Up for sale, a 1961 Fender Jazzmaster in 100% original, collector-grade condition and in perfect working order, complete with the original hardshell case, all hangtags, and case candy. A stunning one-family instrument with a very dark original three-tone "target burst" Sunburst finish, this original Pre-CBS Jazzmaster delivers sparkle, twang, and incredible dynamic range while also being easily one of the lightest Jazzmasters we've ever encountered at only 7lbs 13oz.
The stock black bobbin pickups are well-balanced and powerful, with the clarity and cut of your favorite Fender single coil, yet providing a warmth and nuance that's unique to the Jazzmaster pickup design, with the original pickup windings extending all the way to the very edge of the bobbins. Whether you desire the sinewy snap of early surf recordings or the seminal attack of your favorite Elvis Costello or Sonic Youth records, it's hard to beat a real Pre-CBS Jazzmaster. Professionally setup and dialed in to perfection here at Mike & Mike's Guitar Bar, where we specialize in Offset Fender guitars, this Jazzmaster features 10-46 strings, low action, and accurate intonation.
The maple neck has slender, fast-feeling C-shaped profile carve at the nut with lightly rolled fretboard edges and a gentle increase in roundness and overall heft as you travel up the neck, measuring .795" deep at the 1st fret and .980" at the 12th. The thick slab Brazilian rosewood slab fretboard is an extremely dark, tight-grained cut, sporting clay dot inlay and original slender fretwire. The frets show decent grooves (particularly beneath the plain strings) on frets 1-3, with wear growing fainter beneath the plains until fret 6. The fretboard has a 7 1/4" radius, and the nut measures 1.660" in width, just fractionally shy of 1 11/16". On the headstock, the original Kluson Deluxe single line tuning machines are intact with clean plating and just a speckling of patina. The nitro lacquer on the headstock face shows virtually no ambering, retaining the pristine original Jazzmaster waterslide decal. The 10/61 grease pencil date is bold and clean on the neck heel.
The electronics function flawlessly with untouched solder joints and Stackpole pots that date to the 1st week of '61. Both pickups have extremely clean black bobbins, original windings, and clean white pickup covers. The grease pencil body date from 4/61 is present beneath the neck pickup brass shielding plate.The original vibrato tailpiece works exceptionally well in concert with the stock bridge, responding to the lightest touch for quick flutters, surfy warbles and deep dives, jumping back to the original pitch with ease and complete with the original arm. The nitrate tortoise pickguard is very dark and glossy with sparingly little shrinkage. The guard sits very flat, and both pickups can still adjust with viable original foam beneath the bobbins. The amber switch tip and knobs with greened text round out the original plastics.
The original three-tone Sunburst nitro lacquer finish is the richest, tightest "target burst" we've ever encountered on a Jazzmaster, a burst pattern sometimes seen on examples from 1960-61. The finish retains its original saturation and burst gradient, with zero fade when comparing the exposed finish and that which is protected beneath the pickguard. There is a spot of targeted buckle rash central to the back, wear on the treble-side body edges (more case wear than playwear), with some additional requisite minor nicks and finish scuffs consistent with light, careful use across the body. The neck profile exhibits a few very faint superficial marks on the lightly ambered nitro gloss, with light natural palm wear on the bass-side shoulder from frets 2-9.
All of the original hangtags are included, with the manual, Jazzmaster hangtag with matching hand-written serial, and tolex hangtag advertising the new case covering material. Additional goodies include the original strap, cable, Fender-branded picks, and vintage string packs, along with a claim check from a previous owner written as "Jassmaster."
The brown tolex hardshell case is equally as clean as the guitar with well-kept brown leather ends, original handle, and functional latches.