My restoration project needs help

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Post by BarelyThere on Wed Jul 31, 2019 2:00 pm

Hey Whats Up!


i'm new here stumbled across this site a lot looking for info so i signed up.


So i have a westone guitar that i would like to fix up and i was hoping you kind folks in this forum could help me with a few things.


firstly, to help me find more detailed info, could anybody identify what i actually have? (besides a lot of work to do)


My restoration project needs help Img_2015

[url=https://servimg.com/view/20096339/9]My restoration project needs help Img_2018My restoration project needs help Img_2014[/url]My restoration project needs help Img_2013

My restoration project needs help Img_2017My restoration project needs help Img_2016


Second I have scoured the internet looking for string lock plates and bolts with the angle cut in them for this bendmaster nut (best I can tell it is) and can't find anything... does anyone know where else i should look or some keywords i may be missing in my searches? alternatively can i make these or alter the square ones from a different nut like a F.R. nut?


third I want to rewire the old girl / may need new pickups, im handy with the soldering iron and can put things together if i have the correct parts, but i don't really know technical info like gauge/type of wire i should use or any don't use these capacitors switches pots rules. (I don't have anywhere near me to buy these things or talk with anyone knowledgeable.) also can i use any single coil pickup / humbucker as replacements without having to alter the body cavities? Like would “Golden Age Lipstick Pickups”/humbucker on the stewmac website fit? 


I think i'm just short of some of the correct terms and phrasing to find some of the info I need. Everything only ever says it fits gibson or fender or it is generically for an electric. If i had a big ol’ pickguard trust me i’d just buy stuff and make it fit lol but i don't want to have to drill out or alter anymore than i have too.


but all that and now the good part... the story…


so my friend in high school back in 2000 had this old guitar in the corner of his room the whole time i knew him and i asked him what was up with it. he said he found it in his brother's abandoned house a few years earlier and took it home to work on it. the headstock cracked from the high E tuner straight down he finished breaking it and glued it back together. but other than that he hadn't done anything else with it and he said i could have it if i wanted. so i took it home to see what i could do. i fixed a couple wires that came apart on the inside and boom i had a guitar that worked... but never stayed in tune due to no string locks. so i bent a hanger and placed it in the back and i "fixed"(pun intended) the bridge. it worked it was fine i had another guitar anyway but then one day i picked it up and the wiring must of been bad still because it no longer worked. so i tried to look it over again and the young highschool me gave up and even misplaced a couple pieces (the back cover and the output jack plate)
I put it in a closet moved a few times putting it in a closet every time until a couple weeks ago.


I've been re-bitten by the music bug and have been buying and fixing instruments left and right. but this westone has always been my "when i have time and space" project and i'm finally there. nothings more exciting than the idea of getting this guitar up running and customized.
over the years she's gotten dirty. I gave her a good cleaning and have been treating the fretboard with lemon oil i have a plan of the final product which is mainly in just looks ... i'm not a picky person when it comes to sound so the pickups and the various pots and such giving me a "blank" tone doesn't matter to me...that'll come in time. I just want to get her working again asap... and if i can reuse these old rusty pickups then that's what I'ma do and upgrade as I see fit, until it fits like a glove.


I look forward to seeing what you guys have to say and can't wait to get moving on this project.


"final"* goal:
original bendmaster bridge and locking nut
original pickups (if possible)
super strat wiring  (fill in the switch hole and add 3 toggles)
green metal knobs
comic book collage face on a black guitar body


*is it ever really final?




bonus question what in the world is the metal thing on the back of the head stock for?
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Post by corsair on Wed Jul 31, 2019 4:29 pm

Your last question first... no, it's never *final*!! :-D

You won't find those lock plates on the open market; they were are proprietary item and the Matsumoku factory closed its' doors in 1987. 

However.... 
PM me your postal address and I'll get a set of the lockplates to you ASAP.. easy peasy. Cool  Do bear in mind that you will need to fabricate 3 1mm thick 'washers' that go underneath the strings as they cross the locking plate; I use metal strapping from shipping pallets. What they do is stop the lockplates guillotining your strings when you nip them up!
Pretty sure most pickups will fit in the holes; I've used Tonerider and Kent Armstrongs in my projects with no dramas... your ruler is your friend! Do the pickups in the guitar work? If so, what are they? That h/b may well be an MMK45 which are stock, and quite highly regarded; they are a Japanese clone of the early DiMarzio Super Distortion pickup. Matsumoku s/c are generally pretty good, too... that said, swapping pickups in and out is no major, though I don't know if lipsticks will fit in there without modification.

