JAG-STANG Prototype - Reverse Engineering

Talk about modding or building your own guitar from scratch.
User avatar
AcrylicSuperman
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 238
Joined: Wed May 23, 2018 3:37 am

Re: JAG-STANG Prototype - Reverse Engineering

Post by AcrylicSuperman » Mon Nov 23, 2020 2:01 pm

BeeTL wrote:
Mon Nov 23, 2020 1:59 pm
If you prefer, I'll delete my posts...no big deal.
I wouldn't delete the post, but i would redact the links.

Because you are a good detective, I'll shoot you a message and tell you about my interaction with him.

User avatar
BeeTL
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 626
Joined: Tue Jul 12, 2011 1:24 pm
Contact:

Re: JAG-STANG Prototype - Reverse Engineering

Post by BeeTL » Mon Nov 23, 2020 2:05 pm

The plot thickens... ;)

Since all of the recent photos of "red" seem to be taken in the same display case and similar photos were posted to social media, I assumed it's location was not a secret.
Owner, Lowe Custom Guitars

User avatar
AcrylicSuperman
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 238
Joined: Wed May 23, 2018 3:37 am

Re: JAG-STANG Prototype - Reverse Engineering

Post by AcrylicSuperman » Mon Nov 23, 2020 2:25 pm

BeeTL wrote:
Mon Nov 23, 2020 2:05 pm
The plot thickens... ;)

Since all of the recent photos of "red" seem to be taken in the same display case and similar photos were posted to social media, I assumed it's location was not a secret.
And now you know. I didn't even have to kill you. Lol.

But...

*puts finger up to lips*

User avatar
BeeTL
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 626
Joined: Tue Jul 12, 2011 1:24 pm
Contact:

Re: JAG-STANG Prototype - Reverse Engineering

Post by BeeTL » Mon Nov 23, 2020 5:53 pm

I'm grateful to be among the living for at least a little while longer.

:whistle:
Owner, Lowe Custom Guitars

User avatar
AcrylicSuperman
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 238
Joined: Wed May 23, 2018 3:37 am

Re: JAG-STANG Prototype - Reverse Engineering

Post by AcrylicSuperman » Tue Nov 24, 2020 10:23 am

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Final Chapter - Part 10: “ The Jagstang: A History Part 1 - Disclosure”
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

The beauty of myths and legends is that they usually contain an ounce of truth and contary to popular belief, dead men do tell tales if you listen hard enough. I promised all of you a post with a summary of each piece of witness testimony from Nirvana's techs, former master builders, current Fender employees and beyond. I also promised you a post with the Jagstang prototypes specs and that post is today. However, as a full disclaimer, there are two things I must disclose before we get started.

First, at the end of our reasearch, we do not have all the neck measurements from the neck that Larry built for the Jagstangs. Larry unfortunately no longer owns that Mustang and we have no access to it. However, we have some and we have access to something close. Kurt's competition Mustang resides in Seattle in the MoPop Museum. I have requested measurements from both the museum and by extention the owner of the guitar, permissions were granted on the stipulation that I wait until the next time it is removed from it's display. Covid caused issues that forced the museum to temporarily close. As best as I can currently tell, it is open at likited capacity, but they do have a Nirvana exhibit on display. I am unsure when I will get this info, but it is coming and when I get measurements on Kurt's neck, that will be as close as we can get and I will post it here.

Second, I have the Seymour Duncan Custom Shop looking into the pickups made for Kurt. While I have confirmed that these pickups exist, I'm not ready to divulge this information yet. I have confirmation on one of the pickups but not both. While Larry told me that these two pickups were identical and I believe him, I want to be absolutely certain. These records are not in their computer. They are physical records in two different years. Without having a rough date estimate, finding the last one has been difficult. All we have to work with is an approximation between February and October of 1993. There is a lot of clientel between there. When I get this information in full, I will post them as well. What I can tell you for now is that this pickup does already exist on the market, however, if you want it to look like Kurt's, it will be a custom shop job.

The following is so long that I will have to break it up into two additional posts. Both of these will be posted today. Be prepared to read and I will answer questions after I have posted the final piece. If I have done my job right, you shouldn't have any.

