This vintage 1964 Fender Stratocaster guitar with 1954 electronics and 1960 body came through the shop a few years ago. I'm always a vintage Fender guitar buyer but I especially love Stratocaster guitars from the 1950s and 1960s. You can contact me here to sell a vintage Fender Stratocaster guitar

This is my favorite Stratocaster I've ever played - but it was quite a surprise when first bought it. I knew it had some strange features when I bought but wasn't sure what it was until I disassembled and inspected it. It looked like a 1964 Fender Stratocaster, was being sold by the daughter of the original owner, and even included a sales receipt from 1965. I couldn't figure out why it had a four digit serial number and no-line Kluson tuners (1954/1955) until I took a look under the hood. Check out all the interior pictures here then skip to the end to see what I've determined it is!

I believe that this guitar has 1954 electronics including pickups, potentiometers, and switch. The potentiometer date code is 304443. "304" is a CTS code or Chicago Telephone Supply, "4" indicates 1954 in this case, and "43" is the 43rd week of that year. You can also see a three way switch with straight sides (1950s era). You can also see black bobbin pickups with tall "D" poles. If vintage (and these certainly are), that dates the pickups to between 1954 and 1954. The single line Kluson tuners were used by Fender from 1954 to 1956. The four digit serial number neck plate was used in 1954 or 1955. That's quite something, isn't it?

Now check out the body. We can see the impressed marks under the pickguard indicating a factory refinish but you can also spot some filled nail holes as well as a filled screw hole. The screw hole pattern indicates that this body was drilled for both the pre-1963 and post 1963 screw hole pattern. If you look at the back of the guitar with the tremolo removed you can see the pencil date on the body. It's a little tough to read but I believe it reads "6/60". It can't be "66" since Fender did not pencil date bodies in 1966. I believe that this is a 1960 body that was factory refinished in 1964.

Lastly, all of the neck features are aligned for late 1964 (except for the tuners). It's clay dots, 1964 date stamp, typical transitional logo, etc. I think that this was a parts guitar likely assembled by a Fender factory worker. What do you think? I'd love to hear your thoughts. Drop me a comment below.

I'm always looking for vintage Fender Stratocaster guitars. Do you have one you might like to sell? I'd love to check it hit. Click the red "Contact Me" button on the lower right corner of your browser to send me a message about your guitar. 

Vintage 1964 Fender Stratocaster electric guitar with 1954 parts

Vintage 1964 Fender Stratocaster electric guitar with 1954 parts

1960 Fender Stratocaster body, factory refinished in 1964

Neck heel date stamp "2NOV64B", 1964 Fender Stratocaster neck

Factory refin marks "SB44", 1960 Fender Stratocaster body refinished in 1964

1954 Fender Stratocaster pickups, potentiometers, switch, capacitor

1960 Fender Stratocaster tremolo claw cavity pencil date "1/60"

1954 Kluson Stratocaster tuners, no line, "PAT APPLD"



John Shults

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