Fender Lead Series Owners Club

Discussion in 'Guitar Owners Clubs' started by John C, Aug 9, 2012.

  1. jack.plugg

    jack.plugg Tele-Holic

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    Fender Lead II...

    These guitars are all 30 years old now.

    I like 'em. A little bit Tele, a little bit Strat.

    I've got a couple of them in red, one with a rosewood fingerboard and one with a maple neck, (plus I have a black one too).

    The red ones can be seen in this old video clip...

     
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  2. jack.plugg

    jack.plugg Tele-Holic

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  3. treedroppings

    treedroppings TDPRI Member

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  4. TNcaveman

    TNcaveman TDPRI Member

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    I have a 1980 Lead II that I got in 83 via a trade. I have modified it to try and get what I wanted it to sound like. But it still only fits one general purpose. It's fun to pull out and play occasionally. Now, you say - what is it's special purpose. Well, watch this video:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d528nnu70r8

    The modifications were mostly done in the early 1980's when I was in college. :rolleyes:

    G&L Tremolo
    Dimarzio PAF (from the late 70's)
    Grovers (now Kluson locking 19:1)
    Graftech nut
    Dimarzio noiseless Area 61 neck

    I had a friend that is a tech do a setup and he found and fixed a couple of loose frets, installed the nut, and did a great job on a setup. She plays nicely, just with her super heavy ash body (as heavy as a Rick 4001 bass), not much "Strat" tones. Not bad, but is my 4th favorite guitar. But, the high gain volume pedal stuff, she rules!

    Hope you enjoyed the video. It was fun making it. :cool:

    And here's a picture:



    Stephen

    PS - I'm working up my first home built body and it might be with a Lead II body shape built with a chambered cherry wood body>>>>>>and a Tele neck :eek:) A Lead-caster
     

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    Last edited: Dec 31, 2013
  5. Roshambo

    Roshambo TDPRI Member

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    Anyone have a complete descriptive wiring diagram for the Fender Lead II ? It seems the one I keep running into doesn't show the orientation(pin #'s) of the 7201 & 7211 toggle switches. Not sure this would make a difference, but I don't want to have to solder those points more than once and end up melting the bottom of the toggle switches....it's easy to do. As well, not sure where the ground on the body attaches to the pickguard. And what wire on the pickguard harness goes to the hole that grounds under the bridge plate. I'd like to get it right the first time.

    I appreciate any help or links to a wiring schematic. ;-)
     
  6. Xeavyz

    Xeavyz TDPRI Member

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    Here is my Fender Lead III

    [​IMG]
     
  7. John C

    John C Friend of Leo's

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    Xeavyz - nice Lead III there.

    Roshambo - sorry; I haven't been able to turn up the schematic for the Lead II. For some reason I thought there was one in the owners manual but there isn't. Fender only has the schematic PDFs for the FMIC-era instruments on the website, but you might reach out to them and see if they have a hard copy they could scan and email you.
     
  8. Roshambo

    Roshambo TDPRI Member

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    I have drawn one out and will transfer it to the computer this weekend. I have several Lead II guitars and had to pull the pickguard off to make the drawing. I was trying to avoid that.

    I will post the wiring schematic for the Fender Lead II when I'm done. It will be as thorough as can be.
     
  9. Xeavyz

    Xeavyz TDPRI Member

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    Fun

    All the paper stuff that was with my Lead III

    [​IMG]

    Thanks John :)
     
  10. cjb523

    cjb523 NEW MEMBER!

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    Hello Everyone!

    I've been on these forums many times before, but this thread made me sign up so I could join in! I've got two Lead Is- one completely stock with the red see-through finish and maple neck, one black with a maple neck that has had a new GFS hum bucker installed. I love these guitars, but I want to find a stock hum bucker for the black one. The only other thing that isn't original are the tuners, and I've been looking at the set Fender makes now to replace them, the 'F' type tuners. Does anyone know if these new 'F' tuners that Fender makes now are the same size as the originals?
     
  11. John C

    John C Friend of Leo's

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    Hi; welcome and thanks for posting!

    Now from what I've read the current "F" tuners don't exactly fit as replacements for the old "F" tuners; I believe the body is slightly larger and the diameter of the post & bushings is different. I haven't compared them, but I think I read that either here on TDPRI or on Strat-Talk.
     