User avatar
AcrylicSuperman
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 238
Joined: Wed May 23, 2018 3:37 am

Re: JAG-STANG Prototype - Reverse Engineering

Post by AcrylicSuperman » Tue Nov 24, 2020 10:50 am

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Final Chapter - Part 10: “ The Jagstang: A History Part 2 - Blue”
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

For 27 years, you've heard the story of the Jagstang but you've never heard it like this. Everything is this post has been proven.

While researching for the Jagstang, the first people to start with were the obvious names. Problem was, many of these people are no longer with us. Kurt Cobain, Mark Wittenberg, Dan Smith. Others, like Peter Buck, were elusive. Between Nirvana techs, Fender Master Builders and former employees and beyond, I managed to finally piece together the story of how it finally came to be.

In late 92 or very early 93, Kurt contacted then president of Fender, Dan Smith, requesting a custom American made Mustang. Dan was pleased that Kurt was embracing Fender but was also a little terrified of having to bear the bad news. The Custom Shop could not build a Mustang nor the hardware, but Fender Japan could. Upon requesting a guitar from Fender Japan, they refused to build Kurt a single guitar. He would have to order 10. This order lead to an endorsement deal (and eventually all of Pat Smear's strats) and the offer was accepted. These guitars were to be made by long time CBS era artist relations builder Scott Zimmerman. Five of these Mustangs were to be Sonic Blue and five were to be Fiesta Red. Kurt had a specific color in mind for the red Mustangs and a custom red color was used for all of the red Mustangs except for the first one. Six of these Mustangs were shipped to Kurt before his death. The remaining four, two Sonic and two "Fiesta", were sold as regular left handed 69 RI Mustangs in a Tokyo music store.

Kurt had mentioned that he had an idea for a guitar and Dan directed him to head of Artist Relations, Mark Wittenberg. Mark saw great potential in Kurt as well as Nirvana's relationship with Fender and he convinced John Page to give the contract to Mark's friend, Larry Brooks.

Larry and Mark met Kurt and Courtney at their Hollywood home in February of 1993. Kurt and Larry hit it off well and Kurt was extremely passionate about his idea. So what was it that Kurt wanted? He wanted the Jagstang to be an affordable entry level model that anyone, including Kurt himself, could pick up and play. His vision was to loosely mimic the original 1964 Mustangs which bore a smaller headstock, slab bodies and Daphne Blue with white pickguard, Dakota red with white pearl pickguard and Olympic White with tortoise shell pickguard colors. Rather than a signature model, he wanted it to be more of an anti signature model. He only wanted credit for it's design. Kurt handed Larry his competition Mustang, stating that it was his favorite neck. However, Kurt would not let Larry take the neck back to Fender as Nirvana was about to record In Utero. While Kurt never used the Mustang on that album, it was clear that he considered it. Larry assured Kurt that it wouldn't be a problem as he owned a competition Mustang with a similar neck profile. Kurt took a series of Polaroids of his Jaguar and Mustang at different distances, cut them up and laid out a rough shape before handing them to Larry to take back to Fender.

Upon returning to Fender, Larry then recruited an employee who worked in the paint department to help him create a template. This individuals name is Mark Kendrick. They arranged the polaroids in various configurations and snapped pictures of the arrangements. They then had these images blown up and attempted to try to recreate the shapes they wanted, but Kurt's lack of consistent distances doomed this method. Larry brought in his personal Mustang and made a template for the custom shop, which can still be ordered today. Unfortunately, the shop did not have a Jaguar template and would be forced to use a Jazzmaster template instead.

Kendrick took over on the template process, creating variations of the Jagstang and tracing them out on cardboard, creating cutouts of body shapes. We know that 2 of these exist, however, there had been more. They were designed to be sent to Kurt for final approvals. The two that we know of are examples of approved designs that were later rejected, and Larry never saw any of these cutouts.

The approved cutout was turned into a slightly larger shape, meant for Kurt's final approval. We refered to this body as Pre Prototype Body or PPB. PPB was shipped to Kurt a few times. Kurt drew two notes on the body with sharpie. He reshaped the back end and and requested changes to the Mustang horn. At one point, Kurt requested a neck pocket to be cutout to see how it balanced with a neck. After attaching what would have likely been his competition Mustang neck to the body, Kurt decided that the guitar should feature a large CBS headstock rather than the small Stratocaster style headstock. A custom aluminum CNC template was then made and their converted metal CNC cut out a two piece Alder body that would then become Blue.

