Dating stratocaster body
When CBS sold Fender to its current owners in 1984 there was a transitional period from 1984 to 1987 with limited Fender USA production resulting in mostly Fender Japan and leftover stock being sold.There are also Fender Contemporary Telecaster models with HSS or HH pickup configurations and switches for selecting pickup options.while the "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...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.The single coil pickups used in the Contemporary models have a DC resistance which is approximately 5.6 kΩ.The Contemporary models that use a TBX tone control use 500 kΩ volume pots and use 0.022 µF tone capacitors.The System III tremolo system was designed by John Page, Dan Smith, Charlie Gressett and John Carruthers. Sometimes parts of the tremolo system are lost and one common modification is to make the bridge function as a hardtail by locking the bridge into a non movable position and installing a string tree for the first and second strings so that the strings don't slip out of the nut slots.
I encourage you to take initiative and verify this (and ALL) information independently, for yourself.
They were designed to help identify the approximate manufacturing date of the guitar.
For example: a guitar whose serial number begins with the letter and number "E8", would have "theoretically" been manufactured in 1988 (E = in the Eighties, 8 = the 8th year...
There was a lower priced Fender Contemporary Squier model produced as well.
The Fender Contemporary Stratocaster and Telecaster models were part of the Fender Japan E series model range.
This guide explains the basic differences between Fender USA guitar serial numbering, and Fender Japan serial numbering.