3/13/2013

c.1965/1980 Offset Teisco Electric Guitar


This guitar, or should I say "these guitars," have been hanging out in the workshop for a while. This is a Frankenstein I made from a fun, lightweight Japanese-made Teisco body c.1965 and the neck off of a mid-late 70s "Harmony" (read: Korean or Japanese knock-off) Strat copy.

Both guitars were pretty poor to begin with (the neck was practically a squareneck on the Teisco and 2 out of 3 pickups on the Strat were junk as well as 2/3s of the wiring). However, as this hybrid instrument the guitar is really awesome. It has that sort of 50s maple-neck Fender thing going on with the long 25.5" scale but has the awesome "gold foil" single coil pickup tone and coolness inherent in the wild Teisco body. Since Teiscos are normally 23-24" scale instruments this gives the whole guitar a totally different feel compared to what I'm used to on these guys.

I did this mod for a customer and I'm hoping he likes how it turns out. If not, maybe I'll pick it up from him. This thing sounds great.


Both guitars had lightweight, ply bodies. This one is sort of featherweight, though, and the smaller offset-body shape gives it a cool look and feel. This handles really nicely as it's got the feel of a smaller guitar but the scale of a big one.


The tuners appear to be replacement Rotomatic-style types. The string tree is new and from my parts bin and all those extra holes near the trussrod access hole are from a wonky Floyd Rose-style locking nut. Considering the funkiness of the whole thing, backfilling those holes seemed a low priority.


After giving all the electronics a clean bill of health, I reinstalled the pickguard and pickup but while doing so raised the pickup with some thick washers so that it'd give a hotter signal. That "did the trick" for tone, as it were, since this thing has that beautiful almost DeArmond clean, sparkly sound going on.

The pickguard itself is a reverse-painted silver color on clear plastic.


The adjustable bridge is a Jazzmaster part that I had floating around in my parts bin. This had no bridge to begin with. That tailpiece also would have had a chrome cover but it's missing. The black volume & tone knobs are from the un-necked Strat copy.





Yessir, a bit curious but overwhelmingly cool, and now very practical as well.

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