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MIJ strat neck stamp "ST-357V"

Discussion in 'Stratocaster Discussion Forum' started by m.d., May 9, 2009.

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  1. m.d.

    m.d. New Member!

    May 9, 2009
    Does anyone out there know what the MIJ neck stamp ST-357V means?
    I'm looking at a used MIJ strat for sale online and it has this stamp on the heel of the neck.
    I thought it meant it was a '57 V style neck but seller says it is not a V neck, but rather a "C" profile.



  2. StratoBrew

    StratoBrew Strat-O-Master

    Feb 1, 2009
    Evergreen, Colorado
    I believe the "V" stands for vintage-style pickups.

    Fender Japan model numbers often have suffixes that denote the pickup type, as in "TX" for Texas Specials, and "US" for USA pickups. So that'd be ST57TX or ST57US.

    I'm just extrapolating on that fact and assuming that the "V" stands for "Vintage." But I could be wrong.

  3. Orbit

    Orbit Senior Stratmaster

    Dec 31, 2008
    New Mexico
    st-357 is from a vintage squier

    st-57 is from regular japanese strat

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  5. Kyri

    Kyri Senior Stratmaster

    Apr 28, 2009
    I have a ST-357V neck and it is on a Mij strat sold as a standard in 1990. Standard meaning ceramic (nothing special) pickups and a modern logo.
    A friend of mine bought a strat sold as a 57 reissue at around the same time. I understand from sneaky that its not as simple as that, that they aren't exact copies or called reissues, and that the shop he got it from must have called it that at the time. That strat had the same neck heel marking but it had a vintage logo, serial on the heel, (my standard had it on the headstock) and the pickups etc were much better.
    The necks were identical apart from the decal but my guitar was cheaper to buy at the time, although it had 50's styling like 8 hole pickguard and truss adjust at the heel etc.
    I read somewhere that some necks destined for higher end guitars would sometimes get used in the standard guitars, I have no idea if that is true or even what higher end means, as I have not seen many standard models from that era, the only ones I have seen with modern logo are 22 fret contemporary necks with truss adjust at the headstock, so it could be the case.
    In any case the necks are generally very good, I like mine a lot. I fyou like the look of it I would get it but assume you may have to change the pickups - the ceramic ones are OK, but it depends what you are used to.

  6. Lobotomy Boy

    Lobotomy Boy Strat-O-Master

    Apr 29, 2009
    This is interesting, and I have seen some evidence that this may have been the case. Is there any way to tell if the guitar had a "higher-end" neck?

  7. ThreeHands

    ThreeHands Strat-Talk Member

    Jun 19, 2009
    I've got a MIJ 57 that has that 21 fret neck (ST 357V) It has a H series serial number so 88 or 89. there is also a pencil maked 6 after the ST 357V and a bigger red G and another V stamped at a 90% angle.

    I've had it refreted a couple of time over the years, its a great neck on a great guitar. the only changes I've made are: DeMarzio HS-1 pickups and a pearliod tri layer scartch plate. Oh yeah and solid brass bridge saddles. with heavy strings every note sings that SRV style tone...

  8. fatguy241

    fatguy241 New Member!

    Jul 7, 2011
    the st-357v is a reissue of a 1957 strat that was most likely made by fugi-gen in japan.they were contracted by fender USA,to build japanese models.you must look at the headstock serial# it should have a letter followed by #s(ex.E864531-this means it is an 88)&this goes for the rest( E6=86 E5=85 & so on.also the words made in japan or crafted in japan will be present.the st-357v should be in two places if the guitar is straight the neck heel stamp & neck pocket stamp,but this can vary also,sometimes you will find different neck pocket stamps(st-362v=a 62reissue body,I know this reply is late,but I just joined & was reading your thread & this will clear up your concern & anybody else who are wandering what these markings denote.these japanese strats are in a league all their own they are some of the best playing guitars you will find,but keep in mind once you do mods to any guitar that can not be reversed you destroy its vintage value & originality so be careful what you do & hold onto the original parts you might need to sell your main squeeze if hard times fall upon you & you will be standing there saying are you Kidding me man when the shop gives their offer!good luck & don't drill or route your main squeeze for any reason,because you'll be sorry you did later,you can buy a good copy for that & get the same results,it will be a killer player without killing vintage value BE COOL & BE SMART

