Vintage Fender Telecaster - 1952!
Posted on April 19 2019
Here's a neat story about two ladies that ended up with a special guitar - a Fender Telecaster from 1952. It's a common enough thing in the vintage guitar world. Someone purchases a vintage Fender or Gibson or Martin guitar in the 1950s or 1960s and cherishes it their entire life until they pass. The family finds the instrument and realizes the value has increased spectacularly since their relative bought it. Some decide to keep since it's not hurting anyone just sitting there. Some decide to sell since it's not helping anyone while it's sitting in the closet either!
A similar thing happened with the above guitar: a 1964 Fender Stratocaster, well, sort of! This beautiful example came from Kingman, Arizona from the daughter of the purchaser on the original receipt that was with the guitar dating to April of 1965. Her father bought the guitar in San Bernadino, California in a music shop that's now closed. The guitar was in beautiful condition but had some strange features including an 1960 style pickguard, 1954 Stratocaster pickups, 1954 Fender serial number, and pre-1956 tuners!
I carefully inspected every part to find out what it was. The 1954 era Fender serial number was on the back plate but also on the receipt from 1965! What I ended up finding was that the body of the guitar was from 1960 but refinished in 1964. The potentiometer codes indicated a manufacturing date of the 45th week of 1954. The pickups and selector switch were not made after 1956 and were correct for 1954. The neck was completely correct for the date stamp on the heel which was October of 1964! I think the the most likely reason for all this was that the guitar was a lash up of parts that were put together and finished out in late 1964 or early 1965.
Vintage guitars like this require a careful eye to inspect, date, and verify every single part on them. I was honored to get to work with this one and loved every minute of the inspection process. If you've inherited a vintage Fender guitar like a Telecaster, Stratocaster, Jazzmaster, Jaguar, or similar, I'd love to check it out with you. You can reach out to me here at my Sell My Guitar page for contact information.