First Post! Educate me on my MIJ ‘52 please

Discussion in 'Telecaster Discussion Forum' started by stateofidleness, Jun 30, 2020 at 11:17 PM.

  1. stateofidleness

    stateofidleness TDPRI Member

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    Howdy from Texas y’all! First time posting and am hoping you all can educate me a bit on some questions I have about my MIJ ‘52 reissue Tele. Hoping the pics Help a bit.

    Some of the things I’m not sure about...

    1. there’s a really thin brown wire going into the bridge pickup slot that’s not connected to anything. What’s that for? Should it be soldered to something?

    2. no markings on either pickup. Can I assume those are stock then? Seller said neck pickup was a “dragonfire tele” pickup.

    3. the bridge pickup has a copper looking plate on the bottom. I’ve read this is a common “mod” on Teles. Is this original?

    4. the bridge plate says “fender pat. Pending” but there’s no serial number, and it also appears to be “notched” on the high E side. Can I assume this isn’t the original bridge plate?

    5. I took the neck off in search of an actual serial number but couldn’t find one. Both body and neck are stamped TL-52. Is there any other way to accurately date the year of this guitar?

    thanks in advance!
     

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  2. stateofidleness

    stateofidleness TDPRI Member

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    Adding some additional info and pics. Looks like that thin wire is soldered to the knob closest to the pickup selector.

    another interesting thing is the wiring going to the neck pickup appears to be braided cloth wire, whereas the wiring to the bridge pickup appears to be standard black and white wiring. Does this give credit to the claim it’s a dragonfire pickup?
     

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  3. 68Telebass

    68Telebass Tele-Afflicted

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    Welcome from Arizona!!
    You will surely get answers here-
     
  4. Nick Fanis

    Nick Fanis Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

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    It's not a mod.
    It's the original design and the absolute heart of the famous bridge telecaster sound.
    Any Tele bridge pickup WITHOUT this simply isn't a REAL tele bridge pickup.
     
    Fretting out likes this.
  5. Nick Fanis

    Nick Fanis Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

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    It's a bridge grounding wire.
    Just make sure the bridge is in contact with it and you will be fine.No need to solder it.
     
  6. Fretting out

    Fretting out Friend of Leo's

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    I don’t know too much about the electronics but I thought most of these mij teles have small pots, I think my 88 did

    The bridge itself is definitely a replacement but is usually no help at establishing a year because almost all of them had A-serial numbers ranging from 86(I think) all the way through the 90’s

    They put pencil dates on the neck heal on the early ones, I’m not sure when they stopped though maybe in the early 90’s, some don’t have them at all though

    If I had to guess it’s definitely pre 97, and probably closer to the early 90’s, is there anything on the neck plate?

    You didn’t ask about it but the “EX” in the neck pocket just denotes that it’s an export model,

    Edit: after looking at the electronics again The switch is definitely a replacement, the electronics were probably changed out that’s fairly common
     
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2020 at 1:33 AM
  7. Dacious

    Dacious Poster Extraordinaire

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    Brown wire is almost certainly as bridge earth wire. Looks like a standard MiJ Fender bridge and pickup. I can't say about the neck pickup, I remember some eBay ads for them,. Probably Asian source alnico 5 of vintage-ish spec similar to Guitar Fetish.

    Decent enough pickups if so. Some MIJ Teles got Texas Specials. These had no.particular markings IIRC but would have cloth covered wires so I'm thinking yours are stock MIJ.

    A lot of people like these, if you do, no need to change. Those guitars are a great value, well made with good Gotoh tuners.
     
  8. stateofidleness

    stateofidleness TDPRI Member

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    Found this page: https://dragonfireguitars.com/Tele-Pickups_c449.htm but not sure if it helps confirm/deny the pickup type as mine have no markings. I do find it odd that they have different wiring (neck with cloth, bridge with "plastic coated" standard wiring).

    The neck plate just says "FENDER" stamped on it, no other markings. It has phillips-head screws throughout. Did not see any pencil markings on neck or the body, only the stampings. Appears to be an Ash body?

    Great info on the grounding wire. I was worried something wasn't quite wired up properly. Any way to tell if the electronics are original or not?
     
  9. brookdalebill

    brookdalebill Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

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    Howdy!
     
  10. tah1962

    tah1962 Friend of Leo's

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    Welcome to TDPRI. :)
     
  11. BradL

    BradL Friend of Leo's Ad Free Member

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    Lovely Tele and welcome to the forum!
     
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