198x - Fender Stratocaster "Eric Clapton model":
This pewter finished "Eric Clapton model", one of my favorites of The Edge's guitars, has had some custom finish work applied to it. First it was spreckled with a maroon hue of paint. Second, a skeleton and snake were painted on.
The skeleton and snake are similar to logos U2 used on the 1989-90 Lovetown tour book and stage back drop. This leads one to believe that the guitar might date from this period, although I've yet to find a picture of the Edge using this guitar during the Lovetown (or earlier) tours.
This guitar originally had a white pearloid pick guard which was later replaced with a maroon colored mirrored pick guard. I saw this up close at the Rock And Roll Hall of Fame in June 2003.
This Clapton, like all others original "Clapton models" has 3 Fender "Gold Lace Sensor" pickups. These are great pickups witha 25db mid-range boost.
I first saw this guitar in the "Achtung Baby" CD booklet and digi-pak, there are a great number of Hansa Studios era shots (by: Anton Corbijn) showing The Edge playing this great guitar. It appears black in many of Anton's pictures that were featured in Rolling Stone magazine (Issue: 618. November 28, 1991) and in Musician magazine (Issue: 161. March 1992) but is indeed pewter.
The Edge used this guitar on the ZOOTV and Zooropa tours for live performances of "The Fly" and "Desire" but was not used on the Pop Mart or Elevation tours.
I am not 100% positive as to the year of this guitar. Musician magazine (March 1992) listed the guitar as a 1989. This makes sense as the artwork is similar to that of the Lovetown backdrop and tour books. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame lists this guitar as 1987, and it is in a 1987-88 era case of Rattle and Hum items and the Rock And Roll Hall. I questioned (curator) Jim Henke about this and he stated that Dallas Schoo (The Edge's technician since 1987) insisted that the guitar was a 1987 and was present on the Joshua Tree tour. I am still not sure about the validity of that statement as Clapton models went into production in 1988.