Saga Strat - (partial) kit build

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Morecowbell
Posts: 284
Joined: Thu Feb 21, 2019 10:51 am
Location: Fishers, IN

Saga Strat - (partial) kit build

Post by Morecowbell »

My wife left me unsupervised one weekend this fall and this followed me home: a Saga Strat kit that had been returned minus all the hardware. These kits get pretty good reviews so for $30 I thought it would be fun to mess around with and maybe learn a few things.
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First I ordered the missing hardware, and this took a few tries to get things correct and complete.
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"Facts seldom sway an opinion." - John Hall
"The difference between theory and practice is that in theory there is no difference." - Van de Snepscheut
Morecowbell
Posts: 284
Joined: Thu Feb 21, 2019 10:51 am
Location: Fishers, IN

Re: Saga Strat - (partial) kit build

Post by Morecowbell »

The body was next – it was pretty good but had a few nice lumps in it.
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The color choice was tricky but for some reason I have a strange affinity for golden yellow, so after a bit of circling decided on the lovely Rustoleum Sunset Yellow. Most things that I finish only reveal themselves fully after the first few coats so I was prepared for this.
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I was however, unprepared for the wrinkling I got from the Rustoleum upon re-coating according to their instructions! Some quick research revealed this to be a common problem with their new formulation so I made a quick switch to Krylon, which solved the problem. After the fact I realized the wrinkling might have been used to advantage for a relic’d look, lol! But my head was elsewhere at the time.

A few coats gave me a 10 foot finish, perfect for my purposes.
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"Facts seldom sway an opinion." - John Hall
"The difference between theory and practice is that in theory there is no difference." - Van de Snepscheut
Morecowbell
Posts: 284
Joined: Thu Feb 21, 2019 10:51 am
Location: Fishers, IN

Re: Saga Strat - (partial) kit build

Post by Morecowbell »

I decided to go with the early Stratocaster headstock profile, since I like the design better than the newer version.
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The neck was straight but the frets were pretty wonky, they needed a pretty good leveling, crowning and polishing.
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After cutting and sanding the headstock profile I French polished the neck with orange shellac, hoping it would give me that great vintage color on the maple....
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"Facts seldom sway an opinion." - John Hall
"The difference between theory and practice is that in theory there is no difference." - Van de Snepscheut
Morecowbell
Posts: 284
Joined: Thu Feb 21, 2019 10:51 am
Location: Fishers, IN

Re: Saga Strat - (partial) kit build

Post by Morecowbell »

I started referring to it as my “Claycaster” and that led to decal research which led to making my own water slide decals for the headstock.


I had some fun with the decals, copying the original spaghetti logo and then extrapolating to create my own “brand”
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"Facts seldom sway an opinion." - John Hall
"The difference between theory and practice is that in theory there is no difference." - Van de Snepscheut
Morecowbell
Posts: 284
Joined: Thu Feb 21, 2019 10:51 am
Location: Fishers, IN

Re: Saga Strat - (partial) kit build

Post by Morecowbell »

Assembly was pretty straightforward. The tuners needed some filing to fit, the neck needed a 1/64” shim and the nut needed to be cut down.
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The action is still a bit high and it needs to be intonated, but TTBH it sounds good - much better than I expected from the low end ceramic pickups. The fit and finish on the kit was pretty medium but overall a fun project with a surprisingly positive end result - I'm having a blast with it!
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"Facts seldom sway an opinion." - John Hall
"The difference between theory and practice is that in theory there is no difference." - Van de Snepscheut
TEETERFAN
Posts: 356
Joined: Fri Sep 07, 2018 12:43 pm
Location: Kansas City, MO

Re: Saga Strat - (partial) kit build

Post by TEETERFAN »

Thanks for posting your project. Looks like you achieved your goals and came up with a fun guitar!
Kevin Doty
Kansas City
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