Variations

Unusual white Charvel logo on a ’92 Star-glo (cherry-burst) Charvel Surfcaster

allsurf1

The Big 95 Catalog Tease:  Star-Glo Surfcasters normally have black Charvel logos.  The Trans-Reds normally have white Charvel logos!

Rare Charvel Surfcaster HT Dark Metallic Violet Finish

Unfortuntely, this beautiful ’94 Star-glo had a Bigsbsy installed at one time

Eric Clapton’s $9,000 Surfcaster

1989 Pre-Real Surfcaster…ugh!

Unusual 12 string gathering

1991 Mint Seafoam Green, Whew!

’95 seafoam surf

Ultra Rare 1995 Charvel Surfcaster Humbucker Tremolo, Only one I’ve ever seen

Typical Star-glo Surfcaster with black Charvel logo

 

Here’s a link to a matrix of all known Surfcaster variations:

Matrix: All Known Surfcaster Variations – Updated September 2016

Comments
  1. jody says:

    awesome site! i hope to repost my pictures again of my “odd” surfcaster as my orginals were horrible, sorry.

  2. The owner of this site has given me editorial privileges. Currently, I’m still learning the intricacies of WordPress. My first effort was to trash all of the spam posted to the various pages. I’ve also added 3 new links.

    The link above is a pdf matrix that illustrates all known variants of the Surfcaster and how many of each are known.

    The second link is on the About The Surfcaster page and is a pdf document that attempts to describe all of the Surfcaster variants manufactured during the first run 1991 through 1996. Please contact me at me@grahampearson.com if you have any suggestions for improving this document.

    The third link is on the Serial Numbers page and is a pdf table that lists over 200 Surfcaster serial numbers and a brief description of each entry in the table. Again, please contact me at me@grahampearson.com if you wish to provide any updates to this table.

    In the future, I hope to check each of the posts for dead links – there are many such links to expired eBay auctions for example. What should I do? Delete the post unless it provides information other than just a dead link to an old eBay auction?

    Looking forward to hearing from fellow Surfcaster enthusiasts.

  3. Maybe this Link will help if you all wish
    happy surfcasting everyone

    /ii\ Cirith7 /ii\

    http://www.musiker-board.de/threads/exoten-und-deren-kopien-talman-und-surfcaster.604980/

  4. Arthur says:

    Guys is anyone selling one of these amazing guitars please email me at garveyman123@gmail.com

  5. Robert says:

    Has anyone ever run across a Surfcaster (Charvel headstock, sf green) with a Kahler trem? I have one, looks factory. Anything anyone could tell me would be appreciated! Thinking of selling it…

    Thanks,

    Robert

  6. BrightonCynic says:

    My Jackson 12-string Surfcaster has the serial number 9657102 – anybody know when this dates it?

  7. RC Ricci says:

    thx :)

  8. Ricci:

    Regarding a bridge for your Surfcaster bass, search eBay.com for “Charvel Surfcaster”. This should display a bunch of parts being sold by Alien Xnation. View any of these entries and ask the seller if they have such a part for your bass. You’ll probably need the serial number of your bass when you ask them.

    Hope this helps.
    Graham

  9. RC Ricci says:

    can you get parts anymore? I need a bridge for a surfcaster bass.

  10. Six String Richie says:

    I’ve posted this in another place on the site but I wanna make sure people see it:

    I don’t know if you are aware of this but an awesome company called Eastwood Guitars is looking for funding to recreate Surfcasters. Eastwood makes many great retro style guitars and I would love to see them bring back the Surfcaster. They have 10 days left and are 75% done with their funding. If it doesn’t reach its goal they won’t produce it. They only need $400 more.

    Here’s the link to their project:

    http://eastwoodcustoms.com/projects/eastwood-surfcaster/

    I promise these guys are awesome. Hopefully this is helpful to somebody.

  11. Chris says:

    Hi there, just discovered this awesome website, thanks to the guys behind the scene!
    I’d like to share some pics of a ’94 STD I bought some years ago in the Geneva area, Switzerland.
    Regards to all!

  12. Hi Lluís,

    I announced it here on this site. I’m open to offers!

    Thanks,
    Frank

  13. Lluís Molina says:

    Hi, Frankmcloughlin,

    where do you announce your greenie surfcaster for sale?

