Telecaster Ultra

werdna

New member
Messages
1
Hi Everyone,

I'm new here. My current project is to build something like the Telecaster Ultra. Single bound on top. Belly cutaway and neck heel mod. Put on a tele neck but with Wolfgang profile, because once you play that profile there is no going back. Neck pickup a soap bar or HB sized single coil.

The challenge is figuring out how to do the Texas Tea finish which Fender uses on their Ultras.

I think it might be primer in black. Then a clear coat with gold tiny dust. Then an dark brown/black tinted clear layer.

On the other hand it could be a custom blend of the gold and the dark brown/black.

It's a colour in the Dulux range. I don't know if it's the same as the Fender finish.\

I don't want to buy a Fender Ultra because I want the Warmoth neck and custom pickup config.

Is there anyone out there with painting expertise who might be able to shed some light please?
 

stratamania

Senior member
Messages
9,218
I am afraid I don't have a steer on the Texas Tea finish but welcome to the forum. It sounds like a fun project.
 

rgand

Senior member
Messages
5,934
Thi finish is out of my expertise. I do look forward to seeing you progress on this. Welcome to the forum.
 

jay4321

Senior member
Messages
1,278
Agree on the Wolfgang profile. I got 2 from a guy as part of a trade having never tried them and was pretty happy, got one lately from Warmoth and another from a competitor. It’s just the right shape for me.
 

Ace Flibble

Senior member
Messages
859
'Texas tea', like most of Fender's finishes, is a paint first made for custom cars and bikes that Fender has 'borrowed'. Get in contact with automotive spray shops or garages near you and unless you live in the middle of nowhere, you should be able to find one which will either carry or be able to order in the colour and spray the body for you. (Though in my experience they'll often ask you to sand and seal the wood first, and possibly supply them with a primer, as they're not always experienced with or set up to work with wood, especially oily, highly-figured or porous wood.)
If you can't find a garage that can handle it, you can buy the paint yourself online. You can find it in brush/wipe-on form, in aerosols, or for proper compressor airbrushes. If you can't find 'Texas Tea' specifically in a form that is available and affordable to you, you might want to try also searching for 'black gold' or 'black gold pearl' finishes, which have a similar look. Of course there are many other metallic browns and blacks that you could either mix up or have a custom paint company mix for you – on that note many custom paint companies will be able to mix Texas Tea for you, though some may ask for a specific car model number to match the paint exactly.
Or, to do it the old-school way, you could buy some gold metallic or gold flake paint and then spray translucent black over the top. It'll give you a higher-contrast look; this is the difference between a standard metallic finish and a 'candy' finish. The body will look more black when looking at it straight-on but the gold will stand out more on edge highlights.

Lastly, keep an eye out for a Fender body. It's very common to see new Fenders broken down to individual parts and sold off on eBay and the like. The Ultra body is already routed for a humbucker at the neck (and a middle single coil too, I believe – this is standard practice for modern Fenders) so you could get the pickup config you want (though there are many 'regular' Tele pickups made to sound like P-90s, too, so you can get that tone no matter the format). The only problem is Warmoth's 'pro' necks aren't compatible with Fender's heel contour, but there are ways around this. (And in many ways better since Fender's contouring is much slicker and better for fret access than Warmoth's own, which frankly is a very outdated design that needs to be addressed.) You could stick to a 'vintage modern' Warmoth neck, which leaves out some of the fancier options like some of the exotic woods and binding, but can still be bought with the Wolfgang profile; you'll need to re-drill one of the neck bolt holes, but it works and the old hole remains covered by the heel. Alternatively you could check out any number of other neck/body companies, most of which offer profiles that are like or approximate the Wolfgang style and are compatible with Fender's contoured heel. Lastly, you could get an actual Fender neck already drilled for the contoured heel (a Tele Ultra neck, even) and simply shave or sand down the neck profile yourself, then give it a quick spray of clear matte poly or nitro and you'd be set.
 

ragamuffin

Senior member
Messages
915
I think Tonar/Greg did a finish like that a while back and it came out really nice https://www.instagram.com/p/Bey2drUD6ff/
 

bagman67

Senior member
Messages
8,248
The dude is a master.  As I recall, he did it with rattle cans by first painting the body black and then applying the gold as a mist from a distance.
 
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