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Looking at a 1998 MIA Tele what are your thoughts?

Discussion in 'Telecaster Discussion Forum' started by Sacdubro, Mar 6, 2014.

  1. Sacdubro

    Sacdubro Tele-Meister

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    I've found a '98 MIA Tele on CL and we've agreed to $500 w/bag. Are there any significant issues or characteristics that should be considered before I check it out?
     
  2. arem

    arem Tele-Meister

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    I have a 97 that I love and is one of my main guitars. The only thing that I would consider an "issue" is that the finish on the maple fingerboard guitars can start to chip off in chunks and look weird over the fretboard markers. Something was funky with the neck finishing, but it's mainly a cosmetic problem, it doesn't affect how the guitar plays. When it happens it looks like this:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  3. Sticky

    Sticky Tele-Meister

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    Yep. Had both those issues on my '93 Am. Std. Strat, too. No big deal.
     
  4. FredDairy

    FredDairy Friend of Leo's

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    My first Fenders were a 1993 MIA Strat and 1997 MIA Tele. I still have the Strat for sentimental reasons. But dumped the Tele. These are some of Fender's worst instruments IMO.
     
  5. Dismalhead

    Dismalhead Poster Extraordinaire

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    I recently traded for a 2006 American Series Tele. I did some Googling, identified specs and found pics of what the correct bridge, identifying marks (since it was an '06 it's got a 60th anniversary button on the back of the headstock), neck, and serial number range was. I went to make the trade knowing exactly what it should look like and easily identified that it was unaltered.

    One question that you may not have answered yet is whether it is an American Standard or an American Special. The Special will have a different bridge, finish, and pickups. There is a few hundred dollar difference in value, but both are "made in the USA". The fact that it comes with a gig bag and not a hardshell case makes me think this may be the case. There's nothing wrong with the Special, it's a good guitar, but it is a different model than you may think you are getting.
     
  6. peteb

    peteb Friend of Leo's

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    From what I Have read, the quality improved thru the course of the 90's, culminating in high quality guitars at the end of the decade. the neck finish issues were the only problems that I have heard of. Some of the 90's bodies are made of v*#**@*d wood but that practice ended before the American standard became the American series in 2000.

    In 98 there were no American specials or Highway ones, so it should be an American standard if it is made in the USA.

    I have a couple of 99s that I am completely happy with even though one has the neck finish problem.
     
  7. 985plowboy

    985plowboy Friend of Leo's

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    I have an '01 American series that had finish on the frets.
     
  8. Sacdubro

    Sacdubro Tele-Meister

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    Thanks for the responses. I did ask the Seller about the neck/fret condition and it has the same lacquer chips. It's a well used "Player's" condition Tele. I'm not sure that this is my next Tele. The conditions may make it difficult to resale down the road.
     
  9. jonnyfez

    jonnyfez Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

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    It could also be a California Series. Labeled Made in USA. Made in '97 and '98.

    $500 for an American Standard or California Series is a good deal.
     
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