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The 2008 Fender® Partscaster

The summer of 2008 project. An Arctic White Stratocaster, assembled from original Fender parts.

Click on the pictures for a bigger version, close the picture on the "X" or by clicking outside the box.

Body parts from the Bay


Started this project with the intention of doing a custom paint job. An American Standard neck and a MIM body were purchased of the eBay. The MIM body was selected for being cheap.

When the body arrived I found it to be gorgeous, and even my wife liked it; "Nice color, do you really want to paint on that?"

After some persuasion I decided to keep this as is, and doing the paint job on my Highway One instead, since I really do not care for the satin finish on the HWY One.

This was the parts purchased from eBay:

• A 2008 Maple American Standard Fender Stratocaster Neck
• A 2008 Arctic White MIM Standard Fender Stratocaster Body

Assembly time


The neck is a modern C-shaped neck with 9.5" radius, medium jumbo frets and a bi-flex truss rod. Both parts was described as "unused and in mint condition" by the seller, and they sure was.

To be able to assemble the Partscaster I made a quick order from FDP sponsor "Guitar Parts Resource". The parts arrived within a week:

• A set of Fender American Standard staggered tuners - P.N. 099-0820-100
• Fender F-logo neck plate in chrome - P.N. 099-1448-100
• Fender Jack Ferrule for Strat in chrome - P.N. 099-1940-100
• Switchcraft USA 1/4" Mono Jack - P.N. EP-0055-000
• Dunlop Straplok in nickel - P.N. SL1031N

Copper shield

The body cavities were shielded using copper tape.

Heads up


From another angle, from the head down...

Here is the Fender American Standard staggered tuners mounted. They were to be replaced later on as you will see further down.

Busted threads


Some of the treads for the pickguard and jack ferrule screws was stripped clean because of previous over tightening and was in need of some attention.

• The holes were first drilled clean with a 3 millimeter drill

• A 3 mm hole was then punched in square pieces of masking tape and applied over the screw holes to protect the body

• The screw holes were filled with chemical wood (a two component plastic wood putty) and left to harden for about an hour

The unmasking


When the masking tape was lifted off it looked like this, a clean hole with no surrounding putty. The little hole in the middle was done with a scratch awl at "filling time" when compacting the putty just to mark the center for later drilling.

Drilled and done


A 2 millimeter hole was drilled in center for the screw, enough for the screw center to go clear, and the threads to grab.

The chemical wood putty used have the same properties as real wood and can be drilled, sanded and sawed. It makes a very strong bond with the surrounding wood.

Pickguard


The fully loaded and shielded pickguard is taken from my Highway One, for which I have other plans.

The pickups are Lace Sensors Hot Golds with a hotter 13.2kOhm bridge pickup, treble bleeder, Greasebucket tone controls, and the seven-sounds mod utilizing the neck+bridge and neck+middle+bridge combinations as described in the "Seven-Sounds" section.

Closeup


A closer view of the controls. You see the treble bleeder capacitor and resistor on the volume pot, the mid potentiometer with its Greasebucket circuit and the push/pull pot for the Seven-Sounds mod.

A Fender 5 way super switch is used making it possible to assign separate positions for each of the two tone controls. Only one tone control is active in each position.

The wire used is AWG-22 sized Teflon insulated high quality wire.

Pickguard in place


The pickguard is at last being mounted.

DOH!

Since I have a couple of vintage Fender bridges lying around I planned of using one of those. This new body had the 2 1/16" spacing and my bridges were the 2 3/16" kind.... DOH!

Had to order a new 2 1/16" bridge, and found a new original Fender with a high mass block on the Bay. About a week and a half later the bridge arrived and I was able to continue.

Rear view


The body backside showing the F-logo neck plate and the tortoise shell back plate.

Body closeup


A front view of the body.

A four-ply tortoise shell pickguard with a 13.2 set of Lace Sensor Hot Golds and aged white knobs.

Tune in...


Since the guitar turned out to be really nice I decided to upgrade it after using it for some time. I wanted locking tuners instead of the American Standard ones so I ordered:

• A set of Fender "F" Locking Tuners in chrome - P.N. 099-0818-100

These was also ordered from Guitar Parts Resource. Here they are mounted.

This is actually the short shaft tuners from two sets. Since I had a second set "in stock" I used the short tuner post ones from both sets. I do not like the look of having different length tuner posts.

Tuners from behind


And here a reverse headstock (?) view.

Callaham bridge


This was the second upgrade made. I decided to go for the best.

This is a Callaham bridge with 2 1/16" string and mounting spacing, the "Callaham Mexican Model".

Full view


A full view of the completely assembled 2008 Fender Partscaster.

Specs:

• Arctic White
• 22 fret maple neck, 9.5" radius, biflex truss rod
• Fender locking tuners
• Callaham Vintage Bridge, 2 1/16" E to E
• Tortoise Shell pickguard
• Lace Hot Golds with 13.2k bridge pickup
• Greasebucket Tone controls
• Seven-Sounds push/pull pot for added pickup combinations
• Dunlop Straplok system straps

Made mostly out of genuine Fender parts...