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For decades, the G&L S-500 has been the go-to for a classic design with added versatility and a bold sound thanks to the MFD pickups, Passive-Treble-Bass tone circuit and expander switch. These enhancements give the S-500 levels of grit, energy and sophistication that other, similar guitars just can't reach.
The new CLF Research S-500 pauses to consider its heritage and the history that unfolded on Fender Avenue in the late 1970's. It's sort of a retro-futurist dream, imaging Leo Fender's late '70s Magnetic Field Design pickup technology and Dual Fulcrum vibrato system packaged on a model that could have predated the earliest G&L guitars produced in 1980. For the journey back in time, John R. McLaren has substantially modified the pickups from the current production S-500 spec, including the coil bobbin aperture, length of pole pieces, wire turns and more. John sought to create a softer, sparklier sound without losing the sense of smoothness and strength expected from an S-500.
Dave McLaren's #Project1979s500 is the prototype for this model, with its development shared with followers of the CLF Research Pages on Instagram and Facebook. Interaction with the fans inspired Dave to draw together functional and styling elements prepared at CLF Research in the late '70s and '80s, including a 3-ply black pickguard and beautiful machined CLF knobs. Even the headstock is based on the original G&L design, modified to fit Kluson tuners and sporting a '70s-flavored "go faster" logo.