How to Date your Fender Guitar

How To Date Your Fender Guitar:

1962 Fender Jazzmaster and 1967 Fender Telecaster

Checking the date range can be done by removing the neck of the guitar and checking the butt end of the neck heel for a stamped or written date (See picture for an example). Also, another good way to properly date Fender guitars is to check the components (pots, pickups, body dates). Fender neck plates were selected from large bins and it's difficult to properly date Fender's by neck plate alone. Please refer to an experienced guitar tech or luthier if you are not sure about doing so.

1956 Neck Date on a Fender Precision Bass

(Handwritten Fender Neck Date Example on a 1956 Fender Precision Bass)

1962 Fender Neck Date Example: Fender Jazzmaster March '62

(Handwritten 1962 Fender Neck Date: Fender Jazzmaster March '62)

1963 Fender Neck Date: Fender Jazzmaster September '63)

(Stamped 1963 Fender Neck Date: Fender Jazzmaster September '63)

Fender Stamped Date Example: 1971 Telecaster Bass

(Fender Neck Date Example: 1971 Telecaster Bass)

(8th week of '74 Pot Codes on a 1974 Fender Stratocaster)

1959 Fender Jazzmaster Body Date

(Fender Body Date 4/59: 1959 Fender Jazzmaster)

 

Manufacturing Date Identification of Fender:

Fender serial number schemes from 1950-1964 contain overlap in numbers and years. Remember these serial number plates were just taken from the pile and 

Fender Telecaster (Early Esquire and Broadcaster) Serial Numbers from 1950-1954:

The Telecaster was introduced in 1951. It was originally called the Broadcaster and it was the first solid body mass produced electric guitar.

Telecaster Serial Numbers (1950-1954)

Years

0001 - 0999

 1950 - 1952

1000 - 5300

 1952 - 1954

 

Fender P Bass Serial Numbers from 1951-1955:

Fender also introduced the Precision Bass (P Bass) in 1951.

Fender P Bass Serial Numbers (1951-1955)

Years

100 - 400

1951 - 1952

0001 - 0999

1952 - 1954

1000 - 2000

1953 - 1955

 

Fender Serial Numbers 4-6 Digits:

Fender Serial Numbers 4-6 Digits (1950-1963)

Year

0001 - 8000

1954

6000 - 10000

1955

9000 - 16000

1956

16000 - 25000

1957

25000 - 30000

1958

30000 - 40000

1959

40000 - 58000

1960

55000 - 72000

1961

72000 - 93000

1962

93000 - 99999

1963

 

(1958 Fender Serial Number Example: 1958 Fender Musicmaster)

Fender L-Series Serial Numbers:

(Fender L-Series 1963 Serial Number Example: 1963 Fender Jazzmaster )

Fender L-Series Serial Numbers (1963-1965)

Year

L00001 - L20000

1963

L20000 - L55000

1964

L55000 - L99999

1965

 

Fender was sold to CBS in January of 1965. Serial numbers of instruments did not change immediately as they continued using existing production tools and parts.

Fender F-Series Serial Numbers:

(Fender F-Series Serial Number Example: 1967 Fender Coronado II Bass)  

 

Fender F-Series Serial Numbers (1965-1976)

Year

100000 - 110000

1965

110000 - 200000

1966

180000 - 210000

1967

220000 - 250000

1968

250000 - 280000

1969

280000 - 300000

1970

300000 - 330000

1971

330000 - 370000

1972

370000 - 520000

1973

500000 - 580000

1974

580000 - 690000

1975

690000 - 750000

1976

(Fender F-Series Serial Number Example: 1973 Fender Precision Bass)

(Fender F-Series Serial Number Example: 1974 Fender Stratocaster w/ 3-bolt neck design)

Fender Peghead Decal Serial Numbers:

In mid-1976, Fender began putting serial numbers on the peghead for U.S. made guitars. (See picture below). "S" Serial Numbers = 1970's, "E" Serial Numbers were started in 1979 to denote the 1980's, "V" Serial Numbers were introduced in 1982 for U.S. Vintage Series. “N” Serial Numbers denote the 1990’s. “N” and “E” Serial Numbers can also denote Japanese-made instruments. CBS sold Fender in March 1985 and serial numbers of instruments stayed the same. There are overlap with numbers and years.

