Now here's an idea that I like a lot. On the surface this Chord T-type would appear to be yet another cheap Telecaster copy. It has a solid alder body, which is nice in such a cheapy, and given that the basic Telecaster design is nearly as simple as you can get, well, how bad can this guitar be? Hardware such as pickups and machine heads can always be upgraded.
What makes this Tele different is the ability to swap and change the graphics. The top of the guitar is covered in a clear plastic plate, all you have to do is slip in one of the 4 supplied graphic sheets under the plate... or else - and this is more interesting - cut out and use your own graphics or artwork. I can really see this appealing to younger players (before they get too conservative and nothing other than a vintage butterscotch or sunburst finish will do... Yawn... Zzzzzz...), and it's a cheap and easy way of having your own unique looking guitar.
Before any of you comment, I realise that this is not an original idea. (Is there such a thing as an original idea any more?) Yes, I believe it was Yamaha that marketed a similar idea several years back. I was always surprised that guitar wasn't more successful.
The only drawback I can see to this system is that you'd need to remove the strings so as to take the plate off and change the graphic, and so if, for example, you play a lot of gigs and wanted a different graphic for each night, that could end up being quite a chore. (And not everyone can afford to put fresh strings on for each and every gig.)
Of course if you already have a Tele, Strat or even Yamaha Pacifica, the other alternative to quick change graphics would be the FaceLift system as developed by Status Quo's Rick Parfitt - that has the advantage of being applied to your existing guitar, but the disadvantage is that you can't make up your own custom design.
The Chord Tele-style guitar with variable graphics is currently on eBay UK with a Buy It Now of £107.
G L Wilson
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