My Burgundy Mist Strat


Junior Member
Here's my recently re-configured and re-assembled Strat that's been a project over the last couple of years. The guitar started as a Black roasted swamp ash body and a roasted maple showcase neck- see last photo for what this looked like when first assembled.

I always intended this project as a learning experience, and oh boy it definitely has been. I didn't know how to properly set up a guitar when I first was putting this together, and now I feel like I've got a really good handle on assembling, wiring and setting up guitars. It's been a journey getting here, but I've ended up with a sweet guitar I really love.

My first big mistake was trying to put in the neck the wrong way the day the parts arrived, despite Warmoth's very clear warnings. Rookie mistake! I chipped off a chunk of wood on the body on the treble side of the neck pocket. I "fixed" it with some JB Weld putty and nail polish. I eventually got tired of looking at my crappy fix and wanted something more interesting, so I had the body refinished in Burgundy Mist Metallic by Copacetic Customs in Texas.

I also ultimately ended up doing my own fret level and recrown, which this neck badly needed. I was very nervous to tackle this, but I recently bit the bullet after practicing on some beater necks. It took me a lot longer than I anticipated, but it all went well and it plays so much better now.

The neck was initially finished with a few coats of Tru-Oil to bring out the figuring, especially on the headstock. The back of the neck was still mostly raw and I found it too rough, so I recently stripped whatever Tru-Oil there was on the back of the neck and burnished it up to 2000 grit. It's almost too smooth now, but definitely an improvement over what it was before.

I initially started with a Mojotone HSS Quiet Coil pre-wired pickguard. I inadvertantly killed one coil of the bridge humbucker putting on a cover with a crappy soldering iron and then I ultimately never meshed with the Quiet Coil singles. They're great pickups, but that sound just isn't for me.

I've swapped everything out with a Seymour Duncan Pearly Gates in the bridge and Red Devils in the neck/middle. I like the PG and absolutely love the Red Devils. (Didn't mean to go all Billy Gibbons on the pups, but it just happened that way.)

I also rewired the electronics when I put in the Red Devils. My controls are Volume, Master Tone, Master Bass Rolloff. I used a 5 way super switch to give me these pickup combinations:
1- Bridge
2- Middle
3- Bridge + Neck
4- Middle + Neck
5- Neck

I never really used position 2 bridge+middle and like having the classic Tele/LP neck+bridge combo. The original wiring had a blender pot, but this switch configuration made that basically moot. I replaced the blender with a bass rolloff ala G&L and Reverend, which I find super useful. It's still got some of that Strat sound (especially in position 4 with some of the bass rolled off) but with some thicker humbucker sounds.


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