My guitar collection - G&L


This gorgeous G&L has a 2-piece swamp ash body in Candy Apple Red (CAR), Leo Fender’s favorite finish, single-ply black plastic pickguard, rare Dual-Fulcrum Vibrato (DFV), hard-rock maple neck with 7½” rosewood fingerboard, pearloid markers, 1⅝” nut, and Sperzel Locking tuning machines. Here 2 single-coil Magnetic Field Design (MFD) pickups in the neck and middle positions, the S-500 variant most commonly found on any ASAT III including e.g. this pre-BBE ASAT III w/maple board, are combined with a (HG-2) GHB humbucker in the bridge. When reading the caption for Jeff Byrd’s current ASAT III HSS, it states that Paul Bechtoldt, author of “G&L: Leo’s Legacy”, has recorded the existence of about 5 ASAT III’s with this configuration. But no such explicit statement appears in his book in my possession; the ASAT III is not discussed at all. More likely, the production number can be traced back to the logs still in the possession of BBE Sound, Inc. and/or Dale Hyatt’s original (and more correct) copy now with an unknown owner. Any pre-BBE ASAT III is a Rarebird in the Guitars by Leo (GbL) Registry. Beyond this guitar and G028953 (see next guitar), only few other ASAT III HSS guitars are registered: S/N G023292, with an even rarer HG-2R “Angled Offset” bridge humbucker, G025282, G027871, and G028824. A seventh HSS entry, S/N G033915, has a replacement Seymour Duncan bridge humbucker and does not really count.


ASAT III HSS w/Dual-Fulcrum Vibrato

The story behind this guitar


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Previously owned by Greg Gagliano, and featured on his website, I had been lusting for this guitar ever since Atomic Music in Beltsville, MD listed it on several online auction sites sometime during 2019. It took literally years before a deal was struck. I guess buying that beautifully aged Blonde ASAT w/#5 neck from them about a month earlier might have helped. This guitar is not just unique due ti its HSS configurations. Two other reasons add to the magic: the presence of a DFV and the CAR finish. Only 7 are registered with a vibrato, one even with the rarer (2nd generation) Leo Fender Vibrato. In the Registry, this guitar shares its hardware configuration only with S/N G028824. The CAR finish was more or less discontinued after 1984 before making a reappearance in 1988-1989, although used on only few instruments during that period. Ever since 1992, i.e. in the BBE-era, the color is available a the standard Candy Apple Red Metallic finish. In agreement with the age of the guitar, it still has the Broadcaster wiring harness, demonstrating the specific pickup configuration is of no concern. The guitar sounds great. The single-coils have that warmth to them and a very Strat-like tone. And the bridge humbucker is bitching with lots of sparkle and high end, just without noise. Great stuff.

The story behind this guitar



SEP 29 1989, marked ’10/3’

MAR 30 1989

D’Addario EXL120 Nickel Wound Super Light (9-42)