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Fender Custom Shop

There are very few other groups of guitar builders that possess the mystique of the Fender Custom Shop. Years of studying and repairing vintage Fender Guitars have granted the master luthiers profound insights into what makes their guitars sing. The classics are classics for a reason, so if you’re looking for an extraordinary butterscotch Telecaster, or an elegant sunburst Stratocaster, they’ve got you covered. On top of that, they’ve unveiled some subtly (and some not so subtly) postmodern axes that brilliantly expand on tradition. As always, fit and feel are essential, so they offer a wide range of specs and relicing options, ranging from “journeyman” to “heavy”. These are more than just instruments, these are custom shop Fender Guitars hand-built by some of the best in the game. The custom shop is free and encouraged to take their favorite branches from the Fender family tree and graft them onto something totally new.

The Origin of Fender Custom Shop

In 1965 Leo Fender sold his company to CBS, and the quality of the instruments declined. With the exception of a few cool new models, most of the changes made during this period were implemented to save money. In 1984, the company began its triumphant return to grace when its employees rallied together under their CEO, Bill Schulz, and purchased the company back from CBS.

Although they needed to continue large-scale musical instrument production in order to stay viable, the new leadership wanted a division dedicated to honoring the precise attention to detail that initially distinguished their guitars. In 1987, the Fender Custom Shop was founded. Some of their first builds were for sponsored artists. Former Master builder, John Suhr, made a tweed twin for Eric Clapton. They built a tele for Danny Gatton. Before long, many of these signature models were made available to the general public along with other unique interpretations and configurations of their classic designs. The Custom Shop came to function as Fender’s R&D department, constantly experimenting and innovating. For luthiers, it also came to represent the pinnacle of solid-body guitar luthiers. What started as a duo of master builders has expanded into a team of 11, each with thousands of instruments already under their belts. The Custom Shop is like the NASA of Rock & Roll. They employ the brightest minds, keenest eyes, sharpest ears, and most dexterous fingers they can find. As a result, a custom shop fender is one of the most coveted 6-strings in the world.

The Origin of Fender

Fender Musical Instruments evolved out of a humble radio repair shop run by Leo Fender and his partner Clayton Orr “Doc” Kaufman, a former employee of Rickenbacker. In addition to fixing tube radios, they had been commissioned on occasion to construct PA systems for local dance halls. This experience, combined with the growing popularity of electric Hawaiian lap steel guitars, led them to begin experimenting with their own guitar amplifiers and pickups. Over the course of many experiments and designs, K&F created a “pick-up” test rig that, rather than being a retro-fitted arch-top or lap-steel, boasted key qualities of each. This hunk of solid, resonant yet feedback-resistant wood featured a neck that you could fret, and it soon became so popular with clients that they began asking to borrow the “test-rig” for gigs, clearly they were on to something. Leo decided to refine the instrument with the intention of combining the volume and metallic intensity of the lap-steel with the versatility and general aesthetic of a traditional, “Spanish”-style guitar. Doc wasn’t comfortable venturing into such uncharted waters, so Leo embarked alone, and Fender Electrical Musical Instrument Company was born.

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  • Fender Custom Shop LTD Journeyman 1956 Stratocaster - Sonic Blue #9478 Fender Custom Shop LTD Journeyman 1956 Stratocaster - Sonic Blue #9478

    Fender Custom Shop LTD Journeyman 1956 Stratocaster - Sonic Blue #9478

    Fender Custom Shop
    $5,550.00
    Fender Custom Shop LTD Journeyman 1956 Stratocaster - Sonic Blue #9478 Just in is a fabulous Fender Custom Shop 1956 Stratocaster in the lovely sonic blue finish. This guitar is spec'd with a 9.50" - 12" compound radius, a custom "v" shape neck, and a...
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  • Fender Custom Shop 1959 Telecaster Custom Relic Maple - Aged Black #7563 Fender Custom Shop 1959 Telecaster Custom Relic Maple - Aged Black #7563

    Fender Custom Shop 1959 Telecaster Custom Relic Maple - Aged Black #7563

    Fender Custom Shop
    $4,550.00
    Fender Custom Shop 1959 Telecaster Custom Relic Maple - Aged Black #7563 *We do all our own photography.  The guitar pictured is the exact one you will receive! The 1959 double-bound Telecaster Custom imparted a refined look to the once-rugged...
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  • Fender Custom Shop 1952 Telecaster Heavy Relic - Aged Nocaster Blonde #6957 Fender Custom Shop 1952 Telecaster Heavy Relic - Aged Nocaster Blonde #6957

    Fender Custom Shop 1952 Telecaster Heavy Relic - Aged Nocaster Blonde #6957

    Fender Custom Shop
    $5,249.99
    Fender Custom Shop 1952 Telecaster Heavy Relic - Aged Nocaster Blonde #6957 Looking for an incredible Telecaster? Look no further; this 1952 Telecaster Heavy Relic from the Fender Custom Shop is mind-numbingly good! We spec'd this one with Handwired...
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  • Fender Custom Shop LTD 1963 Stratocaster Heavy Relic - Aged Fiesta Red Fender Custom Shop LTD 1963 Stratocaster Heavy Relic - Aged Fiesta Red

    Fender Custom Shop LTD 1963 Stratocaster Heavy Relic - Aged Fiesta Red

    Fender Custom Shop
    $5,100.00
    Fender Custom Shop LTD 1963 Stratocaster Heavy Relic - Aged Fiesta Red MGS is excited to have this all new FCS '63 spec Stratocaster.  First off, this is one our favorite relic's we have seen out of the Custom Shop!  This aged fiesta heavy...
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  • Fender Custom Shop 1961 Stratocaster Heavy Relic - Super Faded Aged 3-Tone Sunburst Fender Custom Shop 1961 Stratocaster Heavy Relic - Super Faded Aged 3-Tone Sunburst

    Fender Custom Shop 1961 Stratocaster Heavy Relic - Super Faded Aged 3-Tone Sunburst

    Fender Custom Shop
    $5,150.00
    Fender Custom Shop 1961 Stratocaster Heavy Relic - Super Faded Aged 3-Tone Sunburst *We do all our own photography.  The guitar pictured is the exact one you will receive! Here we have a super vibey  '61 Stratocaster from the Custom Shop! The...
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  • Fender Custom Shop Limited Edition 1964 Stratocaster Journeyman - Aged Burgundy Mist Fender Custom Shop Limited Edition 1964 Stratocaster Journeyman - Aged Burgundy Mist
    Sale 27%
    Sale 27%

    Fender Custom Shop Limited Edition 1964 Stratocaster Journeyman - Aged Burgundy Mist

    Fender Custom Shop
    $3,600.00
    $4,950.00
    Fender Custom Shop Limited Edition 1964 Stratocaster Journeyman - Aged Burgundy Mist-"USED" Here we have an incredible 1964 Stratocaster Journeyman from the Custom Shop! This thing has all the mojo - It's finished in a gorgeous Aged Burgundy Mist finish...
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  • Fender Custom Shop 1964 Telecaster Journeyman - Candy Apple Red Fender Custom Shop 1964 Telecaster Journeyman - Candy Apple Red
    Sale 18%
    Sale 18%

    Fender Custom Shop 1964 Telecaster Journeyman - Candy Apple Red

    Fender Custom Shop
    $3,600.00
    $4,399.00
    Fender Custom Shop 1964 Telecaster Journeyman - Candy Apple Red-"USED" *We do all our own photography.  The guitar pictured is the exact one you will receive! Here we have a stunning '64 Telecaster Journeyman in Candy Apple Red!  It features...
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