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80s AVRI vs. MIJ RIs

Discussion in 'Stratocaster Discussion Forum' started by danoman, Sep 8, 2017.

  1. danoman

    danoman Strat-Talk Member

    Age:
    117
    18
    Sep 8, 2017
    Earth
    I'm looking for an early to mid 80s Fender Strat. I like the 62 reissues and am taking note of all the differents specs on both the USA made RIs (Fullerton) and the Japanese JV, E-A series, etc.

    I prefer the relic'd feel on the neck (think Custom Shop Nitrocellulose aged necks, not gloss). I'm wary of Basswood, per my research, including a respected tech's opinion, and would prefer and alder or ash body. I like them both no real preference there, just want something not too heavy with great sustain.

    As you know, price difference is sizable in the USA vs. MIJ. I'm actually surprised some early 80s MIJs are commanding upwards of 2k asking price now. Pretty astounding.

    Originality is important to me, but only if I had to sell it because I wasn't in love with it (trying to avoid this instance). That brings up the idea of doing a Partscaster with with Fender body + neck with boutique pickups. If going this route, I'm thinking getting an Alder MIJ guitar for the well matched body and neck.. that way I could score it for much less than an AVRI and swap parts with no remorse as it's not a collector's piece.

    My concern with a Partscaster is a poorly matched body/neck ( for instance, taking an AVRI neck and pairing it with an MIJ body, etc ). Unfortunately what we're talking about is not readily available on the local level, so I don't have the luxury of trying anything out. I have to buy online and make the best of it.

    That's it! Much looking forward to your recommendations and thoughts.
     
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2017

  2. conehead

    conehead Strat-Talker

    Age:
    46
    246
    Apr 12, 2017
    way out there
    I'd be more wary of this 'respected' tech. A few of the nicest sounding Strats I've played have been basswood.
    I used to have a basswood bodied Telecaster which was just fantastic.
     

  3. balston11

    balston11 Senior Stratmaster Strat-Talk Supporter

    May 8, 2013
    Preston UK
    Other than Telecasters and some other non strat models the Japanese don't do reissues just guitars similar to early strats. It all depends on what you want to spend you will pay a lot of money for early AVRIs and for JVs not so much for the Es and other MIJs. You will probably lose money on a partscaster even if you take it apart and sell the parts, why not try an early MIJ first and see if it suits you, you will be unlikely to lose money to any degree if you don't like it and have to sell it.
     

  4. Mr C

    Mr C Senior Stratmaster Silver Member

    Age:
    44
    Feb 17, 2016
    New Zealand
    Market for AVRI's is rock solid so you won't get one cheap but won't lose anything if or when you sell. I've got an AV62 from '86 and it's head and shoulders the best strat I've got, better than my Custom shop '66 and noticably better than any of the AM standards I've owned.

    I've never had a Japanese strat so can't comment there but I've heard good things. There are a number of models though with varying quality levels so do your research on model numbers roger you buy.
     

  5. Guitarmageddon

    Guitarmageddon Squier-a-holic Strat-Talk Supporter

    Age:
    41
    Apr 19, 2014
    Windsor, Ontario, Canada
    None of the Japanese Fender stuff except for a few rare JV's have nitro finish...they are all a thick polyester on body and neck...they are also not true reissues, just 'styled' after a 57 or a 62 Strat, etc... (E and A serials I'm talking about)

    Also only the lowest end models have spaghetti logo with basswood body and ceramic pickups, most of them are alder with alnico....

    The thing is that some of the Fender 'STANDARD' strats with basswood body, 60s transition logo, and cramic pickups get labelled as '57' or '62' by either unknowledgeable sellers, or sellers trying to rip people off....

    So if it doesn't have the Fender 50s Spaghetti logo, it's not what you're after....prices for A and E serials are about $400-550.

    The 4th link in your 2nd post, the 1985 Fender Japan ST-62 is NOT what you're after. See the '55' sticker on the back of headstock? That means it sold for 55,000 Yen when new, the bottom of the line - basswood body and ceramic pickups

    The first 3 are way overpriced, same with the $1100+ neck in 5th link....

    I would NOT recommend building a partcaster, you will spend $1000 or so on parts and be left with a guitar worth about $400-500.
     
    danoman, stratman323 and Yves like this.

  6. conehead

    conehead Strat-Talker

    Age:
    46
    246
    Apr 12, 2017
    way out there
    While I've seen many with thick poly that breaks off in big chunks, they're not all that way.
    Mine has a REALLY thin coat of poly over a very thin coat of paint.
    Actually one of the thinnest coats of poly I've seen on a guitar.
    The finish on the neck is thin enough to have worn through to the wood in places from normal playing wear.
    Hard to tell from the photos but...there you have it.
     

