A couple of weeks ago I found a pretty nice Squier Affinity Strat for only $119 so thought I would pick it up. I’ve been wanting a cheap Strat for a while now to show people that you can get a decent tone with an inexpensive guitar. Many may see the guitars I use and think that you really need an expensive one to sound good but that’s far from being true.
For the demo I’m using a 1966 Vibrolux amp into a Two Notes Captor and using an EVM12L IR. For strings I’m using DR Pure Blues .010s. Settings for all the gear used are in the video.
Here’s a quick pic of the guitar before the makeover.
Here’s the breakdown of all the upgrades I did to this guitar, what this project cost, and links to where you can purchase the items I upgraded. This doesn’t include the cost of sandpaper and any tools that would be required though. All the prices listed are as of August 14th 2019.
Disclosure: Most of the links in this post are affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you make a purchase.
Squier Affinity Strat Guitar Used – $119
Graph Tech Bone Nut – $10.13
Graph Tech String Tree – $12.71
Tone Shaper Wiring Kit – $30
(1) Capacitor, .022µF Orange Drop
(1) Jack, Switchcraft 1/4″ Mono
(3) Pot, CTS 250k Audio, Low Torque (1/4″ Bushing Length)
(1) Switch, 5-Way, CRL
(3) Wire, 22 AWG Cotton Push Back w/ Tinned Overcoat, Black
(3) Wire, 22 AWG Cotton Push Back w/ Tinned Overcoat, White
Fender Locking Tuners – $49
Musiclily Pickguard – $10
This comes to a total of – $339
The stain, which I will have extra leftover was $45 so add that in if you wanted to stain the neck. I probably used half of each can so however you would want to count that. The stain would be optional. I also picked up a Fender waterslide decal to put on the headstock but I haven’t put it no yet.
An equivalent guitar would be a Squier Classic Vibe Strat for $350-$399. I believe this build would have better wiring, pickups, nut, and tuners than that guitar though. To me, this Strat before I did the mods was a better guitar to play than my Classic Vibe Tele. Not sure what the new ones are like but that guitar is hard to play due to the smaller frets and doesn’t stay in tune that great if you are using .010s in standard tuning. That’s why I keep it in Open G.