  12. TNcaveman

    TNcaveman TDPRI Member

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    Here's my Lead II copy that I just completed. I used my Lead II to make the pattern. I'm working up a thread on the build. It's my first body build, and I used a really nice Musikraft neck that I got a killer deal on. Wood is cherry from my mother-in-law's yard. It came down in a storm that had a EF-1 tornado.

    Hence the name Cherry Tornado-caster. Pickups are Duncan JB Jr bridge and Little 59 neck. They seem to match it well. Sounds great clean or heavily overdrive. Got to work on the blues tones. Tremolo is a Super-Vee Blade Runner. Tuners are Gotoh locking.

    Stephen :D
     

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  13. John C

    John C Friend of Leo's

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    Nice work! Love to see the Lead body shape getting a little love as well.
     
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  14. perttime

    perttime Friend of Leo's

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    A for-sale ad just reminded me of the existence of the Lead. I was considering it in the '80s - but went a different way after all. Now that I look at it, it has a lot of things I'd probably like - except the information that I found lists a pretty narrow neck width at nut: 1.60 in (40.64 mm). Is it really that narrow?

    The guitar in the ad has a pretty destroyed finish. I read that some production runs had weird finish issues.
     
  15. ScottJPatrick

    ScottJPatrick Friend of Leo's

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    John C, is your truss rod still frozen? Have you ever tried putting some 3 in 1 oil down there? If you remove the neck and unscrew the adjustment nut/screw thing, drop some oil into it and leave it headstock down for a while to let the oil work it's way through, that can sometimes release the truss. While your at it make sure the washer isn't jammed as this can also cause the truss to appear seized.
     
  16. John C

    John C Friend of Leo's

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    That's probably right; mine measures in-between 1 9/16" and 1 5/8" on the tape measure I've used for years, but it is almost 1 5/8" (which would be 1.625").

    There has been an ad for a black Lead I here in the USA; the finish on that one is absolutely destroyed and the guy wants about $600 for it - way too much for a Lead in that condition. The finishes used on these from say 1979 into 1981 do have a tendency to turn milky, crack and chip; some really do start falling off the bodies - particularly on an ash bodied Lead (all the wine reds are ash, some of the black ones could be alder by 1981 and the black finish on them is more stable). I don't believe there are any finish problems on the later ones - definitely no issues by the time they brought out the Lead III and started offering other colors at the end of 1981/start of 1982.
     
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  17. John C

    John C Friend of Leo's

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    Scott,

    I haven't tried to adjust it lately, but that's a good idea. That being said these days I can't play that narrow neck for very long (I have some left-hand issues being a lefty who plays righty - since I turned about 46 I'll get a "writers cramp" on narrow nut width necks from any manufacturer because I wind up holding my hand in kind of a "claw" position; when I play say an American Standard with a wider nut width my hand can stay more relaxed). I wind up getting the old girl out 4-6 times a year, and change the strings every couple of years for upkeep.

    I am thinking of taking it over to one of the well-known repair shops in the KC area (either Seuf's shop here in KC or head over to Mass Street Music in Lawrence) and see what they can do just to try to bring it back to life a bit.
     
  18. perttime

    perttime Friend of Leo's

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    Nope: red Lead 2 in Finland.
     
  19. John C

    John C Friend of Leo's

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    Sorry; I'll edit my original post as there is an ad in the USA for a black Lead I that is really trashed.

    Okay, then just kind of judge the finish; just about all of the 1979s and 1980s will have some amount of that milky/white discoloration, and there will be cracks throughout the milky areas. If it's from 1982 it will probably be fine. I think the finish changed in 1981, but I'm not sure when during the year it changed so an '81 could have the cracking finish.
     
  20. Bob Arbogast

    Bob Arbogast Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

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    I had a black Lead II (S/N E009440). I bought it new as a backup when used Strats were really hard to come by in the "Sultans of Swing" era. It was a pretty good guitar. Weighed a ton though; felt like the body was made of concrete. The finish developed long cracks and took on a milky hue. I guess that was pretty common. I eventually installed a middle pickup in it. Sold the guitar in 1982.

    [​IMG]
     
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