The Creamery Blackguard 2 – Based on a ’72 Custom Tele

Blackgyard 2 - Based on a '72 Custom Tele
Blackgyard 2 - Based on a '72 Custom Tele

Pine is such an underrated wood for guitars. Its seen as a poor man’s thing; cheap and without prestige. I like it, and although there are a myriad of types, it can be a great tonewood. There, I’ve said it – and I know there will be guitarists out there whose nostrils flare and eyes bulge at the idea, but I stand by the claim. My one caveat being that it must be bone dry, the kind of mature, dry wood that only time can offer. The pine, in this case Scottish Pine (Redwood) had very little moisture left having dried out for 30yrs. Due to the sheer amount of sap in the wood, its easy to see why it could be unusable as a tonewood but once that sap has gone and the guitar has been strung wired and plugged-in, there’s such a snap and bite to it that you can’t help thinking, “Why aren’t more single coil guitars built this way.”

It can be an ugly, knotty wood and needs a number of pieces to craft a guitar unless you are lucky enough to find a piece large enough, so from an aesthetic point-of-view it is rarely considered. Also, it can require a lot of grain filler if a smooth coloured/lacquered surface is required making it not cost effective for the big companies to produce guitars from.

Pine also takes a while for the sap to crystalise & become stable. That’s why I only use old reclaimed pine. Leo Fender himself used pine for the original Broadcasters & Esquires. Its the mutt of the tonewood world, I just like it, and its unbelievably light if you love throwing yourself around on stage – now that’s a winning reason by itself.

The reason The Accidental Humbucker works well with this wood is down to the low number of winds and offset coils, giving the pickup a spank and clarity that just isn’t usually possible with non-custom humbuckers. The 3-way switching and 2 x Volume, 2 x Tone controls give the guitar a versatility of sounds not often available to the standard Telecaster style guitar.

Handcrafted March 2010.

Technical Specifications:

Model Name: Blackguard Two
Model Number: 006
Built: March 2010
Body: Antique Pine
Neck: Maple
Fingerboard: Maple
No. of Frets: 21
Pickups: Classic Creamery Tele Bridge / Neck – Original Creamery Accidental Humbucker
Magnets: Alnico 5
Controls: 2 x Volume, 2 x Tone
Pickup Switching: 3 way
Position 1: Bridge
Position 2: Bridge & Neck in series
Position 3: Neck
Bridge: Stamped Steel Ashtray / Brass Compensated Saddles
Machine Heads: Fender Grover Style
Hardware: Chrome
Scratchplate: Custom black perspex
Scale Length: 25.5” (648 mm)
Width at Nut: 1.625″ (41.3 mm)
Unique Features: Complete one-off, original ‘Accidental’ Humbucker
Strings: Fender Pure Nickel Wound Original 150s
String Gauges: Regular – 10, 13, 17, 26, 36, 46

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2 Comments

  1. Bill Stickers

     /  13/07/2010

    Your style is fantastic. The utter simplicity and ingenuity is jaw dropping. It's heart warming that you are building fantastic stuff on a good ethic with no mention of any Tone Science BS; just the actual facts from the real world. For example, your Guitar bodies are unconventional but you just keep to the facts, like needing to be dry, solid and resonant. Truly refreshing work!!!
    I tip my hat to you sir and bow, well done, well done indeed.

    PS… I'd buy one but I'm skint xD

  2. Only just read the notice of this comment – thanks for the great words. Very much appreciated indeed. Thanks.

    J

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