The body would be given a single ply white pickguard. The hardware was Japanese. The guitar featured a right handed Texas Special pickup in the neck, a pickup that was made for the signature models of Stevie Ray Vaughan, which Larry also built. The bridge pickup was a custom Seymour Duncan humbucker based on the 59 model. Both pickups and the electronics were wired like a standard Mustang. The neck was a clone of Larry's Mustang neck, made of Maple with a Rosewood veneer fingerboard. White pearl dots and side dots. 1 5/8" nut width. 7.25" radius with vinatge small frets. A single string tree, Gotoh tuners and a modified 1959 Fender Custom Telecaster decal. The neck plate was completely blank and Blue did not get an official serial number. The neck was finished in nitro and the body was finished in a modified Daphne Blue nitro finish.

We believe that Blue arrived with Kurt's shipment of Skystang 1 and Skystang 2 in October of 1993. Nirvana guitar tech, Earnie Bailey, claims to have worked on the Jagstang behind the stage of the MTV Unplugged show in November. While I do believe that Earnie worked on the Jagstang at this time, a part of his claim is false. Earnie claims to have removed a DiMarzio H8 in the bridge, replacing it with a Seymour Duncan JB. We know that this never happened because we have a photograph from Larry showing that the guitar in fact has the custom Seymour Duncan model in the Jagstang at the Custom Shop. As far as we can tell, with the help of Gary Jarman who got to hold the guitar and photographed it, this pickup seems to remain to this day. By the end of November, Earnie was no longer Kurt's tech and was replaced with Jim Vincent. Jim seems to remember the Jagstang being routed for a JB as well, but seeing as how the guitar already featured a Seymour Duncan and the humbucker remained pickguard mounted, routing for a humbucker was not needed. It is safe to say that what Jim remembered was actually Skystang 3, which seemed to have a long legs humbucker mounted to the wood.

Kurt's first appearance with the Jagstang is December 1st, 1993 and he begins playing it more, sometimes for whole shows and sometimes, if his Mustang broke a string, the Jagstang became it's replacement. It recieved a Gotoh ABR-1 bridge, cut off switch tips and Schaller strap locks. Later, under Peter Buck, the guitar ended up with a second string tree and an unknown set of modern 10mm tuners.

The specs of Blue:
2 piece Alder body
White 1 ply pickguard, no bevel
Japanese Hardware
Blank neckplate
Daphne Blue nitro finish
3 screws on the hump
Right Handed Bridge Texas Special (neck)
Custom Seymour Duncan humbucker (Bridge)
250k pots
.047 capacitor
Maple neck
Veneer rosewood fretboard
Pearloid dots, both fret and sides
Vintage fret wire
7.25" radius
1 5/8" nut width
Gotoh tuners
Nitro finish
Thickness to be determined
Larry Brooks signature in neck pocket.

Mods made by Kurt:
Schaller strap locks
Gotoh ABR-1 Tuneomatic bridge
Locked tail piece
Cut off switch tips

Mods made by Peter:
Unknown 10mm tuners
Second string tree
Last edited by AcrylicSuperman on Fri Nov 27, 2020 5:47 pm, edited 2 times in total.

User avatar
AcrylicSuperman
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 238
Joined: Wed May 23, 2018 3:37 am

Re: JAG-STANG Prototype - Reverse Engineering

Post by AcrylicSuperman » Tue Nov 24, 2020 11:54 am

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Final Chapter - Part 10: “ The Jagstang: A History Part 3 - Red”
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

In February 1994, Earnie Bailey discussed changes to the Jagstang with Mark Wittenberg just a couple months before Red was finished. The changes discussed were primarily comfort countours. The contours were not requested by Kurt and by Earnie's own admissions, he offered to put contours in Blue and Kurt never allowed it to happen. Keep in mind, in February 1994, Earnie is not Kurt's tech so it would appear that this conversation may have happened behind Kurt's back. Regardless, Red never recieved them.

