Mustang review by Sunn

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  • Sound: 8
  • Overall Impression: 9
  • Reliability & Durability: 9
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 8
  • Features: 8
  • Reviewer's score: 8.4 Superb
  • Users' score: 7.7 (10 votes)

Purchased from: Ebay

Sound — 8
I play a range of everything these days, from Blues to Funk and lots more, so I need a guitar well suited to playin pretty much anything. This guitar does it perfectly. I use a Peavey Rage 158 with this most often along with a Crybaby Wah, a DigiTech Bad Monkey and a Denio Chorus pedal. With a medium crunch overdrive sound, this guitar really does best. It sings and screams and takes all the abuse I give it and turns it into an amazing sound. The guitar works amazingly with a Wah pedal and I can get some amazing funky sounds from it, akin to some great RHCP hits, such as Give It Away and can't Stop. Unplugged, the guitar sustains beautifully, not quite like Nigel Tufnels Les Paul, but close to it. It has a beautiful sound to it unpluggedwhich makes it a pleasure to play at all times.

Overall Impression — 9
I play many different musical styles as I have mentioned already. This guitar is suited perfectly to everything I choose to play. I've been playing for nearly three years now, but only had this guitar for a year. I use a variety of other gear with the guitar, all of which it responds to well. If it was stolen, I'd probably have a hard time finding another one, so I'd be forced to purchase a different guitar. However, I would hunt down the person that stole the guitar and bludgeon them to death with it. It would still be playable afterwards aswell. I love the way it's so effortless to make a good sound come from it. There isnt really anything I hate about it, except maybe the neck pickup can sound quite flat sometimes.

Reliability & Durability — 9
This guitar will definitely withstand Live playing but I haven't actually testedit in this area yet. however, I have travelled with it and provided it's placed correctly and looked after, it withstands travel well. The hardware I have on the guitar is Wilkinson Hardware and it all seems to be perfectly solid and looks like it will last for a long time. The strap buttons are very solid and well screwed into the guitar. However, as with all my guitars, I use Dunlop Strap Loks to ensure the strap doesn't come off. I have every confidence that I could use this guitar in a Gig situation with no backup. However, being as precautious as I am, I would take another just in case I snapped a string. The finish is very thick and I believe it will last for a very long time, although it does chip off easily when bumped.

Action, Fit & Finish — 8
The action when I came into possession of the guitar was terrible, but it had sat in a loft for a long time. I'm sure if it was fresh from the factory, it would be perfectly set up. The guitar when I received it had some minor scratches and dings, but that's to be expected from a second hand guitar really. It would appear that all parts where fitted correctly and all routings were routed correctly.

Features — 8
The Sunn Mustang (by Fender) was produced in India and China. Mine has the FMIC copyrighted headstock, so it was produced in the '80s in India. There is 22 frets on the neck, which is made of maple, with a rosewood fretboard. The neck is just your regular neck nice and easy to play on. The body is made of with a beautiful black satin finish. The body style is a Strat, so I'm not sure why it is called a Mustang, probably to do with copyright or something. The original bridge was a Vintage Strat tremolo bridge, but I switched it for a black Wilkinson one. The electronics are passive. You have your regular volume control, two tone knobs and a 5 way selector. It really is just like your bog Standard Strat, with three single coil pickups, all of which are stock Fender pickups. The original tuners were normal tuners, but I switched them for regular black tuners (from Wilkinson) as the originals were old and didn't keep tune very well. The guitar had been left in the original owners loft since the eighties, due to the original owner purchasing the guitar, playing it and then losing interest. As a result of this, the electronics werent very healthy and it was in terrible condition but after a few days of maintenance, the guitar was back into perfect form again. This was mainly because it was second hand though, I'm sure if it was Brand New all would be perfect.

