Fender Guitars with Gold Hardware: Jazzmaster & Jaguar
Posted on December 15 2021
Some of my favorite 1950s and 1960s Fender guitars are in the very small minority of guitars ordered with the fanciest upgrade offered in Fender's price list: gold hardware. One glance at the Fender Price List from 1960 shows that the most expensive guitar for Spanish style playing was the Fender Jazzmaster in a custom color finish with the gold hardware option. Many players decided that gold hardware was too expensive and that the typical chrome hardware looked pretty good! I personally find the gold hardware on a Fender guitar wholly intoxicating. It's my goal to collect one Fender guitar with gold hardware in each color.
As a Fender guitar collector, I'm always looking for the nicest examples of all Fender guitars made in the 1950s and 1960s, but I'm especially looking for those with gold hardware. I travel worldwide to collect the Fender guitars I've always dreamed of. You can contact me here to sell a Fender guitar. Or, if you're looking for help with identification and values, check out Fender serial number lookup and Fender guitar Appraisal.
Fender Jazzmaster Gold Hardware
This 1960 Fender Jazzmaster came from the Fender factory in rare Black finish with gold hardware. I flew into Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania to check out the guitar being offered from its original owner. While this Jazzmaster was made in 1960, the owner believed that his dad purchased it for him brand new in 1965. It's possible that the owner was only a few years off on the dates, but it's also possible that it didn't sell for a few years because of the much higher price when compared with Sunburst finished Jazzmaster with chrome hardware for much less. Either way, I was thrilled with the Jazzmaster when I picked it up for the first time. The gold was well tarnished and worn but I thought that made it look even better.
This Fender Jazzmaster from 1960 with gold hardware bears a five digit serial number beginning with 45xxx which is within the typical range for Fender guitars made in 1960 (check out Fender Serial Number Lookup). The neck heel bears the pencil date signature of "5-60" indicating that it was roughly shaped during May of 1960. It weighed in at 7 lbs 12 oz which is on the lighter side for Jazzmaster guitars. It's a phenomenal player that has all the magic I look for in great examples of Fender Jazzmaster guitars from the late 1950s and 1960s.
Fender Jaguar Black with Gold Hardware
I was thrilled to purchase this 1965 Fender Jaguar in original Black finish with gold hardware from a collector friend! The Jaguar became Fender's most expensive model at its introduction in 1962. The Jaguar with custom color finish and gold plated parts was even more expensive that that of the Jazzmaster in 1965. This guitar is in similarly clean condition with standard tarnish and wear on the gold played parts. It still has its original polish cloth, leather strap with gold plated buckle, and the receipt from the original sale with matching serial number.
The Fender Jaguar was introduced in 1962 and coincided with an update to the fresh new offset waist body style guitars with custom colors: the matching headstock. Fender Jazzmaster, Jaguar, Jazz Bass, and VI (Bass 6) with custom color finish options now received a matched color peghead. The matching headstock posed a problem for the Black finish since the model names and patent numbers on the peghead stickers were printed in black ink. Instead of making new stickers with white ink to contrast the black, Fender clipped the model name and patent numbers from the stickers. This 1965 Fender Jaguar in custom color black has a clipped logo with no model name or patent numbers.
This Fender Jaguar bears a 5 digit serial number beginning with "L67xxx" which is within the typical serial number range for Fender guitars made in 1965. The neck heel ink stamp reads "1MAR65B" where 1 = Jaguar model (not the day), MAR = March, 65 = 1965, and B indicates the standard nut width of 1 5/8". The volume potentiometer code on the lead circuit reads "304 6508" where 304 = Centralab, 65 = 1965, and 08 = the 8th week of that year. You can read more about Fender guitar dating here: How to date a Fender Jaguar