G&L is the final legacy of legendary guitar builder Leo Fender. Creator of so many iconic instruments, Leo continued to re-work these designs when he founded G&L in 1979.
The ASAT Special is an evolution of the classic T-type guitar that Leo originated bringing modern refinements and a reimagined sound to an iconic design.
Body and Neck
The Basswood body on this guitar keeps it nice and light making it comfortable to play, especially for long periods and while standing; additionally, some say Basswood lends a balanced yet warm tone to guitars.
The ASAT Special has a comfortable “Medium C” neck profile which is easy to play and has a 9” fingerboard radius. This radius is slightly more curved than most modern fingerboards and makes fretting chords a breeze without compromising your ability to play leads and bends. The maple fingerboard makes for a very smooth playing experience and it has been said that maple adds a snap and brightness to the tone.
Pickups and Hardware
Just by looking at the ASAT Special you can tell that the pickups differ from those commonly found in a T-type guitar. These Leo Fender-designed jumbo Magnetic Field Design (MFD) single coils feature shallow and wide coils that have a sound closer to a Jazzmaster or P-90 pickup. However, the MFD means that these pickups have more pronounced bass frequencies and an emphasised high end. You’ll still have all the smooth articulation that T-types are known for just with a thicker sounding pickup.
Another Leo Fender innovation on this guitar is the Saddle-Lock hardtail bridge which offers stability, resonance, and impressive energy transfer for great sustain and that classic T-type twang.
Here's What G&L Say About the Tribute ASAT Special
The G&L ASAT® Special just might be the quintessential G&L guitar, viewed by many as Leo’s ultimate single-cutaway. Back in 1985, Leo Fender launched this model under the G&L Broadcaster name, which prompted a response from Fred Gretsch of Gretsch Guitars over the name just as it had thirty-five years earlier. History buffs will recall that the Broadkaster® name is owned by Gretsch, and once again, a Broadcaster from Leo was required to have its name changed. This time around, the name became “ASAT” which is US military shorthand for an “Anti-Satellite” missile.
The ASAT Special, as the model became known, features jumbo single-coil Magnetic Field Design™ pickups, each with a narrow bobbin aperture for a coil which is shallow yet wide. In this regard, an MFD™ jumbo single coil is similar to a P-90 or Jazzmaster® pickup, yet the MFD principle provides a punchier bottom end and brighter top end sparkling with harmonics. Leo further departed with the past with the addition of his innovative Saddle-Lock™ bridge which transfers string energy right into the body end-grain for an incredibly resonant instrument. The result is one of the most versatile guitars ever, serving up ballsy twang to searing blues to smooth jazz tones. What’s more, this ASAT Special is offered in either a Basswood body, or a Mahogany body for that righteous ‘80s G&L blend of jumbo MFD power mellowed by the high porosity of Mahogany. Two great ASAT flavors, yours for the picking.
The Tribute® Series ASAT Special brings the magic of Leo’s own reinterpretation of the single-cutaway bolt-on guitar, all at a price attainable for every working musician. Once you play a G&L Tribute Series, you’ll never look back.
- Construction: Bolt-on
- Scale: 25 1/2"
- Pickups: Leo Fender-designed jumbo G&L MFD™ single coils made in Fullerton, California
- Body Wood: Basswood
- Neck Wood: Hard-Rock Maple with Maple fingerboard
- Neck Width At Nut: 1 5/8"
- Neck Radius: 9"
- Neck Profile: Medium C
- Frets: 22 medium jumbo, nickel
- Tuning Keys: 18:1 ratio, sealed-back
- Bridge: Leo Fender-designed G&L Saddle-Lock™
- Controls: 3-position pickup selector, volume, tone