I’ve decided to share this with all my friends here on Jemsite who like Strats. I know there are a few of you around so I present to you my beloved ’83 Strat.
I bought this guitar from a gigging bluesman in Italy 1993 who played and gigged the sht out of it in the bars and clubs of Milan. I bought it quite cheap as it wasn’t in the best shape, pretty much as you see it now - but I loved it then and still do now. We left home together in 1995 and she has been with me ever since.
So what’s so special about the 1983 Strat you ask? Well, not much really
It seems to have been an experimental year for the Strat. You’ll notice the weird trem bridge, called a “FreeFlyte Tremolo System”. It’s basically a top loading trem with no access to the springs cavity on the back of the guitar, instead it’s under the scratchplate. The trem is very stiff and not comfortable to use at the moment so I keep the trem arm in a cupboard somewhere and use this axe as hard tail. This is where the beautiful tone of the guitar has its origins, I believe. The stiff trem design (practically fixed) gives a Paul Gilbert style ‘snap’ to the strings …
The other idiosyncrasies of the guitar is that it has only 1 tone knob instead of the traditional 2, the input jack is strangely perpendicular to the scratch plate and the scratch plate itself is one-ply instead of the traditional 3-ply. Why, you ask? Well, it seems as though they were cutting some costs on the Standard in ’83 and obviously did not continue this design for very long
This guitar will soon undergo its first proper service since I’ve had it:
1. It needs a full refret.
2. The machine heads are battered and the high –E one is a clumsy replacement (wasn’t me
). A brand new set will be installed.
3. Volume and Tone knob have been replaced with new ones.
4. Needs new lacquer and sanding/cleaning of the fretboard
More pics to follow.