1961 Fender Jazzmaster
1961 Fender Jazzmaster
This vintage 1961 Fender Jazzmaster has recently come in from the widow of its original owner. It's completely original aside from a replaced nut and switch tip. It still has the original leather strap, bridge cover, and hardshell case! 1961 Jazzmasters have some excellent early features including the patent pending stamped tremolo with stiffer spring, slab Rosewood fretboard, black bobbin pickups, and attractive smooth transition sunburst finish.
Make and Model: Fender Jazzmaster
Year: 1961. Bridge pickup cavity pencil date "7/61", neck heel pencil date "7/61", serial number 63xxx, potentiometer code "304-6101" (304 = Stackpole, 61 = 1961, 01 = 1st week). Check out How to date a vintage Fender Jazzmaster guitar.
Measurements: 8 lbs 2oz, 1 5/8" nut width, neck depth at first fret = .80", depth at 12th = .96"
Originality: All parts original except for the switch tip and nut. The finish is original and free of overspray and all solder appears to be untouched. I've installed new springy foam and kept the hardened originals. I also installed a StewMac full neck pocket shim and kept the original shims in the case.
Playability: Good! The neck is straight, truss rod adjusts properly, electronics have been cleaned, and the set up is excellent. The frets are worn so many players would prefer a refret.
Condition: Very good with scratches, dings, and wear throughout. The original case is thoroughly worn and the bottom end's leather covering is mostly torn off. I removed duct tape from the leather end but there's a lot of residue left.
Notes: All of the guitars I sell are tough to let go of, but this one is among the most difficult. I built a relationship with its original owner starting in early 2019. He wanted to sell but we couldn't come together on it for a long time. I would call him every few months and we would end up chatting guitars and life. I called him again this October but someone else picked up his phone. It was his widow. She remembered me and how her husband talked about wanting to sell me his guitar. She graciously sold me the guitar and the proceeds helped cover the cost of his funeral. She met him in a bar over 50 years ago after immigrating from Germany. This guitar was a stark reminder of what it means for guitars to outlive us and continue on after we're gone.