Up for sale is a lightly used 2012 Fender Offset Special in a sunburst finish. This example is in great shape and has had the bridge and tailpiece updated to Mastery parts which is a huge upgrade over the originals. Original parts not included.
2011 saw the launch of the first models in Fender's Pawn Shop Series, and these have recently been joined by another trio of six-strings. These Mexican-made additions maintain this line's mix 'n' match approach, by borrowing and blending parts and design features from various existing instruments to create Fenders that 'could have been' - either officially, or as the result of some serious aftermarket alterations. Here we look at the Offset Special...
Living up to its name, this Fender features an original body outline that combines Strat-style double-cutaway horns with a significantly sloping waist and lower bouts borrowed from the Jazzmaster.
The bolt-on neck plays it straight, but construction is one-piece maple, complete with an integral fingerboard. The latter is lightly radius'd, gloss lacquered and accommodates 21 frets spread over Fender's standard 648mm (25.5-inch) scale.
As well as its all-new sleekly contoured shape, the alder body incorporates a single long f-hole. This confirms the semi-solid construction, which helps keep overall mass to a meagre 3kg.
The review guitar's nicely applied Shell Pink polyester finish could be considered cool or a mite twee, depending on personal taste, but it effectively contrasts the Offset Special's cream plastic and chromed metal parts.
Pickups are a pair of JZHB humbuckers rather than normal Jazzmaster single coils. Size-wise, they look the same as the latter, and are also direct-mounted to the body (being installed in neatly executed cavities), but screw- type polepieces confirm there's something different under the large cream covers.
Circuitry is simple, with a three-way selector switch sitting below master volume and tone pots topped by cream, vintage-style Fender amp knobs to match the pickups. These controls are positioned quite a way up the body, putting them at more risk of being knocked during overly enthusiastic strumming.
The hardware appointments are completed by the same bridge and vibrato tailpiece found on the Jaguarillo. However, for whatever reason, the Offset Special's screw-in vibrato arm is a much tighter fit, providing a more positive feel, and usefully staying put in any position.Comes with gig bag and a pro setup by our in house tech.