1962 Fender Stratocaster Sunburst
Posted on May 09 2021
This 1962 Fender Stratocaster with original slab Rosewood fretboard and Sunburst finish has survived in very nice condition! I'm always a vintage Fender guitar buyer but I'm especially looking for Stratocaster model guitars from the 1950s and 1960s. You can contact me here to sell a Fender guitar.
Get help with Fender guitar dating here: How to date a Fender Stratocaster.
Check out another vintage Fender Stratocaster guitar here: 1965 Fender Stratocaster White.
Fender's Stratocaster model debuted in 1954 as the second professional grade solid body electric guitar from the hip new company in Fullerton, California. It was intended to supersede the company's first solid body electric guitar, the Broadcaster turned Telecaster by 1952. Where the Telecaster was simple and reliable, the Stratocaster was upgraded with a third pickup, comfort contoured body with offset waist, and a complex tailpiece with tremolo. Most guitar players agree (especially this one!) that there is room for both the Telecaster and the Stratocaster in their collection! I'm always a buyer for Fender Telecasters and Stratocasters from the 1950s. You can contact me here to sell a Fender guitar.
The neck pickup on a 1962 Fender Stratocaster is spectacular, but I always find myself gravitating towards the in between positions which combine either the neck and middle or middle and bridge pickups. Fender's original design didn't account for players wanting these out of phase combined positions which is probably why the guitars were made with only a three position switch instead of 5 position switch until 1977.
The Stratocaster model guitar featured a combination Maple neck and fretboard until the introduction of the slab Rosewood fretboard in 1959. The thin finish on the Maple necks tended to wear off and oils from fingers would darken worn spots. Many players thought this made them look worn out or dirty which wasn't exactly the style at the time. Fender began using a thick Rosewood fretboard on the Jazzmaster in 1958 and the Stratocaster soon after. Many players refer to the design used from 1958 until mid 1962 as a "slab" style fretboard because of the thickness of the piece of Rosewood compared the the thin veneer style used after 1962. You can spot a slab Rosewood fretboard by the slightly convex shape protruding towards the top of the headstock near the nut.
The question of how old is my Fender Stratocaster? becomes important for accurate vintage guitar identification. We can easily date this 1962 Fender Stratocaster using the serial number, but a better way is to use the neck heel pencil date, the potentiometer codes, and the features. The serial numb 78xxx falls within the range of serial numbers we would expect on a Fender guitar from 1962. The neck heel pencil date reads "11/61" which would indicate that it was milled in November of 1961. The neck dates usually pre-date the completion of the guitar by one to six months. The tone potentiometer bears a manufacturing date code of "6207" which indicates that it was made during the 7th week of 1962. Check out How to date a Fender Stratocaster for help with Fender Stratocaster guitar dating.