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Bowling ball finish teles.

Discussion in 'Telecaster Discussion Forum' started by gimmeatele, Apr 17, 2021.

  1. gimmeatele

    gimmeatele Tele-Afflicted

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    I was watching a John 5 vid on YouTube yesterday and he mentioned the bowling ball finish from the 80's I think he said, he didn't have one but fender made him a new one. Then today a bowling ball strat pops up on my Instagram, does anyone have one? I had never heard of them till yesterday
     
  2. closedmri

    closedmri TDPRI Member

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    That could look cool! Sounds like a very thick finish
     
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  3. jfgesquire

    jfgesquire Tele-Afflicted

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    They are exactly the same as the much maligned 1983-84 two knob top loader Strats.

    It was a third party guy that did the finishes for Fender.

    The necks are 12" radius and are fantastic.

    The alder bodies are average weight total weight around 8lbs all parts included.

    Lots of info on the 83-84 Strats. Many think they were awful because they only had one tone knob.
     
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  4. Joe M

    Joe M Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I remember those, but never saw or played a Tele with that finish, just Strats with several different colors.
     
  5. RodeoTex

    RodeoTex Doctor of Teleocity

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    At an Arlington guitar show in the 90s one vendor has all three Strata and all three Teles. He was selling them as a group of I recall.

    I just remember not understanding why the Strats didn't have any tremolo cavities on the back. Only later side I learn that they had the Freeflyte tremolo system.
     
  6. John C

    John C Friend of Leo's

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    I remember them but like others never saw one in person. They are very rare; Teles even more rare that Strats. As mentioned they were 1984 Standard models - so 2-knob Strat and the top-loader Tele.

    I came to find out later that the guy who did the finishes for Fender went on to do the swirled finishes for Ibanez in the late 80s/early 90s on the Steve Vai Jems and Universe (7-string) guitars.

    EDIT: I found a couple of sources online that mention there were 225 Strats but only 75 Teles in the bowling ball finishes; there were 3 colors so for Teles that was 25 of each while there were 75 Strats in each color.
     
  7. jfgesquire

    jfgesquire Tele-Afflicted

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    They crammed the springs and claw under the pickups.

    I personally liked the sound. The finish was thick and rubber-plastic feeling even on the non bowling ball ones!

    tapatalk_1562969979604.jpeg
     
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  8. johnnylaw

    johnnylaw Tele-Afflicted

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    FF0A36FF-A04E-4284-80F3-538B39E9FA27.jpeg
    Close. Well, sort of...
     
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