10/25/2013

c.1965/2010 Teisco "Decca" 9-String Tele Style Electric Guitar



So, the story on this guy is that I put it together a few years ago and some friends of mine picked it up before I blogged on it. Since then they've decided to downsize their collection (they moved!) and it's now up for sale again. It's a 9-string electric guitar that started life as a 6-string, Japanese-made, Teisco-produced, Decca-branded "Tele" looking instrument. It's really not much like a Tele at all save the shape, though, as it's got a shorter 23 1/2" scale and a single mid-position single coil pickup that's voiced more like the old "Gold Foil" pickups: sweet and clean and natural but delicious with just a bit of overdrive.

I figured with the short scale, medium-sized round-backed and truss-rodded neck, and nice "full width" string retainer, that this would make a good conversion to a 9-string guitar with the addition of 3 more (period, very similar) tuners. Well -- it worked just fine and has a really cool, 12 string jangle on the top end plus an EA&D string side that lets you get solid growly blues tones out of it.




The body is 1 1/8" deep and 12 1/2" wide. It's laminate construction but still feels sturdy and it's also very lightweight which means this can hang on you all night long.


The full-length string tree meant it was easy to add the extra tuners. The zero fret is a good idea, but like most of the Japanese guitars, it was implemented poorly (it was too big to begin with), so it's now slotted for good string height at the nut.


Bound, radiused rosewood fretboard with faux-pearl dots. Frets are leveled and dressed.


The cute volume and tone knobs are original to the guitar.


Simple tailpiece -- note that the GB&E slots are doubled-up. The bridge is a new rosewood mando bridge and it's just floating where the old bridge went missing. Works pretty nice, I'd say, and gives a bit of a sweeter vs. more metallic tone.



The 60s sunburst is pretty darn fun!


So, for someone who wants a jangle on the high end but a nice clean bass that can be aggressive and power-chordy, too, this is a perfect stand-in for a full 12 string. It's exactly the same reason the old blues guys did it, too.

1 comment:

Dale said...

Hi! Is this guitar for sale?
Thank you!