EGC FyrHawk Custom

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A (very) modern take on an Australian classic.

As I’ve mentioned, the guitarnerd guitar army has been shaken up and new axes added. In the following weeks I’ll be posting what new beauties I’ve gotten. Strap yourselves in.. there’s some sweet machines in the works. Through this website and my associated Facebook groups (‘guitarnerd.com.au’ & ‘Vintage Maton Guitar Appreciation Society’)… pretty much EVERYONE knows about my obsession with the Maton Fyrbyrd. Which is both bad and good. Bad because I get emails from people wanting to sell me their guitars and good because I get emails from people wanting to sell me their guitars.

One weekend I got a message from a friend of mine Nick Smethurst, who is an EGC (Electrical Guitar Company) and Travis Bean fanatic. Nick mentioned that he’d become the Australian importer for EGC, which was fantastic. What was even more fantastic was that in celebration, Nick and Kevin from EGC were going to make a one-off EGC non- sharkbite Fyrbyrd custom… would I be interested in buying it when it was finished? Yes. Yes I would.

The guitar was going to be finished in 4 months, so I had to quickly sell off some guitars for payment. Amazingly (for me) I let go of my Fernandes Polka Dot Randy Rhoads Flying V, which I had owned for 20 years… but hadn’t played in the last 15. This guitar held a lot of memories but honestly it had been living in storage for so long I wasn’t going to miss playing it… as I never did. Off it went to it’s new home… I also sold my Epiphone MC5 Olympic plus various pedals. I hoped this EGC was worth it. I didn’t even know what it was going to look like!

I waited (impatiently) for any sign on EGC’s Instagram of my guitar… Kevin is notorious for not posting images of guitars until they’re finished. And then out of the blue he posted this. I lost my brain…

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This was a VERY good sign. So far I was very impressed. Another month went past and finally a very big and heavy box turned up to my work. I was blown away… I happened to have my vintage Fyrbyrd at work so I was instantly able to compare the two.

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The EGC is a BEAST. It weighs an absolute ton (we’re talking late 70′s Les Paul Custom) which means no swinging around the neck “John Reis” style. As you can see from the photo, it’s slightly bigger than a 60′s Fyrbyrd. Having no access to the real deal, Kevin just went off photos from guitarnerd (which is amazing) and scaled the guitar to suit the neck. I love it. In the flesh it’s an imposing guitar.

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The pickups are EGC’s own, and like a Maton Fyrbyrd are selected via 3 mini switches. Instead of the rotary tone switch, I asked that the neck pickup have it’s own volume control, then a master, then a tone. I know the whole thing about Maton’s is the cool selector switch with the stalk… but this is a tribute… not a copy. I wanted it to be usable to my needs.

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Another example of this is the neck. It has the classic 3 a side EGC headstock. While the Maton Fyrbyrd headstock is iconic, this isn’t a Maton. From a distance people will know this is an EGC…. not some frankenstein Maton.

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The neck “joint” is insane. I reality the neck goes all the way into the body down to the bridge. Kevin cutaway all the body to give full access all the way up to the top frets. It’s leaves a’ Cliffs Of Dover’ style edge to the neck joint but this was needed to keep the look of the guitar from the front.

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The back has a massive cover plate which covers the electronics and protects the back from buckle rash. Kevin coated it in a crinkle finish which should last forever (I’m very good with my guitars).

 

The final added touch was still needed. One of the coolest things about Fyrbyrd’s is the top horn Fyrbyrd sticker. When I first got it, I put on a spare repro Fyrbyrd sticker that I had handy.I kept it like this for a while a played a gig with it. When people saw this guitar on stage, they were pretty stunned. Plugged into a VASE Trendsetter 60 she sounded amazing.

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But I didn’t want to call this a Fyrbyrd… it was something different. VERY different. It was it’s own guitar. So I had a think and came up with the name FyrHawk. I quickly designed up a logo and had a think of what to do next. A sticker wasn’t going be worthy… that neck was just so SHINY. So I contacted my jeweler friend Tam Gannon and asked if he could do up a badge that matched the neck. Tam makes amazing works of art so I knew he’d be up for it. When I got the finished result, I was blown away. It suits this guitar perfectly.

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So, here is it. My one of a kind, USA meets Australia masterpiece. A massive thanks to Nick Smethurst at Season Three Guitars for thinking of me first when ordering this guitar and Kevin at EGC for his amazing work. I hope I do it justice on stage.

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