Dating fender jazz bass
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Most of the “Made in Japan” and the “Crafted in Japan” guitars us a 6 digit number (But not all and excluding the A prefix! A 6 DIGITS 1985-1987, 1997-1998 (Made in Japan) and (Crafted in Japan) This was one of the most confusing serial uber used by Japan.They placed the "A" on the bridge on the Telecasters and some of them could be as late as 1996 (as in the case with many JD Teles.
For more on the MADE vs CRAFTED thing, see the Guide I authored titled "MADE In Japan - vs - CRAFTED In Japan Fender Guitar(s)" .
All this is public information, avaiable on the web.
I encourage you to take initiative and verify this (and ALL) information independently, for yourself.
First we need to understand there is a * manufactured* difference in the "MADE In Japan" Fenders, and the "CRAFTED In Japan" Fender guitars.
For example: a "MADE" In Japan guitar having a serial number starting with the letter "A," would have been made in 1985 or 1986.
Mid–1997 the CIJ logo was the only one used on Fender guitars coming out of Japan (with exception the Squire series). I really don’t know, but the MIJ logo Fenders were for the USA market.
USA Fender wanted to stop the import of these guitars to the USA due to firing up their Mexican plant and due to the “too good” quality Japan was creating which competed with the USA models.
The "JV" alone, tells us the guitar was made between 19. The next serial number prefix used by Fender Japan - as shown on the Fender web site (and other web sites as well) - was "E". The "E" alone tells us the guitar was made between 19... Not the same use of the "E" as the US serial number of the same time frame...
The "JV" serialed MIJ (Made In Japan) Fenders have become, and will probably remain, the most collectable - The Holy Grails - of the Fender Japan instruments... The second serial number prefix used by Fender Japan was "SQ", which was followed by 5 digits. Next were the "A", "B", and "C" prefixes, each followed by 6 digits. The first letter (or letters) alone, is (are) all we need to determine the year of manufacture - in , and beyond the scope of this Guide. A great place to start in verifying this for yourself is... You'll notice on their "DATING JAPANESE MADE FENDER INSTRUMENTS" page, they start with the "MADE In Japan" serial numbers.
so, 1988); a Fender USA guitar serial starting "N4" would "theoretically" mean 1994 (N = in the Nineties, 4 = the 4th year... The "theoretically" appears in the previous paragraph a number of times for these reasons: the serial numbering system for USA Fenders has been more accurate in recent years, and that the Fender Japan serial numbering system has had a few quirks of its own... Additionally, Fender USA sometimes adds letters to the serial number to make special designations.
so, 1994); a Fender USA guitar serial starting "Z3" would "theoretically" mean 2003 (Z = 2000, 3 = in the 3rd year... For example, the US Fender serial number DZ575xxxx, would designate a Deluxe (the "D") guitar made in 2005.
work differently than Fender USA guitar serial numbers.