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I have a Route 101 Solimar Custom (strat clone w/angled headstock) that I paid about $300 for back in 2000. I've bought and sold over a dozen guitars in that time, but the Route 101 has been a constant. It has a great neck, it sounds good, and it's dependable.
<div class="signaturecontainer">You have the right to free speech, as long as you're not dumb enough to actually try it. -- Joe Strummer</div>
My hands-down favorite is the Squier Bullet Strat with trem, that came out about a year ago. Excellent modding platform IMHO. The neck is really nice too, with the vintage headstock, rosewood fretboard and medium jumbo frets. The stock pickups are pretty decent too, especially the neck pup. I've modded a daphne blue and SB, and I just ordered a fiesta red one, which will become "coral pink" (salmon) in a month or two. Fully modded, i've only got maybe $230 invested in either one of them, including the cost of the guitar ($75-$100 each).
<div class="signaturecontainer">My band "The Executives" website : <a href="http://www.theexecutivesmusic.com" target="_blank">TheExecutivesMusic.com</a></div>
(would've said my 2nd Tele was my favorite - but it's disqualified by $8)
<div class="signaturecontainer">I made the mistake of including the name of the band I was in at the time I started my account here, but a lot of my friends really do call me "gibby"...<br />
<a href="http://www.youtube.com/user/gibby1117" target="_blank">My guitfiddle vidyas</a><br />
Xbox LIVE Gamertag: Gibby McFender<br />
<font size="1">Good trades with: jnapruitt, jelloman, emptyparadigm, teleman, atrox, Norcal_Gtr, Cale 76, Moops, Fart Murphy, gutterking, npidge, shimrod69, HickorySMOKES</font><br />
bassist for <a href="http://www.reverbnation.com/foolsforrowan" target="_blank">Fools For Rowan</a>. Check us out!</div>
It's a Korean-built fat strat based on the Wolfgang, but with a Fender-style bridge and locking tuners instead of a Floyd. The green transluscent finish is soooooo pretty, and it gives strat tones better than any non-US Fenders I've picked up.
<div class="signaturecontainer">This is my signature file. There are many like it, but this one is mine.</div>