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So just how cheap were Fender offsets before they became popular?

Discussion in 'Other Guitars, other instruments' started by Daddy Hojo, Oct 1, 2020.

  1. brookdalebill

    brookdalebill Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

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    My first Fender was a 1963/1964 L plate sunburst Jazzmaster.
    My parents bought it for me, for $250, in 1970.
    I was 13.
    I don’t know the exact age/year of the guitar.
    I was just a kid, and didn’t take a screwdriver to it to check the year.
    It wasn’t a 65, it had the old spaghetti logo, traditional (Strat type) knobs, and no neck binding.
    L plate, references the L prefix before the serial number on the neck plate (1963-1965) Fenders.
    When I was a young guy, Jazzmasters and Jaguars were uncool, and no one wanted them.
    They sold for $200-300 well into the early 1980s.
    Everyone wanted Strats and Les Pauls.
    Teles and 335s were cheaper then, too.
    They didn’t start commanding any money/respect till the 90’s.
    That’s my old guy recollection.
    I want another one.
    Maybe a nice CS reissue.
     
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2020
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  2. chris m.

    chris m. Poster Extraordinaire

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    Mustangs, Duosonics, LP Jrs were still considered student models and thus were perceived as cheap and without any cachet.
     
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  3. Ron C

    Ron C Tele-Meister

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    Around 1979-80 I bought a 63 Jaguar that had the finish stripped and a lot of fret wear for $125 from Sam Ash in Hempstead NY (my favorite place in the world at that time).

    Of course what I really wanted was a Strat so soon after that I bought a cheap loaded pickguard and, once over my head asked a repair shop to make it all fit. The end product sounded and worked fine but because I really still wanted a Strat I sold it to a friend.

    I think this was the first of many instances where I've wrecked perfectly good gear through mods.
     
  4. deytookerjaabs

    deytookerjaabs Friend of Leo's

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    In 2004 or so I was bidding on a gold guard '59/8 jazzmaster on Ebay.


    I was ready to pay $2500. I got distracted during the last couple minutes and it went for about 2K, ****!...what a beauty!!


    A few years ago a couple serious vintage snobs I know from years back caught up with me at a guitar show. We went out drinking and they were talking about an "amazing" '60 Jazzmaster their friend bought. I started laughing hard, they looked at me puzzled. Then I reminded them how they both thought Jazzmasters were garbage back when I was into them!


    It's a very real thing, people letting the market impress them more so than their own personal sensibilities.
     
  5. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Telefied Ad Free Member

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    A friend bought a 59 Jazzmaster pretty cheap in 1990 just for the slab board neck, then sold me the loaded body for $300. I doubt he paid as much as $600 for the whole guitar. He cut the headstock down to Strat size.

    I bought a 65 Mustang in 1980 for $50 at a pawn shop where it was tagged at $80. Refin had but a great clean neck.

    As much as those guitars were cheap they also got parted out a lot, especially the JM because it had pretty much a Strat neck and Strats got value long before JMs.
    I parted out Strats too but only the dogs from the 70s.

    Who knew 70s Strats would ever be worth more than a new Strat???
     
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  6. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Telefied Ad Free Member

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    I now see that certain players can do certain worthwhile things with a vintage JM, but the 59 I bought a put a Stat neck on really did nothing for me.
    Thin bland tone and that plinky thing, even after I shimmed a good bit of neck angle. I think new Jazzmasters are really better guitars, but again, I don’t want what the original does.

    I do choose a modern JM bridge pickup now, really a favorite of any pickup design.
    Originals with the super thin flat bobbin and 6k of 42awg just had nothing I wanted.
     
  7. Goldenshellback

    Goldenshellback Tele-Meister

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    I don’t remember any guitar back in the mid sixties that were cheap price wise. They were all expensive as far as I’m concerned. I bought a used Tele in 1969 that was a ‘66 model in a pawn shop and I paid 280.00 for it. Fenders were less expensive across the board compared to Gibson or Rickenbacker and Gretsch. But they were all expensive new. I bought an Electra Precision bass copy made in Japan in 1974 for 180.00 new. It was a great bass. Had I know then the prices of old beat up guitars would become astronomical I would have kept some of the beaters I acquired back in the day. I traded a Gibson Melody Maker, 1962 model for a 13 year old mule. I wish I still had the Melody Maker.
     
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  8. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Yeah I suppose he was maybe the first drop in an empty bucket, but did anyone really want to cop his look or guitar sound?

    I mean I like to sing kinda like him but the look?
    Sorry Elvis!
     
  9. Fretting out

    Fretting out Poster Extraordinaire

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    At least they are the cheapest of the vintage fenders

    You can get a pre cbs jag/jazz for custom shop dollars
     
  10. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Telefied Ad Free Member

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    I bought a new Hondo P bass copy in 75 for maybe $150 which was about half the price of a used Fender P.
    The Hondo was really pretty good, at the time probably MIJ but I’m not certain.
     
