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The GOLDEN Decades For The Fender Stratocaster.. But What’s The Difference? | Guitar Village

Adam Leaver: June 22, 2023
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Hi Sam from Guitar Village here and today we’re going to look at the differences between a 50s and a 60s Strat before we get started I will mention we’re not going to go really nerdy we’re not going to look at what paint supplies they used or where they got their Phillips head screws from but we are going to go quite in depth so let’s get started

okay so first up I picked this 50 style Custom Shop Fender strap and I think this really highlights a lot of what was going on during the mid 50s anyway when the Strat was first released in 54. initially you’re going to have an ash body until you get later on into the 50s when they change to order you’re also going to have a one-piece Maple neck and most likely a skunk stripe down the back of it other things that you will notice is a single ply pick guard in the 50s Fender we’re very fond of using these single ply pick guards But as time went on they did walk these also have eight holes on them you’ve got black dot inlays both on the front and on the side of the neck as well and what we found with a lot of these strats is that they have brighter sounding pickups because the Tweed amps are a little bit warmer sounding they made the pickups brighter so they complemented them really nicely now let’s have a look at the 16 strap for comparison

so here I’ve got a 1964 reissue Stratton candy apple red you might notice one thing straight away obviously it’s a different color but you’ll also notice that it has a rosewood fretboard on this one so it’s still a maple neck but with a rosewood fretboard and a lot of people feel that the Rosewood is a slightly warmer sounding Uh Wood I’m not sure we did do a video on it I think it’s pretty neck and neck are the differences though obviously you wouldn’t put black dots on a rose with fretboard so they would have moved to Clay dots initially but on this model as it’s a 64 you’re going to have per Lloyd style dots on there as well this also has a different logo on the top so the traditional spaghetti logo that we saw on the last strap that was very classic for Fender and then as they go into the 60s they start adding pattern numbers to it and then they went to this transition logo before CBS took over the body on this one is an older body as Fender decided that they preferred using order might have been cheaper I’m not sure but generally what you’ll find is if it’s a solid color it’s going to be older underneath other small differences you’re going to find that the contouring on the body is slightly different to the earlier ones the pickups are a little bit warmer sounding because the black face amps they had in the 60s were slightly brighter so it’s kind of Vice Versa with the Tweed amps and the slightly brighter sounding 50s pickups another thing that a lot of players will really notice when they first pick up a 16 style Strat is the neck profiles when you look at the 50s strap it’s a slightly chunky neck with a slight V to it as well until they got towards the end of the 50s and then early 60s you’re going to start to get these Slimmer more tapered profiles in there as well let’s have a listen to each one and see how they sound

so you’ve had a listen to these guitars back to back now and hopefully you’ve got an opinion on how you think each one sounds so please do put it in the comments below we’d love to hear from you now there’s a couple of other changes I hadn’t mentioned earlier that I thought were quite interesting about the Strat so when the strap was first brought out it had 100K pots in it instead of the 250k that we’re so used to seeing and that would give it a slightly warmer tone now other things and these are nitty-gritty little details but the string Tree on this one isn’t that typical for a kind of mid 50s strap this is kind of slightly later in some ways but this has a butterfly or Square string Tree on it instead of the round that they were using it also has a single ply pick guard that I mentioned earlier and this has eight screw holes on it whereas the 64 reissue strap that I had this one has an 11 hole three-ply pick guard now the reason they went to three ply is because it was a bit more stable and didn’t warp like the original one ply something else that was really important during the 50s as well is how they changed the Sunburst so the original strats actually were kind of really a one color Sunburst they left the middle of the guitar natural and then just sprayed black around the edges it wasn’t until later on they started to add Amber in the middle and then later on they added the red in for that classic three color Sunburst look I think more of us are familiar with I think for me the main takeaway from this video is that the custom shop actually offers some pretty cool options for you you know you can order an exact replica of a 56 Strat or a 62 Strat you know whatever one you prefer or you can mix and match you know and in these cases I think we’ve kind of got two very opposite guitars I think the candy apple red was probably almost the purest guitar in the fact that they’ve gone almost spot on for the specs of that year whereas this is kind of more it’s a 50s Vibe Strat you know it has a three color Sunburst so you’d be looking late 50s but it has an ash body which you would see kind of Fade Out in mid 56 and then it has a square string tree you know if you’re really into your nerdy details so you do have some really cool options from the custom shot now we had a lot of fun making this video and I hope you enjoyed watching it we will bring out new videos every week so make sure you click the Subscribe button now to stay up to date with the latest content thanks for watching


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