    How much do you ask for it?

    Regards,

    Lluís

  14. Hi Graham,

    It’s a 6-string w/ tremolo.

    Cheers,
    Frank

  15. Hello Frank:

    Is your surf greenie a 12-string or a 6-string? If a 6-string, does it have a tremolo or a “C” hard tail?

    Thanks,
    Graham

  16. Looking to sell a Surfcaster in sea foam green Serial # 380303 in top condition. Any interest?

  17. Hey Quinn:

    I already had your guitar listed in my serial number database. It seems you bought it 3 or 4 years ago via eBay, although I didn’t record the date or the price paid.

    Date of manufacture? My guess is either 1994 or 1995, although I don’t think the date of manufacture is as important as the condition of the guitar. Is it all-original and does it have the original hard-shell case (OHSC)? Typically, I don’t think “C’ tail models fetch as high a price as those with a tremolo and roller nut.

    If you want to sell your guitar and it is all-original, I’d put it on eBay starting at about $900 with no reserve. If it has the OHSC, you can add $25 to $50.

    That’s my 2 cents. I hope this is helpful. Graham.

  18. Quinn says:

    Trying to sell a Japanese Fugi-Gen made, semi-hollow body, orange burst surfcaster with mahogany back. Serial #381857. 2 lip stick pick ups, fixed c-tail & black logo. I don’t remember what I bought it for, and prices have ranged greatly online. I’ve seen them from $550-$1800. Any way to get the exact year? I’m thinking it was a ’93. Any help would be appreciated!

  19. Howard says:

    Thanks Silversurfer. She’s a beauty alright. These unmodded specimens in good condition and certainly growing in value…

  20. Silversurfer says:

    Howard –

    Tha Surfcaster is gorgeous – congratulations. Orange is the best color, in my opinion. The push-push switch is a phase switch. When both pickups are engaged, in the down position it should be “in-phase” and in the up position, it’s out-of-phase, a thinner, more nasally tone.

  21. Howard says:

    Hi all.
    Just bought my first Surfie after many months of waiting and watching.
    Paid top dollar but I think it’s worth it.
    http://tinyurl.com/lqejnvk

    Can someone please explain what the purpose of the push-push switch is on the tone knob?
    What EXACTLY does it do?
    Thanks

  22. BrightonCynic says:

    Thanks for the enquiries about my pair of Surfcasters. I’d lent the semi-acoustic to a friend but she never played it so I’ve just recovered it. I’m going to check whether either it or the 12-string need re-stringing, which I’ll get done, then I’ll either set a price for them as a pair or I may split them on eBay and let them find their own level.

  23. John Sutton says:

    H, BrightonCynic, noticed you have a Sea Foam Surfcaster 12 string for sale. Is the guitar still for sale? If so could you contact me at johnsmileysutton@yahoo.com. Regards John

  24. Tom Farrington says:

    Hi there,

    Wondering what you’re asking for the pair??

    Tx,
    Tom

  25. BrightonCynic says:

    If anybody’s interested I’ve a matching pair of sea-foam green surfcasters for sale – a 12-string and a 6-string semi-acoustic that has a slight crack in the back which doesn’t affect its sound or playability.

  26. Tom Farrington says:

    Cash waiting for a Surfcaster XII !!! Drop a line if you’ve got one!

  27. harry says:

    is anyone selling a surfcaster? email harrymorrismusic@hotmail.co.uk

  28. John says:

    Hi Frank M, Do you still have your surf green surfcaster for sale and where are you located?

  29. Serious says:

    Frank: your guitar is worth $1,400

  30. Frank M says:

    Have a 1991 Surfcaster in sea foam green and can’t seem to find any info on its value. The guitar is in very good condition. Any help appreciated!

  31. victor says:

    have a orange/red early 90’s with original case in excellent shape. im located in toronto canada. will send pics on request

  32. Jacob Jensen says:

    Hey there. i have a surfcaster STD black with 3 lipstick pickups and the metal C-plate in the bottom and the serial number 502069 on the back. how can i see when it was made and how much it is worth? please help i want to sell it but I can’t figure it out. thanks. :)

  33. silversurfer says:

    No Surfcasters ever came with a Bigsby as stock equipment

  34. Dave says:

    Anyone know if any of the early ’90 – ’91 (or earlier) Surfcasters would have had a Bigsby on it ? Thanks !

