Bite the Bullet
Updated: May 17, 2019
So this is the first post for the first project.
I recently popped into a small local guitar shop for the first since I moved house and wandered out as the proud owner of an old guitar body... as you do.
I’d only gone in for strings! I guess it’s not that bad, there are days when I‘ve been to buy a pick and could have happily walked out a few thousand £££s lighter!
On first glance I thought - Strat body, yellowed Olympic white, poly patina - nice and easy to throw some old parts on. When I got home it dawned on me the there’s no jack hole and the body is a bit narrower than a regular Strat.
The heavy relic Strat alongside was an old project that will be revisited in the future... it’s a less than convincing relic close up!
So what tondo with this skinny body? My mind wandered to thoughts of making a fun custom guitar in the vein of the Ed O’Brien signature Strat but I thought I should really find out what this oddity actually is.
A bit of Googling later (other search engines are available) and it turns out to be a Fender Bullet from the early 80’s. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fender_Bullet
How early is difficult to say as there are no other marks on the guitar, but the Wikipedia suggests that white body colour and 3 single coil pickups was only an option on the ’82 Fender models and not the later Squire models, which would be a nice bonus!
If that is the case and it’s an early Bullet then it is plausible that someone has decided to have the original neck from it for another project, consigning the body to a nearby parts bin. The necks were reportedly old ’70s Telecaster stock and worth more than the guitar they were on!
Possibly a more likely scenario is that something has broken in the past. There are signs that the neck pocket has been opened up slightly and the cracks in the finish (which seem to be ubiquitous to these early Bullets) may not have been to everyone’s taste... I love them personally!
Regardless of provenance (or lack of it) the evidence that it was once a good Fender rather than a cheaper Squire has set my mind towards rebuilding this with a bit of a vintage modified feel rather than wildly customising it. Even that will be a challenge as there isn’t an abundance of second hand Bullet bridges or loaded pick guards on the market!
This one’s going to be fun!