Fender Custom Shop 50th Anniversary ‘54 Stratocaster Masterbuilt LE Todd Krause – USA 2004
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‘Todd Krause has built exquisitely crafted custom instruments for many of the world’s greatest artists, including Jeff Beck, Eric Clapton, Bob Dylan, David Gilmour, Robbie Robertson, Kenny Wayne Shepherd, Robin Trower, Roger Waters and many others.
His guitar-building apprenticeship began in early 1981 at Jackson/Charvel guitars. Krause arrived at Fender in 1991 and steadily rose through several roles, including one-off instrument builder, R&D model maker, and woodworking machinist. He became a Custom Shop Master Builder in 1997 and has since created countless distinctive instruments, all of which embody his personal design philosophy: “Form and function are the biggest part of it,” he said. “It’s about the way an instrument sounds and feels. It has to look cool, and it has to compel you to play.”’
The Limited Edition 1954 Stratocaster guitars were built from January 15th to December 31st of 2004, in celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Stratocaster guitar. They are faithful replications made with the same exacting detail as the original instruments, using many of the same machines and manufacturing methods used 50 years ago. Every deep body contour, pickup magnet and screw is a replica of a 1954 Strat. Fender even went as far as to have pre-CBS Fender employee, Roger Centeno, stamp each tremolo cover plate with the original die.
This guitar features a nitro-cellulose lacquered, two-piece ash body with offset glue seam, and one-piece “U”-shape maple neck. This limited release guitar also includes three new Custom Shop Vintage 1954 Stratocaster pickups - custom reproductions of the original 1954 pickups. The finish and body contours also match the original exactly. There are also features and details that have yet to be seen on a reproduction, including the unique knobs, switch tip, pickguard, tremolo cover plate and pickup covers that have been retooled and manufactured using the exact formulas and materials that were used on the original parts.
7 lbs. 10 oz.
2-Tone Sunburst Finish
Maple Neck and Fingerboard
25.5" Scale Length
'54 "U" Neck Shape
.870" Neck Profile at Nut
.970" Neck Profile at 12th Fret
Custom Wound ’54 Stratocaster Single-Coil Pickups
Vintage Style Tremolo
Vintage Style Tuners
Single-Ply White Pickguard
The result is classic Stratocaster bell-like tones with that wonderful woody character from the neck pickup and plenty of snarl from the bridge pickup. The control knobs roll effortlessly, but still have enough resistance to smoothly operate with your pinky if that’s your thing.
While showing playing wear is the whole point of this light relic Strat, the guitar has actually hardly been played at all. There is next to no fretwear, but the feel and sound of this thing is that of an old instrument – as close as you can get the real thing without having to take out an extra mortgage.
Todd Krause is 25-year Master-builder at the Fender Custom Shop, and it is our experience that his Masterbuilt guitars, and Strats in particular, are becoming more and more sought after, and therefore more collectible. And for good reason - if you can get a chance to lay your hands on this one, you’ll understand why.
Sale includes a bunch of unopened case candy including ashtray, cleaning cloth, tags and Certificate of Authenticity signed by Todd Krause.
Comes in its original Fender ‘poodle’ case in good condition.