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Fender Custom Shop Artist Inspired '61 Strat in Target Burst Journeyman Relic


The Fender Custom Shop have let us get our hands dirty and have a go at designing our own little series of guitars using their Custom Shop spec sheet. We all have a couple of famous strats in our head played by legendary guitarists and the Artist Inspired range is our take on some of the world's most iconic guitars. These are not official signature models just our interpretations of some of the best guitars we have ever seen.

The Black '61

This guitar is one seriously sexy number. Designed after an early 60's Stratocaster this guitar has a wonderfully smooth feel to it that will certainly turn this black number into your number one. There are only minor differences between a '61 and the previous more sought after years but they still add up to give it a different kind of look.

The Construction

This is one of the areas where we took a bit of license as in '61 Fender was begining to transition in to using Alder on most of their guitars but we wanted something a bit more premium so we opted for a nice lightweight Ash body that is perfectly matched up with a Maple neck that is then topped with 9mm thick Rosewood for the fretboard. The neck is then carved to the always popular Mid 60's Style Oval "C" shape.

The Electronics

As this guitar was designed for the perfect modern blues rock tone that sounds just as good with overdrive as it does clean. So to make sure we get that while still keeping the 60's vibe we have gone for a set of handwound Fat 60's pickups that like the Fat 50's before it take period correct pickups and overwind them for a bit of extra heat and compression for a super smooth sound and great breakup.

Journeyman Relic

Before Fender introduced their Journeyman relic you had the choice of New Old Stock (Fresh out of the factory), Closet Classic (aged but not worn) or their standard Relics, which even when done lightly still looked quite battered. Now the Journeyman finds a nice spot in-between Relic and Closet Classic. A good amount of ageing with some small marks and dings to show it has been played give this guitar a great bit of character.


  • Body: Stratocaster '61
  • Wood: Selected Lightweight Ash
  • Neck: Plain Maple
  • Neck Carve: Mid 60's Oval 'C'
  • Fretboard: Rosewood
  • Pickups: Fender Custom Shop Handwound Fat 60's
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