The wee thing on the rear of the headstock is a clamp for the OEM Allen keys which were held in by a pair of thumbscrews....

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Post by corsair on Wed Jul 31, 2019 8:32 pm

The guitar is probably a Spectrum III, XA1330...

http://www.westoneguitars.net/guitars/spectrum-series/spectrum-iii/

... in which you don't have an MMK45 in the bridge! Sad

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Post by Barry on Wed Jul 31, 2019 8:54 pm

Hello barelythere and welcome.

I have been looking through the info on our website and the best I can determine on a quick scour is that your guitar is likely one of the Corsair models, although which one I don't know, or as our Corsair says It could also be a Spectrum Series.  geek

Your serial number would indicate 1987 which was a confusing time for production. Matsumoku went out of business in February of that year and some production continued in Korea. In the process, some model lines got scrambled a bit and old Japanese stock was mixed with new Korean goods. So who knows?

Pickups are a toss up, but  there's no crime in swapping them out if you don't like them.

Whatever  you decide on should work out nicely, you're building on "good bones". Please document your resto for us. We just love to see an old Westie live again!

Just lose those stickers! Mad

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Post by corsair on Thu Aug 01, 2019 12:47 am

Barry wrote: or as our Corsair says It could also be a Spectrum Series.  geek

... pretty sure it's an XA1330; the postiton and style of the pickup selector and the normal orientation of the headstock are the clinchers, I reckon!! Very Happy

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Post by Barry on Thu Aug 01, 2019 9:47 am

Yep, Spectrum XA1330 it is then. Wink

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Post by BarelyThere on Sat Aug 17, 2019 11:55 am

thank you peeps for for looking into it. you all replied fast now i feel bad. ive been bogged down this month but thank you corsair ill PM you soon. and thanks barry ...i'm losing the stickers for sure. i don't know if the pickups are good or not they worked years ago but the wiring on this one is shot and looks like a rat nest of wires a couple aren't attached its bad.... also the pickups are a little rusty on the poles so i need to find i way to clean rust off magnetized metal..yay  Neutral

the allen key thing is genius lol and i noticed it in the spectrum pictures i looked at on the site. 

do you all know if the output jack plate can be replaced with any old "gibson" jack plate? mine is MIA over the decade, but from the pictures of replacements they look too flat.

again thank you all and i will document the whole thing the posts just might have a lot of time between them, i didn't pick this name for fun  Smile


Last edited by BarelyThere on Sat Aug 17, 2019 11:57 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : typo)
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Post by corsair on Sat Aug 17, 2019 5:42 pm

You're welcome, and don't worry about gaps between posts - we understand that life gets in way sometimes!!

Have you got the pickups out? You'll need to measure the output to find out if they're viable; red lead from a multimeter to the white (? - can't remember now!!) and black to the black with the meter set to ohms and you should get a reading if the pickup's good. Not a bad thing to re-do the wiring if it's been mucked around with - this one's quite straight-forward, really. We'll help if you get into strife!!

The output socket plate is just a curved plate with a socket in it, so I guess a Gibbo one would fit!?

Looking forward to the journey, mate....

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Post by junkmale on Sun Aug 18, 2019 6:05 am

The metal thing on the back of the headstock its to hold the allen keys for adjustment of the bridge and nut.
You will need 24mm diameter  500k logarithmic potentiometers (Alpha brand). Use 0.02uF polysyrene capacitors. The wire size/thickness is not important - just use black for ground and red for live. A nice hot soldering iron is required, especially for soldering to the back of pots. I can recommend the MMK45 pickups, if you can find them. Or Ironstone, which are made in the UK

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Post by Electra 110VW Owner on Sun Aug 18, 2019 12:06 pm

My restoration project needs help Untitl12

Yep its a Spectrum Spectrum XA1330BK for Black; I have 3 Different Spectrums / Mag V Pickups / Alpha Pots .. 

