Up for sale, a 2021 Riggio Custom Guitars Sierra model in like-new condition and in perfect working order, complete with the blonde tolex G&G Deluxe hardshell case and outfitted with Ron Ellis pickups. In a class all his own, Joe Riggio creates easily some of the most compelling, soulful, and truly inspiring guitars made in this decade or any other. While the S-Style template may initially feel like well-trodden territory, Riggio is able to capture that elusive thing that made the model so compelling in the first place. And of course it's not just one thing, but a bevy of small details that Riggio is able to bring together in a guitar that simply feels "right." From his proprietary neck profile shapes (mapped on a CNC from actual vintage examples) to lightweight tonewoods, no corners are cut in creating the ultimate Strat.
This particular Sierra is loaded with Ron Ellis 50/60 single coils which faithfully recreate the sparkling yet woody tones of a great Pre-CBS Strat. Easily some of the most coveted boutique Strat pickups on the market today and easily fetching over $1000 for a set (and with a significant wait list), the Ellis pickups make it easy to find just the right Strat tone for a variety of genres. This set has the Hot bridge pickup, and the coils meter at 6.4k ohms in the neck position, 6.5k in the middle, and a robust 9.1k at the bridge. This Sierra is a dynamic and soulful instrument that truly delivers the goods, and the natural qualities of the tonewoods are channeled through the Ron Ellis pickups for a distinct, vital sound on every position on the five-way switch. The guitar weighs 7lbs 7oz with an alder body and tempered one-piece maple neck, dialed in here at Mike & Mike's Guitar Bar with 10-46 strings, low action, and accurate intonation.
The neck has Riggios "63 C" shape, a medium depth profile care with full shoulders and lightly rolled fretboard edges, measuring .835" deep at the 1st fret and .965" at the 12th. The fretboard has a modern 9 1/2" radius, with flawless Dunlop 6125 .095"x .047" fretwire. These "narrow, tall" frets have similar width to vintage wire with a bit more crown for longer fret life and effortless bending. The Sierra plays effortlessly up the 25 1/2" scale, and the carved bone nut measures 1.650" in width. The headstock shape is easily one of the best out there, reverent to the Bigsby/Fender origins of the shape, yet with a slight German Carve on the outer edge, and complete with a Riggio waterslide decal and Gotoh, Kluson-style tuning machines.
All of the electronics work as intended, with the Ron Ellis 50/60 pickups wired to a Switchcraft five-way switch and 250k CTS pots. The gold anodized pickguard and aged plastic parts provide the perfect contrast to the Copper Metallic nitro lacquer finish, and tasteful aging applied by Riggio includes light lacquer checking, simulated edge wear, a touch of patina on the hardware, and oxidizing of the gold text on the knobs. The neck profile has Riggio's proprietary aging, with a very smooth gradient between nitro gloss and bare maple, silky and simulating genuine palm wear behind frets 1-9.
The original blonde tolex G&G hardshell case with black leather ends and purple crushed velvet interior is included, along with the original spec sheet/hangtag.