  35. Kevin says:

    Anyone know if Charvel produced any Lefty Surfcasters?

  36. Lars Edqvist says:

    Found out that the colour aparently is called: cherryburst.

  37. Lars Edqvist says:

    Have an early 90’s orange/sunburst 6 string for sale here in Sweden.
    As good as mint. Hardly ever played. Whammybar & Original Hardcase

    Anyone?

  38. dilver says:

    There’s a nice Sunburst one on eBay right now.

  39. rob abramson says:

    looking for surfcaster for sale – any ideas

  40. marco de santos says:

    6 String, serial 385442, “C”tailpiece, (lipstick-red, front & Back), white logo, two lipstick PU’s,

    How to send pictures?

  41. Graham Pearson says:

    Yes, this site is still active and we look forward to hearing about your Surfcaster. When giving details, please include the following:

    For a 12-string: Serial number, date of original purchase if known, front-of-body color, back-of-body color (same as front-of-body or mahogany), color of Charvel logo.

    For a 6-string: Same details as for a 12-string, plus type of tailpiece (tremolo or “C” fixed tailpiece or other), and pickup configuration (2 lipstick, 1 lipstick and 1 humbucker, or 3 lipstick).

    Looking forward to hearing about your Surfcaster.
    Graham

  42. marco de santos says:

    ?
    I´d like to have my surcaster added…!

  43. Here’s another variant from the Japanese market- there’s a similar one in the ‘Norwegian Surfs’ pic on the Gatherings page in pale green. This one’s a silver sparkle Surfcaster SC-65 C-tail.

    http://www.jacksonguitar.org/gall/gall25.html

    From what I can decipher from google’s translation of the page, the owner modded it to a string-thru to increase sustain.

    These SC-65’s were apparently a Japan-only reissue in the later ’90s, but slightly missed the mark due to the dot inlays- probably a cost-saving method vs. the expensive sharkies.

  44. Finally found another example of the SC-85 Surfcaster like JodyHoward’s above!

    http://www.jacksonguitar.org/gall/gall245.html

    It’s hard to see what color it is exactly, if it’s not black then maybe Candy Blue? Likely modded with aftermarket tuners & SD zebra humbucker. Distinguished from other Surfcasters by the Charvel branded, but Jackson-shaped headstock, and the TOM & stopbar tailpiece.

    It’s hard to pinpoint any documentation on these Japan-only models, as the only catalog appearance I’ve found so far is in the 1999 “Grover Jackson/Charvel” catalog- basically the line that morphed into Jackson Stars. Looks like they were available for several years before that though, if Jody’s was purchased in 1996. Interesting (to me, at least) to see the slow progression from the early ones to the Jacksons- they made some strange stops along the way.

  45. Mark B. says:


    I’ve heard of other Surfcaster STDs coming with Kent Armstrong pickups, too. Is it possible that the specs are wrong in the catalog?

  46. Mark B. says:

    Trying a single link to see if it passes without moderation.

  47. Mark B. says:

    Is there any way to get my post approved? 5 links to pictures may have overloaded the spam detector. :p

  48. Mark B. says:

    I’ve taken some pics if anyone is interested. It’s a bit beat up. :)

    http://images.imaginekitty.com/SurfcasterBody.jpg (shows the nice blue color with pre-installed chips and the broken pickguard)
    http://images.imaginekitty.com/SurfcasterIdMarks.jpg (markings are SFC-STD and 1-2)
    http://images.imaginekitty.com/SurfcasterKentArmstrong.jpg (Kent Armstrong pickups)
    http://images.imaginekitty.com/SurfcasterHeadstock.jpg (wrong nut, slotted way too deeply)

  49. Mark B. says:

    Ah, yes. Thank you. I was thinking CB meant cobalt blue and it didn’t match the color but Candy Blue makes sense since it really doesn’t look violet at all.

