I know this is a metal guitarist forum and all, and I love my ESP to death, but I've always wanted a strat so I could get those slick cleans and kick back with some jazz/blues every now and again. My problem was that I knew nothing about them, though. I mean, when I'm searching to buy a rock/metal guitar, I know exactly what I want and what to look for, but when it came to a strat I would just think "uh....Fender? I guess, lolwut"
So I decided to take the "safe" route, and get an Eric Johnson signature model Fender. I figured I loved the guy, his sound, and his playing, so one of his signatures should be right up my alley. I ordered one off of ebay, and when it came in I loved the way it played and sounded. I was showing it to a friend when he asked me if I was 100% sure it was legit (he found out his strat had a mexican body when he tried to resell it). I hadn't thought that it could possibly be fake, or, more importantly, how I would even go about verifying something like that.
So I went online and looked at various pictures of EJ signature strats, and took notice of the hardware, or lack thereof. Mine looks identical in every way (even has the vintage sticker decal on the headstock, but something like that would make me think it would be easier to fake), but then again I'd assume if it was a fake it would look like one. So, my question to you guys: are there any tell-tale signs I should look for? Has anybody had their guitar legitimately verified by a professional?
Oh yeah, thread useless without pics, etc etc: