If i buy a mexican strat and replace the pickups do i have an american strat?

some guy at the guitar store told me that and i wanna know if its true.
No. The strat would still be Mexican. (haha that's what you asked)

As for sound, not really. You could get close, but wood makes a big difference.
Mexican strats are very good compared to americans, and a pickup change would make them sound similar (if you got a good strat in the first place, and own a nice tube amp). If you want to get one make sure you try out a lot of mexicans and find a good one. . .

edit: the wood is the same, though the mexican strats usually have 3 piece bodies.
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It won't be exactly the same, but close enough. The Americans definately aren't worth the $400+ more.
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It's almost true.

American strats have nicer pickups, a nicer bridge, a better setup, and the neck is a different shape. If you change the pups that fixes 1 problem. Factory setups are pretty worthless because they are not setting it up for YOU and your style of music, they are setting it up to work well in a showroom for all types of music so you really should get it set up after you get it home anyway. That fixes problem number 2. The nicer bridge on the MIA isn't an issue for most people because the MIM bridge won't break unless you abouse it so problem 3 isn't really a problem. The neck is really the only thing that would remain differant. If you like the mexican strat neck then by changing the things I mentioned you will have a guitar that is much nicer than an american strat and even if you pay a luthier to do all the work you will still spend less than what you would spend on an american strat.

The "better wood" they use in American strats isn't really better at all. There is nothing magical about the Alder they use in MIA guitar, and it sounds exactly the same as the alder in the MIM guitars. When the guitars don't have an opaque finish then the MIA strats try and use wood that looks pretty and they don't bother looking for the pretty one in Mexico.
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Last edited by CorduroyEW at Sep 23, 2006,
if you bought an american neck + new pickups ya it would be about 400$ less and sound almost exactly the same but the necks important
^Necks are personaly preference.

You'd have a MIM Strat with different pickups.

Yea, it'll sound virtually the same for a lot cheaper, I've played a load of USA Strats and none have really compared to my MIM Strat, not that I'm biased, it's just really good.
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the neck is the big difference IMO.

plus there are about 10 models in between standard mex made and a standard american made. so do your homework and find the best one for you.

pick up a MIA, ull feel a difference im sure of it.

they upgraded the mex made standards for this year. better trem block, more shielding, and larger frets. these are all good improvements.

i have one of each a 95' MIM and a 06' deluxe MIA.

both were good for the money.

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well aside from personal preference on the necks, mim strats have 21 frets, mia have 22 frets.
however they are very nice for the money. i had one and i sold it to buy a 91 ibanez japanese RG. bad desicion, should have kept it and saved up for a few weeks instead. not that i dont love the ibanez more but having the strat for bluesy stuff would be sweet. so fun to play and maintain.

moral of the story, never sell gear!!