    I’ve only tried it at the shop to make sure the pickups worked so I can’t really comment on the sound of them yet as I need to replace the nut and I’ve already torn it down. :)

  50. Graham Pearson says:

    Mark:

    According to page 47 of the 1993 Charvel catalog, abbreviations for the colors of the Surfcaster STD are explained as: TRQ = Turquoise, BLK = Black, CB = Candy Blue, and DMV = Deep Metallic Violet.

    I can’t help you on your question about the pickups. Perhaps somebody else can chime in.

    What does the guitar sound like? If you’re happy with it and it looks really cool, $400 for a 1993 Surfcaster is not a bad deal !!

  51. Mark B. says:

    I just picked up a “well used” Surfcaster STD. It looks exactly like the one on the right in the second picture above, same blue color. What is the finish code for that? I’m not sure if that is considered dark metallic violet or if the “B” in CB stands for Blue. The catalog scan says “Chandler LST” but my pickups are marked “Kent Armstrong SLHC-1” (the middle one is “SLHC-1R”). Is it possible they are OEM or do you think they were replaced?

    At $400 I may have overpaid for it but I think it’s a really cool guitar.

  52. Nick Randall says:

    When I said ‘too good not to play’ I realise that it might be misread as ‘not too good to play’. It has been professionally set up and although it is a collectible I believe in playing my guitars as much as possible. New strings are on their way, but even with the old strings the sounds are magical.

  53. Silversurfer says:

    Nick – you might want to consider having it looked at for a proper set up, including (potentially, if it needs it) a fret leveling and crowning. Surfcasters have huge frets AND long scale so depending on how it was originally set up and/or how much it was played, a good leveling and recrowning of the frets can make a huge difference.

  54. Nick Randall says:

    I am the new owner of this one – very nice to look at but too good not to play.

  55. Hi CH: That’s a beauty. If you’re patient, probably $1,900, if you want to sell it without any fuss, probably $1,400.

  56. CH says:

    Hey guys can anyone tell me the current value of a 12 string sea foam green surfcaster. Its all original except the tuners have been replaced but no holes were needed to be drilled. I’ve posted a link to a pic…great site by the way.

    $(KGrHqIOKkQE4hHvzoVSBOReJVWthw~~_12

  57. Nick Randall says:

    I found a solid body Surfcaster that looked a bit iffy but the seller pointed me towards the original catalogue page.

    http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=110748876138&ssPageName=ADME:X:RTQ:US:1123#ht_45353wt_864

    They were a once only Japan Market reissue EM-SC from 2005, described as ‘lower end’ but Japanese made – not Indian.

    One of you collectors might want this just to fill in a gap but it is not the sound, or look I am looking for.

    http://www.musictrades.co.jp/instrument/2005/12/022/

    Google this and translate – it will give you a rough idea.
    also:

  58. silversurfer says:

    Hmmm… check these out: http://www.ebay.com/itm/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=130574422191+&item=130574422191&lgeo=1&vectorid=229466

    While the Jackson Surfcasters don’t hold the same cache as Charvel models, I’ll be these are good players, pretty good quality (MIJ) and value. For the price, it sure beats a Kokocaster. If I were playing in a band right now, I’d probably pick one up instead using my “vintage” surfs.

  59. Interesting… Looks like it was also issued in an even more stripped-down version: The EM-SCB.

    TOM bridge, HH pickup config, no pickguard, maple neck.

  60. Graham- that’s actually a 1992 Charvel EM-SC. I don’t know if they were ever issued in the US- they may have been a Japan-only model. Here’s a link to an isolated catalog scan I found on importcharvels.com:

    The white one looks intriguing to me.

  61. Graham Pearson says:

    There’s a solid-body three-pickup Surfcaster for sale on eBay right now (09/09/2011). Item number 110741584113, made in Japan. Is this a new line from Charvel or a fake imitation?

  62. ^^ agreed.

    Looks like those custom-shop jobs were prototypes for this year’s ‘desolation Skatecaster’ line.

    http://www.charvel.com/guitars/?section=desolation&bodyShape=Skatecaster

    I’m afraid the ‘variations’ tab might need a subdirectory for ‘bastard offspring of the surfcaster’- Jackson Outcaster, Nocaster, etc… and now the Skatecaster. The line needs to be drawn between the true surfys and their less desireable cousins/stepchildren.

  63. Graham Pearson says:

    Regarding the above link, so so spendy for so little of the original Surfcaster retro flavor.