  9. sneakypete

    sneakypete Senior Stratmaster

    Feb 5, 2009
    fatguy...the first digit following the E serial number does not always denote the year the guitar was made, it hasn`t worked out that way on the guitars I actually own. I have quite a few 1980`s Fender Japan guitars and all have a pencil date on the neck butt. They made the change from MIJ to CIJ...sometime mid/late `90s... and have gone back to MIJ once again. As for the markings, so far I have found nothing from Fender Japan as to exactly what they all mean, and I have seen a LOT of stuff stamped in there but there are many theories on what they mean just nothing official from the company as far as I know, at least nothing here in Japan. Personally the model number is far more important to me than when A Fender Japan guitars was made, they have since the beginning made high end models but they are`t all high end...one of my FJ strats is a 54-128...based on a 1954 and retailed for 128,000 in 1991. Nowadays they do not include the price in the model number anymore...just US, TX or nothing at all if the guitar has MIJ p`ups. Lots of folks seem to think...sellers especially...that all Fender Japans are great, in my experience, they ain`t ... theres a lot of middle of the road and low end stuff out there. So when it comes to reselling a guitar it really matters what the model is...well, to me anyways...if there are no markings indicating just what the guitar retailed for...like the ST-357V here...then it may be very difficult figuring out just where a guitar fits in the pecking order...generally, the higher the numbers the better the parts and wood in the guitar,m stands to reason.

  10. pitongjerome

    pitongjerome Strat-Talk Member

    Jan 3, 2011
    i assmue its a 57 style with 3 tone burst finish.

    whats the color of your body?

  11. sneakypete

    sneakypete Senior Stratmaster

    Feb 5, 2009
    thing wit Fender Japan is...they don`t always make precise copies of F/USA guitars so models can come in any color they fancy at any given time, or...depends on what shops order, they do frequently make runs of guitars for guitar stores to any specs they want.

  12. hogdog76

    hogdog76 New Member!

    Jan 26, 2010
    I emailed Bob Willocks at Fender and this is what he said

    Hello I have an 80's mij stratocaster with a neck stamp of ST-357 V what does this mean. Thank you

    Hey Gary,…

    It’s an internal factory designation that has no meaning outside of the factory.


    Bob Willocks
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2011

  13. hogdog76

    hogdog76 New Member!

    Jan 26, 2010
    I do own one too and I was hoping it was something cool like vintage but it,s just a real nice player so there ya go

  14. hogdog76

    hogdog76 New Member!

    Jan 26, 2010
    strat st 357 v

    1980's strat st 357 v neck stamp ghoto tuners

    Attached Files:

  15. Kyri

    Kyri Senior Stratmaster

    Apr 28, 2009
    I have a few of these, great necks. One from '85, a squier neck, one from around the same time (an E serial fender neck) and one from 90 or 91 (I serial). They are all C shaped, with rolled edges and vintage truss plug. Nice necks, really playable. The squier and fender branded necks are no different, apart from the decals.

    Attached Files:

  16. Reo Fendel

    Reo Fendel New Member!

    I have a lovely '87 ST-357V, maple neck w/ body in my favorite color of the "strong" Lake Placid Blue (more closer to Ocean Turquoise). Serial # is E7....., indicating eighty seven, and consequently the only place of any date reference as the stamp in the body neck cavity and on the back of the neck are both
    a red "K" followed by the ST-357V. These ST-357V's were all Squier versions of the vintage '57 style with single ply pick guard and maple neck with the old style Fender truss rod adjustment at the neck heal. The Strats stamped ST-362V have a rosewood laminated neck, ala '62 vintage style, same ceramic pickups in a 3 ply pick guard. Feb 2007 Fender Japan and Squier collection (77).jpg Feb 2007 Fender Japan and Squier collection (47).jpg Feb 2007 Fender Japan and Squier collection (55).jpg
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2016

  17. stratman323

    stratman323 Dr. Stratster Strat-Talk Supporter

    Apr 21, 2010
    London, UK
    Warning - this thread had been quietly resting in peace for five years!


    An ST-357 is quite simply the budget model of the range, isn't it? Certainly not any kind of "re-issue".

  18. bloomz

    bloomz Senior Stratmaster

    Sep 17, 2012
    yer mom's house
    something I just found in an ebay ad - (which I think may well be total baloney?)
    I am selling my 1985 Fender Stratocaster made in Japan. I have too many instruments I need to clean some house. This particular model is a rare A-Series model only released for two years (1985 to 1986) which ran aside the more common E-series's Stratocasters (1984 to 1987). The main difference between the two is that the A-series have bodies made of alder (instead of basswood) and the radius is a little thicker on the neck. The E series, although very good, is known for being the cheaper made guitar of the two series. So this particular guitar is more high end than your typical e series guitar.

