Up for sale, a 1964 Fender Mustang in excellent, 100% original condition and in perfect working order, complete with the original hardshell case. A first year example of the Mustang model and one of very few produced, this instrument is a true Pre-CBS Fender with a feature set consistent with the '64 model year including black bobbin pickups, single line Kluson tuners, clay dot inlay, an L-prefix neck plate, and a wide bevel pearloid pickguard.
An uncommon short scale version of the Mustang, this guitar has a more compact 22 1/2" scale length and slender "A" 1 1/2" nut width. The guitar delivers a smooth acoustic voice that translates well through the stock black bobbin pickups with great sparkle, clarity, and sweetness. Since the pickups are essentially flat pole Stratocaster pickups with covers over the magnets, the tones are surprisingly similar, although the Mustang has the added benefit of a pair of three-way on/off/on pickup switches for an out-of-phase hollow twang and quack when the switches are engaged in their innermost or outermost positions. Featherweight at 6lbs 14oz and professionally setup here at Mike & Mike's Guitar Bar with a fresh set of 10-46 roundwound strings and low action, this Mustang is a lively and vital-sounding vintage Fender.
The maple neck has a modestly slender C-shaped profile carve at the nut, quickly gaining notable shoulder and heft further up the fretboard, measuring .825" deep at the 1st fret, .910" at the 5th fret, and .999" at the 12th. The extremely dark, tight-grained Brazilian rosewood board features clay dot inlay, and the original slender frets show only faint wear beneath the plain strings on the crowns of frets 1-3. The guitar plays cleanly in every register, the neck is straight, and the truss rod is responsive and optimally adjusted. On the headstock, the Mustang decal is near mint on the face, and the original Kluson Deluxe single line tuners work smoothly and hold pitch well with clean white buttons. The neck heel retains a bold August, 1964 date stamp, along with the "paint stick" markings in the neck pocket indicative of an original finish.
The electronics all function as intended, the solder joints are untouched, and the Stackpole pots date to the 26th week of '64. The pickups are both hand-dated on the black bobbins too, reading 8-24-64. The original hardware has gleaming chrome plating including the L-prefix serialized four-bolt neck plate, bridge with barrel saddles that show uniform surface patina, and Pat. Pending vibrato unit. This vibrato has excellent tension and actuates smoothly, jumping back to the original pitch with ease and complete with an original arm. The original plastic parts are notably clean, including the stock knob pair and white pearloid pickguard which is well-preserved with virtually no shrinkage and great dimension in the pearloid material.
The Dakota Red gloss nitro lacquer finish is 100% original with no touchup or overspray, and the finish is a slightly brighter shade than the Dakota seen on Mustangs from '65 and beyond. There are various nicks on the back and to a lesser extent on the lower bout on top, with some faint vertical lacquer checking on the back and additional scuffing in the gloss. The gloss finish on the neck profile is nigh flawless.
The original Victoria Luggage-made hardshell case with gray textured exterior is included. The case has clean black leather ends, a trio of stock latches, the original handle, and even the small neck strap.