    Attached Files:


  7. Guitarmageddon

    Guitarmageddon Squier-a-holic Strat-Talk Supporter

    Age:
    41
    Apr 19, 2014
    Windsor, Ontario, Canada
    What is your serial number and model?
     

  8. conehead

    conehead Strat-Talker

    Age:
    46
    246
    Apr 12, 2017
    way out there

  9. diogoguitar

    diogoguitar Strat-O-Master

    870
    Feb 2, 2012
    Northwest US
    I have a MIJ as well as a couple of MIA strats.

    There is no noticeable difference in quality from MIA to MIJ from that era, at least to my hands/eyes.
    The neck of my MIJ guitars are smooth like a butter.

    I happen to have a CS as well and maybe that one has an extra notch of quality.

    I have both alder and basswood bodied guitars and can tell you: maybe my ears aren't refined enough, but I think there is no noticeable difference in sound in different guitar woods... plus basswood weighs less in general.
     
    QMTstrat and conehead like this.

  10. Guitarmageddon

    Guitarmageddon Squier-a-holic Strat-Talk Supporter

    Age:
    41
    Apr 19, 2014
    Windsor, Ontario, Canada
    1993, made by Dyna Gakki...TOTALLY different finish than 80s FujiGen Gakki guitars....

    that's why :)
     

  11. conehead

    conehead Strat-Talker

    Age:
    46
    246
    Apr 12, 2017
    way out there
    Ok, that makes sense!
    In any case, they're both very well made guitars with great feeling necks. No sloppy neck pockets here. The stock electronics are crap, though. I replaced everything under the pickguard on the ST57, the ST58 is waiting on some newly-ordered Don Mare SwingOtones.

    The necks on those two guitars are pretty much perfect for me.

    Don't the 'ExTrad' models have a nitro finish?
    I've seen some priced in the same range as US RI models...
    http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-5...0001&campid=5338148356&icep_item=232465573822
     
    Guitarmageddon likes this.

  12. DBSG-STRAT1976

    DBSG-STRAT1976 Strat-Talker

    299
    Mar 6, 2016
    US
    I own 3 guitars (soon to be 4!) and my Surf Green 57 AVRI is by far my favorite! The quality of the build, the 7.25 "V" neck, and the 57/62 pickups make for a great "off the rack" guitar that you initially pay a lot for up front, however you know you are getting a great guitar. I'd be wary of the Partscaster route, but that is just my opinion and I think you brought up valid concerns.
     

  13. Ebidis

    Ebidis Most Honored Senior Member Strat-Talk Supporter

    Age:
    51
    Nov 14, 2013
    Alabama
    My thoughts exactly. What is your aversion to basswood? I have, and have had guitars made from basswood that sound and play killer.
     

  14. danoman

    danoman Strat-Talk Member

    Age:
    117
    18
    Sep 8, 2017
    Earth
    Knew this would arouse some conversation.. full disclosure, this isn't a firm stance, just based on some reading and a tech I know's recommendation (may be a purist POV).
     

  15. danoman

    danoman Strat-Talk Member

    Age:
    117
    18
    Sep 8, 2017
    Earth
    Think it was a strong default to just say "stick to alder or ash". Or perhaps he doesn't have much experience with basswood. He's coming from a place of not doesn't wanting to see me get ripped off, I imagine.
     

  16. danoman

    danoman Strat-Talk Member

    Age:
    117
    18
    Sep 8, 2017
    Earth
    Thank you for the information and recommend. I will not go the partscaster route. If ending up going MIJ route, and don't like the poly on the neck, I can always relic it and not feel too bad if it's not a high price tag, me thinks.
     

  17. danoman

    danoman Strat-Talk Member

    Age:
    117
    18
    Sep 8, 2017
    Earth
    Much appreciate your reccommend. Solid advice!
     

  18. Ebidis

    Ebidis Most Honored Senior Member Strat-Talk Supporter

    Age:
    51
    Nov 14, 2013
    Alabama
    I think it's pretty much just a purist point of view. There are many high end expensive guitars made from basswood: Suhr, EBMM, EVH, Ibanez, Fender, to name a few. I like basswood, because it's light and resonant.
     
    danoman likes this.

  19. danoman

    danoman Strat-Talk Member

    Age:
    117
    18
    Sep 8, 2017
    Earth
    Can you educate me on EXTRAD?