Dating fender instruments
Japanese Serial Numbers on Peghead Decal Note the lack of S, E, N series. Most notably, PRODUCTION DATES have been penciled or stamped on the butt end of the heel of the neck of most guitars and basses, although there were periods when this was not consistently done (1973 to 1981, for example) or simply omitted.While there have been periods of dramatic change—such as the transition periods between the Leo Fender years and the CBS years or the transition between the CBS years and the current ownership—most models are generally feature-specific and do not change from year to year.Serial numbers are also helpful in determining an instrument’s production year. Information on Japanese and Mexican-made instruments is included towards the bottom.
With the Telecaster and Precision Bass on the market for some time, Leo Fender was able to incorporate input from working musicians into the Stratocaster's design.The neck date simply refers to the date that the individual component was produced.Given the modular nature of Fender's production techniques, an individual neck may have been produced in a given year, placed in the manufacturing warehouse and remained in stock for a period of time, and then subsequently paired with a body to create a complete guitar in the following year.Note: A new Japanese vendor was enlisted in 2010 to help meet demand for the Geddy Lee and Marcus Miller Jazz Bass models.In March 1985, CBS sold Fender to a group of private investors.