When the Stratocaster first launched in 1954, Leo Fender's goal was to build an affordable, workingman's instrument by simplifying the design and streamlining the production process. The result is a versatile, expressive guitar that has now become ubiquitous across all genres of music as a Swiss-army-knife guitar. Nevertheless, an interesting consequence of Leo's genius is the mutability of the design. While Stratocaster parts aren't exactly 100% interchangeable, players have always experimented with Fender templates. Sometimes when you combine the right parts, you can create something unique that tells its own story.
This Partscaster started its life as a 1980 Fender hardtail Stratocaster. It looks like the body was once painted Orange over its original polyurethane finish, but then later on, someone sanded the orange finish off and dug into the original finish underneath it to show the natural grain of the guitar's three-piece Ash body. The original finish was never altogether removed, just sanded down quite a bit. The neck has a rosewood fingerboard, and it has been refretted. The nut has also been replaced, but the tuning machines and both string trees are original.
Under the hood, this guitar has been hot-rodded with Barden (JBE) S-Style pickups. These are the Strat equivalent of the Danny Gatton telecaster pickup, and in addition to removing hum and unnecessary noise, they fatten the tone and add a ton of sustain. Nevertheless, the guitar's tone remains typical of a good Strat through and through. The 5-way switch and both tone pots are original to the guitar, but the volume pot was swapped to a 500k to accommodate the greater load of the pickups. The pickguard is a simple replacement three-ply guard that has the original shielding plate underneath it.
This 1980 Fender Startocaster Partscaster certainly has its own unique character and mojo, and it has been used in performance by blues monster Jimmy Thackery. His signature is on the back of the headstock as a seal of a approval, but honestly, you don't need to take Jimmy's word for it—this Stratocaster can speak for itself! Fender economy gig bag included.