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Wood used for strats from 1960 to 1968

Discussion in 'Stratocaster Discussion Forum' started by Guitarman555, Mar 29, 2018.

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  1. Guitarman555

    Guitarman555 Strat-Talk Member

    Age:
    38
    23
    Mar 29, 2018
    Paris
    Please, does anybody know, when exactly strat started to be more pieces body? I have heard that in 1966 there were 4 pieces body or so, whereas till 1960 only 1piece. Does anybody know the develepoment between 1960 and 1968?
     

  2. Yogi

    Yogi Most Honored Senior Member Strat-Talk Supporter

    Age:
    30
    Jan 21, 2009
    Tuscaloosa, AL
    That's not true at all. Fender has used multipiece bodies from day one.
     
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  3. Guitarman555

    Guitarman555 Strat-Talk Member

    Age:
    38
    23
    Mar 29, 2018
    Paris
    Really? I have seen many ads from 1959, especially jazzmasters, 1 piece body, etc.
     

  4. Thrup'ny Bit

    Thrup'ny Bit Grand Master Curmudgeon Strat-Talk Supporter

    Age:
    59
    May 21, 2010
    Sheffield, UK
    I doubt that very much.
     
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  5. Guitarman555

    Guitarman555 Strat-Talk Member

    Age:
    38
    23
    Mar 29, 2018
    Paris
    So there was not any trend to make strats, teles or jazzys after cbs takeover in 1965,1966?
     

  6. Guitarman555

    Guitarman555 Strat-Talk Member

    Age:
    38
    23
    Mar 29, 2018
    Paris
    How many parts were strats made of the most often? Many thanks
     

  7. Robins

    Robins Dr. von Loudster Strat-Talk Supporter

    Dec 22, 2010
    Germany
    They used wood that was available and cheap. Whatever pieces they had available. If the piece was too small they used those for all kind of things like piling wood planks and repairing things etc.
    There were no mystery days in the Fender history. Just hard working men and women who enjoyed their job maybe a bit more than these days.
    But always have in mind the great guitars from those days we still have these days are just some sort of "the good ones that survived".

    All the best,
    Robin
     
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  8. Guitarman555

    Guitarman555 Strat-Talk Member

    Age:
    38
    23
    Mar 29, 2018
    Paris
    Yes, but I would love to know, how many pieces body was starndard eg in 1959, 1966, 1968? Are there some differences?
     

  9. Bob the builder

    Bob the builder Senior Stratmaster

    Age:
    57
    May 2, 2016
    Cranston, Rhode Island
    How ever many it took. A tree is only so wide
     

  10. Paperback Rocker

    Paperback Rocker Nitro-mancer Strat-Talk Supporter

    Sep 18, 2014
    Victoria TX
    There was no standard number of body pieces, ever.
     
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  11. SachaPlusDeluxe

    SachaPlusDeluxe Strat-Talker

    Hi Guitarman

    I think what everyone is really stating here and what you need to understand is that there were no real standards used at fender, what was available was used. So you won't get a definite answer to your question.

    Hope that helps :)
     
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  12. Guy Named Sue

    Guy Named Sue Beer me up Scotty Strat-Talk Supporter

    Feb 11, 2015
    Limbo
    There's no way to tell how many pieces were used in one specific year. There's No WAY! Depending on how large the lumber was that Leo got the bodies varied every day in production. Some rare instances there were large enough pieces to produce some small amount of one piece bodies but in general they were mainly made out of two to three piece bodies. The Alder trees grow very tall and generally small in width. While on the other hand Ash trees grow a lot thicker and bigger but shorter.

    So yes if you look at the early 50s Tele production you'll probably find more one piece bodies, and even a few in the early production of strats before they switched to American red Alder. But there were no specific standard for exactly how many pieces the bodies should be made out of.

    Starting from mid 50s Leo started reserving good looking pieces of wood, nice grain pattern and large enough pieces for only to be used for translucent finishes such as Blonde, Butterscotch, Mary Kaye etc that's the only standards they had.