  64. Silversurfer says:

    This post sort of belongs here, as purple Surfcasters with a horizontal Charvel logo, with dot inlays are not common… I have no affiliation and take no responsibility, but if this IS a MIJ Surfcaster, it’s a helluva deal, even if it doesn’t have the standard appointments and has been modded. Obviously, not for a collector, due to the routing mod, but may be a good player.

    http://toronto.kijiji.ca/c-buy-and-sell-musical-instruments-guitars-Charvel-Surfcaster-Strat-lipstick-pickups-W0QQAdIdZ298494074

  65. Del Preston says:

    Thanks guys for any interested views, but I’ve now had a couple of very helpful responses. I’ll keep you all posted on how it turns out.

  66. Del Preston says:

    Hi guys. I’ve got a request. I do a bit of luthiery ‘on the side’ and have made projects and done repairs etc. for a while now… I’ve got an urge for a Surfcaster, but with a neck to my specs. What I’m after is for some kind soul to produce an accurate outline tracing around the body of their Fuji-Gen surf on a large sheet of paper and send it to me. I’ve made a pretty damned accurate CAD drawing but I’d like the confirmation that it is a match to a proper Fuji-Gen surf… (I’m nothing if not pedantic!). Alternatively a very high-res PDF or similar scan of the back of the body, if your scanner at work is big enough, would suffice.

    I know you can get hold of the Kokos cheaply etc. but I’m after something a bit more custom and accurate to the original shape. Given that its not been made for quite a while now, I’m sure my one or two hobby bodies wouldn’t be a problem to the big F or whoever owns the rights.

    If one of you out there is prepared to do that for me (accurately!) then I will be prepared to make you an unfinished body from the template that will fit standard Warmoth / Fender necks… First come first served!

    I’m based in the UK and would refund your postage/parcel tube cost.

    Email me at fretfest@yahoo.com.

  67. I had a TSH-12 for a little while – a black one I picked up for nearly nada on ebay. The looks on them are great- but the neck-dive was annoying. I could have dealt with that, but the sharp frets and the dull tone made it an easy one to send on its way. It just couldn’t hold a candle to the surf12- so I just decided to get more of those! I’ve never looked back, until I decided to pull the trigger on the trem idea.

    The Corsair12 is quite a different story though- finish and playability are top-notch! Slightly thicker neck and shorter scale length are taking some getting used to, and I’m still exploring the tone pallete, but I’m sure it will end up in my stage arsenal for the trem effect. At least until I find a beater surfcaster12 to Bigsby up and replace it!

  68. Graham Pearson says:

    SotD:

    It looks like you found a great guitar to try out your 12-string trem experiment. I too have a 12-string Schecter … it’s a Diamond Series TSH-12, finished in “Amber Clear”. A beautiful guitar who’s only fault is the rather heavy peghead which means I can’t let go of the neck or it does a nose dive. Perhaps a Bigsby would give it better balance?

    Now don’t go messing with that Surfcaster 12-string behind our backs !!

  69. Graham- I did finally decide to test the 12-string trem out, but not on any of my surfcasters. Here’s the project thread if anyone’s curious how it turned out:

    http://www.offsetguitars.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=38395

    I’m not ruling out modding one of my surfcasters like this, as I think it would look and play amazing- but I’ll need a LOT more time to perfect it before making that investment.

    Eric- Congrats on the hum/trem combo surf! That one is definitely one for the histories. The acoustic line of surfcasters (designated 325SL/X for the guitars, 425SL/X for the basses) has always intrigued me, and it sounds like you got a killer deal- especially for a flametop model. They never ‘officially’ reviewed very well, but I’ve heard some owners rave about them- especially the bass version.

    Yours is a 425SLX- because of the flamed top- it also features a built-in chorus effect in the preamp, correct? I’ve always been curious as to how those sound plugged in. The offset body shape doesn’t seem like it would be conducive to a very full acoustic tone- (a theory semi-confirmed by every review I’ve read on these) so I’ve often wondered if the chorus circuit was put there to try to compensate for that. What do you think?

    I’d definitely throw my vote in for putting the acoustic line in the Variations tab- even though they never officially bore the Surfcaster title.

