Thursday, December 17, 2009

Indie #12 - 'Super T' black sunburst

This is another Indie 'Super T', but an older one that's had a quite hard life prior to me getting hold of it.

I picked this up very cheaply from a studio that was relocating and getting rid of all its gear. There are knocks and chips all over it, even a couple of nasty digs in the back of the neck where it's obviously been repeatedly leant against a hard edge.

Even so it's 100% fine to play which made me decide this would make a fun modding project. There have been a couple of evolutionary stages to get to this point but what you see is how I think it'll stay for a while.

The main change is that I bought a 'Nashville' style Tele pickguard and two lipstick tube pickups from GuitarFetish. By default the Super T is routed for just one single coil and this was my first venture into routing guitar bodies. In the end I found it was quite simple really and I made a fairly tidy route even without using a template. The only bit I got wrong was that the lipstick tubes are quite tall when you include their brackets so I had to drill a little deeper at the ends of both routes after I started putting the guitar back together. Before this the pickup mounting screws were touching the bottom of the route. I tried shortening the screws but then the pickups were really close to coming undone all the time.

The bridge pickup is the original Indie humbucker. I briefly toyed with a P90 in there but wasn't happy with it. In order to make it match the lipstick tubes I've bought a gold pickup cover, soldered it on then wax potted  it. Another first for me, but it seems to have come out well.

While I was there I put in a phase reverse push-pull on the middle pickup so you can do out of phase sounds. Not something I'll use a massive amount but I like doing stuff like this "because it's there".

The hardware started out gold but some of it was scratched and corroded so I've changed it to black. While I was doing that I tried out some of the unbranded locking machine heads AxesRUs started selling. These are similar to locking Sperzels, with a thumbwheel on the back which you use to tighten a pin onto the string as it passes through the hole in the stem of the machine head. I've not described that very well, but suffice to say they work very very well indeed. I shall be buying more of these should I need to replace any machine heads in the future.

With all this done I've added a little versatility to it and in my opinion improved the looks a bit. The two lipstick tubes give me a really bright strat kind of sound but the bridge humbucker is quite high output and very rock. There's a nice contrast between the two.

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