Ride the Lightning With This Scorching Hot Explorer-Inspired Beast
This gently used James Hetfield Snakebyte guitar was designed in collaboration with James Hetfield, frontman and rhythm guitarist for the legendary metal band Metallica. In designing the Snakebyte, Hetfield drew from his experience as the driving force behind metal’s most influential band, creating a guitar that offers everything a thrash metal performer would want. In terms of aggressive tone and power, the ESP/LTD Hetfield Snakebyte is one of the best options available.
Known for playing an Explorer in the early years of his career, Hetfield used the Explorer body shape as his template, but modified it in a variety of ways to increase comfort and playability. The Snakebyte body may resemble the Explorer, but it includes several evolutionary changes like a carved bout on the back edge, a beveled cutaway, and a hook-like end on the headstock. These changes may seem slight, but they have actually made the Snakebyte more balanced and extremely comfortable to play.
The 24.75" scale 3-piece Mahogany neck, with 22-Fret Ebony fretboard, features neck-through-body construction with a wonderfully refined neck joint that makes accessing the highest frets extremely easy. The Ebony fretboard features dot inlays with a pearloid coiled serpent inlay at the 12th fret, and could not be more comfortable and easy to navigate.
The sound of the Snakebyte is powered by dual EMG James Hetfield Humbucker pickups, active and wired in series for super high output and incredible high gain. Controls include a 3-way pickup switch, master volume and tone knobs. The Hetfield Humbuckers are super responsive and surprisingly clear at low volume, and brutal with scorching sustain when overdriven. A fixed Tune-o-Matic Bridge with Stopbar Tailpiece help bolster the sustain, while ESP locking tuners help to keep the tuning on point.
- Body shape: Modified Explorer Body
- Body wood: Mahogany
- Neck: Mahogany 3-piece Thin U Satin Finish
- Joint: Neck-through Construction
- Scale length: 24.75"
- Truss rod: Standard
- Fretboard: 22 Fret Ebony
- Inlays: Pearloid dot with Pearloid snake at 12th Fret
- Nut width: 1.656" (42mm)
- Pickups: Dual EMG James Hetfield Humbuckers
- Active or passive: Active
- Series or parallel: Series
- Control layout: Master volume, tone
- Pickup switch: 3-way
- Bridge type: Fixed Tune-o-matic with Stopbar Tailpiece
- Tuning machines: ESP locking
- Color: Black
- Case: Hardshell Case Included
- Country of origin: Korea
Coiled and Ready Strike, the James Hetfield Snakebyte is the Perfect Guitar for Metal Performers
The first thing that strikes you when you play this gently used ESP/LTD James Hetfield Snakebyte is how light and balanced it is for an Explorer type guitar. Playing thrash metal can be physically demanding, especially if you have a heavy guitar putting demands on your hands, arms and shoulders, but the Snakebyte is perfectly balanced and incredibly light, designed for long and demanding metal gigs. In terms of straight-up power, there are few guitars that rank in the same class with the James Hetfield Snakebyte.