  70. Eric says:

    btw, just yesterday i pickup up a surfcaster acoustic bass (natural finish, flamed top) for $200. I love the looks, and sounds reasonable. Does anyone here have experience with these? how good/bad are they compared to other acoustics? Thanx

    Eric

  71. Eric says:

    Hi all,

    What a great website! I see your discussions here, and i happen to be the guy you sold the ultra-rare red hum/trem to (and what a great combo this is)! I’m actually in the Netherlands, not Germany, but never mind that. I did replace the jackson humbucker with a gibson P94. Much better sounding, and i of course kept the original. I still own the guitar and i’m very happy with it! Good luck on your site!

    Regards,
    Eric

  72. Graham Pearson says:

    To SotD from one of the kids:

    Very wise to botch up an el-cheapo 12-string before defiling a holy-grail Surfy. I don’t think you’d be happy with the outcome. I had a 12-string with a whammy bar once (forgot the manufacturer but all 12 strings were whammied) and the whammy sounded horrible. I ended up converting the guitar into a vacuum cleaner.

    By the way, SS is my brother, so we’re just having a giggle.
    Kisses to all.

  73. Easy, kids. Let’s keep it light & enjoyable for everyone.

    Silver- I don’t expect that most surfcaster-folk would be open to modding much on their prized guitars, but if you feel you must- give it a try, and let us know the results. I tend to agree with Graham for the most part, although the dialogue seems to be devolving- back on subject: The modding WILL devalue your guitar as a collector piece, but you may be able to wiggle out some minor problems with your guitar as a player. If you’re never planning on selling it, and it has something that bugs you about it, then go ahead and fix it.

    I cringe at the slant-hum harem too- but the owner of those guitars must have found some play-value in that mod to motivate him to do it to the rest of ’em. I’d consider buying one if I saw it on ebay, but I wouldn’t pay anywhere near ‘collector’s value’.

    Confession time: there were a few months last year when I was seriously considering adding a Bigsby B5 to one of my 12-strings- just active on the octave course so the trem would only ‘whammy’ the 1st string in every pair. I’m still jonesing to try out the effect, (plus I think it’d look cool) but have been talked into trying it out on a cheaper guitar first- before defiling one of my gorgeous surfys.

  74. Graham Pearson says:

    “Wow”

    Wow.

  75. Silversurfer says:

    “I apologize if I appeared to underestimate your expertise when it comes to ruining the value of a guitar my invasive mods.”

    Wow.

  76. Graham Pearson says:

    SS:

    I apologize if I appeared to underestimate your expertise when it comes to ruining the value of a guitar my invasive mods.

    This site is probably viewed by lots of Surfcaster owners, and I’ve seen some terribly modded Surfcasters appear on eBay from time to time. I was simply trying to state what is obvious to most of us …

    Don’t screw with a great guitar. If you’re inclined to take a router or a drill to your Surfcaster, for heaven’s sake find another guitar more to your liking and sell your Surfcaster in its original condition.

  77. Silversurfer says:

    Graham-

    Thanks for the “advice”, but being a long time collector of many, many guitars, including vintage pieces, I’m quite aware of the what constitutes a reversible vs nonreversible mod, the pitfalls of trying to fix what ain’t broke (that pic of the slanted humbuckered surfs makes me cringe every time) and the importance of keeping original parts. And yes, i understand the mechanics of a guitar’s nut, having cut and replaced more than a few nuts in my lifetime. I was merely hoping for some healthy dialogue around people’s experience with the simple mods I mentioned. Guess I should have clarified… Invasive mods requiring drilling, routing, refinishing, etc, are not recommended and not for the inexperienced!

  78. Graham Pearson says:

    SS:

    Swap your humbucker out by all means – this does not involve any structural change to your guitar. But please don’t do anything to change your Surfer structurally. I know a lot of pickers who have very much regretted modding their axes.

    For example, the phenolic nut only affects the tone of the open strings. Once you start fretting a string, the nut is irrelevant. Is the nut really all that bad?

    Changing the pots, maybe, but don’t change the tuners unless the new ones are dimensionally identical to the old ones so you don’t have to drill new screw holes.

    And keep all the original parts. You’ll want to reinstall them if you ever sell your guitar.

