Up for sale, a 1994 Fender Stratocaster '72 vintage reissue model ST72-85SC in near mint, 100% original condition and in perfect working order. Essentially a pre-Ritchie Blackmore signature model produced before Fender Japan rolled out the official iteration, this Stratocaster is a rare model with a unique feature set, crafted at the famed Fujigen factory and only designed to be sold within Japan.
With a scalloped rosewood fretboard, trio of particularly hot ceramic magnet single coil pickups designed to visually echo Duncan Quarter Pounders, and distinctive tuxedo cosmetics, this Strat certainly looks the part of the Blackmore model. There's plenty to love about this guitar, and each position on the five-way pickup selector switch is distinct. Unlike the official Blackmore Strat which has three-way switching and a dummy middle pickup, this guitar offers a full array of Strat tones with conventional five-way switching. The ceramic magnets hit hard and offer cutting, powerful single coil snap. Well balanced on a strap at 7lbs 15oz, we've had this Strat professionally setup here at Mike & Mike's Guitar Bar and dialed in with low action, accurate intonation, and 10-46 strings.
The maple neck has a round C-shaped profile carve with good shoulder and lightly rolled fretboard edges, measuring .845" deep at the 1st fret and .940" at the 12th. The C-shaped factory scalloping on the thick slab rosewood board is not overly deep, and the scalloping is uniform in depth as you travel up the fretboard. The slender fretwire is practically perfect with well-rounded crowns, and the guitar plays easily up the 25 1/2" scale with a straight neck and responsive, optimally adjusted truss rod. The nut measures 42mm in width (just a hair shy of 1 11/16"), and the large headstock has a '70s block logo and Gotoh chrome tuners. The "Made in Japan" text and Q-prefix serial number are present above the three-bolt F neck plate.
All of the electronics work as they should, with the trio of original ceramic magnet single coils with large diameter poles wired to the stock Japanese harness. The guitar has a full-size block too for optimal sustain and clarity, and the vibrato responds effortlessly for deep dives and expressive warbles, jumping back to the original pitch with ease. The chrome plating on the bridge base and jack cup is quite clean, and the plastics are equally well-kept.
The Olympic White finish is a very vintage-correct shade, with sparingly little aging of the clear coat in the last quarter century. Cosmetic wear is limited to one small ding at the bass-side waist on the top body edge, and just a few additional small nicks and faint finish scratches, mostly relegated to the back and lower bout body edge. The gloss finish on the neck profile is flawless.
Essentially a proto-Ritchie Blackmore reissue, this Fujigen factory "Made in Japan" Strat is a great looking, no-nonsense powerhouse with a scalloped fretboard made for shred and ceramic magnet pickups with plenty of tonal heft.
The original Fender-branded gigbag is included.