Fender Stratocaster Solid Body Electric Guitar (1962)

Fender  Stratocaster Solid Body Electric Guitar  (1962)
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Item # 11301
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Fender Stratocaster Model Solid Body Electric Guitar (1962), made in Fullerton, California, serial # 75366, white re- finish, alder body with Brazilian rosewood fingerboard on maple neck, period black hard shell case.

This is a much-worn but super vibey 1962 slab-board Pre-CBS Fender Stratocaster, refinished more than once and heavily played over the last six decades. Apart from the scruffy body finish it remains a surprisingly complete and original guitar with patina and mojo to spare! This is a late example of a slab-board Fender, made in the summer of 1962 just before the rosewood fingerboard was noticeably reduced in depth.

This guitar's body was (very) non-professionally refinished white many decades ago, after what look like a couple of other finishes were previously applied and removed. It was probably sunburst originally, but too little remains to tell for sure. The body shows a lot of subsequent wear with dings, dents and chips that are the result of actual use, not the artificial relicing common today. While somewhat ratty looking (attractively so we would say) this Strat has a serious "real relic" vibe, and has been with one owner since the early 1970s.

The remaining neck finish is original, including the headstock and decal. It has been well worn in, and from the look of it the lacquer was sanded off the back between the nut and heel. It does have that glorious worn-to-the wood Fender neck feel. The original ink-stamped date mark of July 62 on the heel is present and undisturbed. The tuners are original, the frets are either original or an ancient exact refret. They show some wear in the lower positions, the fingerboard itself has surprisingly little wear and playability is excellent.

The beautiful original greenish celluloid pickguard in good shape overall with one typical crack by the neck pickup, but less shrinkage than some and no pulled or broken corners. The three black-bobbin pickups, pots and cap are all original as are the 3-way switch and cloth leads. As would be expected with multiple refinishes some of the solder joints have been re-done over the years, and the cloth wire to the jack is more recent. The pots are a matched set all coded to the 18th week of 1962. The middle pickup has a decent sonic output but reads as nearly dead; it still combines well with the others but the tone control pulls it almost fully down, an indicator of an open coil. This can be rewound as desired or left as is, it remains surprisingly functional.

The bridge components including saddles and trem arm appear to be original to the instrument, with some typical corrosion to the saddles. It is possible just the height adjustment screws were replaced long ago, as they have less corrosion than we would expect. The neckplate is original; one of the four neck mounting screws is newer. The trem springs and claw are original, the trem cover is missing. The ground solder joint on the claw has been re-done multiple times.

This Strat has obviously lived a hard life, but despite some indignities it has survived through it all remaining a fine player's instrument, a '62 Strat that has been played and played and still come back for more. Although this Strat looks cool as is, this is also a splendid opportunity to have one of todays excellent restorers render it into the custom Color of your dreams: Sonic Blue? Shoreline Gold? Coral Pink? The possibilities are endless!
Overall length is 38 15/16 in. (98.9 cm.), 12 3/4 in. (32.4 cm.) wide at lower bout, and 1 1/2 in. (3.8 cm.) in depth, measured at side of rim. Scale length is 25 1/2 in. (648 mm.). Width of nut is 1 5/8 in. (41 mm.).

This guitar has been (very) non-professionally refinished as noted; the finish on the body is rough with LOTS of wear. The coat on the body now appears to be the undercoat of an older darker white/yellow finish that apparently was scraped off decades ago; under the pickguard this is still intact (!). The body dues have some deep dings and dents, with a lot of finish gone from the back and one especially deep worn spot well into the wood on the lower edge of the treble side horn. The guitar is fully playable as is, and also a fine candidate for a full restoration. The piece of wood between the neck heel and neck pickup shows sealed cracks on either side; this section was likely glued back in place at one point but is completely solid.

All hardware appears original except as noted above. The rear trem cover and snap-on bridge cover are long gone, but all else is intact. As noted above the middle pickup has a split in the coil, but is still surprisingly functional with a decent sound even so; it can be re-wound or left alone at the player's discretion. The other read 6.81 (neck) and 5.826 (bridge). This guitar retains a great feel, however one feels about the funky-as-heck finish this is a fine player's instrument. It resides in a slightly later (c.1965) Black Tolex Fender case, and has had one owner since the early 1970s, resting undisturbed for decades before recently resurfacing. Very Good + Condition.