Specimen Products is a unique custom guitar and amp shop located on Chicago’s West Side. Specimen founder Ian Schneller shows Guitar Shop TV a guitar he calls “the Marmite ‘caster,” made of two-by-fours and masonite. The guitar has a “subcutaneous” P-90 pickup set underneath the pick guard with just the pole pieces sticking up. According to Schneller, this gives the neck pickup a much warmer sound than the traditional Tele neck pickup has. He also talks about why he took a blow torch to all the chrome on the guitar.
A former sculptor-turned-guitarist who became fascinated with acoustics, Schneller brings what he calls a “minimalist” approach to designing guitars and amplifiers. His innovative designs have become popular with artists as diverse as Franz Ferdinand and Death Cab for Cutie. Schneller also runs the Chicago School of Guitar Making.