#1
I've currently got a Squier Affinity Strat (Yeah I know lol) and I thought instead of buying an off the shelf guitar next I'd make my own!

What I'm planning to do is have humbuckers in the neck and bridge positions and keep a single coil in the middle position. Now my current body only has space for 3 single coil pickups so I've got a decision to make; do I get my current body modified (I assume they can be routed to fit larger pickups?) or are the Squier bodies so bad that I'm better off buying a brand new body?

Next question is if I do decide to go the brand new route, what do I need to look for in a body? It seems there are so many different woods/designs/configurations etc that I don't know where to start! From reading it seems even the Squier Strats have a different design/size to the normal ones, is this right?

Thanks in advance, I've got many more questions but if someone could help with this it would get me started
#2
Dude dont bash Squires just because they're Squiers. I've got one and its sound and playability matches up to many Fenders i've played. That aside, it wouldn't be too hard to route for humbuckers, you just need to do some research and plan it out so you know what your doing. And no one can tell what to look for in a guitar without knowing what kind of music you play.
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#3
get the current body modified, and by that I mean do it yourself.
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#4
Quote by MarkyMark8609
Now my current body only has space for 3 single coil pickups
Are you certain? Pull the pickguard and look. You might be surprised.

Even if it is necessary to route, it's not that big of a deal.
And the pickguard will hide a multitude of sins.
No reason you can't modify this guitar to HSH.
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#5
@SYK, I'm thinking he could even do a swimming pool route incase he wants to change anything later.
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#6
if you removed the pickguard yours should have the room for it already.. you would either have to mod the pickguard or get a new one, im in the processes of doing this to my strat style guitar
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#7
Quote by SomeoneYouKnew
Are you certain? Pull the pickguard and look. You might be surprised.


Agreed. Most cheaper Squiers/Fenders are swimming-pool routed, meaning you can fit whatever the hell you like as long as the pickguard has a hole for it
#8
Cheers for the help so far guys

Just had a quick peek under the pickguard and it isn't swimming pool routed .....

But it is routed for a humbucker in the neck and bridge with room for a single coil in the middle, so perfect for my needs!

OK next question, I'm going to be buying a different neck for it aswell. I've read that the necks for Squier and Fender Strats are different widths, is this true? Or should any Strat neck just bolt straight on?
#9
The best part on a Squire is the neck.
Is there some tangible quality you hope to change/improve by changing the neck, or are you just changing it to be 'better?'

If you're changing for a different headstock or to get a different color fretboard or for some other cosmetic reason, then you'll probably have to go ahead and get a new neck, but depending on what you want out of it you may be able to modify the neck that's already on it to suit you.
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#10
It's pretty easy to get neck pocket dimensions :P

and what dont you like about the current neck?
#11
Well it's not a case of being snobby about it being a Squier, there are a couple of frets that don't seem to 'work'

It's the 16th fret 3rd string and 13th fret 1st string, i seem to have to press them really hard (as in until it hurts) to get any sort of sound out of them. Everything else seems to be ok

I just assumed it was because it was a 'cheap' guitar, or is there another reason?
#15
Quote by MarkyMark8609
So I'd just be better off getting a new neck then?


depends how much does it cost you to get it fix. You can try before dumping the neck, to level the fret.

This consists of getting a radius block and sanding the frets. Its a process that is not THAT difficult but requires patience. If you do this and still notice dead frets that means you need to change those frets. It is a pesky job to change frets, and it may be expensive depending who does the job. Get some price quotes and maybe you can be better buying a new neck.
#16
Quote by ironmaiden_98
Dude dont bash Squires just because they're Squiers. I've got one and its sound and playability matches up to many Fenders i've played. That aside, it wouldn't be too hard to route for humbuckers, you just need to do some research and plan it out so you know what your doing. And no one can tell what to look for in a guitar without knowing what kind of music you play.

My thoughts exactly. I love this guy. My affinity is the shit. Most squier bodies are made of real, solid wood.

Quote by kyle62
Agreed. Most cheaper Squiers/Fenders are swimming-pool routed, meaning you can fit whatever the hell you like as long as the pickguard has a hole for it

Fwiw, i have never seen a squier that was pool-routed. I did see an odd half-pool+neck humbucker route once.

Quote by MarkyMark8609
It's the 16th fret 3rd string and 13th fret 1st string, i seem to have to press them really hard (as in until it hurts) to get any sort of sound out of them. Everything else seems to be ok

I just assumed it was because it was a 'cheap' guitar, or is there another reason?

Sounds like you just have a couple of low strings. Raise the action on those two strings. if it gets ridiculously high, get the frets leveled and recrowned.
#17
It sounds like it needs the frets leveled (dressed). If you want to invest in a few key tools, it's actually not that difficult to do.

(Stew-Mac links for reference)

You'll need:

1. #0404 9-1/2" Sanding Block
2. #5054 300-grit crowning file (I like the offset one personally)
3. ~220 grit sand paper
4. Masking or painters tape
5. Black or blue sharpie
6. Straightedge
7. Double-sided tape
8. 0000 Steel Wool

I'm sure there are tutorials out there to tell you how to dress frets, but I'd be happy to tell you how I do it. Let me know. Learning to dress frets yourself is very, very useful. I can't stand uneven frets, there's no way to get good, low action when frets need dressing. If I could find some customers, I would say it's also a good way to make money!
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#18
^ Here's a great tutorial for that. https://www.ultimate-guitar.com/forum/showthread.php?t=1181012
You don't really need a sanding block or crowning file though. A standard flat file and a standard triangular one from a hardware store (about $25 combined) will do the same job for much cheaper. I leveled my frets this way and it definitely made it smoother to play. Maybe get a new nut as well, since those plastic ones are crap for tone and whatnot.
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Last edited by salsawords at Oct 29, 2009,
#19
Quote by salsawords
You don't really need a sanding block or crowning file though.


True, true, but now that I have mine, I'd never go back. Fret dressing made easy
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MIJ '86 Strat, MIJ '95 Foto Flame Tele, Jackson JSX-94
Schecter C-1 Classic 3TSB, Takamine EG544SC-4C
Warwick Corvette Fretless MIJ '89 P-Bass Lyte
Fender Geddy Lee Sig Bass, Ibanez DTT700 Destroyer