A Real 1962 Pre-CBS Strat
Howdy Folks! I had a really cool PRE-CBS strat come through the shop a while back. I took a ton of photos and measurements of it. The neck was dated June 1961. I had the pleasure of playing it for a little bit and it sounded awesome. Click any of the images to see it full size.
This guitar was in really good shape. The neck felt fantastic and the finish wasn’t very beat up
Bridge and Tuners
The reproduction tuners on the market are a pretty good match. The bridge aging seems like it would be harder to replicate.
Plenty of little dings on the edges but still a looker.
They did a great job on the burst.
The pickguard aging would be hard to recreate well. I don’t know a ton about different plastics but it seems different than modern ABS. Finding old stock would be awesome.
The finish crack was a little concerning, but i’m pretty sure its just on the surface. If the body glue joint fails eventually it could be glued up again without much fuss.
That lacquer chipping off is really hard to replicate.
The original springs had lost some of their pep. It really needs all 5 to keep the trem down.
Neck Plate and Neck Heel
You can see the neck plate imprint in the lacquer is pretty deep.
The neck has the marking for C shape and June 1961 date. The owner thought it was a ’63.
I found the shielding under the pickguard to be interesting. It was a solid sheet of metal instead of the foil we use today.
A Look in the Cavities
All I needed to do was retouch the output jack solder. The joint was cold. On a vintage guitar like this less is more.
I’m curious about what causes the blackening on the saddles.
The body was more like 1.65″ thick, and the thin part of the trem route was thinner as well.
As far as the owner knows the electronics are all original, and he has had the guitar since the 80s.
The cloth wiring we use is a great reproduction of the original. If you are doing a relic you could wax it and dirty it up to get the old look.
You can see how much lighter the maple is in the neck pocket where it sits untouched.
Took a neck profile at the 1st and 12th frets to check my C shape neck shaper pucks.
I took tracings of the body, neck, cavities, and whatever else I could. When a project calls for it I may put the measurements in sketchup and publish it.
My measurement spreadsheet is kind of a mess. But most measurements were in line with published specs, and the reissue blueprint that is circling around. If you have any questions or need a measurement leave a comment or text us. Thanks for checking it out