“Z” Serial Numbers denote the instruments made in the USA starting in 2000. “DZ” denotes American Deluxe Series instruments.

 

Peghead Decal Fender Serial Numbers (1976-2009)

Year/Years

76 + 5 digits (Bold 76)

1976

1000000 - 8000000

1976 - 1981

S6 + 5 digits

1976

S7 + 5 digits

1977 - 1978

S8 + 5 digits

1977 - 1980

S9 + 5 digits

1978 - 1983

E0 + 5 digits

1979 - 1981

800000's

1979 - 1981

E1 + 5 digits

1980 - 1982

E2 + 5 digits

1982 - 1983

E3 + 5 digits

1982 - 1983

E4 + 5 digits

1984 - 1985, 1987 - 1988

E8 + 5 digits

1988 - 1989

E9 + 5 digits

1989 - 1990

N9 + 5 digits

1990

N0 + 5 digits

1990 - 1991

N1 + 5 or 6 digits

1991 - 1992

N2 + 5 or 6 digits

1992 - 1993

N3 + 5 or 6 digits

1993 - 1994

N4 + 5 or 6 digits

1994 - 1995

N5 + 5 or 6 digits

1995 - 1996

N6 + 5 or 6 digits

1996 - 1997

N7 + 5 or 6 digits

1997 - 1998

N8 + 5 or 6 digits

1998 - 1999

N9 + 5 or 6 digits

1999 - 2000

DZ0 or Z0 + 5 or 6 digits

2000

DZ1 or Z1 + 5 or 6 digits

2001

DZ2 or Z2 + 5 or 6 digits

2002

DZ3 or Z3 + 5 or 6 digits

2003

DZ4 or Z4 + 5 or 6 digits

2004

DZ5 or Z5 + 5 or 6 digits

2005

DZ6 or Z6 + 5 or 6 digits

2006

DZ7 or Z7 + 5 or 6 digits

2007

DZ8 or Z8 + 5 or 6 digits

2008

DZ9 or Z9 + 5 or 6 digits

2009

 

(Fender Peghead Decal "Z6" Example: 2006 Fender American VG Stratocaster)

A new serial numbering system was used starting towards the end of 2009 with a “10” prefix with a space and 7 digits. The “10” prefix denotes instruments made in 2010. This numbering system was used for a few months, then it was replaced with serial numbers with “US” as a prefix and an 8-digit number with the first 2 digits denoting the year (US11 for 2011).  

Fender Serial Numbers (2010-2017)

Year

“10” prefix followed by a space + 7 digits

Late 2009 - March 2010

US11 + 6 digits

2011

US12 + 6 digits

2012

US13 + 6 digits

2013

US14 + 6 digits

2014

US15 + 6 digits

2015

US16 + 6 digits

2016

US17 + 6 digits

2017

US18 + 6 digits 2018

 

(Fender 2018 US Serial Number Example: 2018 Fender Limited Edition Parallel Universe Jazz Telecaster)

 

Fender Made in Japan Serial Numbers:

Japanese Fender Serial Numbers (1982-1996)

Years

JV + 5 digits

1982 - 1984

SQ + 5 digits

1983 - 1984

E + 6 digits

1984 - 1987

A + 6 digits

1985 - 1986

B + 6 digits

1985 - 1986

C + 6 digits

1985 - 1986

F + 6 digits

1986 - 1987

G + 6 digits

1987 - 1988

H + 6 digits

1988 - 1989

I + 6 digits

1989 - 1990

J + 6 digits

1989 - 1990

K + 6 digits

1990 - 1991

L + 6 digits

1991 - 1992

M + 6 digits

1992 - 1993

N + 6 digits

1993 - 1994

O + 6 digits

1994 - 1995

P + 6 digits

1995 - 1996

 

 

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