Help Dating my Tele

Discussion in 'Telecaster Discussion Forum' started by jholla, May 14, 2019.

  1. jholla

    jholla TDPRI Member

    Posts:
    9
    Joined:
    May 13, 2019
    Location:
    Berkeley CA
    No, I'm not trying to take my tele out on a date, just want to confirm its vintage.

    “Made in Japan” is stamped on the back of the neck and it has “KTLC-62B” (with the K much larger in red) inside the neck heel. I don't see anything else that looks like a serial number.

    According to this article:

    https://www.guitarrepairbench.com/guitar-dating/japanese-fender-serial-number/

    that means it is a 1990-1991 MIJ.

    Can anyone confirm or tell me anything else about it (month/year/location)?

    Pics attached - much appreciated!
     

    Attached Files:

  2. brogh

    brogh Assistant Admin Staff Member

    Posts:
    4,542
    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2010
    Location:
    italy
    Admin Post
    K, TLC-62b is the model number, K is probably reflecting he year, serial number should be under the made in japan behind the neck, maybe on this particular model they put it elsewhere, looks good to me...
     
  3. Danjabellza

    Danjabellza Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    2,111
    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2014
    Location:
    Pahrump, nv
    When dating a guitar, it’s important to buy it nice things and spend plenty of quality time together. New strings are important, but not too soon, you don’t want to come off as desperate. Down the road when you’ve grown together a little more you can always buy it a nice new case to demonstrate a protective and supportive spirit.
     
    bravescoob, ftbtx, thechad and 6 others like this.
  4. jholla

    jholla TDPRI Member

    Posts:
    9
    Joined:
    May 13, 2019
    Location:
    Berkeley CA
    Thanks, yeah, I can't find a serial number anywhere. You can see in the first pic the KTLC is the only marking under the "made in japan" behind the neck. There is a part of the body where the neck is attached where the finish is warn off (second pic) but it looks like that was just another KTLC number.
     
  5. Piggy Stu

    Piggy Stu Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    3,759
    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2017
    Location:
    UK
    Does it help if I narrow the date range down to somewhere between 1952 and the present day?

    Lovely guitar btw
     
    unixfish likes this.
  6. unixfish

    unixfish Poster Extraordinaire

    Posts:
    8,714
    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2013
    Location:
    Northeast Ohio, USA
    Not 1949 as a prototype, or 50 as a Broadcaster, or 51 as a Nocaster? Wow, really limiting yourself there. :lol::lol::lol:
     
  7. Piggy Stu

    Piggy Stu Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    3,759
    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2017
    Location:
    UK
    I admit there was some guesswork, but I like to live dangerously
     
    Treadplatedual and unixfish like this.
  8. teletimetx

    teletimetx Poster Extraordinaire

    Posts:
    9,435
    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2011
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    Can't narrow the date any more from what I can see.

    Two things to ask - string tree doesn't look original; thought most if these '62 reissues came with butterfly style. And not sure if bridge is original either. From what I've seen, the 62 came with 3-saddle steel.

    Very fine looking guitar!
     
  9. jholla

    jholla TDPRI Member

    Posts:
    9
    Joined:
    May 13, 2019
    Location:
    Berkeley CA
    SO helpful - I knew this was the place to turn for answers!

    And nice SG!
     
  10. kinkstah

    kinkstah Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,172
    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2007
    Location:
    Brittany
    1985-1989 would be my guess:

    The terminology "Made in Japan" was used between 1985 and 1997, then again from 2007 to this day (1997-2007 was the "Crafted in Japan" era) : see chart below (straight from a former version of the Fender Japan website).

    [​IMG]

    Note that the font used for the MIJ series differs between 85-97 and post 2007 eras. Yours looks like a 85-97 Telecaster. See this thread (post #2) for details w. pics : http://www.tdpri.com/threads/dating-japanese-tele-52-reissue.673833/

    Also, the s/n used to be located on the neck heel, under the "made in japan"/"crafted in japan" decals, but some 80's models didn't have such a s/n, while the neck plate was stamped FENDER.

