Dating a japanese fender
So, obviously a neck date, while being helpful in providing a date range of production, it cannot be a definitive reference.
Unlike the auto industry which has specific model years for their products, most specifications for a given Fender instrument model, change little if any, through the lifetime of the model.
If you have serious interest in learning about the history of Fender instruments, or if you just want to try to establish the year of production of your own axe, we would highly recommend that you pick up one or more of the following books.
They are detailed reference resources with a wealth of information for helping to either establish the vintage of your guitar or bass or for just learning more about Fender history in general.
You will notice that there is quite a bit of overlap of both numbers and years.
While there have been periods where dramatic changes have occurred, for example: the transition periods between Leo's Fender and the CBS years, as well as the transition between CBS' Fender and the current ownership, generally speaking, most models are feature specific and do not change from year to year..
Serial numbers have been used in various locations on Fender instruments through the years.
Fender Japan usedall of the above lettering sequences for the serial numbering of their guitars and basses over the years, andknowing this first will help you determine the year of manufacture.
These stamps can be found in differentlocations on your guitar, so now I'll tell you where you need to look to find these markings... acronym for "Japan Vintage" On these guitars you will find the letters "JV" stamped/engraved into the neck plate of the Stratocasters and bass guitars and on the bridges of the Telecasters and other guitar models.