Friday, December 11, 2009

Matt Schofield's SVL Sixty-One Strat

In my previous post I mentioned Matt Schofield's SVL Sixty-One Strat -- a travel and tour replacement for his beloved and valuable '61 Fender Stratocaster.

Matt has chosen playability and function over merely recreating a purely vintage replica. These are the specs of his SVL Sixty-One, as Matt tells it on his 2007 forum post:

  • One piece alder body, just under 4lbs
  • Yellowed Olympic White, thin nitro finish
  • Brazilian rosewood fingerboard on a flame maple neck, similar in contour to his '61 but slightly thicker at the first few frets
  • Back of the neck is sealed but has no finish, for a bare wood feel
  • Heavily rolled fingerboard edges
  • Jumbo 6100 frets
  • Slightly flatter compound fingerboard radius -- 9 1/2" to 12" at the end of the fingerboard
  • Hardware is vintage style -- Kluson tuners and a Callaham bridge and steel trem block but with graphite Stringsaver saddles
  • Pickups are scatter-wound Amalfitano SP's

(Pic Source and Matt's full forum post are here: Forum)


  1. Great looking strat, but the old '61 strat is more to my liking. Compound radius is a bit of an oddball choice for a bluesman, is it not?
    What's wrong with vintage specs?

  2. I think the newer crop of bluesmen are into lower action and playability. I suspect many of them were former shredders who were used to low action -- just my theory, so don't quote me. The vintage 7 1/4" Fender radius combined with low action tends to cause the string to choke when bent.

  3. The reason behind the compound radius is to provide better bending whilst up the neck, sometimes the old 7,1/2" radius will choke out on big bends even with a higher action, i'm currently liking 7,1/2" - 9,1/2" compound, you dont even notice the difference but it's way cleaner sounding on beneds up the neck.



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