Guitar Safari Champion: Fender Jazzmaster 1960 Black & Gold

John Shults

Posted on December 30 2021

Fender Jazzmaster 1960 Black with gold hardware for guitar safari champion collector John Shults


For a vintage guitar collector, there's nothing like the feeling of being en route to buy a guitar you've always dreamed of. It's become known as a Guitar Safari; the term coined by the patron saint of guitar collecting: Joe Bonamassa. I was blown away when one of my favorite guitar related authors, Tony Bacon, called to chat guitar safaris and ended up writing an article about me for titled The Guitar Safari Champion. One of the guitars that sticks out as having contributed to that title is this 1960 Fender Jazzmaster Black with gold hardware.

I'm always on the hunt to collect the vintage Fender guitars I've always dreamed of. If you're looking for help with Fender guitar dating for 1950s and 1960s guitars then check out Fender Serial Number Lookup. Or if you're curious about how much I would value your Fender guitar then contact me here: Sell a Fender. I am especially looking for custom color Fender guitars with gold hardware from the 1950s and 1960s. 

Check out the previous post here: The Guitar Safari Champion and the Gibson Les Paul Standard 1958 Burst

Guitar collector John Shults buys vintage Fender guitars near me

Fender Jazzmaster 1960 Black with gold hardware

I received a call from the original owner of this 1960 Fender Jazzmaster is rare custom color Black finish with gold plated hardware. I was half way to Clarksville, TN to buy a 1962 Fender Stratocaster but pulled over to look at pictures of this guitar. He was about 45 minutes north of Pittsburgh, PA but was willing to hold it for me after I expressed my strong interest in buying the guitar with a high enough offer that I was confident they couldn't refuse. As luck would have, I already had a flight to Pittsburgh booked a few days later to buy this 1953 Gibson Les Paul goldtop. It was perfect timing. 

I arrived in Pittsburgh eager to secure both the Gibson Les Paul and Fender Jazzmaster guitars. I made quick work of the inspection on the '53 Gibson Les Paul since it was clean, all original, and a killer guitar. I loaded it back into the rental car and made the trip out to a small former mining town to check out the Jazzmaster. I think the 1960 Jazzmaster sellers were surprised at the depth of the inspection that I needed to do on the guitar, but I was so curious to see the proof myself that it couldn't wait. 

I brought me typical vintage guitar inspection tool kit: Kyser capo for holding strings in place while I take the neck off,  Stew Mac Tool Kit, and phillips head screw driver. I clamped the capo on, loosened the strings, and carefully backed out the four phillips head screws holding the neck to the body. I was thrilled to find factory neck shims, a proper working truss rod nut, and a textbook original custom color Black finish in the neck pocket. I continued the inspection by removing the screws at the output jack end of the pickguard, pealed it back a bit, and observed the nice clear nail hole and original potentiometers. The Jazzmaster had everything I look for in an original custom color Fender from 1960. 

The gold hardware on this Fender Jazzmaster 1960 makes it quite a special find. Fender offered the gold plated hardware option on some models and a decent upcharge for those willing to pay. Most players considered the typical chrome hardware to be sufficient so very few Fender guitars were ordered with gold parts. Nearly every bit of metal on the guitar is plated in gold; even the metal parts not visible under the tremolo plate are gold.

Check out another gold hardware Fender here: Fender Jaguar 1965 Black with gold hardware.

Fender Jazzmaster 1960 with original hang tag

Fender Guitar Values

As a Fender guitar collector, I'm always on the hunt for the best examples of Fender guitars from the 1950s and 1960s. If you're curious about how much I would value your prized Fender Stratocaster, Telecaster, Jazzmaster, or Jaguar, then I'd be happy to take a look. I may be the buyer you're looking for or could connect you with someone who's always dreamed of owning one. You can contact me here: Sell a Fender guitar


More Posts


Leave a comment

All blog comments are checked prior to publishing