While this isn't really my story to tell, it is extremely important, so I will try to be straight to the point and keep personal details out of it where needed. In 1993, there was a relatively large shipment of custom shop guitars that were stolen, enough that it caught Fender's attention. Fender had no suspects at the time. All they knew for sure was that whomever stole these instruments, it was likely one of two type of employees. Either it was a Master Builder or it was someone in the shipping department. Larry reached out to some pawn shops and music stores with some of the serials on his own volition, asking that if any of these guitars come in, to let him know. Eventually, some of these guitars did end up in Hollywood. Larry took this information to Dan Smith and some other ranking members of the company. Because Larry had been the only one to produce any information on these stolen instruments, Larry was treated as the prime suspect and he was heavily questioned about it. From what I understand, Dan Smith and Larry Brooks didn't have a great relationship to begin with. But from that point on, Larry seemed to be under a watchful eye. In late February of 1994, Mark Wittenberg became hospitalized due to a brain aneurysm and died from it. Larry was at the hospital with him that night as they were best friends. Upon returning home sad and heart broken, he pulled up to find that Fender heads were there, searching his property for stolen items. Stolen property was never produced, Larry essentially quit on the spot and got a lawyer.

This wasn't the end of Larry at the custom shop as he did have obligations to complete. He had around 20 instruments left to finish, Kurt's Red Jagstang being one of them. While it is unknown what number this guitar was, we know that it was finished in April 1994 as it was to be shipped to Kurt the day his body was found. Kurt would have recieved this guitar before his death if it hadn't been for a week long wait for a pint of Dakota Red paint. Having just lost another friend, the guitar was left in it's case in the custom shop.

While Red was being made, Dan Smith ordered two MG69 necks from Scott Zimmerman, because Japan wouldn't ship just one. These necks were requested raw. I was fortunate enough to speak with an individual who broke an NDA. Because of this, I can not expose the individual. However, he claimed that he was informed that after Larry left Fender, Dan had the neck pocket of the red prototype routed to remove Larry's signature and replaced the neck with an MG69 neck. We initially matched the red prototypes neck to an MG 69 neck to a 100% match. We initially believed that this was the neck from that very event, but we were mistaken. Dan did order two necks. It turns out, he used both. The fact that there is an NDA (Non Disclosure Agreement) surrounding the guitar should speak volumes.

Have you ever really stopped and thought about how long it took to build Blue and how long it took to build Red? Because I didn't and it turns out that it's a pretty important detail. I tried to really go into depth in my previous post about the process with Blue. It took 9 months to build. However, Red only took 4 months to build. Red is a different shape and Kurt is no longer just a hop, skip and a jump away, he is now in Europe. A new shape couldn't have been verified, a custom CNC template made, a new shape made in that short of time because it couldn't be done in the original time frame. Larry told me that Kurt never discussed further changes to the shape or that he hated it. Rather, he ordered the red one exactly the same as Blue. Cut from the exact same templates. Red and Blue should be exact twins within sanding tolerances. And yet we have a completely different shape. This implies that there isn't just one Red, there are two.

So what happened to Red 1.0? We don't know. We do know that Fender does not seem to have this guitar in their possession. It exists somewhere.

While I can not prove this 100% and I am absolutely better off not knowing, I am of the opinion that Red 1.0 was victim of a theft after Larry had left the company. The real thief had not been caught with all eyes on Larry. It would have been a prime target, having just been sat to the side, left in it's case to be forgotten. Who wouldn't want to say "I have one of Kurt's guitars, one of only two in existence." What I don't believe the thief had expected was for Fender to be in talks with Courtney Love who gave her blessing for Fender to release the model to the public since that is what Kurt had wanted since the very beginning, to produce an affordable guitar that beginners and pros alike could pick up and play.

Larry was asked about taking part in the production models but ultimately refused. He didn't like that Fender was so eager to capitalize on Kurt's death. Larry and Kurt developed a friendship and Kurt even sent Larry a sweater after the completion of Blue. That isn't the action of a man who hated the guitar. This also wasn't the first instance of Larry refusing to capitalize on the death of a musician. Larry was tasked with building a limited run of SRV strats but refused to do so without the Vaughan family blessing.

When Fender went to retrieve Red, it was gone. It is unknown whether the thief was ever caught, but what would happen next was something rather genius. If they couldn't catch the thief, they could shatter his entire credibility. Without Red 1.0 and with the template also missing, they went back to the cardboard cutouts made by Mark Kendrick and designed a new shape based on an approved and later rejected necked cardboard cutout. This one seems to more closely resemble the Red 2.0 prototype's body shape. They used Larry's Mustang template for the neck pocket, pickup location and hardware location and this would come back to bite them. With Red 2.0 been built around USA specs, the use of Japanese parts suddenly caused problems. Their new pickguard is no longer uniform to the horn and is crudely cut. It also features the pickguard hanging over the round over radius, a feature that is clearly missing from Larry's work on Blue. The control plate and the vibrato plate do not fit the pickguard, nor does the neck heel. It also suddenly features 5 screws on the hump instead of 3. Some of the screws seem to be installed at an angle while others seem to be driven too deep. At least a couple screws appear to be a different type of screw head. The guitar features the same right handed Texas Special but now Red 2.0 sports a DiMarzio H3 which was a neck pickup that was made for Fender.

