Guitar Build 2013: This Custom Fender Telecaster is a Sleeper Designed to Wake the Neighbors

One of the benefits of working at is we get to do some pretty cool things. One of the “tasks” I look forward to every year is putting together the custom guitar build. We will typically find a guitar in distress and, with the advice and knowledge of multiple vendors, we not only bring the axe back to life but turn it into a monster guitar.

This year’s project was a mid-2000’s Mexican Fender Telecaster. When we got our hands on this guitar, it was beyond battered. The hardware was rusted, and the body looked as it had been assaulted with a shotgun.  With some TLC, elbow grease and state of the art hardware and electronics we think “The Mean Green Boogie Machine” is now definitely a player’s axe.

We will be doing separate reviews for all of the components that went into this guitar in separate articles. As we post the reviews, we will link them back to this page and post them to our social media. For now, here is the breakdown of what went onto this now phenomenal guitar: Custom Fender Telecaster:

The original concept of “The Mean Green Boogie Machine” was to build a hot rod of a guitar, a throwback to the muscle cars of years gone past. Anyone familiar with the 60’s – 70’s era of these cars has heard the term “sleeper.” A sleeper was/is a muscle car that looks benign, not imposing in any way. These sleepers despite their family-friendly looks would have a large V8 under the hood giving them enough horsepower to reach breakneck speeds in seconds.

“The Mean Green Boogie Machine” is indeed a sleeper. Though it looks like a docile country Telecaster, this guitar has scorching output and super fast action.

Here is a breakdown of the upgrades. First off, we have to thank Mike Eichner of Riverside Auto Body in Methuen, MA for the killer paint job on this beast. As you can see in these pictures, Riverside Auto Body gave the guitar a finish that mimics the muscles cars of yesteryear. “The Mean Green Boogie Machine” has plenty of chrome finishing her and a white pickguard to emulate the classic white tuck-and-roll interiors of the past.

Making the chrome pop is a Babizc Full Contact Telecaster bridge. The Babicz Full Contact is as functional as it is stunning. Giving this guitar its growl is a DiMarzio Super Distortion in the bridge. Yep, the same pickup that gave Randy Rhoades, Ace Frehley and Kurt Cobain their signature tones is sitting in the bridge of this guitar, told you it was a sleeper. The neck pickup also from DiMarzio is an Area T hum-canceling pickup.

The electronics of this guitar were done by Champtone Guitars of Saugerties, NY. They wired this baby up with vintage wiring and capacitors and put in a coil split for our DiMarzio Super Distortion. This gives us the ability to switch from a cool vintage vibe to a face peeling assault with the push/pull of a knob.

We are going to give you a breakdown of all of these features with separate reviews in the coming weeks. Stay tuned.