    There was a drop-dead gorgeous Surfcaster advertized a month or two ago. The cherry-burst top had the best flame I’ve ever seen. But someone swapped the hard tail for a Bigsby so the top had at least four screw holes in it. Trashed the value of that guitar, for sure.

    In summary, leave it alone. if you’re not happy with it, find something more to your taste and sell your Surfer in its original condition.

  79. Silversurfer says:

    Hmmm… Am I really the only one who can’t leave well enough alone and wants to tinker with their Surfcaster? Some of the “mods” I’m considering for my Surfcaster HT:
    – Upgrade to CTS pots; 300K? Need something that will work for the lipstick tube pickup and the humbucker
    – I already swapped out the stock Jackson humbucker for a Seymour Duncan Custom 5. Great pickup, but now I’m wondering what a TV Jones Classic would do, especially when combined with the lipstick tube pickup.
    – Upgrade to a bone nut? Ok, that’s a little more invasive, but would probably sound better than the stock phenolic compound nut.
    – Gotoh Kluson locking tuners? I’d have to custom order them to get the chrome buttons. The original stock tuners are actually Gotoh Japan and pretty good, so maybe not necessary.
    – Upgrade the 3-way swtich? Again, if it’s lasted this long, probably not necessary.

    So really, I’m just talking about the TV Jones Classic and the pots. With all the projects I’ve got going, it’ll probably be a little while before do these mods. Anyone else considering anything?

  80. Graham- just sell your 12-string to me, and buy a 6er! It’s a pity to let that second course of strings go to waste.

    And yes, the lipstick pickups 12-string are identical to those on a 6-string. In the catalogs they are all marked as “Chandler LST” or “LST-1”

  81. Graham Pearson says:

    Thanks for the previous post, SS. I currently own only one Caster and it’s a 12-string. However, I have it strung as a 6-string. It’s my opinion that the 12-string lipstick pickups and volume/tone circuit are probably identical to the 6-string. Anyone know for sure?

    The only mod I’m considering is the temporary removal of 6 of the tuners to reduce peghead weight and improve overall balance. By the way, my 12-string is a delight to play as a 6-string other than it’s sllight tendency to nose dive if I let go of the neck.

  82. silversurfer says:

    Since there’s no “Tech” or “Mods” area, I’m posting this here…

    Sign of the Dragon, Graham, & Charvelsurfcaster (and anyone else): Not sure if any of you are into the technical aspects of guitars, but I for one, can’t help but tinker on all my guitars, do my own setups, constantly swapping pieces and parts, etc.

    Anyone modifying their Surfs? Lots of people change the pickups, but what about pot values, capacitors, alt. wiring, shielding, tuners, etc?

    I’d love to be able to upgrade the sustain block on my trem equipped Surf, but have yet to come across anything that would fit that odd JT-490 Gotoh-designed trem. I’ve also changed the wiring on my humbucker equipped Surf so that the push pull pot is a coil split instead of a phase reversal switch. I’ve been toying with the idea of swapping out one of the 250Kpots for a 500K (better fit with the humbucker). All of this is totally reversible so I’m not too concerned about value depreciation, and besides, I have no intention of selling either of my Surfcasters.

    Anyone?

  83. Yep, it sure does. I think there is a sweet spot with the serial numbers that is very dependable for traditional looking surfs from the ’91 to probably ’97 era even. If you have a traditional surf with a regular serial number, they do seem sequential. But there is a bunch of oddball stuff out there too. But if you have, say, a seafoam green two lipstick version, it is pretty much a sure thing that its serial number will make sense and will be earlier than any humbucking version.

  84. Graham Pearson says:

    What is interesting about Jody’s guitar is the serial number – 385287. It’s well within the range of what we thought were the “early” Surfcasters, built from 1991 through 1995. For example, the 1995 red humbucker / tremolo Surfcaster pictured above is 387354. This makes dating a Surfcaster from its serial number even more precarious.

  85. I’d never seen one of those and thought I had seen (and owned) everything. Great find with the brochure. The headstock lettering isn’t an exact match, but it sure looks like the same guitar. I’m amazed and scratching my head. What else is lurking out there and why don’t these ever come up on ebay? Lots of Japanese only market stuff comes up on ebay, but I’ve never seen one of these…ever.

