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My motley collection

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Here are the instruments in my collection:
1987 Chandler Strat:  This one is a triggers broom.  Bought in 2006, I had the muddy green finish stripped back to bare wood and everything else was replaced.  Jon Shuker finished the body for me and I did the neck in tru-oil. 

Because I wanted this to make 80's session noises, it was fitted a prewired HSS pickgard with EMG 85 in the bridge and two EMG SA in the mid and neck positions. The electronics feature a mid boost control and the EMG85 is tapped by pulling on the vol control.  Tuners are no brand locking type and work well enough.  Unusually, the body is solid two piece quilted maple so the notes ring clear and unmuddied.  

The bridge is a Wilkinson VS100CV, these haven't been made for many, many years and offer the benefits of both vibrato and hardtail.  The trem arm locks the bridge in place when not in use.  I have another three VS100CV bridges stashed away for future use, one in gold and two in chrome.


Nile Rodgers was the reason I decided to take up guitar.  This is a replica of his Hitmaker strat made by Al Knight - made with Fender licensed parts apart from the body.  The wear isn't quite the same these days but it features a thin alder body, Sperzels, Gibson speed knobs and a hard to find Kahler brass pickguard finished in chrome just like the original.  Electronics are standard wiring with Fender Noiseless Vintage pickups. I'm pleased to say it gets satisfyingly close to the sound of the original!


Being a big Al Murphy fan and needing something with humbuckers led me to this, a Yamaha MSG/Image Deluxe.  I have two, one of them is the Mk1 and this one is MkII where the vol pot is slightly further from the bridge.  All mahogany construction with a maple cap, I have since installed Armstrong PAF humbuckers so can extract some nicely jazzy sounds as well as a fat crunch.  The pickups can be coil split and while I was aiming for a tele twang, the mahogany construction kind of gets in the way of achieving that.  Still, the sounds are funky enough.  Otherwise both are still stock, with a Yammie RM-Pro vibrato bridge.  These are great guitars, seriously underrated.


Finally - a Klein replica.  I made the body with help, from NZ beech with a redwood top and the neck is an old Music Yo Steinberger jobbie.  Bridge is a Steinberger R trem and a Fernandes Sustainer kit is fitted for infinite yowling.  I'm not totally sold on the beech body, it seems to dampen the attack a little without reducing harshness so I may yet look for a replacement from mahogany or limba.

Still gassing for an Ibanez Artcore AWD82-ATF for semi hollow sounds.  Was going to make one but with this being nearly identical spec to what I planned, it's a no brainer.  Assuming I can find one. 


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3 hours ago, Kiwi said:

It is worth throwing the amps and pedal board up as well?

If they’re causing you nausea, then yes. 😉

Ooh, is that my coat? It’s ok, I’ll get it myself.

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Well slight problem I have is that the amps are spread across two countries.  So I'll have to improvise a little. 

First up the pedal board.  After getting a Zoom G3X, I actually found myself falling back on a handful of sounds.  Mainly overdrive, chorus, reverb and delay.  The signal chain starts with the Xotic Q wah, then straight into a Nux Chorus for trichorus.  Then the signal goes into an Amptweaker Tight Rock Pro which is one of the best distortion pedals I have ever played.

The TR has a side chain and effects loop intended mainly for running clean and dirty signal chains.  So the Effectrode PC2A valve compressor and Empress Para EQ (for added sparkle) are on the clean side.  In the effects loop are a Joyo JF14 American Sound and a Digitech Freq Out for low volume feedback.  The Joyo is wonderful, I crank the mids for a thick, fat and searing lead sound in conjunction with the Tight Rock - it's basically Alan Murphy in a box.  After the Tight Rock, the signal goes into a Mooer Ocean Sound for delay and reverb and then into the two Ibanez combos.


One note about the Effectrode PC2A, it's fabulous sounding (good enough for Mr Gilmour it seems too) but it needs a 12v 1500mA supply.  So not much good for gigging really unless it stays with the amp and then there's no point in having it in pedal format...sigh.  


The two Ibanez TSA5 combos are fine sounding amps, reliable, clean sounding and plenty loud enough for playing in an apartment.   I discovered them at a Basschat bash, one of the other members bought a TSA15 along and I was impressed by how good it sounded but I didn't need 15w.  

In storage however I have an ex-Lindisfarne Burman Pro501 1x12 50w combo which is great for cleans.  I got it back about 10 years or so ago, thanks to a contact on BC who knew Ray Laidlaw, the band's drummer.  The overdrive needs careful tweaking or else it can sound woofy.  Luckily Simon Cowe [who sadly passed in 2015] left his settings on in white grease pencil.  A cat either owned by Ray or Simon left it's marks as well. lol

You can see it here in an old shot at my place in NZ.

Also, there is a 1984 Fender Concert II (complete with footswitch).  I've always loved the sweet sound of Fenders.  A Super Champ was on the bucket list but couldn't afford it and I mistakenly thought the Concert II would be the next best thing.  As it turns out the Princeton Reverb II was the one to go for.  Ah well, it's hard enough to find these things in the UK as it is, let alone at a reasonable price, so should still count myself lucky.  I haven't actually played it yet even though it was bought about three years ago because I had already left the country.   It'll probably need a service before it gets shipped out here to make sure the caps are fresh.

Extra stuff: 

Burman GX3 preamp - haven't actually tried this with the Pro501 yet but want to see how they both sound with one driving the other.  I've tried recording with it but it tends to pick up the sound of the PC power supply and fans too easily.
Lexicon MPXG2 - an oldie but a goodie.  A real swiss army knife of an effects unit.  Lush reverbs, infinitely configurable (almost) and connectable.  Currently in storage. (Not my photo BTW because I don't have any good ones on my hard drive).

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