Other Guitars

Dad’s 70’s Fender Starcaster


Well I've brought Dad's guitars home and am finding homes for them. (I'm keeping a couple).

One interesting one is a 70's Starcaster -- that short-lived Fender experiment with a semi-hollow and humbuckers. It's a solid axe, pretty cool, but I've got no use for it -- plus they're worth some bucks.

Other than Google, anybody in our group have a particular insight into this thing value-wise?

(I may post Dad's Joe Pass Epi and couple of others in the Sales Dept here but haven't intended to post this Fender there, as there are a couple of folks waiting for me to name a price. But if you want in on that, feel free to send me a note.)


There a several on Reverb for over $3k


That was their attempt at piece of the 335 market. Neither fish nor fowl,& was reissued like everything they have ever done, and IMO not a penny over $2K


Fantastic pickups, though.


Same buckers as Tele Custom and Deluxe?


Same buckers as Tele Custom and Deluxe?

– DCBirdMan

Yes! Seth Lover Wide Range.


You might want to check a recent copy of the Vintage Guitar price guide.

My out-of-date copy lists $3,100 to $3,900 for a sunburst version in excellent condition.


I’ve never seen one of these before. Nice looking guitar. What’s the extra knob used for?


Appreciate the comments.

If I recall correctly, it is a master volume. I am seeing some selling prices out there that are intriguing. This one has some checking in the finish but is quite clean, so it will be interesting.


Because they used to be relatively cheap some indie guitarists started using them. Now they are no longer cheap.

The vintage guitar price guide gives dealer's asking prices; a more accurate guide would be completed sales on ebay or the price guide feature on Reverb.com.


I'd love to take that off your hands, but I'm a few thousand short of what those are going for these days.


I have seen only one in the flesh and it was a beautiful guitar but the neck felt like a baseball bat to me. Still, I could have gotten it at a great price and should have done it.


That's very special.

Please tell me you're at least plugging these in and playing them for a bit before letting go of them? You'll never get that chance again.


That is one of my holy grail wish list guitars! They routinely go for over $3K and super nice flamey ones are often priced ~$4.5-5K. Those '70's Seth Lover Wide Range are one of my most my favorite pickups. I want one as bad as anyone could want a guitar, but the price they fetch these days is just too much for me to justify. I shoulda got one 15-20 years ago.



Leo, Cissy Strut and the Starcaster. His axe of choice back in the day.



Oh, I've played them all numerous times. Every time I'd go up to Dad's, we'd sit around and pick. And the guys would come over and we'd have a Johnny Cash-fest or Ventures, etc. Back at Thanksgiving, when I saw him last, we went through every one of them and I polished, tuned, picked a little. We went to the store and brought back a couple of double guitar stands so he could get them off his sofa. When I went up there last weekend, those stands were holding the four he had out. I had my Guild up there at Thanksgiving and, at one sitting, I handed it to Dad and he settled into some really good, slow finger-style that he'd been practicing, in his classic slow swagger. It sounded good...and I mean good. Not fancy or polished...raw and gutsy good. Best I'd heard him play ever. I sat there grinning and told him so. He'd been working on that stuff.

This Fender is pretty cool because it's solid as a rock to play. Low action and solid feeling neck, you can bang away. Dad just thought it was cool, and liked the way it sounded. He didn't know anything about the model or any of that. The finish has got some nice lacquer checking that's just right. Cool guitar. Just nothing I need to keep.


the Starcaster was totally forgotten until Jonny Greenwood of Radiohead started using one back in the 2000s. they were always hard to come by because i don't think many were built (I've never seen one in the wild, and I've been to a LOT of guitar shops!), but now the combination of demand and rarity has run the price up to a level i think is silly, though i understand and share the wide-range humbucker obsession...one of these days I'm going to get some of the reissue PUs that are out there now and make some Telecaster a happy girl. but $4000 for a Starcaster seems to violate the price/value ratio. but hey, if you can get $4k out of it, go for it. money is money. on the other hand, you might well hang onto it for awhile and let it appreciate...they're not going to become less rare, you know.


fun fact: the contours of the custom guitars that Trey Anastasio of Phish plays were based on the Starcaster design, though Trey's guitars have set necks and an archtop-style bridge.

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