Cookie cutter Custom shop relics?

Neil.C

Most Honored Senior Member
Mar 3, 2012
8,890
Surrey, England
In the past there was quite a long discussion on a British forum I post on about "cookie cutter" relics from the Fender Custom shop.

Supposedly custom but in fact, as pointed out by one of our members the custom shop seem to be working to templates/stencils so these "one off" custom creations are often identical to others.

An interesting piece of detective work and worth a read if at all interested.


Here's a couple of comparison pics....

1660545028660.png
 

uncle daddy

Senior Stratmaster
May 16, 2020
1,053
UK
It makes sense to mask off areas that won't have paint on them, much easier than trying to scrape it off after spraying. They seem to do the same for the MIM Road Worn series.
 

Neil.C

Most Honored Senior Member
Mar 3, 2012
8,890
Surrey, England
It makes sense to mask off areas that won't have paint on them, much easier than trying to scrape it off after spraying. They seem to do the same for the MIM Road Worn series.

The road worn models are of course all done to a template but a bit different to a "custom" shop model, certainly in price.
 

Wound_Up

You can call me Duane 😁
Jan 23, 2020
5,006
NW LA
It does, until you realise they're charging you a lot more money for the 'artistic work' that goes in to it.

And? It's just as difficult on the first as the last. So, what's your point? You think after the first one, they can just do it in a few seconds? Lol. It still take hard work to make it look like that, whether it looks just like another one or not.

You ever been a commercial painter/refinisher? I have. It ain't no cake walk. Doesn't matter if it's on cars or guitars. It's still difficult.
 

somebodyelseuk

Senior Stratmaster
Jan 29, 2022
1,097
Birmingham UK
And? It's just as difficult on the first as the last. So, what's your point? You think after the first one, they can just do it in a few seconds? Lol. It still take hard work to make it look like that, whether it looks just like another one or not.

You ever been a commercial painter/refinisher? I have. It ain't no cake walk. Doesn't matter if it's on cars or guitars. It's still difficult.
You're missing the point.
If they were stencilling guitars up, spraying 'em... etc, and then charging a fortune extra, it's a con.
Personally, I don't believe the Custom Shop does that.
 

=KARMA=

Senior Stratmaster
Feb 24, 2015
1,916
Londinium
You're missing the point.
If they were stencilling guitars up, spraying 'em... etc, and then charging a fortune extra, it's a con.
Personally, I don't believe the Custom Shop does that.
It’s a business, and Fender’s business is to make money and more importantly, profit. The bottom line is everything.

Anything that can be done to reduce the manufacturing costs will be implemented in order to maximise profitability.

Using a masking template is an obvious solution.
 
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Intune

Most Honored Senior Member
Jan 14, 2021
5,666
Edmonton, Alberta
Also notice how those 2 guitars are the same model. They do this a lot so that it’s not just limited to one person getting that one. They’ll do a run of this look, that look and maybe a not so heavy relic.

Even with a template this is still not a job that takes a few seconds. So if there are charging more it’s because it takes time. Who likes working for free, I sure don’t.
 

Stratoskater

Fuzz Meister General
Feb 8, 2011
11,396
Naked in NC
You're missing the point.
If they were stencilling guitars up, spraying 'em... etc, and then charging a fortune extra, it's a con.
Personally, I don't believe the Custom Shop does that.
When I bought my two new CS Fenders in April I looked at Closet Classic, nos and journeyman finish levels. Cost was the same for each. You pay for the custom shop level work and quality, that’s why they cost what they do.
 

somebodyelseuk

Senior Stratmaster
Jan 29, 2022
1,097
Birmingham UK
When I bought my two new CS Fenders in April I looked at Closet Classic, nos and journeyman finish levels. Cost was the same for each. You pay for the custom shop level work and quality, that’s why they cost what they do.
Groovy.
If they're not charging extra, then nobody has the right to complain. I was under the impression that relicing cost significantly more.
 

catsandstrats

Strat-Talker
Aug 2, 2020
145
US
It definitely looks like a template (stencil?) to me. Probably similar to how they made the Rory Gallagher Strats. I understand why it's a bit bothersome conceptually but I don't find it to be a con per se. To me, this feels like a vote with your wallet situation.
 

catsandstrats

Strat-Talker
Aug 2, 2020
145
US
Yes I’d love to have a real vintage 50’s or 60’s strat. I can’t even afford a player grade refin so this is the next best thing. Added bonus is you can play it right away.
Yep - totally agreed here. I have a CS Journeyman relic Tele and it was the most reasonable way for me to capture the vibe/feeling of the vintage Fenders I adore. With a family and house obligations I can't justify wading through the actual vintage market so that was the best I could do and I'm happy I did it.
 

budglo

Strat-O-Master
Nov 21, 2009
653
ohio
Yes I think the heavy relics are slightly more but not a huge amount more. My 51 pbass NOS finish was $4900 and the heavy relic version was $5100, Canadian dollars.
Yeah , I think I calculated it out to be a few hundred. What people are paying for is the level of treatment such as team built vs masterbuilt and always the limited editions cost more. However people think they’re paying a fortune fora “ reliced “ guitar .
 


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