Fender Musicmaster Solid Body Electric Guitar (1957)

Fender  Musicmaster Solid Body Electric Guitar  (1957)
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Item # 11200
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Fender Musicmaster Model Solid Body Electric Guitar (1957), made in Fullerton, California, serial # -20358, desert sand lacquer finish, alder body, maple neck, original brown hard shell case.

This is a lightly worn-in but completely original early example of Fender's first student guitar: the unassuming but very functional Musicmaster. Built to expand the company's hold on the teaching studio/young student market, these guitars were many 1950s and '60s players' first electric, far more playable than most and stylish in an understated way. They were designed to be good enough to get kids hooked on playing electric, but not so flashy as to stop them still lusting after a new Stratocaster down the road!

The Musicmaster features a very short-scale maple neck on a plain double cutaway body that looks unsurprisingly like a juvenile Stratocaster. It mounts a single pickup in the neck position with standard volume and tone controls. The one-piece maple neck on this guitar is pencil-dated 9-57 on the heel; the pots are coded to the 32nd week of that year. The neat, comfortable little neck has a rounder version of the classic '57 Fender "V" with a less prominent spine than some. The original anodized metal pickguard has some loss to the lacquer overcoat but less strum wear than many and still looks cool as ever!

The Musicmaster is not Fender's most versatile guitar but a super handy and good sounding one, with a surprising warmth and depth through the right amp. This example has had some use over the decades but not been stripped of its more valuable parts (knobs, neckplate, pots, and wiring) as so many have and remains a very cool and relatively affordable genuine 1950s Fender guitar, complete in the original hard case.
Overall length is 37 5/8 in. (95.6 cm.), 12 1/4 in. (31.1 cm.) wide at lower bout, and 1 1/2 in. (3.8 cm.) in depth, measured at side of rim. Scale length is 22 1/2 in. (572 mm.). Width of nut is 1 5/8 in. (41 mm.).

This is a completely original example of the first-generation Musicmaster showing some general wear and tear but no repairs or alterations for its 65 years on the planet. The body finish is scuffed in spots with typical dings, dents, and chips, and some deeper scratches to the top mostly on the upper body horn. The neck finish shows typical checking with some dents and chips, especially as usual in the first position on the fingerboard. The Fender logo decal is nicely preserved.

The metal pickguard less of the common picking wear than some, with some loss to the lacquer overcoat below the strings but little wear down to the metal beneath. The Unfortunate tendency to show pick marks fairly quickly was why Fender discontinued this attractive feature in mid-'59! The plastic pickup cover has some light pick wear, and the metal parts show some minor corrosion but nothing tragic.

Internally the pickup, pots and electronics remain completely original and untouched. The original Kluson tuners are intact, the plastic buttons have survived and even the original snap-on bridge cover is still present. The original small frets have some wear, but playability is still quite good. It still lives in the original brown Fender case that shows some wear but is fully functional. Overall Excellent - Condition.