Developed by Seth Lover, who joined Fender in 1971, the “cunife” pickup features a two-coil humbucking design that uses 12 cunife screws connected on the bottom by a steel plate. Cunife is an alloy named for its three constituent metals—copper (Cu), nickel (Ni) and iron (Fe)—and in instrument pickups it produces a distinctive “hi fidelity” sound with rich bass and clear treble, and they never lose their attack or definition when pushed. We used samples of the original magnets to develop these pickups over a two-year period, and we’ve brought the material back exactly as it was 40 years ago. The “Blackguard Tele” has been and still is to this day our most popular guitar, and for good reason. The Limited Edition Cunife Blackguard Tele Heavy Relic combines elements of the classic Blackguard Tele with custom features including the cunife neck pickup and a Bigsby B-5 bridge and tailpiece making for a tantalizing combination that would inspire any player.
The guitar features a two-piece select ash body, one-piece tinted rift-sawn maple neck with 11/’56 off-center “V” back-shape, and 9.5”-radius fingerboard with 21 narrow tall frets. Hand-wound ’50-’51 Blackguard Tele (bridge) and wide-range cunife (neck) pickups feature three-way switching and Dual Stack HS Tele wiring. Additional features include a single-ply black phenolic pickguard, Bigsby B-5 bridge and tailpiece for classic vibrato tone, vintage-style tuners, bone nut and disk string tree. Also includes deluxe hardshell case, strap and certificate of authenticity.