    The "K TLC 62B" is, indeed, not a serial number : "TLC" standed forTeleCaster Custom, "62" for the model it's based upon (roughly a 1962 Tele -it came originally with a 3 threaded steel barrel-saddles bridge), while "B" was for Binding. No idea what the K is about. But Fender Japan were famous for having somewhat esoteric codes/stamps in the neck poket.
    Hope this helps. Nice guitar, by the way (I'm a fan of those Fender Japan Tellies)
     
    Last edited: May 14, 2019
    Luthi3rz likes this.
  11. jholla

    jholla TDPRI Member

    Posts:
    9
    Joined:
    May 13, 2019
    Location:
    Berkeley CA
    Good insights - will keep digging - thanks!
     
  12. Piggy Stu

    Piggy Stu Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    3,759
    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2017
    Location:
    UK
    I paid gbp30 for that SG, and traded it for a really good sounding MIM strat that would fetch 300
     
    jholla likes this.
  13. jholla

    jholla TDPRI Member

    Posts:
    9
    Joined:
    May 13, 2019
    Location:
    Berkeley CA

    Interesting! Being that @teletimetx thinks the bridge might not be original maybe the serial number was on the original one. Or maybe this was in the short period when they weren't stamping serial numbers anywhere. I feel like I've seen other late-80s early-90s teles with original 6 saddle bridge but either way I LOVE how it plays and I love the paint job so I'm happy :)
     
  14. kinkstah

    kinkstah Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,172
    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2007
    Location:
    Brittany
    I agree with teletimetx : bridge is not original. However, the numbers that were stamped on the bridge plates were no s/n either (for example, the so-called "A serial numbers" stamped on bridge plates were all over the place through '90s and 00's). So, should you have the original bridge, it would not have helped as regards to dating the year of manufacture.
    The most important thing is that it's a beautiful (and quality) guitar that you have here. Enjoy!
     
    jholla likes this.
  15. thechad

    thechad Tele-Meister

    Age:
    33
    Posts:
    184
    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2018
    Location:
    Kamloops
    If the SN isn’t on the neck, maybe check under the pick guard? I’m not sure that’s where it will be but that would be my best guess as it’s MIA in all the usual places.
     
  16. toomuchfun

    toomuchfun Tele-Holic

    Posts:
    926
    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2014
    Location:
    NE US
    I think Kinkstah has it right, mid - late '80's. I have a sunburst model of the 62 Custom. The serial number was on the bridge, it had an A before the number to designate MIJ. The string tree isn't original either, had the standard butterfly type.

    Here are some pics of mine.

    MIJ-62RI.jpg

    Here's the bridge, hard to see but there is an A before the number. Note the saddles were originally steel threaded type. Pick up isn't original either.

    62_MIJ_CUSTOM_bridge.jpg
     
    BobbyMac likes this.
  17. jholla

    jholla TDPRI Member

    Posts:
    9
    Joined:
    May 13, 2019
    Location:
    Berkeley CA
    I'll check next time I change strings!
     
  18. jholla

    jholla TDPRI Member

    Posts:
    9
    Joined:
    May 13, 2019
    Location:
    Berkeley CA
    Interesting. Thanks for the reference!
     
  19. jholla

    jholla TDPRI Member

    Posts:
    9
    Joined:
    May 13, 2019
    Location:
    Berkeley CA
    Just found this 87 MIJ on Reverb:

    https://reverb.com/item/22624459-19...aster-twisted-tele-pickups-w-hard-fender-case

    Same paint job, three saddle bridge with apparent SN, butterfly string tree, same "Made In Japan" print on back of neck, same Fender logo on the silver plate. Mine's in better shape :twisted:

    This is compelling confirmation...

    Note to our friendly neighborhood admin: this isn't a "for sale" post - just reference for everyone offering help dating my tele.

    Thanks all!
     
  20. John C

    John C Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

    Posts:
    2,911
    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2005
    Location:
    Kansas City
    @jholla - it looks like your bridge has been changed to a modern 6-saddle one. I suspect the serial number was on the original bridge plate (for the vintage-style 3-saddle bridge) like it is on toomuchfun's Tele. So probably mid-late 80s is as close as you're going to get on this one.
     
IMPORTANT: Treat everyone here with respect, no matter how difficult!
No sex, drug, political, religion or hate discussion permitted here.


  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.