Refenderization

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Step 1
Buy a new Fender guitar

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In my case, I was lucky enough to stumble upon Special Fatory Run Telecaster 52 Deluxe Ash Telecaster.
It is made in Mexico, but with USA Custom Shop Body, neck and bridge, just painted and assembled in Mexico.
The woodwork is spectacular, the wood is really light swamp ash, resonant as an old Cello.
But, as usual, I was going to mke my own custom out of this one.



So, she was assembled in Mexico from US parts, and few hours after I took her home, she was disassembled. :o)

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First, I replaced the ugly Schaller knobs with nice small ones.

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The stock Hot Telecaster pickups were the second to go.
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Then, with the help of Vlatka, my wife who was forced to become a guitar repair expert, we began to shield the new Tele.

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Aluminum for the pickguard, paired with the 3M spray-glue.

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Carefully tracing 2 mm from the edge

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The pickup hole has to be free of foil, since my front pickup has got nickel-silver cap.

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Note the extension for the better contact with the control-cavity plate. Patent pending :o)

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Reinforcement for the extension.

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When this was done, the bodywork began.
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The guitar came factory-shielded with the conductive paint, but I was not satisfied with the conductivity, it read from 300 to 1200 Ohms, so the copper had to get installed.

With the foil joints properly connected with solder, the shielding is now as it should be. Zero Ohms, give or take a few.

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And now, for the Engine-room.
I ordered custom-wound pickups from “Q-pickups“ (You could find them on Ebay or FB).
The guy is an expert and the pickups he made for me are 50’s, A5, but not too hot, in order to maximize the spank and snap, the old Telecasters are famous for.

I highly recommend his outstanding custom-wound pickups. Top-notch custom work.

I have twisted the leads, the old-style, in order to get shielding effect.
Those of you who remember the high-school physics, know what I am talking about.

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The original pots were CTS, but too stiff for my taste and the switch was not CLR as good Lord intended.

The new pots are now Emerson low-friction, the switch is Centralab USA, of course, and with top-hat knob for better grip.
I have made treble-bleed and tone control to my likings. I prefer 0,022 mF for the tone.

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And in the end, the famous star-grounding. Nice, clean and neat.
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Finally, the guitar was assembled, and NOW it is time to remove the protective foils and enjoy my new Fender instrument.
It is now so quiet, one would think the humbuckers are inside.

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In fact, the pickups are RW/RP and in the both-on position the guitar actually IS in the humbucking mode, as Leo was doing in the beginning.
But, due to the perfect shielding, one cannot distinguish the humbucking both-on position from front or rear only - it is that quiet.
The pots are buttery, or silky, as you like, and the switch is industrial grade tough. Feels like changing gears on the truck.

Nut-dressing was done, as always, by Vugi from ńĆakovec.

And the sound, the pickups together with swamp-ash...
Pure silver.