This vintage Strat is the genuine deal, not a reissue. However, I will stress it is not an all-original, unmolested example from new, but one that has had past modifications and subsequently been restored back to as near original state as reasonably possible. Original or genuine period parts have been retained wherever possible. Replacement pickups (see description below). As there is a lot of history here, I think it best if I describe everything individually in detail so you know exactly what you're getting.This is an alder body, though I do not know the original colour. Before I acquired this guitar the body had already been refinished (badly) in a rather unconvincing shade of almost Fiesta Red, making a further refinish something of a necessity. So I had it stripped of every last trace of red Dulux and a relic refinish applied in Daphne Blue nitro. The relic process included introduction of some subtle lacquer cracking, which should improve the appearance even further still over time. This has been expertly filled with new wood, which was stabilised over several months to avoid any potential future issues.
The tidy result has not left even a trace of an outline visible under the refinish (see pic). Otherwise, the body is in good undamaged original condition.The neck, dated November 1964, is completely straight and warp-free and the truss rod works fine. There has been no refinishing of any kind, and the back has worn through the laquer down the entire length and feels nicely slick and smooth - just the way we all like'em! Following a more recent fret dress, it is entirely buzz and choke free with a low action and playability is excellent. Also, the nut is a recent replacement. At some time in the past, other (probably F-type) tuners have been fitted. The resulting extra holes are neatly filled and, as the pics show, not at all obtrusive. The tuners now fitted are a good set of genuine mid-60s Kluson double-line, just as original. There is some indentation due to wear in several locations all up the fretboard, but nothing at all problematic. If anything it just adds to the overall organic feel of the guitar. As the pics show, there has been some flaking of the headstock transfer.
However, what remains is all flat and secure so should stay put indefinitely. And of course, there is the usual obligatory cigarette burn by the low E tuner Why did people used to do that? Especially since Fender have always supplied new guitars with their own ashtray! I cannot be absolutely sure of the origin of these pickups.
But to the best of my knowledge they date from the 1980s and are based on the bobbins & magnets of either early Fender reissues or early Seymour Duncan vintage stagger type, custom rewound with Formvar coated wire as the originals and the magnets bevelled by hand for additional authenticity. I do not have an accurate meter to quote exact DC resistance values, but I recall from measuring them several years back they are all in the 6.2-6.3kohms region, so about right for late pre-CBS black bottoms.In this same guitar I have also tried stock 80s reissues and, more recently, Bare Knuckle 63 Veneer type. Of the three, this set emerge as the clear winner for a well-balanced set with convincingly authentic tone.
For an extra touch of authenticity, when installing these I filthed-up the output wires to match the surviving original wiring anal or what? I do worry myself sometimes! The original pots and cap are still in place (pots dated week 28 of 1964), and still working well. The control circuit wiring is also original.
A 5-way switch is fitted. However, when I bought the guitar there was also a vintage 3-way in the case which is likely the original.
So this will be included in the sale. The trem/bridge assembly is original, possibly including the arm.At some point in the past, three mini-toggle switches have been fitted in place of the original PU selector. Two of the resulting repaired holes are disguised under the PU switch screws. The third is a very tidily flush repair with decent colour-matching, so doesnt show obtrusively but is visible nonetheless (see pics).
There is some shrinkage, but no splits or any other damage. The aluminium shield behind the pickguard is a modern replacement. Knobs and PU covers are vintage items and likely original. The rear trem cover, as often the case, has vanished in the mists of time.The non-original (1980s tweed) Fender hard case shown is included in the sale. The item "Vintage 1964 Fender Stratocaster, pre-CBS NO RESERVE" is in sale since Thursday, September 29, 2016. This item is in the category "Musical Instruments\Vintage Musical Instruments\Vintage Guitars & Basses\Electric Guitars". The seller is "congeroo" and is located in Belper. This item can be shipped worldwide.