Did fender fix the tele player series problem

Discussion in 'Telecaster Discussion Forum' started by 5mile, May 8, 2020.

  1. 5mile

    5mile TDPRI Member

    Posts:
    41
    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2011
    Location:
    Grand haven
    I have a player series strat and love it
    Playing a squire tele and it’s like ok at best need a better tele
    Did fender fix the bridge problem on newer 2020 models?
    I figured you guys would know before I call my Sweetwater guy
     
  2. vanr

    vanr Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,164
    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2003
    Location:
    AZ
    Please explain what the problem is as I just purchased a Players Tele HH last evening.
     
    GGardner likes this.
  3. bsman

    bsman Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    2,144
    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2003
    Location:
    Santa Clara
    IIRC, they used the wrong saddles in the bridge, to the extent that restringing would be extremely difficult, as the slots for the strings do not line up with the holes through the body.
     
  4. vanr

    vanr Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,164
    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2003
    Location:
    AZ
    Well I guess that can be fixed relatively cheaply with a new set of saddles.
     
    Archtop Bill likes this.
  5. schmee

    schmee Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Posts:
    10,827
    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2003
    Location:
    northwest
    Are they off head to tail or up and down?
     
  6. John C

    John C Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    3,578
    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2005
    Location:
    Kansas City
    Okay more detail is needed here.

    When the Player series was introduced all the Strats with the non locking trems, the "regular" Tele and the Tele HH all had bent steel saddles for their bridges. This is absolutely not a problem for the Strats or for the HH Tele.

    Let me repeat that: This is absolutely not a problem for the Strats or for the HH Tele.

    It was a problem for the regular (SS) Tele with the long plate bridge - the saddles were too short (front to back) and therefore the saddle was displaced from the holes drilled in the body and the bridge plate for the strings. Now I think most people who have had a Strat with the vintage bridge have at one point or another had to move a saddle slightly to restring the guitar. However, on the Player Teles you would have to move the saddle close to 1/2" to restring when the saddles were "intonated". And I put "intonated" in quotes because on some guitars you a few strings were at the limit of the saddle's adjustment screws so they really couldn't be properly intonated.

    Fender didn't necessarily recognize the issue - they rolled the guitars out anyway and didn't react until buyers and dealers started complaining about it. Their remedy was to replace the bent steel saddles on the SS Teles with solid saddles that were pretty similar to those they used on the prior MIM Standard models (and similar to the saddles on the MIM Deluxe Teles). Most of these "first batch" SS Teles were fixed with these new longer saddles; Fender did that for the original owners under warranty. There were a few that Fender considered "unfixable" - the bodies might have been misdrilled as well, or that particular guitar just wouldn't have room to intonate properly even with the new saddles - so those guitars were replaced by Fender under warranty. By the fall of 2018 Fender was shipping the next batches of SS Teles with the solid saddle bridge.

    That being said there are probably still a few new Player SS Teles out there in dealer stock with the original bent steel saddles; I wouldn't buy one of them.

    For what it's worth I jumped into purchasing a Player SS Tele back in July 2018. Mine was one of few that had to be completely replaced. Unfortunately the replacement model (I couldn't even get the same color as they were sold out of my original color) wasn't half the guitar tone-wise (and was a good 1/2 pound heavier) than the one with the bad bridge was so I took the hit and traded it to Guitar Center instead of trying to sell it on my own - at least that way someone could spend time demoing it to see if they really liked it.
     
    tamer_of_banthas likes this.
  7. unixfish

    unixfish Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Posts:
    10,939
    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2013
    Location:
    Northeast Ohio, USA
    Initially, these used the bent saddles like on a Strat. The hole where the string passed through the body and through the saddle did not extend back far enough, making it hard to get a new string in.

    Most if the issues were solved by using a block saddle with the elongated hole rather than the bent steel. However, a few early production units had the ferrules too far back and they could not be resolved.

    Fender recalled the bad bodies, and will do a warranty update to replace bent saddles with blocks on the ones that are repairable.
     
