Sorry for the length of this thread, but I need some help and there really wasn't any way to taper it down. Anyway, I'm new to the Forum (first post) and I don't currently own a PRS of any kind, but I've owned several in the past, one of which I sold (like a brain-dead idiot!) some years ago (2001-2002), and I miss it terribly! In fact, after buying, playing and selling somewhere in the neighborhood of 20+ guitars since that time, I've not been able to replicate the pure tonal bliss that I obtained with that particular guitar. And so, I'm on a journey to see if I can get back something (anything?) close to what I lost (or had), in terms of its overall features and tonal quality, and that is the point of this thread. Basically, I'm hoping to get some help from those members who are very familiar with the early (1988-92) PRS lineup in identifying what it was that I had, and how I might best go about replacing it.
I'll start by saying that I was fairly young and relatively new to electric guitars at the time of original purchase, so I wasn't very responsible when it came to things like serial numbers or pickup specifications, which would have helped a lot, but I'm confident that I remember enough to narrow it down. Besides, as I see it, the real problem, won't be identifying what it was that I had, but rather, identifying something of equal or superior quality from current day production that has any hope of replacing it.
Anyway, from what I remember, here are the "known" specifications of the guitar that I sold (i.e., the one I'm hoping to replace):
Purchased: Used (but almost new)
Date of Purchase: Sometime in late '91 or early '92
Number of Frets: 24
Fretboard Inlay: Solid birds
Type of Body: Solid
Color of Body: Dark Gray (probably 'Charcoal Burst")
Top: 10-Top Flame (with cream-colored or natural binding)
Color of Back, Sides & Back of Neck: Gloss Black
Hardware: Gold? I believe the hardware was all gold, but I'm not sure.
Pickups: Humbuckers (2) - Again, I'm not absolutely sure about this, but I think the pups had gold covers
Number of Controls/Pots: Three? Maybe four? I can't quite remember the exact configuration, but there was no blade switch, so I believe it had a minimum of three (3) knobs - pickup selector, volume and tone.
Special or Notable Features: Sweet Switch
PHOTO: And here's a photo of something very similar. In fact, if the chrome hardware on this photo were replaced with gold, and a 'sweet switch' were added, it would be almost identical in every respect to what I once sold:
Unfortunately, I'm not uber familiar with all of the various models of PRS guitars that have been made over the years (discontinued and otherwise), or which specific features belong to which models, and I could be wrong about this, but I believe the model of guitar that I bought back then (the one described above) was considered a "Custom-24". In addition, I suspect that it was a pre-'92 model, because it appears that by '92, the 'sweet switch' had disappeared. In any event, I'd like to get firm clarification of this, and if at all possible, I'd really like to identify the specific year of production ('88-92?). Perhaps most important of all, I would like to identify the specific type of pickups used at that time, so that I can narrow down my future search for another PRS Custom-24 that might offer similar tonal qualities, even if it means a custom order direct from PRS. Last but not least, I'll close by saying that I've owned other PRS guitars in those same years and in the years since, including other 24-fret models and a model that I think is/was referred to as the "SE-22" (with chrome hardware and dot frets), but none of them (for whatever reason?) came close to the tone of the original Custom-24 described above.
Thanks for your patience and for listening, and thanks also to all who choose to respond.