This post is also available in: French
Make Your Own For Cheap
I own quite a bunch of different guitars. Not because I’m a collector, but because I want to possess all possible types of guitar available to have all existing tools at my disposal when recording.
A scalloped guitar was missing in my lineup. I was thinking about it since a long time, and I was interested, but scalloped guitars are not frequent, and I never had the opportunity to test one. Considering the extremely high price of Fender scalloped guitars available, I was not willing to pay so much to maybe not being satisfied in the end.
I had so many guitars already at that time that I wasn’t particularly in a hurry to get a scalloped guitar. Other than that, the only example I had of established musicians using a scalloped guitar were playing a kind of music that I personally do not like. Ingwie Malmsteen and the likes are playing a type of music that make me turn off the volume instantly. I respect but can’t listen.
One day I was bored, and I was doing random keyword search in eBay, just for fun. Because I just heard about Ingwie Malmsteen on whatever site I was browsing just before, I had the idea to search for the keyword “scalloped” in eBay search engine. At that time, for me a scalloped guitar was just too expensive, and I was not thinking about it anymore.
Right away I could spot Stratocaster scalloped necks on sale at a cheap price. Fast, I could spot a Chinese seller that was offering a scalloped neck for $99, shipping included. Right away I was hooked. Within seconds, I ordered the cheapest Squier Stratocaster available at my favorite vendor site: a Squier Stratocaster bullet and a Chinese scalloped neck in the process.
When I received the Squier Stratocaster, I was extremely impressed about the guitar. Up to the point that for a moment, I wanted to keep it that way, and maybe order another one to make it scalloped. But I had already way too many guitars and a real Stratocaster on top of it. So, I calmed down and decided to continue my scalloped project using the freshly ordered Squier Stratocaster.
I was so impressed by that Squier that I decided to produce a song with it before customize it, while I was waiting after the neck from China. The song is named Jeronimo; you can listen to it on my video sites, and if you are interested to read about the Squier bullet review, you can check the entire article following this link.
Check out the video to see me testing the scalloped Stratocaster, and to explain how I made it.
I transformed the Stratocaster less than an hour after I received the scalloped neck. I was such in a hurry that I totally forgot to make a video of the making. At least, I had the idea to take some pictures. I used them in the video above.
It took me less than 20 minutes to transform the Stratocaster. The longest task was to remove and put back new strings on it. I just had to unscrew and screw back four screws to make it scalloped.
What to expect playing a scalloped Stratocaster
Playing a scalloped guitar is not drastically different from a regular guitar, but at the same time it is not exactly the same. 🙂 For solos it is extremely interesting, because the lack of contact with the fingerboard increases speed and ease bending.
You can’t use a scalloped guitar to imitate sitar playing. Maybe with extremely light strings it’s possible to perform extreme bending, but not with the regular gauge I’m using, ie: 010 –046.
Also, I found the guitar resonates much more with a scalloped neck. I don’t know if it’s due to the lack of contact with the fingerboard that might muffle the sound, but the guitar has much more harmonics and is much more sonic since I changed the neck.
If you want to follow my path and make your scalloped Stratocaster for less than €250, you can check the links below to get exactly the same gears I bought to make my own.
Make your scalloped guitar
Squier Stratocastern@ Amazon
Listen to Funk You
Check out my song Funk You on the Video part of this site.
Picture & video : Hervé Senni
This post is also available in: French