  8. bsman

    bsman Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    2,144
    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2003
    Location:
    Santa Clara
    Just glad I kept my 09 MIM standard tele and got a Player Strat! :)
     
  9. frettchen

    frettchen TDPRI Member

    Age:
    35
    Posts:
    60
    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2020
    Location:
    Ridgecrest, CA - Northern Italy
    thanks, i have never heard of this before. I'm thinking to buy one in few days, it has a s/n MX1910...
    Could it be a possible candidate for that problem?
     
  10. John C

    John C Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    3,578
    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2005
    Location:
    Kansas City
    No; all the ones with bent saddles were MX18s. Remember, Fender changes over the MIM serial numbers about the middle of the year, so they had just gone to MX18 serial numbers when the Player series was introduced. They had switched to the solid saddles by the fall of 2018. Since an MX19 wouldn't have been made until say May-June 2019 you'll be fine.

    It's also pretty visible whether they have bent steel saddles or cast saddles. Again, this is the "regular"/SS Tele; the HH Tele has a hardtail Strat bridge with bent steel saddles and was always fine.
     
  11. frettchen

    frettchen TDPRI Member

    Age:
    35
    Posts:
    60
    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2020
    Location:
    Ridgecrest, CA - Northern Italy
    Thanks a lot!
     
  12. Lonn

    Lonn Friend of Leo's

    Age:
    57
    Posts:
    3,769
    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2007
    Location:
    Indiana
    Interesting. I bought a new 2019 Player Tele a few weeks ago and had zero issues with it.
     
  13. Lefty Addams

    Lefty Addams Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,689
    Joined:
    May 6, 2012
    Location:
    England
    That really isn't the point, that would incur further purchase from the customer, instead Fender kept the whole thing quiet and didn't put out any clarification or apology for the problem.

    Arrogant and disgusting imo.
     
  14. DougM

    DougM Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    4,265
    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2017
    Location:
    Honolulu, HI
    Just like the fact that they're still selling the Mustang 1 V2 amp, which requires the discontinued Fuse software to access 9 of the 17 amp models available to that amp, and to adjust or defeat any of the stombox effects on the factory presets, and any more than rudimentary adjustments of the modulation and delay/reverb effects.
     
  15. DLReed

    DLReed Tele-Meister

    Age:
    36
    Posts:
    249
    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2019
    Location:
    NNY
    I purchased an '18 from a shop after playing a couple of them. The one I liked also happened to be the only one with the bent steel saddles. I asked the sales guy about it and he contacted Fender who sent him a whole new bridge with the block saddles. No other issues with it a 'tall.
     
  16. John C

    John C Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    3,578
    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2005
    Location:
    Kansas City
    This was only on the first run Player Teles. As @Lefty Addams says Fender kept it quiet and basically just corrected the issue under warranty - but not until someone bought the guitar and complained about the bridge.

    By the time they ran the next batches of Player Teles they had changed the bridge to the solid saddles; all that happened in 2018.

    Most of these first batch that is all had to be done, but some of them had the ferrule holes drilled in the wrong spot so Fender replaced the entire guitar (more cost-effective for them than replacing the body).
     
  17. 5mile

    5mile TDPRI Member

    Posts:
    41
    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2011
    Location:
    Grand haven
    Ok thanks so much for the detailed explanation!!
    I knew you guys would know .Ive been stalking Sweetwater all weekend
    They’re sold out on all player Teles at the moment
    All the new saddles are like the old Mexican models
    Leaning towards a white one
     
    Last edited: May 9, 2020
  18. EspyHop

    EspyHop Tele-Holic

    Age:
    46
    Posts:
    526
    Joined:
    May 28, 2018
    Location:
    Dayton, OH
    Seems easy enough to fix. Just get a Gotoh In-Tune 3-brass barrel saddle bridge. Problem solved.
     
IMPORTANT: Treat everyone here with respect, no matter how difficult!
No sex, drug, political, religion or hate discussion permitted here.