How to make a cheap Fender Stratocaster more playable

How to make a cheap Fender Stratocaster more playable


This one is for all the “broke” guitar players out there 😉 In this post we will learn how to make a cheap Fender Stratocaster more playable.

Guitar guy Phillip McKnight offered a nice guide on how to take your Mexican Fender Stratocaster or any Strat copy to the next level in terms of playability.

The man explained: “So many questions about Mexican Strat vs. American Strat, and the No. 1 question was what would I do to upgrade a Mexican Strat.

squire fender stratocaster guitar logo

“I know everyone suggests upgrading the pickups, and while that IS an important sound thing, for me, the way it plays is really more important. ‘Cause that’s where I get my inspiration from – how it plays. And then the sound comes in.”

Phillip then dived into five different ways of upgrading the guitar without spending all that much money. Here goes…

1. Put in a set of locking Fender tuning keys

“These will directly fit, so you don’t need a tech or anyone. You can do this yourself in about 15 minutes.”

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2. Replace the nut with Fender’s bone nut

Watch the video to see how to replace the nut.

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3. Fix frets that stick out by using a nail file

“It’s called fret sprout, it’s something common with all guitars. When they cut the frets, they cut them to the width of the fretboard, mkay? What happens is that fretboard shrinks ’cause it’s wood, and the frets pop out. You need some painter’s tape and a cuticle file.”

Watch the video to see how it’s done.

4. Replace the input jack with a Switchcraft jack

“Another huge improvement, especially if you’re gigging. The Switchcraft jack is much better, you can feel it immediately when you touch it.”

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5. Install some strap locks

“Once you make an investment in a guitar, you’ll want to put strap locks in. This is what I like to see [shakes guitar holding it just onto the strap lock]. That’s your strap lock!”

Watch the clip below for full details.

Thank you mr. Phillip McKnight for these awesome tips. 😉

Article via: UltimateGuitar