Thursday, August 5, 2010

The Fender Cyclone

The Fender Cyclone could be considered Variations on a Theme by Leo.

This guitar design was based on a Mustang-like alder body that was slightly deeper and offset. The neck was longer than the short scale Mustang neck. 

It made of maple with a 24 3/4" scale and came with 22 frets on its rosewood fretboard. The pickups and pickup configurations and vibrato/bridge were much different that what was found on a Fender Mustang.

The pickup arrangement was similar to an old Fender student guitar known as the Duo-Sonic.

In 2000, the Fender Cyclone debuted for sale as a USA-made guitar, although it was originally featured two years earlier at the Summer NAMM convention.

The Cyclone featured two single coil noiseless pickups with white covers and exposed pole-pieces, a two-point stainless steel vibrato with steel bridge saddles.

The vibrato unit was similar to a Stratocaster unit and the springs were in a cavity in the guitars back. There was a three-way switch, similar to those Gibson used that was place on the lower horn.

The upgraded model was named the Custom Cyclone had the same accouterments, but had Gold Lace sensor pickups with black covers. The Cyclones had one tone and one volume control. Both potentiometers were housed on a stainless steel plate, much like that of a Jaguar. Both guitars were produced for only one year.

In 2002 Fender introduced the Cyclone II. The Mustang shape remained, but the pickup configuration was entirely different. This guitar came with three Jaguar style single coil pickups all of which were slanted on an angle similar to the bridge pickup of a Stratocaster.

Fender Cyclone
The vibrato/bridge unit remained the same, as did the neck length. The bridge saddles were also vintage nickel models instead of stainless steel.

Note the tiny Cyclone on the guitars headstock
The headstock was modified to resemble the larger style that is found on 1970's Strats.

The deluxe tuners were replaced with vintage style Fender tuners made by Ping.

The pickups were controlled by three slider switches that were covered by a stainless steel cover, which was much like the switches on a Jaguar. This was an advantage as you could have the choice of any of the three pickups on or off. Fender offered only two colour schemes, Daphne Blue or Candy Apple Red. Both colours came with racing stripes on the bottom bout.

In 2003, Fender introduced the Cyclone HH. This guitar was similar to the previous Cyclone instruments; however, it came with twin humbucking pickups. The neck pickup was a Fender Santa Ana model for a sweet tone and the bridge pickup was a Fender Atomic model offering a more dirty gristly tone.

The pickups were controlled by a three-way toggle switch.

The Cyclone HH was available in Black, Pewter, Orange, and Daphne Blue. The racing stripe was not offered on this model.

Both the Cyclone II and Cyclone HH were manufacture at Fender's facility in Mexico.

1998 Fender Cyclone
Despite being offered in Fender's line-up for nearly eight years, the Cyclone never caught on and the entire line was discontinued in 2007.


Mr Noble said...

Squier also made the cyclone model, I remember seeing them in their website long time ago :D

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