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No flushin', just pluckin'! Local musician makes and plays a toilet-seat guitar

October 19, 2012
Melissa Schneider - Editor ( , Fort Myers Beach Bulletin, Fort Myers Beach Observer

Local musician Dietrich "Pete" Schaeffer has been performing an array of classic rock, Spanish and blues at Bonita Bill's for years. But, the nautical resident isn't just talented in the art of music, but in the art of carpentry and crafting, as well.

A couple of years ago, Pete was featured in the Beach Bulletin for sharing his rare, world-renowned Chapman Stick, made up of 12 strings and having the same range as a grand piano. Recently, he's turned a toilet seat (new and unused, of course) into a playable work of art.

"I call it the 'Stratacraper,' and it sounds just as good as a $3,000 guitar, but costs only $35 to make," the 50-year musical veteran eagerly stated. "I had a flashback from the '60s a while ago. There was a guy that built them. So, I decided to build one, myself."

Article Photos

Pete is as happy as a clam when jammin' on his custom-made 'Stratacraper' guitar. Photo by MELISSA SCHNEIDER.

Pete, a talented musician who has played with the likes of Fats Domino, Wooly Bully, BJ Thomas, Johnny Rivers, Rufus Thomas, Dr. Hook and more, explained exactly how to make your own "Stratacraper."

"I bought a Fender Squire, which is like a Strotocaster, but much cheaper, cut off the sides, went to Lowes and bought a toilet seat for $16 I was looking for a really, really ugly one, and you just put them together."

If interested in making your own "Stratacraper," visit and find Pete's video that walks you through, step by step. Just search "Stratacraper."

You can catch the musician play his non-flushing, pure-plucking masterpiece at Bonita Bill's, 702 Fisherman's Wharf, every Monday and Tuesday afternoon, from 1 to 5 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday, from 6 to 9 p.m.

You can also catch Pete with the other Three Old Hippies (Space Ghost, Danny North and Pete) every Monday evening during their jam session, starting at 6 p.m. Feel free to bring your own unique and interesting musical instrument. But, if you just have a "normal" one, that will suffice, too.

If interested in Pete making your very own Stratacraper, call the local island musician on his cellphone, 321-276-8458.



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