  11. SnidelyWhiplash

    SnidelyWhiplash Friend of Leo's

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    The first time I really saw, a JM was on the cover of his first album.
     
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  12. JRapp

    JRapp Tele-Meister

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    10 years ago I almost bought a '62 sunburst JM in very good shape for a grand from Guitar Center. Can now be yours for 6-10K.
     
  13. G.Rotten

    G.Rotten Tele-Afflicted

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    Despite being super comfortable to play & looking super sexy, I've avoided most Fender offsets because I really really really really (that should do) hate all of the bridge/vibrato systems Fender put on those models. I'm not mentioning that for someone to try to change my mind, instead I believe those systems made many people shy away from those models.

    Since supply & demand determines price they just don't command top dollar.

    IMO, (& again, not trying to start a debate here) Squier solved that problem with the Vista series Jagmaster. I feel if Fender had offered those models (Fender branded) with that bridge a long time ago, the offsets would be more common.

    They truely are some of the nicest Fender Styled guitars to hang off your shoulder.

    I think I saw an American Fender (Performer maybe) not too long ago with the Strat bridge & I may have to add it to my "Someday list".

    Yeah, this one checks off a lot of boxes for me.
    https://shop.fender.com/en/intl/ele...american-performer-jazzmaster/0115210302.html
     
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2020
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  14. drlucky

    drlucky Tele-Holic

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    One of my oldest and dearest pals paid $85 in the summer of '76 for a mint '65 Mustang and Blackface Champ (he still has both). Later, in 1987 he picked up a clean sunburst "63 Jaguar for $325...in Hollywood, no less (yep, still has it).

    Another pal (RIP Stratorickster) picked up a CAR '61 Strat in '78 for $195. In his words, he made "the mistake of his life" a year or so later when he traded it in on a late 60's 3 pickup SG Custom.

    In early '77 I went and looked at a early '60's Jazzmaster at a pawn shop that was selling for $130. Alas, I only had $100, and they wouldn't go that low...:(

    In '91 I traded a parts Tele straight across for a '62 Jaguar that had been refinished and was in pieces in a paper bag. Put it together, got it up and running, then sold it the next year to Jonathan Richman's road manager for $250.
     
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  15. Telecaster88

    Telecaster88 Tele-Holic

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    I bought my '66 Duo-Sonic II in 1991 for $325 with original case.
     
  16. erratick

    erratick Tele-Holic

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    1966 Fender Mustang for $120 in a pawn shop in 1991. Got it for $100 out of band money. It went to the guitarist when the band split- we counted it as his share. It was a little beat, but no neck dings, only paint and setup needed. Rosewood fretboard. Got the 20$ off because the twang bar was missing and it had no case.

    Nobody wanted those things. It sounded pretty good then.

    A legit Fender Tele or Strat was probably $500 or $600 at the time, but not a 1966 guitar - that would have been more even then.
     
  17. maggieo

    maggieo Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

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    I'm still gobsmacked at how expensive vintage Jags have gotten. In 1984, when I was in art school in Minneapolis (and getting drunk with the 'Mats) I got a '69(?) '70(?) Lake placid Blue Jag with the blocks and binding and matchinig headstock from $250.00. I kid you not. I wish I still had it, but rent came due...

    As recently as 2003, there was a sunburst 1964 Jag at Russo's music in Omaha, NE that the owner was willing to do a straight-up trade for a 1997 G&L ASAT semi-hollow. By the time I got back the next weekend with the ASAT, he'd sold the Jag from $1200.00. Sigh.

    At least I have my Sherwood Green Johnny Marr Jag, which I am utterly in love with.
     
  18. notroHnhoJ

    notroHnhoJ Tele-Meister

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    I know personally a guy who was in on the ground floor with this “vintage guitar” thing and sold stuff to rock stars. He has a framed bad check from Stephen Stills, and sold Paul McCartney that lefty ‘burst you see him playing sometimes. The thing is, he absolutely got his start because in the 70s, people like Stephen Stills were looking for and seeking out guitars from the 40s through the 60s. It wasn’t really hoarding that started the vintage guitar phenomenon.
     
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  19. DougM

    DougM Poster Extraordinaire

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    No, not entirely. It was people with a personal money making agenda like Gruhn convincing people with more money than brains that old guitars were somehow magic. I've owned a '65 Strat, and I've had many friends who owned vintage Fender and Gibson guitars, and none of them compared to good Fenders and Gibsons being made now. Pre-war Martins are a different story, but solid body electrics, no.
     
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  20. beyer160

    beyer160 Friend of Leo's

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    In 1990, a friend of mine who was a big fan of Sonic Youth and Dinosaur Jr bought a 1970 Jazzmaster for $500. The guitar was cool, but I thought he was insane for paying that much. In retrospect, I should have bought one too.
     
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