Maton Wedgtail

Here’s a couple of very rare birds from Maton… the mighty Wedgtail (yes, correct spelling!)

One of the rarest (and coolest) guitars that Maton ever made was the Maton Wedgtail. From what the Maton Museum webpage says, only 110 were made though this may be even less as Maton’s records from this era are a little sketchy. I’ve only even seen one in the flesh… a first series model with the slotted headstock that was sitting in a display at Brisbane City Hall. It was love at first sight. Since then though, the rarity of this beast has sunk in and I know I’ll probably never get to own one.

One very lucky Wedgtail owner is Tex from Melbourne.

Here it is-my Cash Converters dream find. I was on the road with work and as I was about to leave a large country town I thought I would stick my head in the cashi’s. I saw the headstock first and having several other old Matons at the time I was pretty excited and as I got closer I saw the scratchplate.

Now it had been painted fire engine red with a fence brush and the bigsby was gone and it had a Les Paul bridge and grover machine heads but I was still excited. At $200 I couldnt hand over the cash quick enough. I got a good mate who is a luthier to restore it. That model bigsby wasnt available anymore so he cut and shaped bits off a newer one and made it the same. Where the Les Paul bridge was he shaved grain off the back to put over the plugs he made out of mahogany so as to hide the repair as best he could. And he did a great job.

I love the pick ups and the tone, I am a rythym guitarist and don’t really do solo’s so I never had a beef with lack of sustain, mate thats for blokes like Nigel Tuffnal. It was toward the end of production and they must have been short on cash because they used another 2 pieces of wood which they added to the neck so they could have a headstock.?!

I was in a melbourne band called Charger and another called Bobbafett at the time and we mainly played the Tote.

Another Wedgtail owner is Walt from Holland. Walt was lucky enough to score his Wedgtail on eBay. Walt owns many beautiful Maton’s, but this one is certainly my favourite.

As with Tex’s Wedgtail, this one has been modified over the years. It’s lost it’s pickups and original scratchplate along with being refinished.

Walt’s guitar still has a few of it’s rare original parts though. It still has it’s original Maton Burns-style tremolo along with the Guild-like Maton knobs and Maton neck badge.

The headstock is in great condition, though the tuners have been replaced. I don’t think Fender would let Maton get away with this design nowadays… Interestingly, there’s a slight difference between this headstock and Tex’s example. Maton have taken out a small notch on top of Walt’s guitar, which is slightly reminiscent of the Maton Fyrbyrd design. Tex’s guitar is pure 70’s Fender Strat.

All up, this is a beautiful guitar design. Tim from Tym’s has said he’s going to build one (when he gets time) and it would be great to finally hold one of these baby’s in my hands. Here’s a story on Operation: Wedgtail.


*update* My band was in Melbourne this weekend playing a show and I had the pleasure of meeting up with Tex and seeing his Wedgtail in the flesh. I love this guitar even more now! It’s a bit smaller than I thought it would be, kind of a compact shape that just happens to cram a hell of a lot of awesomeness into a little package. The thickness of the body was a surprise too… it’s almost like a Les Paul, but totally flat on the top. But the guitar was still pretty light (compared to a Les Paul, anyway). The neck was pretty chunky, with a bit of a flat-ish profile on the back, but still comfy to play. Very different from my old Maton Phil Manning. I-WANT-ONE.