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Old May 26th, 2013, 12:47 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Challenge: please date this 60's Tele!

Hi there,

I can buy an early 60's Tele but it is like we say a 'partscaster'. No problem with that, the price is according to that, but it's really hard to date this guitar. So please join me in this challenge, you tele-detectives, and give me your thoughts! I'll post some pics and let me start buy telling you what I think...please react to that!

I think it's a refinished 1961 custom Telecaster (serial 62394 is 1961 and body date matches to that). Body routed for a (neck) humbucker obviously. Neck is either from 1960 or the pencil-date has worn off and it's a correct 1961 neck. Logo looks not original and certainly isn't a 'custom telecaster' logo (perhaps neck-overspray and new repro logo)! It looks like a real vintage slabboard Fender neck to me though. Tuners are wrong (should be single line Klusons, these are no-lines). Pickguard is not original. String ferrules are not flat with the body on the back, perhaps because of the refinish? Pots are from week 36 of 1960, could be right...capacitor should be paper but looks vintage? Bridge looks vintage and is a combined top-loader and string through body bridge, so could be 1960/end 1959 (but doesn't match with body)? Pickups are hard to see in the pics, bridge pickup looks vintage but I think the wires look strange/new...perhaps new wires or rewound? And is that a nail-hole in the bridge cavity? Wires in the control cavity: some look vintage, some don't...so...should I buy it? What would be a correct price for such a guitar?

Please share your thoughts with me!

By the way, I have NO reason at all to think that the seller is trying to trick me...seems like a nice and honest guy!

Here are the pics:

































Last edited by punch; May 26th, 2013 at 02:15 PM.
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Old May 26th, 2013, 01:10 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Deleted.
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Old May 26th, 2013, 02:58 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Why deleted?
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Old May 26th, 2013, 06:08 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Well, the body is obviously dated 5-61 (bridge pickup cavity).

The neck is at least from before june 1962 when fender changed to a rosewood capped neck. Since Fender started producing slab board rosewood necks in 1959, the neck could be from anywhere between those years.

The only differences between the Custom Tele and the standard version were the double binding and the headstock logo, so the neck actually isn't any different from a Custom Tele neck.

For the right price (whatever that is), I wouldn't hesitate. The guitar is a beauty!
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Old May 26th, 2013, 06:46 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Exactly! A May 1961 Custom or very close.. A super collectors' item too.
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Old May 26th, 2013, 06:48 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Oh!... And by the way... Why do you think that it's a partscaster?
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Old May 26th, 2013, 07:53 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I think that the neck could be from different origin than the body (part caster isn't it?). the decal looks good to me and this decal with patent number start end of 1961, I'd say not as early as may. But I have to check where I red this information from.
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Old May 27th, 2013, 01:17 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Thanks for the reactions so far, please keep them coming! My feeling still says 'no' to this guitar...suppose that only the body (refinished!), neck, bridge, pots and control plate would be original (and not the pickups), what would be a decent price? He's asking $ 6000 for this guitar (with non-original case)...
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Old May 27th, 2013, 04:18 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Hi have some more pics (guitar and neck pickup). Don't know if the neck pickup is original and I'm especially worried about the bridge pickup (see pic above)...the pickup looks totally original on the upper side, but the two wires (black and white) that come out underneath do not look original to me at all! The white is much too white and they look like a combination of plastic and cloth if you see what I mean...Should there be a date under the copper baseplate? Is there a way at all to tell if this bridge pickup is an original 1961 pickup? Bridgeplate looks totally original to me, that's a 1960/1961 'double loader' bridge!



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Old May 27th, 2013, 04:25 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
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Why deleted?
I realised, after posting, and re-reading your OP, that I didn't add a single thing to what was already written, so my post was somewhat obsolete and I deleted it!

Nice looking guitar though!
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Old May 27th, 2013, 04:28 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Ron Garson View Post
I realised, after posting, and re-reading your OP, that I didn't add a single thing to what was already written, so my post was somewhat obsolete and I deleted it!

