Budweiser Guitars

2011 McSwain Budweiser

Color: Budweiser, Rating: 9.50, Sold (ID# 01451)
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The Unique "Budweiser" Guitar.


This unique McSwain guitar features an offset asymmetrical double-cutaway, 13.375 inches wide, tone-chambered American Redwood body (made from a thirty-year old signpost) with an amazing sculptured arched-top made entirely of original 50s steel Budweiser cans. The guitar weighs just 6.70 lbs and has a 1.50 inch thick body rising up to 1.90 inches at the heighest point. The canson the top are all held together with a steel structural "T" outline and seams. The back of the guitar is of two-piece book-matched Hawaiian Koa. Three-piece Honduras mahogany glued-in neck with a very fast medium-to-thin profile and a scale length of 24.75 inches. Single-action truss rod. Hawaiian Koa truss-rod cover (secured by one screw) with an original 50s Budweiser pull-tab. Back angled three-on-a-side "M" shaped (for McSwain) headstock laminated with original 50s Budweiser cans. The back of the headstock is signed in silver marker "S. McSwain 10/6/11". Individual 'vintage-style' Kluson Deluxe 'two-line' tuners with oval metal buttons. Aluminum bound Ebony fretboard with 'descending in size' Aluminum Bud 'Crown' inlays and 22 jumbo frets. One Rio Grande Genuine Texas (double-black) pickup in the neck position and one Rio Grande BBQ Bucker (double-black) pickup in the bridge position with outputs of 8.77k and 11.73k respectively. Both pickups have nickel surrounds and are uncovered. One volume control and one tone control (on the lower treble-side of the top) and a three-way pickup selector switch on the bass 'horn'. The volume and tone knobs are specially made from original Budweiser glass bottle neck tops and original red 'Budweiser' caps. Nickel-plated TonePros TP6 Nashville Style Tune-O-Matic bridge with through-body stringing. On the back of the guitar, the Switch panel and the control cavity panel are made of matching 50s Budweiser cans. This unique guitar is indeed a masterpiece in guitar making… and just listen to Phil X making it sing on our youtube channel at

Stephen McSwain makes less than twenty-five guitars per year. They are all custom ordered and no two are alike. He has made unique guitars for some of the greatest Rock Stars around including Slash, John 5, Jerry Cantrell, Duff McKagan, Steve Vai, Steve Jones, George Lynch, Elijah Blue, Tommy Lee, Vernon Reid, James "Munky" Schaffer, Brian "Head" Welch and several others.

"I designed the headstock to resemble the letter M... McSwain Guitars.  HAHA!  Years ago, I played a vintage circa '67 Martin GT-75 electric that a friend had and LOVED the shape of the headstock.  I wanted to design my headstock with a "tip of the hat" to the sharp wide points of the GT-75, but cut out a notch in the top to make it look like an M."

"I've always loved graphics that are somewhat subtle, but very memorable. Budweiser is not exempt from this concept.  I found these old steel Budweiser cans and decided to give them a second life as part of a McSwain guitar. These cans conjure up images of an old pickup truck with several of these rolling around in the back with the trusty old dog. So does the tone of the guitar. It is straight up punch and grit! The pickups are Rio Grande Texas and BBQ humbuckers. One volume and one tone.

I laminated the cans to the arched top of the tone chambered redwood body which has a book-matched Hawaiian Koa back. The neck is a 22 fret, 3-piece Honduras mahogany with an aluminum bound 24 3/4" scale ebony fretboard and a nut width of 1-11/16".  It has a vintage '59 era shaped neck contour. The inlays are aluminum Bud crowns.  

Just to add a bit more colloquialism, I made the volume and tone knob from glass Bud bottle tops.  My buddy Jhon Doria dug up an old fifties pull tab in his garden, so I inlaid it into the Koa truss rod cover. What else was I gonna do with it???!!! The finish is what I call a "dirty finish" which is distressed and looks like it has been around for as long as the beer cans." (Stephen McSwain)

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