1946 Fender Model 26 Deluxe!

1946 Fender Model 26 Deluxe!

The Fender Electric Instrument Co was established in 1946 immediately after Doc Kaufman left the K&F brand. The first run of amplifiers for this new company consisted of three models: the Princeton, the Model 26 "Deluxe", and the Professional. Their lacquered wood cabinets and combination metal strip and cloth grills made them easy targets for the collector nick name of "Woodies".   This Model 26 Deluxe amplifier bears the speaker manufacturing date of the 22nd week of 1946 and serial number 395. Somehow it made it through life without losing its original canvas…Read more
Fender’s Princeton Reverb-Amp!

Fender’s Princeton Reverb-Amp!

1964 was a transitional year for the entire Fender amplifier line. All amplifiers were now covered in a new black material that was striking in appearance and extremely sturdy: black Tolex! Much of the line was already utilizing brown or white Tolex material but the Champ was still dressed in the cool looking but very fragile tweed covering. Not only that, but effects were starting to become standards in guitar tone. Fender's Reverb unit was a hot seller but required hauling around and servicing an additional piece of gear. Fender's research and development…Read more
“Should I buy a tweed Fender Champ if I already have a blackface Champ?”

“Should I buy a tweed Fender Champ if I already have a blackface Champ?”

I recently received this question from a friend: "Hey John, As my most trusted source on music equipment, can you help me understand if I should purchase a tweed fender champ?  I already have a 1965 blackface champ.  Am I incorrect in thinking the tones will be worlds apart? --Friend" I'm flattered! I've narrowed my focus for vintage amps largely on clean examples from Fender recently because of the intersection of their prevalence here in the US and desirability. Champs are some of the most fun because they are simple, affordable, and can…Read more
The Fender Telecaster: 1969

The Fender Telecaster: 1969

By 1969, the Telecaster model had been relegated to fifth place on the price list for standard solid body electric guitars. The top of the line Jaguar was offered at $429.50 but a standard Telecaster with Rosewood fretboard could be purchased for almost half that at $269.50. It's possible that the Jaguar and Jazzmaster's high prices helped kill their popularity in the 1970s while the Telecaster shined as one of Fender's flagship designs and helped keep the company afloat. As the Telecaster's popularity surged in the late 1960s, Fender started developing unique variations…Read more
Fender’s Thinline Telecaster

Fender’s Thinline Telecaster

The recently purchased Fender company was noticing some complaints about one of their most popular models in 1967: the Telecaster was gaining weight. High quality (read: light weight) Ash to make guitar bodies was becoming scarce while the heavier stuff was readily available. Legendary German guitar designer Roger Rossmeisel was then employed at Fender and set out to design a guitar that could utilize the more abundant (heavy) Ash and yet not break the player's back. Rossmeisel's first design was to route away body material underneath the pickguard. The modification was completely hidden…Read more
1966 Fender Jaguar – Lake Placid Blue!

1966 Fender Jaguar – Lake Placid Blue!

This was a really special guitar that came through the shop last year: an early 1966 Fender Jaguar in custom color Lake Placid Blue. Although it was missing the original case, it was in spectacular condition with all original finish and parts. It showed no evidence of prior repair and required only light cleaning and set up. Fender's Jaguar model debuted in 1962 at the top of the electric guitar line, only four years after the Jazzmaster's introduction. It featured an offset body shape slightly modified from the Jazzmaster, 24" scale neck, two…Read more
The Fender Custom… or Maverick

The Fender Custom… or Maverick

  The post-CBS buyout Fender Musical Instrument Company was presented with a problem unfamiliar to it in prior years: leftover stock and parts from a model that was a commercial failure. Fender's Electric XII model failed to sell as many pieces as anticipated and the leftover unfinished bodies and necks were piling up at the factory. In 1969, Fender's production manager was tasked with repurposing the stock into something they could sell. Thus, the Custom was born. Long time Fender employee "Babe" Simoni skirted the R&D department and set out to solve the…Read more
1960 Fender Jazzmaster

1960 Fender Jazzmaster

We sold this 1960 Fender Jazzmaster last year but I had to share the pictures again. This guitar came from the wife of the original owner who passed decades before. He played it for a few years with a Fender amplifier but ended up losing a finger in a work accident. He didn't play the guitar after the accident which was around the mid 1960s. The Jazzmaster sat in its case until it became vintage. We were very pleased with the condition of the guitar when we received it. It was totally original…Read more
Vintage Guitar Library: book suggestion on vintage Fender Telecaster guitars

Vintage Guitar Library: book suggestion on vintage Fender Telecaster guitars

Looking for a good book suggestion for Father's Day? If your dad likes vintage Fender Telecaster guitars then here is an idea for you. I've been building my vintage guitar library for the past couple of years and it's proved an invaluable resource for questions that aren't easily answered on forums or other internet sites.   The Fender Telecaster: The Detailed Story of America's Senior Solid Body Electric Guitar (http://amzn.to/2sGVi0m) is probably my favorite of the currently available books of vintage Fender Telecaster guitars. This one has been on my night stand for…Read more
Vintage Fender Guitars: 1965

Vintage Fender Guitars: 1965

1965 was a transitional year at the Fender Electric Instrument Co which became Fender Musical Instrument Co by the end of the year. Leo Fender finalized the sale of his company to CBS (Columbia Broadcasting System) on January 5, 1965 and they slowly set out to increase production and profit. New cheaper models were introduced such as the Coronado that were easier to manufacture and used outsourced electronics from Rowe Industries (DeArmond). Headstocks were enlarged with appealed to the style trends of the late 1960s. Clay dots turned to flashier pearloid, offset models received…Read more