Batteries not included

Here’s a guitar from one of our favorite customers ever. Very, very well worn American Standard Strat that’s been modded to more closely resemble his favorite Clapton model. 

His favorite feature is the Clapton’s active mid boost. But after installing an EMG Afterburner gain boost, he now prefers the EMG’s pure gain boost to the mid/gain boost on his Blackie. Now all of his Strats feature Noiseless singlecoils and the Afterburner.

Let’s begin by finding a place for the battery for the active boost.  You can either hide it under the pickguard, which is a drag to remove for every battery change, route for a pop-up battery compartment or route out a cavity by the trem springs behind the back plate. We chose ( again, a la the Clapton model) to go with option #3.

Nice clean route, a little black lacquer and a piece of foam and we’re ready for the 9-volt.

Here’ the inside view of the controls. The neck pickup tone pot becomes the master tone and the last pot is the push/pull to activate the variable 20db gain boost.

Now you’ve got a killer Strat with no hum and enough juice to overdrive the front end of any amp. We replaced the worn stock volume pot with a good CTS audio taper pot so that all of the volume isn’t on the top end of the taper.  With this setup, you can set your amp half dirty, roll the volume knob down to 6 to clean it up or activate the Afterburner to make it scream. It’s a blues player’s dream.

Click here to hear  me play Soundgarden’s cover of “Into the Void” arranged in Cmaj with a capo at the 7th fret.


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