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Need help determining authenticity of 1986 MIJ Fender Strat

Discussion in 'Stratocaster Discussion Forum' started by Oromei, Aug 6, 2018.

  1. Oromei

    Oromei New Member!

    Age:
    21
    4
    Aug 6, 2018
    Florida
    Hello all!

    I recently purchased this guitar
    (see comments for pictures, it won't let me link the album)

    I was looking around and I noticed that all other guitars that looked like this one (or had a similar serial number) were not actually Fender but Squire. I was wondering if anyone would be able to spot from the pictures whether or not it is actually Fender, or if it is a Squire? The seller listed it as a 1986 Fender Contemporary Japan Strat.

    Additionally, I was also curious if anyone knew whether or not a traditional bridge would be compatible with this guitar? I have heard that the system one bridge on these can hinder tone

    Thank you for any help you can give me!
     

  2. Oromei

    Oromei New Member!

    Age:
    21
    4
    Aug 6, 2018
    Florida

  3. Oromei

    Oromei New Member!

    Age:
    21
    4
    Aug 6, 2018
    Florida

  4. Guitarmageddon

    Guitarmageddon Squier-A-Holic Strat-Talk Supporter

    Age:
    42
    Apr 19, 2014
    Windsor, Ontario, Canada
    This is a Fender Japan contemporary Strat @Oromei - worth about $400-450 or so US in all original condition, the locking mechanism behind the nut is missing....it's hard to find parts for it! In this case I'd only pay 350 because it would cost at least 40-50 to get the necessary parts if not more....

    Basswood body, flat pole alnico pickups, 12" fretboard radius....

    If you want a traditional Strat bridge, look for another guitar.....this one cannot be changed without seriously modifying the body and replacing some missing wood, more trouble than it's worth and would hugely destroy the guitar's value....

    Nothing wrong with these bridges, it's a System 1 Fender tremolo

    As for most of these being Squier, that's false - most are Fender branded....

    'Fender Japan Contemporary Strat'
     
    stratman323, albala and mad axe man like this.

  5. mutato

    mutato Senior Stratmaster

    Jul 10, 2007
    RI
    Agree. I bought one of these brand new in 1986. Great guitars. But you really need to be OK with the locking trem unit look.
     

  6. John C

    John C Senior Stratmaster

    Jul 17, 2012
    Kansas City
    I've seen photos of an MIJ Squier-branded similar guitar - with the System 1 trem and string lock but it had 21 frets instead of 22. I've only seen photos of that one, so maybe it never made it to North America in large quantities before they imported the 22-fret Fender branded version that Oromei just bought.
     

  7. Guitarmageddon

    Guitarmageddon Squier-A-Holic Strat-Talk Supporter

    Age:
    42
    Apr 19, 2014
    Windsor, Ontario, Canada
    Could be, I've seen both but from what I see online I tend to see about 4-5 Fender for every 1 Squier
     
    stratman323 likes this.

  8. Believer7713

    Believer7713 Senior Stratmaster Silver Member

    Age:
    44
    Dec 27, 2016
    US
    I believe the are more of ther Fender branded contemporarys too. I had one when I was in college and wish I had kept it but bills got in the way of that one. He is a pic of a Squier branded one that I own now.
    1533662199280.jpg
    @Oromei Here is a website that a string lock can be found too.
    https://www.whammyparts.com/fender-japan/system-1/fender-contemporary-stringlock-detail
    They are legit and I have bought parts from them for a couple guitars. As far as the System one bridge hindering tone...this guitar has nails that surfer rock tone better than any other Strat that I have ever played. I love it!!!
     
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2018

  9. guitarmikey

    guitarmikey Strat-Talker

    463
    Jan 10, 2013
    Bucharest - RO
    Indeed, contemporary series IF has the adjusting hole back in the neck plate. Mine has it...
    System I tremolo, locking nut missing anyway a great guitar, I still dig mine ('86)...
     

    Attached Files:


  10. John C

    John C Senior Stratmaster

    Jul 17, 2012
    Kansas City
    Same here - in fact I've never seen the Squier version in person, just photos online. I wonder if the Squier was a 1-year thing while we know the Fender Contemporary version was made until 1989 - or maybe 1990 - since they did it with 3 different bridges: System 1, Kahler 2520 (or was it 2550?) "Traditional", and finally the Kahler Spyder FR-licensed trem.

    Nice; too bad you had to sell the Fender one, but a unique MIJ Squier is a reasonable replacement.
     

  11. Believer7713

    Believer7713 Senior Stratmaster Silver Member

    Age:
    44
    Dec 27, 2016
    US
    I really miss that old fender. It was pristine, without a scratch. It also, had a maple board and was painted LPB. Just beautiful! I just about cired the day I sold it.
     

  12. Will Lefeurve

    Will Lefeurve Senior Stratmaster

    Mar 1, 2016
    England & France
    Personally I think these are dammed good guitars. I have one that I bought near as new in 1986. Candy Apple Red too, but with a Kahler tremolo. As for these trems 'hindering' tone.. sounds like internet blah-blah to me.. :thumb:
     
    Believer7713 likes this.

  13. Oromei

    Oromei New Member!

    Age:
    21
    4
    Aug 6, 2018
    Florida
    Thank you everyone for your responses! I’m confident in my purchase now, I don’t actually have it yet (has to be shipped) but I’ll upload some more pictures when I get it!
    I got it for 325 total, which seems to be about right since it is missing the string lock. I’ve never really explored this area of strats but I’m excited to try it!
     
    mutato likes this.

  14. stratman323

    stratman323 Dr. Stratster Strat-Talk Supporter

    Age:
    58
    Apr 21, 2010
    London, UK
    As is so often the case, I agree with @Guitarmageddon, he is spot on. I bought one of those in LPB in 1987, cost £275, no case or bag. I also removed the locking nut as it was a PITA.

    It's not a Kahler trem, it's a Fender System One. They were well made guitars but the 12" radius board made them feel very different to a typical Strat. I sold mine in 1991 when I bought my AVRI & I really don't miss it.
     

  15. cleanheadsteve

    cleanheadsteve New Member!

    Age:
    56
    4
    Aug 30, 2016
    arkansas
    ive owned several of the 22 fret version and 21 fret squire version. both good but the 22 fretter seemed to have bigger frets. i loved those tremolos. with or without the locking after-nut