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EVH Peavey Custom Shop Wolfgang Guitar Headstocks

The Peavey EVH Custom Shop "was" a group of 4 highly talented craftsman each with their own specialty.  The shop closed to Wolfgang orders in 2004 with the departure of EVH but has re-opened for the HP Special in 2005 (Click this link to see a review of the first HP - HP Review).   The Custom Shop operated out of the Leakesville guitar facility, which was closed in April, 2003.  It opened in January of 2002.  The EVH Custom Shop was moved to Peavey's main facility in Meridian, MS in May of 2003 along with the rest of guitar production.   I originally had no idea the Custom Shop was a such a small group.  During the slightly more than a year that they operated out of Leakesville, so much time was spent on each guitar that they were only producing an average of little less than one Wolfgang Custom Shop model per day.  Approximately 285 Custom Shop Wolfgangs were produced in Leakesville, of which 92 of these were specific orders and the rest were produced for the Vault or the NAMM show..  The attention to detail really showed in the finished product.  Another 130 specific customer orders were produced in Meridian after mid 2003 and another 70 or so Vault guitars, many of which are not really true Customs as they were using up remaining materials inventory.  Thus, approximately 500 Custom Shop Wolfgangs were built from 2002 through 2004 (220 were specific customer orders).  More than 100 of those have made it to this site thus far and are pictured here.  Again, some of the last 50 were really put together using whatever parts and pieces they had in order to help move the remaining inventory and shouldn't be viewed as the same quality as a prior Custom Shop guitar.  Any Wolfgang where the only upgrade is a rosewood fretboard is technically called a Custom Shop, but most really are not.   EVH didn't want the production guitars to have rosewood fretboards so the only way they could produce them like this was to call them Custom Shop guitars.  While these guitars are not really Custom Shop guitars, the rosewood fretboard is less common.  They only had this option the last 3 years after the Custom shop opened.   For now I would say about 450 real Custom Shop models is a good number.  The Custom Shop models were/are the ultimate rock guitar.  The HP Special model may even go further, but time will tell.

It is my guess that the Custom Shop was conceived and implemented as a way to showcase the best of what Peavey can do with guitars and the Wolfgang.  It is an image builder and a marketing program for the company and not a profit center.  Those are my words, not theirs.  With such a limited production, this just adds to the special nature of this guitar.  In addition to incredible quality, tone and unique configurations, you have a very limited supply.  Many of the guitars produced by the Custom Shop are one of a kind. 

When I started ordering guitars from the Custom Shop I wanted to try everything.  I wanted to try each of the different woods they offered for the body.  I had to try different tops and different configurations.  I am just as excited (maybe more so) when I receive a new guitar from the Shop today or find one in the after market.  There is that great anticipation of opening the case for the first time.  And then plugging it in and firing it up!  Wow!   I also view them as my art collection!

Following is a list of Custom Shop models, along with a description and link to a page for each with pictures.  About 1/3rd of these guitars are mine but as people send me pictures and descriptions of theirs I will create a listing and a page for them and give them credit.  If that person would like to include their e-mail address for questions from others I will include it.

Custom Shop Options -  The Custom Shop would do special things if you asked them to, which I really appreciate.  One was a string through bridge, another was a birdseye maple top.  The others were generally custom top colors, body colors or fretboard inlays.  They also produced some guitars for the NAMM shows and the EVH Vault with some special options such as solid Koa or Korina construction, mahogany neck, special inlays, decorative pick-up rings, Lucite body, etc..  Following was what they let you configure on-line:

After selecting whether to start with a Special, Special Deluxe, Standard or Standard Deluxe, the basic options that anyone could select in building a Custom Shop Wolfgang on-line were; the body wood; top wood; fretboard wood; fretboard inlays; bridge type; hardware color; top color / graphic and matching/standard headstock.  The body wood options were basswood (standard), Alder, Ash or Mahogany.  You could get Koa as a body wood but it wasn't a standard option.   You could get a stop tail bridge or a Floyd Rose Tremolo system (same price for either).  You could choose the hardware color as chrome (standard), gold or black.  The Specials came with the birdseye neck, which was an upgrade from a production special.  For the fretboard you could select Birdseye (standard), Rosewood or Ebony.  For the inlays they had pearl or black dots (standard), EVH Blocks, Tribal Flames, Skulls or if you asked them they would leave the inlays off.  For the top you could select flame maple (standard), quilted maple, Koa or none (solid body construction).  There were about 30 colors to choose from including graphics and a custom graphic option.  I did this with my Luna De Fuego guitar.  I supplied the art and they got it on the guitar with their artist.  And finally you could get a matching headstock, which I always did.  I also love the stop tail bridge, especially with the more exotic woods.  It overall just has a better feel on the action and provides for a little better sustain.  However, sometimes you just got have that trem and so if I only had one Wolfgang it would have a trem.  Fortunately, I have a few to choose from!

