Fender Jazzmaster 1958 Gold Guard
Posted on May 03 2022
This 1958 Fender Jazzmaster is one of my favorite examples of the model to ever come through my shop. Fender introduced the Jazzmaster model in 1958 with a unique design including offset waist body style, floating tremolo, and rhythm circuit. My personal favorites of the Jazzmasters were made in 1958 and 1959 with the gold color anodized aluminum pickguard with both cool aesthetic and functional electronics shielding. I'm always a Fender guitar buyer but I'm especially looking for gold guard era Jazzmasters from the late 1950s. You can contact me here to sell a Fender Jazzmaster.
This Fender Jazzmaster 1958 came to me from the son-in-law of its original owner along with very cool Fender Deluxe Amp 1959. His wife's father played it all his life in church and at home. My inspection revealed that he never changed or modified anything except for filing down the frets very low. I asked the luthier I work to perform a careful refret of the neck in order to restore the playability. It was a fantastic vintage guitar after it received new frets!
1958 Fender Jazzmaster
Fender debuted its third solid body electric guitar for professional use as the Jazzmaster in the last quarter of 1958. Leo Fender was always tinkering and updating the designs of his guitars and amplifiers and the new Jazzmaster model featured many of them: a hum cancelling middle position, gold anodized aluminum pickguard to shield against further hum, a preset rhythm and lead switch, Rosewood fretboard which didn't show wear, new floating tremolo design, and offset waist which looks amazing and was easier to play sitting down. All of the new features would continue on with the model except for the gold anodized aluminum pickguard. The Gold Gold was replaced with a celluloid faux tortoishell pickguard for Sunburst and Blond guitars in 1959.
Of the many advancements that the Jazzmaster debuted with in 1958, the reverse wound/reverse polarity pickups making up the hum cancelling middle position are the most interesting to me. Leo designed on pickup with magnets pointing south to strings and the other with magnets pointing north to strings. In order for the phase to match in the middle position, the start and finish wind directions were reversed, and in doing so, the 60 cycle hum which plagued single coil pickups was cancelled out. Both Ray Butts for Gretsch and Seth Lover for Gibson were working on a new style pickup in 1955 which cancelled hum in the same way. Gibson's humbucking pickup debuted on the Les Paul guitars only one year before the Jazzmaster in 1957.
Fender Jazzmasters with Gold Pickguard 1958
Fender guitar collectors refer to Jazzmasters from 1958 and 1959 as "Gold guard" in reference to the pickguard. Gold guards are made of anodized aluminum that Fender was experimenting with in 1958 and 1959. Fender updated the model to a typical feux tortoise shell celluloid pickguard in mid 1959 and discontinued using the gold guards. I personally prefer the gold anodized pickguards over the celluloid pickguards because they look fantastic and they don't shrink like the celluloid guards do. The celluloid pickguards shrink so badly sometimes that it's very difficult to remove and reinstall.
I'm currently looking for a nice example of a Fender Jazzmaster with the gold pickguard. This guitar has moved on and I regret selling it nearly every day. This guitar played like a dream, was light weight, and had all the Jazzmaster tone I look for. If you're looking for a Fender guitar collector for your gold guard Jazzmaster then you can contact me here: Sell a Fender Jazzmaster.
Fender Jazzmaster Values
Finding the value of a Fender Jazzmaster begins with an accurate manufacturing date. Here's a great article for help dating a Fender Jazzmaster: How to date a Fender Jazzmaster. I check four main places to find the year: serial number, date stamps, potentiometer codes, and features.
Fender serial numbers aren't the best way to date Fender guitars because they're not necessarily consecutive and they're easily swapped using only a screw driver. The serial numbers are more effective for checking to see if all the parts can date to about the same time period. The serial number on this Fender Jazzmaster 1958 is 5 digits starting with "31xxx". Our records indicate that Fender used this serial number range in 1958.
The next places to look for how to date a Fender Jazzmaster are the neck heel and the bridge pickup cavity. The neck heel of this guitar has a month and year signature indicating that it was made during November of 1958. The bridge pickup cavity indicates that it was routed during during the same month and year.
Now that we know for sure that this is an actual Fender Jazzmaster 1958, we can compare this guitar to others that may be available with similar features. When finding the value of a vintage Fender, it's best to compare your Jazzmaster with guitars from the same model, time period, color, and condition. Fender Jazzmaster values are generally higher for early years of manufacture. Fender guitar collectors with prefer special colors over the standard Sunburst color. The condition of a vintage Jazzmaster is a bit more subjective, but it becomes clear when one serial number is compared to another.
1958 Jazzmaster Features
Here is the text from the listing from this 1958 Jazzmaster. As a Fender guitar collector, I see it as part of my job to analyze important features and catalog them to compare to future vintage Jazzmasters.
Year: 1958. Serial number 31xxx, neck heel pencil date "11/58", volume potentiometer code "304 641" (304 = Stackpole, 6 = 1956, 41 = 41st week).
Measurements: 7 lbs 14 oz total weight, neck depth at the first fret = .78", depth at the 12th fret = .98".
Originality: All parts and finish are original except for a pro refret with vintage correct fret wire, a new bone nut, and one saddle height adjustment screw.
Condition: Excellent! The finish shows plenty of wear and dings but most are on the back of the body. It seems like the original owner tried to touch up some of the dings with a dark marker at some point.
Playability: Excellent! It plays like a dream with a straight neck, fresh refret, working truss rod, and perfect working original electronics.
Sell a Fender Jazzmaster
If you're interested in find a Fender collector who buys Jazzmasters from the 1950s, 1960s, and 1970s then you've come to the right place. I travel worldwide to buy the guitars I've always dreamed of. If you have a gold guard era 1958 or 1959 Fender Jazzmaster then I'm probably interested in it. You can contact me here to sell a Fender guitar.
thanks for the info. that you posted about this particular jazzmaster. I bought one many years ago and it’s anodized pick guard one and the neck says 2-59. It’s an early ’59 model I believe. Was wondering if you have any idea about how many of these were made by Fender, in general? It looks like they only made them for about 8 or 9 months. Any info, you have would be much appreciated.