The 86-88 Spectrum Series were through Alvarez Guitars

The Allen Wrench Holder on Back of the neck holds Metric Allen Wrenches a 3mm for the Nut and Smaller one for the Saddles on the Tremolo for Intonation.

1 Mag V -1 for the Neck and Middle Single Coil Pickups
1 Mag V -2 for the Bridge

Since you got the Electronics Id just get some Switch Contact Cleaner and spray the Pots... Keep it Original the Presence Control for the Mag Pickups worked great like a Passive Tone / Treble Boost worked excellent.

Clean it up also you can get the stickers off gently try to peal them and use a very light amount of Lighter Fluid on a Soft Cotton Cloth do small spots at a time it will not harm the finish but can be a long process and for a few times a touch messy but will clean up then when done use some Maguires Car Wax / Polish will look nice...

These Babies are par with a Jackson of the same Era same Gotoh Tuners, Wood, and Paint.

The Lock Nuts were not Standard usually the Vintage Kahler Nuts 43mm worked well as a Replacement.
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Post by Electra 110VW Owner on Sun Aug 18, 2019 12:45 pm

The Jackplate is std 4 Screw Metal Curved

Replacing the Behind Nut Locknuts for a Spectrum best
alternative and style...Click the Link Great Replacement Below
this is on Ebay... They install easy and work perfectly...
Great Replacement for the Locknuts for the Spectrums

Truthfully as I mentioned the Pickups and Electronics are Suffice and sound great. Clean the Pots with Electronics Switch Cleaner Spray. A few light Sprays and working the pots back and forward gently work great.

The Neck Plates are only same size as a Aria nothing wrong with what you got in Photos.

Also the Guitar is not a Corsair its an Spectrum III My restoration project needs help Spectr10My restoration project needs help 30


Last edited by Electra 110VW Owner on Sun Aug 18, 2019 12:48 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Updated info and fixed typo)
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Post by corsair on Sun Aug 18, 2019 3:56 pm

You know, chaps, we'd already established what it is and what the thing on the headstock does...

That Kahler replacement you linked is for a locking nut; these guitars have a behind the nut stringlock, so that's a fairly major change if you're not familiar with luthiery, eh! The Bendmaster stringlock works well enough if not monstered....but Kahler do still make a behind the nut string-lock if you need such a device.

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Post by Electra 110VW Owner on Sun Aug 18, 2019 4:16 pm

This is the Wiring in my Spectrum III Chrome Yellow Limited Edition but same Wiring that's used in your's. 

I"d use these Parts if you can because of the Unique Tone they provide your Pickups. The Red Wires are the Pickup Hots and the first Lug Closest to the Vol is Bridge, Middle, Neck and Output to the Volume Pot.

These were wired with a Treble Bleed on The Volume, a Presence and Tone Boost all Passive and work incredible. The only thing I hated was the 5 Way Switch on these Guitars because They would wear out but only replace it if you have to.

The Two Tone Controls have 3 Caps and 2 Transformer Coils that alter the Resistance balancing the Bass, Mid, and Treble range of your Pickups.

The Pickups are about 15k on the Bridge, Which a Seymour Duncan JB would be Perfect as I got in my Number 2 Spectrum III Chrome Yellow with the Stock Switches and Wiring of the Westone.

If I did not have my parts packed since my Stroke I'd have an Original Bridge Pickup Mag Series Pickup.  I think the Heavy Metal Strats used them as well from Fender.

My restoration project needs help Wiring10
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Post by Electra 110VW Owner on Sun Aug 18, 2019 4:29 pm

corsair wrote:You know, chaps, we'd already established what it is and what the thing on the headstock does...

That Kahler replacement you linked is for a locking nut; these guitars have a behind the nut stringlock, so that's a fairly major change if you're not familiar with luthiery, eh! The Bendmaster stringlock works well enough if not monstered....but Kahler do still make a behind the nut string-lock if you need such a device.
You don't need any Luthier Skills to replace that Whole Nut Assembly even though I have over 35 years exp working on Guitars... The one I linked is a behind Nut Style not a Replace the Whole Nut one its a low profile, used them on Peavey Guitars, Westones, Fenders, and Alaverez Electrics. They sit in same place as the Westone behind Regular Nut ones...

