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PostPosted: Fri Nov 16, 2012 4:16 pm 
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I picked up this oddity recently, I thought it might be a prototype or production example because of a number of inconsistencies it has. I emailed McB about it, who correctly guessed that it was a refin. It appears to be a Westone LX with a later (1985+) body with the larger control cavity cover and side drilled output jack, as well as a Westone neck plate, reverse taper knobs and a Bendmaster FT tremolo:

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It has been refinished, although whoever stripped it did a pretty nice job, no burn marks or terrible sanding spots on it. Unfortunately they did a hack job on the electronics with a bunch of splices instead of desoldering the pickups like any normal person would do. Currently the phase switch does not work, but I'll try to get that straightened out eventually.

At this time frame in late Electra/early Westone production, the neck would normally be painted black, and most likely be a multi-laminated piece, but this one as you can see is a solid piece of highly flamed Maple, and the biggest reason I had to jump on it. The jury is still out whether this is an actual Matsumoku neck or some kind of aftermarket affair, and I welcome your thoughts on this. The profile seems to me a little beefier than a phoenix or spectrum neck, although I haven't got any measuring devices out yet. Sports the tiny abalone dot markers, I think most aftermarket necks would have standard sized black fret markers. Check out the dazzling flame:

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The truss rod adjustment is at the body, so my immediate feelings were that it was a aftermarket neck, but as you can see, the headstock shape looks pretty accurate. There is a faint shadow of a sticker on the front of the headstock, but not in the Westone shape or location.

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No sign of any Serial Number on the back of the Headstock, the tuners are Gotoh, no extra holes that I can see. The flame goes all the way across the front and back with no indication of a lamination for the extra width of the headstock:

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The Maple looks pretty nice in Natural, and weighs in at a reasonable 7.5 lbs. The action is a little high, and I'll try to get that better if I can find a tool to fit the funky truss rod at the body. I'm not sure if I'm going to keep it, just one of those things I had to get a closer look at! Would like to hear your thoughts, and if you're interested drop me a line. Cheers, Mike.

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PostPosted: Fri Nov 16, 2012 11:10 pm 
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That's not at all unpleasant at all, is it!!! :up:

Nicely re-finned; shame about the loss of the stringlock... You can see quite clearly the 5 piece body which has been pretty well matched but that neck is a beauty!!

Nice find!

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2012 9:52 am 
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That is a beauty as is but the neck is awesome. I say keep her and enjoy.... :up:

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2012 1:37 pm 
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If it is a refin / rebuild they did a very close job on the headstock shape, as well as using a period correct set of Gotoh's on it.

The radiused corners of the fingerboard at the neck end look to be correct Mike, as well as the rosewood extending past the bottom of the neck pocket in the body... at least from the angle I am seeing. That is consistent with the neck on my '84 x185.

If you do not mind I am going to crosslink your thread over to Westone to see if anyone over there might have opinions as well.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2012 1:47 pm 
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Said link to Westone below...

http://forum.westoneguitars.net/t3808-p ... -off#33912

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 6:17 am 
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i believe the neck is an aftermarket or custom-made neck shaped to look like the original.

what i notice is the shape of the lower side of the headstock is missing a little 'corner' at the lower part of the wide section.

also, the taper on the back of the neck at the headstock doesn't look quite right. the rear of the electra/westone headstock shows a definite 'V' at the lowest part of the flat section, where the shaping begins down the back of the neck.

i don't think i've seen spectrum or phoenix with abalone dots either, but i'm certainly no expert

it is quite a looker that flamey maple neck, for sure!
and a beautiful refinish on the body too!
seems like a keeper to me


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 19, 2012 8:14 am 
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Nice axe Mike.

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 19, 2012 9:56 am 
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the neck could have been a custom order from SLM... the 1st year of the Crate Electra was a one piece neck... the bottom of the fretboard is more rounded, but it at least opens up the potential of something custom...
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 01, 2012 8:05 am 
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Well I've had the neck off again, no distinctive markings or anything, and the more I look at it I think it is a aftermarket or custom neck. I appreciate all the comments and thanks to Ice for cross linking the thread over on the Westone site. As pointed out, the headstock shape is pretty close, but lacks the subtle point on the treble side. Whoever took this on did a nice job though with the shape and it was obviously sprayed after the shaping had taken place. I still wonder who would put this kind of time and money into a guitar worth a couple hundred bucks? The new neck arguably setting him back that much if not more.

I had to enlarge the truss rod adjustment access hole to allow my nut driver to get in there, it looked pretty rough to begin with, and more evidence that this didn't come from Japan. The neck had too much 'relief' so I ended up tightening it another third of a turn to straighten it a bit. Once I got a new set of strings on it and adjusted the spring tension the action is better, although still not as low as I'd like it to be. The guitar is very jangle-ly, rings nicely and stays in tune good despite not having the locking nut any longer. The chunkier neck and 25.5 scale are keeping me from really falling for it, but I don't have a bad taste in my mouth or anything.

Wondering what the chances are of getting a decal made up for the headstock McB? Could you make one that looks like this only with LX instead of FX and in Black? Thanks, Mike.


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 01, 2012 9:42 am 
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I can design it for you, to the proper dimension like you show, since I have a white FX almost just like that one... :)
I'll send the design to my friend who now has the decal equipment. Should not be a problem in Black...

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 03, 2012 7:07 am 
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Mike - please post a pic of the finished product when it's done.

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 06, 2013 1:18 am 
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I sent off the design for logo to be cut, but it's pretty small, so may not work as cut vinyl.. I did prep some alternatives as well...

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PostPosted: Thu Feb 07, 2013 12:49 pm 
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I'd be happy with the Westone "W" with the eagle in the middle... but I do appreciate all the effort, hope it doesn't turn out to be a headache, Mike.

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