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 Post subject: X290 Working Man
PostPosted: Sun Oct 12, 2008 7:21 pm 
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Joined: Sun Oct 12, 2008 6:31 pm
Posts: 64
Got what I think was a great deal for this at a Pawn Shop. Paid $50 for what I have identified as an X290 Working Man which looks like one of the lower end models that sold in the high $200s back in the day.

Looks like it has had a fret job and has some larger frets (medium jumbo) that look in really great shape. The reason I am suspecting a fret job is that the fret board looks a little "Hacked" in a couple of places but no playability issues involved. All of the electronics are original but sounds like a ground has been lifted somewhere when you plug it in. The only thing not original on this thing are some Schaller machine heads and Schaller straplocks. Visually, the neck looks great with the exception of a couple dings but the body is scratched and smacked up pretty bad. IF this was a vintage Strat, this would all look kewl but I am thinking of refinishing the body.

So, any thoughts on how I should go? I was thinking of stripping it down to the wood and using some transparent royal blue stain if the grain looked good underneath. Another option would be to strip the clear, put a couple coats of black down, and re-shoot with clear. How far should I go in hacking up this guitar? How would it impact its collectible value (if any)?

I rebuilt an Electra Phoenix a few years ago that was in way worse shape than this one!


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 Post subject: Re: X290 Working Man
PostPosted: Mon Oct 13, 2008 5:27 am 
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Joined: Thu May 03, 2007 9:32 am
Posts: 1024
Location: NYC
I also have an X290. I think fixing yours in black may be your bet bet. The body on mine looks to be at least four pieces of mahogany glued together. I don't think that would look very good in a clear or tranparent finish.

It is fairly easy to check the ground. Set a multi meter oncontinuity, or buy a cheap continuity meter. put one probe on the bridge or other known ground and then check each ground point (i.e., the metal case of each pot and the three way). You should have continuity at each point. Good luck.

Ps great buy!


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 Post subject: Re: X290 Working Man
PostPosted: Mon Oct 13, 2008 1:23 pm 
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Joined: Sun Oct 12, 2008 6:31 pm
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Workingman wrote:
I also have an X290. I think fixing yours in black may be your bet bet. The body on mine looks to be at least four pieces of mahogany glued together. I don't think that would look very good in a clear or tranparent finish.

It is fairly easy to check the ground. Set a multi meter oncontinuity, or buy a cheap continuity meter. put one probe on the bridge or other known ground and then check each ground point (i.e., the metal case of each pot and the three way). You should have continuity at each point. Good luck.

Ps great buy!


Thanks for the advice! I was leaning more towards sticking with black as I was noticing the lines are somewhat similar to my Yamaha RBX-775 bass and would therefore have a matched set on stage going between the two.

The Electra Phoenix I redid a few years back had a really nice Adler 2-piece body underneath the "Road Rash" paint job and finished up really nice. My only regret is in not using that Royal Blue stain (used a walnut stain instead)!

Do you have the stock pickups on your guitar? Are they fairly adequate or should I look to change these out a little later on?


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 Post subject: Re: X290 Working Man
PostPosted: Tue Oct 14, 2008 7:35 am 
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Joined: Thu May 03, 2007 9:32 am
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Location: NYC
Mine has MMK 45's in it which I like a lot. I have three guitars with them stock and stuck one on the bridge position of a yamaha fat strat. They are fairly hot but don't get muddy and also sound good clean. I guess I am a fan. If you do choose to replace them, I would be happy to take them off your hands :D


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 Post subject: Re: X290 Working Man
PostPosted: Thu Oct 16, 2008 1:08 pm 
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Workingman wrote:
Mine has MMK 45's in it which I like a lot. I have three guitars with them stock and stuck one on the bridge position of a yamaha fat strat. They are fairly hot but don't get muddy and also sound good clean. I guess I am a fan. If you do choose to replace them, I would be happy to take them off your hands :D


I'll stick with the stock pickups for now and see how they sound. They are both reading around 11.3K with an ohmmeter (Still in the circuit). Is this about right? Couldn't find anything obvious with the electrical connections so I guess I'll touch up the connections and see what I got.

Was the original finish done with lacquer?


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 Post subject: Re: X290 Working Man
PostPosted: Fri Oct 24, 2008 8:03 pm 
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Joined: Sun Oct 12, 2008 6:31 pm
Posts: 64
OK, I checked out the electronics and couldn't find anything obviously wrong with electronics so I put it back together, did a quickie setup and this thing is a real player! No noise at all when played with a known good cord through my main guitar amplifier - much less noise than my MIM Fender Stratocaster for that matter! After some tweaking with the tone controls, it sounds rich and velvety clean and has a nice "Crunch" with a little overdrive! I have decided I can live with all the chipped and scuffed paint as the guitar is like 25 years old after all and has earned all of these battle scars - after all, look at all the money you pay for a "Relic" Stratocaster!

This thing is ready to gig!

Did I mention I paid $50 for this? :D


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