You remove the screws holding on the Original Lock Nut Remove it and the align the Kahler one as its same width 43mm and just do new Screw Holes id recommend taping the Drill Bit as a Guide use a touch of wax on the screws and flush tighten butter.I would fill the holes with a drop of wood glue and wood toothpicks great fillers.

BTW on some of the Spectrums they had Kahler Trems so the Replacement was the same used on those models. But get the one as the link goes to and your set...
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Post by corsair on Mon Aug 19, 2019 7:21 am

I still reckon that is a locking nut you've linked to, here's what the current behind the nut stringlocks look like...


My restoration project needs help Image10

... I had one of these locks on a guitar I bought years ago and it worked well; I know some of the Panteras had  Kahler gear and some of the later Korean builds did, too - I've not seen a Matsumoku Spectrum with one.... yet! :-)

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Post by BarelyThere on Mon Aug 19, 2019 7:11 pm

well you all are a big help. ill hopefully get to remove the stickers and re-look at the wires in about 2 weeks. little one has a birthday this week so i don't foresee a chance before then. ill update with pictures when i get to that point. but this is what my wires looked like in my go over the other day...

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Post by Electra 110VW Owner on Mon Aug 19, 2019 8:40 pm

Your Guitar has the same Wiring as my Yellow Spectrum III does since yours is also a Spectrum III.. The image will blow up larger then what you see that I posted. Which is the Jackson Stylist similar body style...

You can find a std 4 screw Jack Plate on Ebay for a few bucks in chrome, You can get you a std Switchcraft 1/4" jack for a few bucks as well...  Bare is Ground The color wire is hot aka center long contact on the Jack.

Wire your rear Tone Switch and you should be back to sound... I will try to post closer of that later for ya so you can match that wiring of that rear tone switch and go over the other wires which appear fine...

Knobs are Std Chrome Speed Knobs you need the Metric Slide on ones.


The Matsumoku Spectrum is the same as the Electra Phoneix X100 series... The slicker Gibson SG kind of looking Guitar I got 2 of them...
Shown Below in 85 the name switched from Electra to Westone...

My restoration project needs help Electr10

Later 80's Matsumoko Spectrum
My restoration project needs help S-l16010


For the Record here is another Behind a Regular Nut Lock Nut you can use thats on Ebay...

Chrome Behind Regular Nut Lock Nut Clock Link



Jackplate with Jack Chrome

Get a couple Tooth Picks break them flush in the holes first then gently screw the plate in diagonally so it gently butts up flush to the body...

Get you a matched Set of Springs for that Tremolo
Standard Universal Tremolo Springs... 

Also with a 2 Stud Tremolo System you need to make sure you string it properly Low E High E  Low A High B Low D High G this keeps the tremolo Level have the fine tuner screws on the tremolo in the middle height. Once its in tune then Lock the Nut Gently till tight dont need too over do it...

Those with the Plates the other person mentioned and you got a nice Classic Limited Edition Spectrum III Westone Guitar...









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Post by BarelyThere on Thu Aug 22, 2019 4:39 pm

Quick update I grabbed myulti meter set it to 200k ohm check and the neck pickup read 5.0 and the mid and h/b came back with no readings... I'm going to recheck during a tear down but pretty sure the mid one is dead... I'm going to re read all your guys posts regarding pickups before I search for some ....again thanks for your help all...
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Post by Electra 110VW Owner on Thu Aug 22, 2019 5:23 pm

BarelyThere wrote:Quick update I grabbed myulti meter set it to 200k ohm check and the neck pickup read 5.0  and the mid and h/b came back with no readings... I'm going to recheck during a tear down but pretty sure the mid one is dead... I'm going to re read all your guys posts regarding pickups before I search for some ....again thanks for your help all...
200K is why too high try 20 or 50k depending on your meter....

Also dont measure with the circuit only check the Pickup Wires Direct the Caps, Pots will give you off reading.
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Post by Barry on Thu Aug 22, 2019 11:40 pm

Electra is correct, 20K would be the proper setting. Wink 

See this post  for a quick 'n dirty way to measure your pickups without having to remove them or poke about in the control cavity.

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Post by knicelyr on Wed Aug 28, 2019 10:07 am




For the Record here is another Behind a Regular Nut Lock Nut you can use thats on Ebay...

Chrome Behind Regular Nut Lock Nut Clock Link



Just a note, I am working on casting an original behind the nut string lock...
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