth, with no drag and easy to handle – The neck profile is pure vintage, yet to enhance the playing performance, a 9.5″ fingerboard radius, along with a set of 6105 narrow/jumbo frets, allows for a slick action with no choking out – Big blues bends are effortless and allow for more control – Dig in and bend as required, or show of a few tricks ‘n’ licks as required

Tonal character :- Pure vintage – spanky – crisp – resonant – lively – highs that glisten – big  piano like lows that are clear and rounded – transparent mids – musical – angelic – These are just a few attributes that I can bestow upon such a Strat – As with any good Strat how you play it, plus how the amp is set up will determine exactly what you hear – Yet overall this Strat is full with a musical tonal character, plus shed loads of soul, expression and emotion – It has enough bite to be angry when required, especially when the volume pot is on 10, yet equally it sounds musical, with an angelic flute like character, when you roll off the volume pot just enough – All 5 switch setting possess a well balanced set of voices as you move from neck through to bridge – You’ll discover a chilled out laid back voice that is velvet smooth from the neck pick-up, to more bite and attack for hot country and rock n roll from the bridge pick-up – The Knopfler esq out of phase voices are so infectious – Rich, smooth and clear with plenty of body and quack – More full and rounded from the neck/middle combination and more crisp from the bridge/middle combination

On a clean amp setting it still possesses plenty of character and warmth to inspire – Yet equally only a touch of gain on the amp is required to make it sing and start to show its true colours – From subtle blues overdriven amp settings, to classic rock territory with an increased level of gain, this Strat is on home turf – Leave the Strat’s volume pot on 10 for more edge, bite and snap, yet always musical, but for your base tone I suggest you set up camp with the Strat rolled off to around 6 or 7 – It will still retain the guitars full tonal character, but now a touch softer, more chilled out as it cleans it self up – Then take it back towards 10 when you require that additional boost – Hence you and the guitar totally control the amp – As  a result all the emotion, soul, passion and expression you require is at your finger tips – Funky chord chops, power riffs, walking bass lines with shuffle chords, blues riffs, melodic moody single lines, to scorching solos and this Strat is both exciting and musical – Some Strats tend to lean towards a chilled out soft voice, others towards bright and crisp – This Strat possesses enough power to drive the amp but not at the expense of warmth and a vocal like tonal character, especially when you use the volume pot as a key part of your playing – Utilise this and your Strat is far from being one dimensional  – It has a big tone that truly inspires – Remember this is spec’d with the bottom tone pot now operating the bridge pick-up, so smooth out any ‘spikey’ highs as required – The other tone pot operates the neck + middle pick-ups

Full spec and details :—

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Guitars4You Offers Reliability, Integrity and Expertise

Every guitar in stock at Guitars4You has been personally selected, inspected and approved by me, with particular attention paid to the set-up and playing performance – Every sale, phone call, mail order transaction or e-mail is handled my me – Mark Hopkin, the owner, Managing Director, cleaner and coffee maker (Jo, my wife helps with the coffee) – A journey, now in excess of 40 years, has fuelled my knowledge, experience, love, devotion and passion for exceptionally fine guitars – This reflects in every aspect of our business.

I have no desire to run an Amazon style 'click to buy' guitar shop, that lacks any soul or passion, or indeed to fill a showroom with a selection of dirty, shop soiled or dusty guitars that are in need of a set-up.

For our returns and cancellation policy relating to mail order sales, on the above menu bar click on shop info then select mail order.