Fender USA has just released some FSR Roasted Ash versions of the American Standard Stratocaster, Telecaster and Precision Bass. These models are already showing up at various dealerships around Europe, and featire roasted ash bodies and roasted maple necks. Apart from the retro look, do roasted woods offer any tonal benefits?
Everyone loves a good roast, whether it is a coffee bean or a Sunday lunch and so, it would appear, do Fender USA. These new FSR versions of the ’56 Strat, ’52 Tele and ’58 P-Bass come with roasted ash bodies and maple necks. Roasting ‘tone’ woods supposedly helps remove any moisture from the timber. As a by-product it also gives the wood a rather pleasant, dark, caramelised look as well. Each guitar has a very light finish to seal the wood and so I can imagine will feel great to play. They all come with a tweed vintage-style case included in the price as well.
These models are part of a limited run and it would appear Fender are testing the water to see what woods they can use for the future. As we all know, CITES regulations are having a huge impact on the woods available to builders for guitar construction going forwards.
Aesthetically, I think these models all look very good, smacking somewhat of rosewood in appearance. But they’re lighter, avoid CITES regulations and paperwork for crossing borders while also bringing some tonal benefits.
I can imagine that these guitars will be nice and light, and hopefully tonally rich. They certainly look it. As yet, there is no ‘official’ Fender web page for any of these models, but I have found them listed over at Thomann where there is some more detailed information on specifications.
- FSR Limited Edition Roasted Ash ’56 Stratocaster GBP 1,799,
- ’52 Telecaster GBP 1,659
- ’58 Precision Bass GBP 1,999
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