Up for sale, a 1988 Fender American Vintage '62 Stratocaster in exceptional, 100% original condition and in perfect working order, complete with the original hardshell case. This rare and desirable early American Vintage series Fender was manufactured in the Corona, CA factory very soon after Fender relocated from Fullerton. The Lake Placid Blue nitro lacquer finish is a particularly uncommon custom color option too, and this finish is virtually unaged, accented by bright white plastic parts and gleaming chrome hardware.
The tonewood complement includes an alder body, maple neck, and thick slab rosewood fretboard, yielding a rich, balanced acoustic tone that translates faithfully through the original 57/62 black bobbin pickups. These vintage-spec single coils have staggered, unbeveled alnico magnets, ensuring traditional chime, sparkle, and quack. Via the factory included five-way pickup selector switch, an array of classic Fender tones are at hand, from biting bridge position cut, to the bell-like chime and sweetness of the neck pickup. Weighing 8lbs 2oz and professionally setup here at Mike & Mike's Guitar Bar, we've restrung this Strat with 10-46 strings and dialed in the action and intonation for optimal playability.
The maple neck has a slender C profile carve with lightly rolled fretboard edges and a bit more heft and shoulder in the higher registers, measuring .815" deep at the 1st fret and .895" at the 12th. The thick slab rosewood fretboard is a dark, tight-grained cut with a 7 1/4" radius and original slender frets. The frets retain their full factory height with well-rounded crowns, showing only moderate wear beneath the plain strings on frets 1-2, with fainter wear extending to fret 6. The guitar plays effortlessly in every register with a straight neck and responsive, optimally adjusted truss rod. The scale length is 25 1/2", and the nut measures 1.650" in width. On the headstock, the Fender Stratocaster waterslide decal is intact and the Kluson-style Gotoh tuners turn smoothly and hold pitch as they should. The neck heel has a clean July 22, 1988 date, and the heel and pocket retain all the requisite factory stamps and markings.
The stock electronics function flawlessly with original CTS pots that date to the 25th week of 1988. The plastic parts are extremely clean with a bright white three-ply pickguard and knobs, and just a hint of aging on the pickup covers. The chrome-plated hardware is positively gleaming, and the vibrato works very smoothly with three springs, responding quickly and reliably for quick shimmies and deeper dives. The early V-prefix serial number is also present on the four-bolt neck plate.
The gloss nitro lacquer Lake Placid Blue finish shows sparingly little aging of the clear coat save for one localized spot of greening on the treble-side lower bout edge. There are a couple isolated spots of finish checking on the lower botu on top, along with light buckle rash between the neck plate and trem cavity cover, one finish chip on the edge of the tremolo route, and a few dings and scuffs on the back and body perimeter. The neck profile has an extremely smooth and clean ambered nitro gloss, with just one small nick on the treble-side shoulder at the 2nd fret and a similarly small spot of palm wear on the bass-side at fret 2.
The original tweed G&G hardshell case is included.