Fender Stratocaster Solid Body Electric Guitar (1964)

Fender  Stratocaster Solid Body Electric Guitar  (1964)
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Item # 8849
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Fender Stratocaster Model Solid Body Electric Guitar (1964), made in Fullerton, California, serial # L53729, sunburst lacquer finish, alder body, maple neck with rosewood fingerboard, original black tolex hard shell case.

This is a lovely example of a very late pre-CBS Stratocaster, made JUST as Leo's company was being sold to the CBS corporation. The guitar has a typical set of "transition" features seen at the time. The neck is dated December 1964 (the last month of "pre-CBS" officially), the pots to the 22nd and 28th weeks of that year. The headstock sports the older style small headstock with the newer gold "transition" logo. The thin rosewood fingerboard has the brand new pearloid dot inlay that was just coming in at the end of 1964, replacing the older "clay" dots.

The sunburst finish on the body shows the trend towards the more quickly sprayed "bull's-eye" bursts that would become the norm in 1965. The pickguard is still the lovely slightly greenish nitrocellulose plastic that would also disappear within the next few months, replaced by less romantic white ABS plastic. All other hardware is still in the pre-CBS mode.

This is simply a great-sounding, medium weight, and resonant Strat built just before "things started a-changin" in Fullerton after the January 1965 sell-out to CBS. All three pickups have the typical 1960s sheen, powerful and crisp without being excessively bright. This is a fine and unmolested product of the high summer of Fender, still housed in a very nice original black Tolex case.
Overall length is 39 3/4 in. (101 cm.), 12 3/4 in. (32.4 cm.) wide at lower bout, and 1 3/4 in. (4.4 cm.) deep. Scale length is 25 1/2 in. (648 mm.). Width of nut is 1 5/8 in. (41 mm.).

This is a nice example overall, original and complete with some general finish wear but no repairs or alterations. The lacquer on the body shows dings, chips, and scrapes overall, typical loss to the edges, and a medium-sized patch of buckle wear to the back. The finish on the back of the neck is beautifully worn down, with that perfectly played-in feel so beloved in old lacquer-finish Fender necks. There are some small darkened areas on the headstock rear around the tuners from the pegs being oiled long ago. A small ding to the Fender logo decal has left the bottom half of the "R" missing, as is the "S" from "Stratocaster".

The original frets have been dressed down a little but still have life left in them and the guitar plays very well. Internally it retains all original hardware and electronics. The finish is a sharp 3-color sunburst with virtually no fade and very little checking. This guitar has been played and loved but not abused, and is ready for the next 50+ years. The original case is still intact and solid with some wear and loss to the leather ends. Excellent - Condition.