The Fender Custom Shop's Master Builders have announced a new line of "Student" guitars.
A series of 12 one-off models inspired by Fender's short-scale, small-bodied Student guitars of the 50s and '60s, the new Student line is a tribute to the Fender Play Foundation, which – according to Fender – has donated over $1 million in resources and equipment to help increase access to music education.
The program hopes to support more than 35,000 students by the end of 2023, and 1 million students nationwide by 2030.
The first four models in the 12-guitar series – two Musicmasters and two Strats – have been unveiled in full. All proceeds from the sale of the guitars will go toward the Fender Play Foundation.
First up is a Musicmaster designed by builder Paul Waller. The guitar features a two-piece alder body, 24.75”-scale flat-sawn maple neck with a 9.5”-radius round-lam rosewood fretboard, and a Fiesta Burst finish.
Elsewhere, the guitar features a single Wide-Range Cunife neck humbucker – controlled by individual volume and tone controls – a vintage-style Strat Hardtail bridge, and vintage-style tuning machines.
Builder Dennis Galuszka's Musicmaster, meanwhile, features a quartersawn maple neck with the same 9.5”-radius round-lam rosewood fingerboard, and a Copper Sparkle finish.
Elsewhere, the guitar boasts a pair of Curtis Novak pickups (a Wide-Range humbucker in the neck and a Tele unit in the bridge), controlled by individual volume and tone knobs and a three-way switch. Other appointments include a Hardtail Subsonic bridge, vintage-style tuning machines, and a custom "FPF" logo inlay at the first fret.
The first of the two Strats unveiled is a '62 Blue Ice Metallic model by Greg Fessler, which features a two-piece alder body, 9.5”-radius quarter-sawn maple neck, and a flat-lam rosewood fingerboard with 21 narrow tall frets.
Sounds on the guitar come by way of a set of hand-wound Fat ‘50s single-coils with an RWRP middle, controlled by a five-way switch and Strat Blender Wiring.
Other appointments include a 3-Ply parchment pickguard, an American Vintage synchronized tremolo, and vintage-style tuning machines.
Last but not least is an Oxblood-finished short-scale Stratocaster by Carlos Lopez. This guitar is built with a two-piece ash body, and a 14” radius quarter-sawn maple neck boasting a rosewood fingerboard with 22 narrow tall frets.
Sonically, it features a single DiMarzio Super Distortion humbucker controlled by a single volume knob.
Each Fender Play Foundation Student model guitar comes with a deluxe hardshell case, strap, polishing cloth, and certificate of authenticity.
For more info on the Fender Play Foundation, stop by fenderplayfoundation.org.
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