Nice looking guitar though!
I understand, so you do agree with my opinions? What is your feeling on this guitar? Original enough to buy it?
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Old May 27th, 2013, 06:00 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Judging from the color of the magnetwire the neck pickup looks rewound to me (goldish instead of brown/purple). The lead wires could have been replaced at that point. I have seen that type of wire before as a substitute for the old cloth covered wire. The pickup cover has the right shape and the bobbin might also be original but that is hard to tell from the pictures. You could measure the magnet diameters and check if it is more like 0.195" or about 0.187" (which would indicate a later manufacture). Have you already had a chance to play it? BTW a lot of the 1959 necks did not have a neck date. 1959/1960 necks are often very slim as well, with 1961/1962 being bigger.
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Old May 27th, 2013, 09:19 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Antoon View Post
Judging from the color of the magnetwire the neck pickup looks rewound to me (goldish instead of brown/purple). The lead wires could have been replaced at that point. I have seen that type of wire before as a substitute for the old cloth covered wire. The pickup cover has the right shape and the bobbin might also be original but that is hard to tell from the pictures. You could measure the magnet diameters and check if it is more like 0.195" or about 0.187" (which would indicate a later manufacture). Have you already had a chance to play it? BTW a lot of the 1959 necks did not have a neck date. 1959/1960 necks are often very slim as well, with 1961/1962 being bigger.
You are talking neck pickup, right? My main concern is the bridge pickup, that HAS to be original or I won't buy the guitar...any thoughts? And what price should this guitar have, supposing that only body (refinished), neck, bridge and control-plate are original?
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Old May 27th, 2013, 12:07 PM   #14 (permalink)
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There appears to be a join on one of the black wires in the control cavity, covered with sleeving, or shrink wrap.
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Old May 27th, 2013, 12:33 PM   #15 (permalink)
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There appears to be a join on one of the black wires in the control cavity, covered with sleeving, or shrink wrap.
True, I did see that too...after spending hours of thinking and looking at the pics my guess now is this: it's a 1961 custom Esquire that they put a neck pickup on once, therefore changed the logo and also changed a lot in the wiring harness...I really hope that the bridge pickup is the original one and that it just got some new wires (black and white) once...but how to prove that? What remains strange is the non-dated neck and the incorrect tuners...oh, and the hole in the middle of the top of the bridge pickup seems a bit large to me when compared with pics of real vintage bridge pickups from the early 60's...or am I seeing ghosts now?
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Old May 27th, 2013, 12:50 PM   #16 (permalink)
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The first Custom Telecasters had brown sides, they looked a lot like just ugly brown enamel house paint. I'm not sure exactly when they switched to the black sides, but if it is an original body with a refin, I guess that doesn't matter much. Parts look good. I can't imagine someone would change a decal from Esquire to Telecaster though. If they were that OCD it would have been a custom esquire decal, I think.
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Old May 27th, 2013, 12:53 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Here's a good picture of the brownhttp://www.offsetguitars.com/forums/...p?f=31&t=21418 side...
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Old May 27th, 2013, 01:02 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Andy R View Post
The first Custom Telecasters had brown sides, they looked a lot like just ugly brown enamel house paint. I'm not sure exactly when they switched to the black sides, but if it is an original body with a refin, I guess that doesn't matter much. Parts look good. I can't imagine someone would change a decal from Esquire to Telecaster though. If they were that OCD it would have been a custom esquire decal, I think.
Perhaps because they added a neck pickup?
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Old May 27th, 2013, 05:07 PM   #19 (permalink)
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My thoughts are that you would buy this guitar with the following in mind. We all agree that this guitar is original wood. The Neck has been refretted, (not so well, there are some bent tangs on the 4th last pic) The Body refinished, colour not quite right ( given that you can only tell so much with these pics) with not enough Red "band" (too thin) and of course the the sides not being the purple/brown, with the binding front and back edges not as thick as you would see on an original. I think I am in the replacement decal camp, it looks to me as though it may even be lacquered over, but hard to be conclusive from the pics, but something that is worth asking about as it means a refinished Neck and Body...
As for the parts, well you can only speculate, but I see Gotoh Tuners, a Plastic Guard and "maybe" flat poles in the Bridge Pickup (once again the pics aren't good enough to tell)
So definitely a "Partscaster", one which the sum of the parts is quite lower than the asking price. For this money I'd be looking at a nice clean original 67 or 68, which is achievable.
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Old May 28th, 2013, 01:55 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Mmm...still having doubts...but the neck is an original 'between mid 59 and early 62' neck...and the body is an original 61 body...we agree about that...tempting! Perhaps if the price was lower...I can see this guitar with a new refinish in a great reliced custom colour, with quality (perhaps even vintage) pickups...new correct logo...would be a great project! But for $ 6000 ???
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