May 20, 2009
Late-''60s to early-''70s Fenders made of mixed and matched parts: the Maverick and the Electric XII
With the snow finally melted away and the warmer sunny days ahead, thoughts of spring cleaning seem to start creeping in. Now please keep in mind that not everyone at Fender in the late ‘60s and early ‘70s had these same ideas.
One of the two guitars that you see here is a clear result of not throwing anything away. The Electric XII went into production in 1965. Sales were only so-so, and it was taken out of production in 1968. When the unsold Electric XII body and neck blanks started taking up room on the stock shelves, someone at Fender had the bright idea of modifying these parts and using them to create a new model.
The Maverick (later renamed the Custom) was introduced in mid 1969. This model used the overstock Electric XII neck and body blanks. The headstocks had six of the twelve holes filled. A Maple laminate was glued to the front and back of the headstock. This work was only done with the necks on hand. When the stock of neck blanks was gone, the guitar was renamed the Custom. New neck blanks were cut and used, but the stock of Electric XII bodies was still used in production.
The Maverick and Custom bodies also went through considerable work. The twelve individual string holes were filled with dowels, and the top and back of the body were also filled with Maple plywood to hide this work. The back of the bodies were painted solid black and sported a Sunburst top.
Other leftover parts that were used on the Custom include the pickups, the pickup selector switch, and most of the hardware. The vibrato unit came courtesy of the Mustang. Needless to say, the Custom was discontinued in 1971.
I can only imagine how many man hours and bottles of glue were used to rebuild these guitars. I also can just picture the size of the wonderful bonfire that the Fender janitorial staff could have had with the wood that was used.
For further information about these guitars, please refer to The Fender Book by Tony Bacon and Paul Day.
Dave's Guitar Shop
Daves Rogers’ Collection is tended to by Laun Braithwaite & Tim Mullally Photos and words by Tim Mullally. Dave’s Collection is on display at:
Dave's Guitar Shop 1227 Third Street South
La Crosse, WI 54601