13 comments sorted by best / new / date

    A Sunn Mustang was my first guitar purchased nearly 20 years ago and I still compare guitars I buy now to it. Fair enough it was an 80 ex-demo from PMT in Southend but I still have it to this day and it stills plays very well. It's the 3 single coil Indian made chubby neck with jumbo fret beauty. Over the years I've beaten the crap out of it, modified it, basically used it as a practice item before I worked on one of my other more expensive axes and it still gives me joy to pick up and play. It has been difficult to get anything close to it for anything less than 300. They just don't make 'em like they used to.....if someone were to steal it I would beat them with a Fender Squire as they wouldn't be worth the silky bluesy tones that would cascade out of the Mustang as it stuck against their bonce. As for restoring one of these Hawes I would say do it. After all, it isn't how much it costs, it's how it feels. The early ones are worth it.....not so much the later ones with the pointed headstock.
    I have a mustang fitted with a bridge humbucker and it sounds awesome it has all of the qualities of a vintage and it can be mellow and sweet, she can also be a wild ride raunchy as her name implies,flowing golden like the Sunn.
    If so any pics? price? if so, msg me? thanks
    EBay would be your best bet.I would never sell mine.Every time I buy a new guitar I always go back to my mustang after a while.I believe mines is a early 80s model.Its was my first guitar I bought it from my cousin and to me its sentimental value alone is thou the roof never mind how good its feels and sounds.I actually feel privileged owning one.
    I can’t believe anyone who can actually play properly would ever sell theirs, my mate has a USA custom shop, a PRS and a Gibson SG all worth serious money and he’s always asking me to sell it to him. I’ve got a dozen guitars myself but I’m taking my skunk stripe sunn Strat to my grave.
    I have one of these, it sat in the corner for 10 years till I recently got an interest in the guitar again. I got a Les Paul style and it just couldn't compete with the Sunn Mustang so its been called back into action and its still good after all this time. Very solid reliable guitar ( mine was made in China 1980's ). Its main downfall is that it goes out of tune slightly overnight and the pickups are a bit clean for my style of music, but put it on a good amp with a pedal and problem solved. Very rare nowadays, because nobody wants to sell them so might be difficult to get original parts! Overall tho' for the price you can't really fault them so I would say 8/9.
    i have an indian make with 2 singles and a double pickup setup. i find it pretty damn reliable for how old it is and the pickups are amazingly clear, especially considering for the age of the guitar.
    I've got a Sunn Mustang made in India with an inspetion sticker dated 12/82. It says nothing on the guitar about FMIC. When it was frist given to me I played it a bit and I really liked the sound and feel, but it had (and still has) a broken truss rod, so I sat it in the corner. It looks like it was turned it until it snapped about 1 inch from the headstock. It has 2 single coils and a Humbucker at the bridge. I am trying to decide if I should replace just the truss rod or the entire neck. Since it was a free guitar I wouldn't mind putting some money into restoring the neck, but it'd be nice to know if the guitar community saw some value in doing this. Any thoughts?
    my sunn mustang was new when I got it in the mid 80s black with met flick of blue red hand full of other colours it got two single pickups and a double at the back a maple neck with mah inlay all the other one I ever see just have three single pickup it in mint contd it play ok still it a bit hard on my hands after courple hour un like my burns marquee I have does any no what country it was made in....
    I actually own two of these. Both the fender branded reissues. The newer one's got the crappy pointed headstock, machine heads are cheap. Bolted trem, so tuning goes out pretty quick. The older one however, with the arched (classic) headstock was the equivilant of a modern day vintage line reissue. Hardware upgrades to that of a classic strat, middle pickup is reverse wound so the trademark fender hum cancels out when your on two pickups. Genuinely sounds like a squire, probably more audily diverse to be honest. These guitars are pretty few and far because fender bought out sun for their bass stage amps back when nobody else had really made them big enough. The sunn guitars were always a gimmick for the amps, but the fender reissues were genuinely good instruments in an attempt to boost the brand a little. Well worth picking one up if you can get hold of one. But go for the fender branded reissues as they originals were very poor in comparison
    I bought my sunn mustang in 93 in chennai and I still have it here. I have brought it to Europe. The sound is great except for the little hum which is there since I bought it. Very difficult to find something like it. The feel and ease of playing is unbelievable.