  86. Way to go SOD! You are a wealth of info. Thanks. I wonder if it counts as a surfcaster and if we should include it in the database or not.

  87. jodyhoward says:

    hey thanks for all the info and replys. the guitar in the japan link looks just like mine except the logo on the headstock is different and i bought mine in 1996 or so used. i will get better pictures soon thank you for all of the support.

  88. Jody’s surfcaster is a SC-85 Surfcaster issued in 1999 for the Japanese-only market under the ‘Grover Jackson/Charvel’ brand that would eventually become Jackson Starz.

    Here’s the catalog page link: http://audiozone.dk/guitargallery/?content%2FGuitar_catalog_scans%2FJackson_Charvel%2F1999_GroverJackson_Charvel%2F1999_GroverJackson_Charvel_17.jpg

    Kind of a wierd one with the headstock shaped like the Jackson ones & the 2-piece TOM bridge, but still a legit & complete surfcaster.

  89. Graham Pearson says:

    Yep, that’s a weird one. I wish the pictures were clearer. Looks like a Les Paul tail-piece and a non-standard adjustable bridge. I don’t know about the humbucker p/u, I’ve never owned a humbucaster. The neckplate looks legit even though the picture is blurry. The neck looks like a caster neck until you get to the shape of the headstock. Could this be a neck from a different model Charvel? I can’t tell from the picture what kind of tuners it has. Yep, that’s a weird one.

  90. Graham, what do you think of Jody’s surf?

    IMG_0486

  91. Man, that’s a weird surfcaster Jody. A jackson headstock, but with a charvel name. It looks kind of fake to me. Strange color too. Anyone have any ideas? I’ll wait to put it up on variations or serial number database until we get some more input. I’ve never seen anything like it. Jody's unusual surf

  92. Hi Jody: Can you send us a picture so we can identify it? Thanks. also, send a picture of the serial number.

  93. Oh, yes, OK. Yes, I’m aware of this one, it was mine but I sold it (and really wish I hadn’t). It was red. I’d love to see an Orange one like you mention above though. I don’t they exist, but if they did, wow. That is the only hum/trem I’ve ever seen personally, that is stock looking. I’ll put it on the variations tab. Thanks.

  94. Graham Pearson says:

    SilverSurfer:
    Referring to your link above, that looks like a red caster to me, especially because it has a white logo (orange casters usually have a black logo).

    JodyHoward:
    Please send pictures of your caster to donrownrocks@yahoo.com so we can all take a look. Include close-ups of your humbucker and bridge, peghead, and back of your guitar. What color is it? Does it have a mahogany back? What color is the Charvel logo on the peghead?

  95. silversurfer says:

    Charvelsurfcaster –

    Re: Orange with Humbucker and Trem – I’m talking about this one…
    Ultra Rare 1995 Charvel Surfcaster Humbucker Tremolo

    I had assumed you had posted this – perhaps not. Regardless, it looks stock and I’ve never seen this configuration before – I would have loved this it were available.

  96. jodyhoward says:

    hello, great site! I have a surfcaster that i even contacted jackson with the serial number but they replied no records, so i have always been wondering about the orgins of my caster that i have owned for going on about 12 years or more. my serial number is-385287 with a humbucker in the bridge with a tune o matic bridge and the lipstick pickup in the neck position, i think the humbucker was changed out by previous owner,and that it is a pickup by kent armstrong HPAN-1 that i can not find any info on either. well hope to hear from you any information is greatful, thank you.

  97. Yes, I’ll get to it this weekend. Thanks for the rec…ah, wait a minute, orange hum with trem? Have we ever seen one of those? Maybe I missed it in one of the comments. I’ll look around. That sounds very unusual. I’ve never seen one.

  98. Excellent, I’ll put it in the variations tab. Thanks SOD

  99. Here’s a link to one of the late ’80s prototypes- complete with pointy headstock and double-locking Floyd:

    It’s from the 1990 C/J catalog- in the custom shop section, So I’m sure this one was made in the USA Jackson Custom shop.

    Tickles my gag reflex to look too long, but I thought it interesting & relevant.

  100. Silversurfer says:

    Hey Charvelsurfcaster – could we get the pic of the Orange humbucker w/trem, here too?

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