Custom Inlays - All of the Custom Shop special inlays were done by Ron Thorn.  You can see Ron's site at: http://www.thornguitars.com/.  I asked Ron if he did any custom inlays for the Wolfgangs beyond the 5 that were available through the Custom Shop standard offering.  This is what he said:  "As far as 'custom' inlays went, I recall one that I inlaid that read 'Les Paul' in pearl in a 50's style font.  That apparently was going to be a gift from EVH to Les.  I never saw it completed.  There were a handful of other ones, such as wolf heads, diamonds, and I think a koa hot-rod flame board....  There were a couple that I did in pin-stripe flames using a silver acrylic for the outside edge of the flames and a black pearloid for the center.... those looked pretty hip."  You should check out Ron's site.  He does some really cool stuff.

  <Click the thumbnail pictures below for a larger image and the links to the left where available for more pictures>

 
124 guitars on 11 pages.   Click to change page »   1 · 2 · 3 · 4 · 5 · 6 · 7 · 8 · 9 · 10 · 11
Korina Custom Standard
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There is one other guitar just like this, but it doesnt have a matching headstock. They both have ebony fretboards and EVH block inlays. Pick-ups all black with black hardware. I bought this at the NAMM 2004 show as did the other person. Until we ran into each other we were both under the impression they only made one. I sent mine back to have a matching headstock done where he took his from the show. (the other one now belongs to Tim Joyce and has since been sent back by Tim for a matching headstock and black hardware change).

See the dedicated page »
Fire Graphic Custom Deluxe
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This fire graphic looks great in certain lighting both dark and bright. The black binding is perfect on this one giving it a look of no binding. An ebony fretboard would have been the way to go but it has a nice rosewood board that still works. The body is basswood. The headstock is the standard black but is OK on this one because it matches the guitar. I normally like to see a matching headstock on a Custom Shop model. This was at the summer NAMM 2004 show.

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Blue Swirl Quilt Special
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One of the last of the Custom Shop Wolfgangs. Very interesting top that is almost electric in the light. It is almost like it is backlit. Rosewood fretboard.

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Natural Flame Special Deluxe
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This guitar is a heavy mahogany body and has a real natural beauty to it. The natural binding really looks nice. The guitar has a great feel to it and makes me wish and I bought a few more specials early on. Like almost all of the Custom Shop guitars it plays great and is another work of art.

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Solid Koa Special
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This is an exceptional guitar. It was built for the January 2003 NAMM show and displayed there. The body is a solid piece of very pretty Koa with a mahogany neck and rosewood fretboard. It has a natural hand rubbed oil finish. It has a great feel and a nice tone to go with it.

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Ocean Blue Custom Quilt
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I heard about this guitar right after it was built for the summer NAMM show in 2004 and I bought it sight unseen. It was actually built in Leakesville and went into storage, where upon it was rediscovered for the show. It seemed to disappear for awhile after NAMM so I was afraid it got sold to someone else, but one day it appeared. The different shades of blue (with brown) in the quilt that are shown in the pictures is actually how it looks. This guitar turned out very unique and is a favorite of almost everyone who has seen it in person. It is definitely one for the art collection.

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Tiger Eye Quilt Top - Alder Body
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The alder body on this guitar gives it a warm tone and is the closest of any of the woods to the standard Wolfgang sound. The Tiger Eye quilt top is Superb on this guitar. The back is a dark red color, which the custom shop chose. I like it!

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Dark Cherry-burst Quilt Top - ST
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The black binding and ebony fretboard give this guitar a great and unique look. There is an optical illusion that it is thicker than a regular Wolfgang due to the monochromatic look from the side. The body is Ash which gives the guitar a different and unique tone. The look of this guitar is the favorite of many people who see my guitars in person.

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Dark Cherryburst Flame Top
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This one now belongs to Robbie Staples of Canada. Another top that the light just makes it come alive. The black binding really works on this one and it has an exceptional top. With the black binding and the black outer burst the headstock in black works well.

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Koa Top - Finished - ST
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This is the first Custom Shop order ever taken and delivered. This Koa top guitar is one of kind. It has a heavy Mahogany body giving it a weight similar to a Les Paul. The beauty of the wood up close is stunning. Of all my Wolfgangs this one has the tone that is furthest from a standard Wolfgang. It has an incredible clean tone.

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Koa Top - Unfinished - ST
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This is one of my personal favorites. There is no clear coat on this guitar. It is natural wood with a hand rubbed oil finish. The birdseye in the neck matches the guitar. The beauty of the wood is stunning. The body is a light mahogany and the tone is my favorite of all the guitars I have. Even the removable covers on the back are made out of mahogany to match the body. This guitar feels great in your hands!

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Harvestburst Stop Tail
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This is a harvestburst quilt top with a mahogany body and gold hardware. It looks a lot different in the direct natural light vs. indoors in darker light. Both looks are good but they are different. Nice feeling neck, but that just about applies to all the Custom Shop guitars I have come in contact with. Transparent dark red finish on the mahogany body, abalone dot inlays on the fretboard and a matching headstock. It now belongs to Robert Schwab.

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124 guitars on 11 pages.   Click to change page »   1 · 2 · 3 · 4 · 5 · 6 · 7 · 8 · 9 · 10 · 11
 
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