    Later on in the 60s you might even find Poplar bodies used on some strats, but Poplar were mainly used for the student guitars such as Duo Sonic etc

    There were although some rare instances where the supplies of big enough lumber was low that Fender produced so called Faux Burst, they would glue multiple woods together and then put a veneer on front and back and spray thick sunburst to hide the grain pattern. I have seen a Jazzmaster done like that that was refinished, every detail was visible.
     
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2018
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  13. stratman323

    stratman323 Dr. Stratster Strat-Talk Supporter

    Age:
    58
    Apr 21, 2010
    London, UK
    They may have claimed this but I very much doubt if it was true.

    It's like this. This is one of those pointless discussions that has only existed since the internet existed. Nobody gave stuff like this a moment's thought before. Not least because it doesn't matter! Leo made solid, reliable guitars for the working musician, & none of them gave a damn what sort of wood it was made from or how many pieces made up the body. Leo used stuff that was easily available & reasonably cheap. He switched from ash to alder in the 50s because alder was quicker & easier to finish. He didn't like to waste wood as that impacted on the profits. If he got big pieces of wood delivered, maybe a body would be made up of fewer pieces, if it was small they might use more pieces. It didn't matter then. And it doesn't matter now.

    If you're desperate for a Strat or Tele with a one piece body, look to the top end of the Japanese market. They like stuff like that over there, & the some of the top of the range models may have one piece bodies or centre joined two piece bodies which look pretty under a see-through finish. But the Japanese also make many more guitars with multi-piece bodies.

    Even Fender's own Custom Shop rarely makes Strats or Teles with one piece bodies, though I suppose they might make you one if you pay them enough for a one-off special order.
     
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  14. Guitarman555

    Guitarman555 Strat-Talk Member

    Age:
    38
    23
    Mar 29, 2018
    Paris
    hey guys, many thanks to you for your posts! My another stupid question: So you think that eg. 4 piece body is still nothing unusual? Let´s say that the most common inteval was from 2 to 5 pieces in 60´s?
     
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  15. Guitarman555

    Guitarman555 Strat-Talk Member

    Age:
    38
    23
    Mar 29, 2018
    Paris
    Another one: how I recognise if 1959 jazzmaster is really from ash? I assume that only higher weight can be a signal of ash? Or to look at wood from the inside?.
     
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  16. Guy Named Sue

    Guy Named Sue Beer me up Scotty Strat-Talk Supporter

    Feb 11, 2015
    Limbo
    In my experience up to 3 piece bodies would get the same treatment as 1 or 2 piece bodies. 4 or 5 would fall into the category of Faux Burst. This is a P bass with Faux Burst which has more than three piece body. Unusual? No.

    fenderbass5.jpg
     
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  17. stratman323

    stratman323 Dr. Stratster Strat-Talk Supporter

    Age:
    58
    Apr 21, 2010
    London, UK
    Ash is wood. Wood can vary considerably in weight. Some 70s Fenders are incredibly heavy & are made from ash. I have a CS 63 Tele made from ash that's the lightest guitar I own. I think the lighter stuff is known as swamp ash - no doubt someone will correct me if I'm wrong about this.

    These generalisations like "ash is heavy" just don't work because they're not true.
     

  18. Guy Named Sue

    Guy Named Sue Beer me up Scotty Strat-Talk Supporter

    Feb 11, 2015
    Limbo
    The weight difference is undeniable when you compare northern Ash which was used throughout the 70s to swamp/southern Ash that was used before 1970. But of course you have some examples of real heavy ones from the 50s too.
     

  19. Guy Named Sue

    Guy Named Sue Beer me up Scotty Strat-Talk Supporter

    Feb 11, 2015
    Limbo
    The odds are against you when it comes to the 59 Jazzmaster being made out of Ash, in 59 they used American red Alder, Ash was reserved for translucent finishes like I mentioned above. What makes you think it's Ash? Cause the weight? That's not a correct way to look at it. You have to look at the wood grain to differentiate Alder from Ash.
     
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  20. Uncle Fiesta

    Uncle Fiesta Senior Stratmaster

    If you look for a list of the densities of various woods, you will notice that they never quote a single figure for each type of wood; it's a range. Thus two samples of the same wood can have vastly different weights, and at the same time two different woods can have the same weight.
     
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