One of the two necks that Dan Smith ordered wound up on Red 2.0 and this is why the neck heel does not align properly. It was wider at the heel and while they got it to fit, you can see that string alignment is wrong.

Upon completion of Red 2.0, Fender sought out every guitar magazine they could and showcased it. If the thief had not been caught, it was at this moment that their credibility was shot and questioned. If anyone knew that thief had stole Red 1.0, the obvious question would be "how could you have stole Kurt's Jagstang when Fender clearly has it in their possession?" Anyone who was buying from this individual had to question whether the guitars they were buying were legitimate or counterfeit. I personally do not believe that Fender ever caught this employee. Either they are still there and have gone legit or they would have left when the gig was up, likely in good graces with the company. As I have previously stated, I am, and by extension so are you, better off not knowing.

I can not 100% prove that Red 1.0 was stolen, but it is fact that there were thefts at Fender around this time and whomever the thief was, they had access to the custom shop. What I can tell you for certain is that Red 1.0 and the CNC templates for the Jagstang prototype have also gone missing. I can also tell you for fact that the Red 2.0 body does not match Blue, not even remotely close enough to say that it came off the same CNC template. Fender did release the Jagstang and they did showcase the Red prototype. It is an incredibly interesting choice of words since Red 1.0 does not match that description. Red 2.0 IS a prototype however. It is a new shape. It is a production model prototype and that is why it features a 1996 Japanese serial number rather than the blank plate that Larry gave the first Red.

When I showed Larry the above mentioned features of Red, he noticed several things wrong with the guitar. He then asked me for a full photo of the guitar and instantly stated that that guitar was all wrong. He even commented that it wasn't the color that he sprayed. He sprayed a dark Dakota Red. The color that was used on Red 2.0 was a custom color. It was the same color that Kurt had requested for his Mustangs. Scott Zimmerman had sent a Japanese color swath to Fender and the owner of Red 2.0, who wished to remain anonymous, comfirmed that he also has this color swath in his possession, given to him by Fender after winning the auction.

I realize that 27 years can do a lot to a memory, but when I interviewed Larry about Blue, I asked him details that at the time, only Amon and I publicly knew and he answered everything. There were a couple small minor details that he couldn't remember very vividly. I sent him a render of Blue that Amon made and he sent me a picture of him holding Blue in return and they were a dead match.

Larry has not steered me wrong. I fully 100% believe him. I am absolutely honored that he trusted me enough to speak with me about it. I learned things just from speaking with him. I learned about the Jagstangs, I learned about Kurt, Clapton and his strats, SRV, Bonnie Raitt and more. I wish he had felt that he could have come forward and told his side of the story a long time ago. As I understand it, Larry and Earnie seemed to have fought about it to the point that there was almost a lawsuit. Larry just let it go and Earnie, Fender and the Nirvana fans have controlled the narrative for 27 years.

I also want to be clear, in no way am I trying to paint Ernie out to be a bad guy here. He is a vast wealth of information too but I have seen him be mistaken more than once. When it comes to the Jagstang, I don't feel like he spent enough time with it. Maybe a month or two at best. Larry spent at total of 13 months with the Jagstangs and physically built them while maintaining contact with Kurt through the process. If you were to ask me who's input I take more seriously in regards to the Jagstang, Earnie or Larry, I'd pick Larry.

Below is a render that Amon made for what would have been the original Red.

Image

I sincerely hope that you've enjoyed the ride and thank you to all who have helped us along the way. Don't let the memory of this guitar die. It deserves more than that, not just from a Nirvana perspective but as a piece of history.

