Up for sale, a 1998 Fender Custom Shop American Classic Stratocaster in near mint condition and in perfect working order. With a striking and nigh flawless Ice Blue Metallic gloss nitro lacquer finish and highly figured quartersawn one-piece maple neck, this Strat has been extremely well cared for over the past 20+ years and comes complete with a Fender-branded G&G hardshell case, COA, and hangtags. Visually striking and expertly made, this Strat embodies everything we love about this era of Custom Shop construction, with incredible tonewoods, exceptional attention to detail, and much more limited production.
All of the ingredients of a great Strat are present with this model, including a highly figured quartersawn maple neck, black bobbin Custom Shop pickups, and a resonant alder body. There's plenty of versatility and tonal range on the five-way pickup selector switch too, with a bridge pickup that chimes and sparkles, 2 and 4 positions that have quintessential Strat quack and cut, and a neck pickup that is warm and detailed, perfect for lead work with rich harmonic content. This guitar weighs a comfortable 7lbs 14oz, with a sweet, articulate acoustic tone that translates well through the pickups. Here at Mike & Mike's Guitar Bar, we've dialed in this Strat with ideal action, solid intonation, and 10-46 strings.
The quartersawn neck has a slender, effortless C profile carve yet with shoulders at the nut that slope away subtly from the fretboard edges almost inferring a very soft V. The profile depth measures .835" at the 1st fret and .905" at the 12th. The figuring which extends evenly across the profile, fretboard and headstock splits the difference between quilted maple and birdseye, deep and dimensional and highlighted by a smooth nitro lacquer gloss. The fretboard features a modern 9 1/2" radius, with original medium jumbo frets that retain their full factory height, showing only light wear on the crowns beneath the G and B strings on frets 1-5. The neck is straight, the truss rod is responsive and optimally adjusted, and notes ring out clearly in every register. The nut measures a full 1 11/6" in width, and the headstock boasts a set of original Schaller-made and Fender-branded tuners with clean gold plating. The Custom Shop USA Fender chevron logo is also present on the back of the headstock, with a matching Custom Shop stamp on the neck heel and date stamps spanning December 1997-January 1998.
All of the electronics work as they should, with 100% original factory wiring, full-size CTS pots, and a trio of Custom Shop black bobbin pickups with staggered alnico magnets. The aged white plastic parts are in great shape, and the guitar has been fitted with a mint green vintage-reissue three-ply Fender pickguard (the original white pearloid pickguard with the same screw pattern is also included). The gold hardware is in excellent shape, with wear limited to very faint patina on the bass-side bridge saddles. The two-point vibrato actuates very easily for broad, expressive gestures and subtle warbles, complete with the original gold-plated vibrato arm. The gloss nitro lacquer Ice Blue Metallic finish shows a hint of greening in the clear coat, and cosmetic wear is limited to just a couple tiny minor marks on the body, and a spot of light, localized buckle rash mostly on the plastic tremolo cover. The neck profile is flawless.
The original black tolex Fender hardshell case, COA, polish cloth, and factory paperwork is included.