I got this Strat in '95 for Christmas from my dad. He was the reason for my Gilmour worship so he knew to get me a CAR Strat with a maple neck. This guitar served me quite well until I got my JEM and quickly forgot about it. I still used it occasionally but realized that the tone was just HORRID. Such a lifeless guitar. My uncle gave me some Rio Grande's to put into it, but the poly is so thick on this body that you can barely feel the strings vibrating through the body.
I've toyed with many ideas on what to do with this thing. I LOVE the neck and it's got loads of sentimental value. It's actually in better condition than any guitar I own and it's the one I've had the longest. But that body.....I thought of buying a new body for it, but then that kind of takes away from the "This is my first good guitar" as only half of it's there.
So I decided last night on what I'm going to do-
Body is getting stripped of it's poly finish and getting re-finished with a new CAR finish and a nitro clear. I'll be doing this myself after some experimenting, but I've seen some people get great results using Alsa Killer Cans for the candy finishes. My biggest concern is South Florida's weather while it's curing.
Neck is also getting stripped of the poly (which feels like glass on the fingerboard now from playing), getting refretted with jumbo frets and then I'll tint and refinish it in nitro. I'll be replacing the logo with an era-correct decal.
New nut (Not sure on who has the best nuts these days, aside from DEEZ NUTS RIGHT HERE BITCH!)
Kluson Vintage tuners (IIRC, they've got locking ones, which I'll definitely switch to)
Callaham Bridge (They've even got a direct Mexi upgrade!)
EMG-SA's with the SPC and EXG circuits. EMG no longer makes the DG-20 set, so I'll have to piece the stuff together.
I'm REALLY looking forward to this project and am leaving the house in a few minutes to buy a heat gun and some scraping tools.
The two biggest concerns for me will be getting the finish on the body/neck right as well as the refret. I've never refretted a guitar before but will be getting the tools to do so over the next couple months. I'll probably buy a shitty neck somewhere just to practice on first. The small, stock frets on the old Mexi's.....I don't know how anyone can play that shit.
I told myself I'd never strip another guitar after I stripped my Jackson a couple years ago, but I didn't know you could use a fuckin' heat gun to do a lot of the heavy work.....I did that shit by hand with sandpaper and it took me 2 weeks!
I'll use this thread to keep the updates going, it'll either come out perfect or I'll fuck it ALL up.