The specs of Red 1.0:
2 piece Alder body
4 ply white pearloid pickguard with slight bevel
Japanese Hardware
Blank neck plate
Dakota Red nitro finish
3 screws on the hump
Right Handed Texas Special (neck)
Custom Seymour Duncan humbucker (Bridge)
250k pots
.047 capacitor
Maple neck
Veneer rosewood fretboard
Pearloid dots, both fret and sides
Vintage fret wire
7.25" radius
1 5/8" nut width
Gotoh tuners
Nitro finish
Thickness to be determined
Larry Brooks signature in neck pocket

Mods made by Dan:
MG69 neck
Removal of signature

Specs of Red 2.0:
2 piece Alder body
4 ply white pearloid pickguard with bevel
Japanese Hardware
Serial number V069200
Custom red color from Japan
5 screws on the hump
Right handed Texas Special (neck)
DiMarzio H3 (bridge)
250k pots
.047 capacitor
Maple neck
Veneer rosewood fretboard
Pearloid dots, both fretboard and side
Vintage fret wire
7.25" radius
1.574" nut width
Gotoh tuners
Extremely moved string tree
Nitro finish
.82 at the first fret*
.91 at the twelveth fret*

*measurments taken from Skystang 3, made by Scott Zimmerman

User avatar
BeeTL
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 626
Joined: Tue Jul 12, 2011 1:24 pm
Contact:

Re: JAG-STANG Prototype - Reverse Engineering

Post by BeeTL » Tue Nov 24, 2020 1:01 pm

So, structurally, the main difference is that Blue 1.0 used a US Custom Shop Competition Mustang neck while Red 1.0 used a regular production Japanese MG69 neck, is that correct?

It's interesting to imagine that Red 2.0 was nothing more than a prop in an elaborate show, and that its auction and sequestration in the hands of a private collector may have been nothing more than the last act in an elaborate, decades-long pageant.

I'm imagining the last scene in Raiders of the Lost Ark:

AcrylicSuperman: Where is Red?
FMIC: I thought we settled that. Red is somewhere very safe.
Amon 7.L: From whom?
AcrylicSuperman: Red is a source of unspeakable power and it has to be researched.
FMIC: And it will be, I assure you, Amon 7.L, AcrylicSuperman. We have top men working on it right now.
Amon 7.L: Who?
FMIC: TOP. MEN.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FRP0MBNoieY
Owner, Lowe Custom Guitars

User avatar
AcrylicSuperman
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 238
Joined: Wed May 23, 2018 3:37 am

Re: JAG-STANG Prototype - Reverse Engineering

Post by AcrylicSuperman » Tue Nov 24, 2020 1:22 pm

BeeTL wrote:
Tue Nov 24, 2020 1:01 pm
So, structurally, the main difference is that Blue 1.0 used a US Custom Shop Competition Mustang neck while Red 1.0 used a regular production Japanese MG69 neck, is that correct?

It's interesting to imagine that Red 2.0 was nothing more than a prop in an elaborate show, and that its auction and sequestration in the hands of a private collector may have been nothing more than the last act in an elaborate, decades-long pageant.

I'm imagining the last scene in Raiders of the Lost Ark.

OSG: Where is Red?
FMIC: I thought we settled that. Red is somewhere very safe.
OSG: From whom?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FRP0MBNoieY
Blue and Red 1.0 initially featured the exact same neck, Larry's 69 competition. The original Red 1.0 neck was removed and replaced with an MG69 neck from Japan as a means to erase Larry's involment, who was wrongfully considered a disgraced employee at the time. The second MG69 neck wound up on Red 2.0.

No idea where Red 1.0 wound up, the template or the original neck.

But Red 1.0 is definitely that exact Raiders moment.

A detail I didn't post about but how I specifically think it occurred, Larry told me that the cases were made by G&G and that he didn't remember having to have anything custom made, meaning that the cases were in house. So if they fit in an existing case, I believe the thief put the guitar in a different case, leaving the case marked for Kurt behind. I think Fender believed they had it the entire time and found out that they didn't after making deals. Fender was trying to recover from the reputation that CBS left behind. Losing Kurt Cobain's guitar would have definitely tarnished it.

User avatar
Amon 7.L
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 613
Joined: Sun Aug 28, 2011 5:45 am

Re: JAG-STANG Prototype - Reverse Engineering

Post by Amon 7.L » Tue Nov 24, 2020 1:34 pm

BeeTL wrote:
Tue Nov 24, 2020 1:01 pm
So, structurally, the main difference is that Blue 1.0 used a US Custom Shop Competition Mustang neck while Red 1.0 used a regular production Japanese MG69 neck, is that correct?
Wrong.
At the beginning: Blue 1.0 and Red. 1.0 were exact twins.
The MG 69 magic came later on as described

User avatar
jagstanger
PAT PEND
PAT PEND
Posts: 27
Joined: Thu Nov 12, 2020 2:01 am

Re: JAG-STANG Prototype - Reverse Engineering

Post by jagstanger » Tue Nov 24, 2020 1:43 pm

Wow. That is one interesting story of a guitar and it’s making. Crazy, interesting, thrilling and amazing.

