It is very interesting to compare my Wolverine guitar to my coworker’s Peavey Predator. Same guitar, but the Wolverine has had some major modifications. My coworker’s Predator has had some modifications too, but it is very interesting to see the baseline so many years after I started modding Wolverine.
The Wilkinson Tremolo bridge on Wolverine is head and shoulders above the old bridge on the Predator. The Wilkie is so smooth and holds tune so well. I can really play with it and it settles right back in tune. Part of that is the locking tuners and roller nut, but it is an obvious improvement. I knew these hardware upgrades made a big difference, but I was shocked at how big a difference when compared to the original Peavey Predator.
The tuners are exactly what I remembered. They weigh less, which is noticeable when comparing the balance of the two guitars, but changing strings on the locking tuners is so much easier!
The one thing I was most excited to compare was the original neck shape to the new one I carved and refinished. I was surprised at how the original Predator neck wasn’t as bad as I remembered it (could be different production runs). I played a Peavey T-60 once that had a perfect neck. This doesn’t have a perfect neck, but it isn’t bad. My modified Wolverine neck is noticeably different, but my frets are worn a bit more. I like it better, but it was not as night and day different as the tremolo/vibrato bridges.
I didn’t get to play the Predator enough to get a good handle on the pick ups. They were different from what is on Wolverine right now (I didn’t open up Wolverine, but they don’t match my memory). I put on the old white pick up covers. I think it looks pretty cool with the blue and white on top of a black guitar (my coworker doesn’t and said it will be the first thing he changes). The oddest thing was the 5 way pick up selector. It was completely different. I don’t know if this Predator has an upgrade (the wiring was very clean). The 5 way switch didn’t look like a Fender licensed one, but it looked and felt better than the one currently on Wolverine. The knobs/pots were pretty much the same. 500k pots all around. That’s something I’ve wanted to change on Wolverine for a while. I understand most Strats have 250k pots. But first I think I’ll upgrade Wolverine’s pick ups… someday. And definitely the 5 way switch will be upgraded soon.
So overall, these are certainly the same base guitar. A little heavy. A little bigger body than a traditional fender strat. A basic maple neck. Straightforward pick ups. With some hardware upgrades…and with the right decopage of Wolverine comics, a real masterpiece!