Up for sale, a 1985 Fender "Order Made" Esquire in near-mint, 100% original condition and in perfect working order. An exceedingly rare, non-catalog model, this very early Esquire was produced in Fender Japan's golden age at the Fujigen factory. With a single snappy bridge position pickup, this Esquire captures the chewy twang, slightly aggressive cut, and classic sparkle of the Tele/Esquire. The stock pickup features alnico rod magnets and flat pole pieces, indicative of Fender's earliest designs and offering a bit more punch and fullness than later staggered magnet iterations.
The Esquire's secret weapon is its three-way Tone switch. In the "bridge" position, the pickup is connected only to the Volume control (the Tone control is disconnected), and this minimal circuitry produces more top-end sparkle than is possible with a Telecaster. In the middle position, the standard Tone control circuit is activated. In the "neck" position, the Tone control is again disengaged, but a tone-shaping capacitor rolls off much of the top end and some bottom, producing a darker tone and slight volume loss. This Esquire weighs 7lbs 14oz, professionally setup here at Mike & Mike's Guitar Bar with 10-46 strings and low action.
The maple neck has a slender C-shaped profile carve with nicely rounded shoulders and faintly rolled fretboard edges, measuring .815" deep at the 1st fret and .885" at the 12th. The fretboard has a vintage spec 7 1/4" radius, and the slender frets are flawless, playing cleanly up the 25 1/2" scale length with a straight neck and responsive, optimally adjusted truss rod. The nut measures 1.650" in width, and the headstock features a '50s-style Esquire logo and Kluson-style tuning machines which turn smoothly. The "Made in Japan" text is present above the four-bolt neck plate which is embossed with an early A-prefix serial number. The neck heel and pocket have matching Order Made stamps and production numbers, with "BSB" denoting the Butterscotch Blonde gloss finish.
The electronics function as intended, and the solder joints are untouched. The full-size pots date to May of 1985. The chrome plating on the hardware is positively gleaming, and the Fender-stamped Pat. Pending bridge base retains its trio of steel barrel saddles. Freakishly well-preserved, save for perhaps a tiny mark or light finish scratch, there’s virtually no wear on the instrument.
The original brown Fender-branded gigbag is included. This rare bag is only seen on Fender Japan's earliest guitars.