I know you guys had a lot of work to do to investigate all this. And thanks so much for sharing it with us. I also think, this was a lot of fun for you and you had the opportunity to talk to some really interesting people and listen to great stories.

So one easy question. You said, the bridge pick up was a custom 59 and that it is one, that man can buy today from Seymour Duncan. And to have it like Kurt, it needs to be out of the custom shop. So what’s the pick up? Is it a regular 59, that you can buy on the SD page? Cause it’s possible to get it in white there, as it was in blue. Or is it another one?

Really good to get that infos about the pick up, cause I was just shy of buying a white JB for ma Jag Stang. ;)
Just because you're paranoid, don't mean they're not after you!

User avatar
AcrylicSuperman
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 238
Joined: Wed May 23, 2018 3:37 am

Re: JAG-STANG Prototype - Reverse Engineering

Post by AcrylicSuperman » Tue Nov 24, 2020 1:54 pm

jagstanger wrote:
Tue Nov 24, 2020 1:43 pm
Wow. That is one interesting story of a guitar and it’s making. Crazy, interesting, thrilling and amazing.

I know you guys had a lot of work to do to investigate all this. And thanks so much for sharing it with us. I also think, this was a lot of fun for you and you had the opportunity to talk to some really interesting people and listen to great stories.

So one easy question. You said, the bridge pick up was a custom 59 and that it is one, that man can buy today from Seymour Duncan. And to have it like Kurt, it needs to be out of the custom shop. So what’s the pick up? Is it a regular 59, that you can buy on the SD page? Cause it’s possible to get it in white there, as it was in blue. Or is it another one?

Really good to get that infos about the pick up, cause I was just shy of buying a white JB for ma Jag Stang. ;)
As far as I know right now, it is a slightly modified 59 model. You can pickup a regular 59 right now and pop it in a Jagstang, and you'll basically get his bridge humbucker tone. If you want it to look exactly like his and you want it correct down to every detail, you can only get it through the custom shop. There are some differences between stock and Kurt's, most of which are cosmetic, but it does feature one distinct difference. And when I get the specs for both of those custom pickups, I'll tell you exactly what the differences are.

If you want his neck pickup tone, and you are right handed, you'll need to route the neck pickup slot to put the Texas Special in upside down to mimic the mismatched pole pieces as the Texas Special is only made right handed.

User avatar
dc
Expat
Expat
Posts: 2120
Joined: Sun Oct 08, 2006 9:57 pm
Location: seattle

Re: JAG-STANG Prototype - Reverse Engineering

Post by dc » Tue Nov 24, 2020 3:49 pm

8)

this whole thing's mind blowing -- best thread ever on OSG in my estimation. you guys are awesome.

I'm still processing this whole thing, but two questions for clarification if i can:

-- could Fender do a production model "true to Blue" with what they still have, or would they have to borrow the original from Peter Buck and create a new template?

-- is there any record of the serial numbers of the four lefty Mustangs that were purchased from Fender Japan but never delivered in time, then were just sold at retail? imagine that ... four people out there have 69 RI Mustangs that Cobain bought but never saw - :derp:
can almost hear rollercoasters / see sailboats in the sea

User avatar
Veitchy
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 1002
Joined: Sun Jun 12, 2011 7:12 am
Location: Robe, South Australia

Re: JAG-STANG Prototype - Reverse Engineering

Post by Veitchy » Tue Nov 24, 2020 4:58 pm

This had been an incredible read and I applaud both of you for the countless ours of work you've put into this. This is truly a scholarly work. I can only hope this thread gains more traction and the information within starts to propagate outside of this forum.

Incredible stuff.

User avatar
Rgand
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 1170
Joined: Sun Mar 05, 2017 3:55 pm

Re: JAG-STANG Prototype - Reverse Engineering

Post by Rgand » Tue Nov 24, 2020 5:01 pm

What a phenomenal amount of research you did. Outstanding job. This has been an epic journey. Many thanks for all your work.

Post Reply