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First Strat Ever Made

Discussion in 'Pre-CBS Strats (before 1966)' started by BluesDontCare, Mar 8, 2017.

  1. Wayne D.

    Wayne D. Senior Stratmaster

    Nov 28, 2009
    Pittsburgh, Pa.
    I'm not sure, all I've ever seen is those few pics I posted. There was an article I read that Scotty's memorabilia was to be on display at the Willie Nelson Store & Museum in Nashville, but I didn't see the guitar as one of them.:(
     
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2017
  2. Jonny Hotnuts

    Jonny Hotnuts Senior Stratmaster

    Nov 7, 2013
    Portland
    The problem with 'first strat made' is that there were prototypes and production. The protos were works in progress and the one(s) I have seen were a good bit different than production. Technically these were the first strats but clearly not production pieces.

    As far as first production strat....well....that has its own set of problems because factory made guitars are made in runs not as individual guitars.

    Think of a production run to be 500 bodies and 1000 necks. After completing the bodies they are run into the paint department. There was no 'first body cut, first body painted'. This also applies to necks...neck 350 may be the first to be fretted and last to be painted.
    Once the bodies necks were assembled they would go to final assembly. No accountability of what body went with what neck or when they were made. It would be 'take a neck off this rack and put it on a body'.

    So guitar with a serial '0001' may of been the 350th body made, 221 body painted, the 55th assembled, and had the 0001 plate put on it. Funny that David Gilmore acknowledges there thee are earlier strats than his.

    Basically with the exception of the protoypes no guitar was made as an individual and the serial numbers were never designed to be any accountability of actual production.

    ~JH
     
  3. Bluebird_12

    Bluebird_12 Strat-Talker

    319
    Feb 21, 2014
    Nova Scotia, Canada
    Well said, JH. For the reasons you state there could never be a 'first', really. There can only be 'one of the earliest'.

    About the closest thing to the earliest would be the #0100 on the trem cover.example that Richard Smith had and Gruhn resold a couple years back. With a 1/54 neck date, it would be hard to definitively argue the existence of an earlier complete example than that.
     
  4. Wayne D.

    Wayne D. Senior Stratmaster

    Nov 28, 2009
    Pittsburgh, Pa.
    These maybe early photos of the PRO-1 54 strat. Taken when Scotty was in the Tommy Sands and Raiders group in the late 50's. Tommy is at the mic.:)



    a871.jpg a873.jpg a872.jpg
     
  5. T Guitar Floyd

    T Guitar Floyd Senior Stratmaster

    Oct 27, 2014
    Arizona
    Wayne D. likes this.
  6. sikoniko

    sikoniko Strat-O-Master

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  7. Wayne D.

    Wayne D. Senior Stratmaster

    Nov 28, 2009
    Pittsburgh, Pa.
    Thank you for the 'heads-up' sikoniko. :thumb: The Songbird Museum in Chattanogga just opened last Friday (10th) to the public.:)
    They also have Wanda Jackson's 1954 Shell Pink strat.:):)
     
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2017
    T Guitar Floyd likes this.
  8. Craig Usselman

    Craig Usselman Strat-Talker

    Age:
    38
    140
    Feb 4, 2018
    Calgary, Alberta,Canada
     
  9. Craig Usselman

    Craig Usselman Strat-Talker

    Age:
    38
    140
    Feb 4, 2018
    Calgary, Alberta,Canada
    george gruhn has stratocaster 0100 which is the first production strat there is a awesome vid on the net where they play and talk about it looks like any other strat shes beautiful and in good condition bult in march 1954 david gilmours 001 because it was the first custom built later on.the second one is in the fender museum and was lent to a guitar store for display theres an awesome pic of it standing on the counter upright its the sexiest and most bad ass strat ive ever seen sunburst of course its on google images .
     
  10. Wayne D.

    Wayne D. Senior Stratmaster

    Nov 28, 2009
    Pittsburgh, Pa.
    Actually David has the first metal 1954 plate, but the trem plates were issued before his and 0100 is the first trem plate issued.
    George Gruhn sold that strat 0100 a few years ago to Richard Smith, author of the book 'Fender: The Sound Heard Around The World'.

     
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2018
    T Guitar Floyd likes this.
  11. Craig Usselman

    Craig Usselman Strat-Talker

    Age:
    38
    140
    Feb 4, 2018
    Calgary, Alberta,Canada
     
  12. pinkoboe

    pinkoboe Strat-Talk Member

    Age:
    46
    55
    May 18, 2009
    USA - San Francisco
    Adam Wolfaardt likes this.
  13. Seymour Duncan

    Seymour Duncan Senior Stratmaster

    I played a verified prototype (from Leo himself) from late '53. It was a terrible guitar.
     
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  14. Mipstoo

    Mipstoo Senior Stratmaster

    Mar 18, 2013
    Rockingham Palace
    Luckily it was a prototype...
    I played four '54s in my life. One was awesome, two were ok and one was awful. Of course there variables as setup and string gauge of course, and pickups as you know.
    This is also my take on almost all guitars that were built before and still built now. Less than 25% is special, a lot are ok and some are dogs. Vintage bursts, pre-cbs guitars, recent guitars... That's why I don't get that people buy guitars without trying...
     
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  15. sikoniko

    sikoniko Strat-O-Master

    I would love to hear the story around that opportunity you had!
     
  16. Seymour Duncan

    Seymour Duncan Senior Stratmaster

    Well, it was from a respected vintage dealer who had the correct paperwork. The shape of the guitar as we know it was right, but the contours were all strange. It had sort of a sunburst, but the body wasn't really sanded and it didn't have a clear coat. Looked very much like a high school shop project. The neck was a leftover Tele neck (square bottom) with (sort of) a Strat headstock. It had the 3 way switch and 3 knobs, although it had some extra holes in the pickguard from some ideas they tried. Interesting from a historical perspective, but nothing I'd ever want to play.
     
    Highway Star likes this.
  17. Highway Star

    Highway Star Former Member

    411
    Apr 22, 2016
    Who knows?
    That is an amazing story. Thanks for sharing :thumb::thumb::thumb:. I guess it took a while to get the strat together from the first prototypes to the first official models in 1954.
     
  18. Miotch

    Miotch Senior Stratmaster

    Age:
    57
    Jun 28, 2011
    ok
    Doesn't matter. Worthless. Somebody heretically put a shim on the neck and it never had any tone after that
     
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  19. knh555

    knh555 Senior Stratmaster

    Age:
    47
    Dec 6, 2016
    Massachusetts
    According to this, Mark Knopfler has serial number 059, which perhaps was from the same run as Gilmour's.

    http://www.oneverybootleg.nl/MK_guitars_fender.htm