Hi - Took the scratch plate off my Tele deluxe and to my astonishment I found that it had been routed out for a middle pickup.

John C

Poster Extraordinaire
Silver Supporter
Sep 20, 2005
Kansas City
I guess to take a switch

My guess is for a switch

I think that's doubtful - there's no channeling or routing and the hole is pretty shallow. Plus Fender if Fender has had an expander-type switch (one that combines neck & bridge pickups in at least positions 1 and 2) on a Nashville Tele they have used something on the control plate - either a mini-toggle, an S-1 switch or a push/pull switch. I don't think they've used a push/push switch (as found on American Pro II models) for this function as of yet.

I've heard 2 reasons behind these small holes:

1. It was a tooling hole for the templates that went with the CNC routers Fender had at that time; when they got a new CNC router in the mid-late 2000s those holes went away on USA bodies. I'm not sure this is the true reason - because the AVRI bodes never had the hole.


2. It was initially done to differentiate USA bodies from MIM bodies - MIM bodies got multiple holes of various sizes while the USA bodies got the single hole. It seems that since the mid/late 2000s USA bodies (for all models) no longer have these holes and the MIM ones have fewer holes than they had in the past.