  19. Guitarmageddon

    Guitarmageddon Dr. Stratster Strat-Talk Supporter

    Total baloney - both A and E serials had alder and basswood, it depends on the price they sold for originally. There were 2-3 different price points....
    bloomz likes this.

  20. bloomz

    bloomz Senior Stratmaster

    Sep 17, 2012
    yer mom's house
    Total baloney is exactly what I spotted as well. I have a B serial Contemporary.

    Baloney just like that guy's Uncle's guitar I bought last week - lol

  21. jakobian74

    jakobian74 New Member!

    Aug 23, 2016
    San Francisco,CA. USA
    IMG_9278.JPG IMG_9280.JPG IMG_6813.jpg IMG_6822.jpg IMG_9673.JPG IMG_9690.JPG IMG_9697.JPG IMG_9702.JPG Anyone that believes the ST-357V is a cheaper model, knows nothing about Fender Japan E series. I have three MJ E series. I'm going to preface this by saying I've been playing for sixty years ( getting old is not fun ) . I have a photograph I will post, as soon as I take a pix of the pix. It's an 8 by 10 on Kodak paper. I say that as it's dated June 1962. This was possibly the first time I played professionally. I'm playing a 1958 maple neck,sunburst Strat in the picture . ( Oh how I wish I could have read the future ) I remember going into the music store with my dad. I had started on a Duosonic, as I was only nine years old, and it was smaller,albeit still had a maple neck. I grew up in Rochester NY. Fender guitars were made in California. When you're a very young kid, that was like being made on another planet. My dad tells the store owner his son ( me ) wants a Stratocaster, and would like to trade in the Duosonic ,also bought at same store ( Benson Music ) I'll never forget the store owner taking out the sunburst Strat from behind the glass doors. He handed it to me, and to this day, I'll never forget the " smell " of the varnish. It was otherworldly. It was also do shiny . The Duosonic was just white/cream and didn't have the smell or gloss of the Strat. So my dad made the deal. Then the store owner brings out the tweed case. The guitar had been in the store for at least a year, nobody bought it. This was 1961-2 and the guitar was made in 58-9, can't remember, but do remember the stores owner "Bernie Benson" said it was expensive ,$330. with case. Fast forward early to mid eighties . Someone here ( SF ) was selling a maple neck P bass with a really beat up tweed case. Cream finish. I tried it . Blown away. I thought it was a 60s P bass made in USA. That was 1985. I didn't even see,nor pay attention to the small " made in Japan " on headstock ,let alone E serial. ( I still have this bass and case ) bass is in 8.5/10 cosmetically. 10/10 sound.changed pups to USA and put in CTS pots and oil/paper cap. I didn't even realize for first month or so, it was MIJ. It sold me. Since then, I have bought three 84-87 E types ( Jaguar) . One is an 84 ST-357V. Maple neck,Lake Placid blue, or whatever custom color Fender had at that time. They were NOT all sunbursts. This gets interesting. I bought it in 87. It was in a pawn shop,in original cheap Japanese " hardshell " case. I did not see the guitar on the wall, I had asked the guy, if they ever got any Japanese Fender guitars or bssses . He said he would look downstairs . He comes up with a dusty black case. He said, that the owner was going to start selling these " cheap " Fenders made in Japan, because they looked nice and he could sell them " new " and I do mean new , for $600. Apparently shipping from Japan was expensive . They didn't sell well. So I open case and there is an UNPLAYED with tags Fender Strat. I bought it thirty years ago for $500. w case. Threw case away or gave away . I now just have the guitar in a GL case in my closet. Took strings off and have cloth around guitar in the case. One change I did make recently was changing the pickguard, but made certain holes ( 11 I think ) lined up. It came with a pearloid pickguard . ( Yes, I have not altered the body,not even screw holes ) After all this time I finally looked under the hood. CTS pots,Orange drop cap. The Grotoh tuners are the only thing that doesn't make sense . Point of my novel here. The MIJ Strats and bass I have from the eighties, all maple neck, two of the four CTS pots etc. are JUST AS WELL MADE AND SOUND AS GOOD AS THE FIFTIES STRATS ! That's a blanket statement , it wasn't like I didn't start seeking out certain ones. If you look ,play,go inside and plug in, you may find a Strat made in Japan that is as well made as ANY period USA Strat. To compare the CBS junk of the period to the eighties Japanese is an insult . Why they are my,ing 70s reissues is nots. They were junk from 65 until Fender went back home twenty years later. I'll try and post pix. The lake Placid is the mint one. As mentioned, had the custom pickguard made from original 11 screw template. Guitar is SSS no Hs allowed ...
    Ronnie12460 likes this.

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