Dating your fender
Although there were several deviations from the original Tele Thinline, the only generally sought after model is the one with standard Tele-style single coil pickups.This variant was made from 1968 to 1971 and was marked "Fender Telecaster" only on the peg head (as per regular solid body Telecasters), the truss rod adjusted at the butt-end of the neck, and had a pearled pick-guard between the neck pickup to the tone control.Dating a guitar is not only a useful and interesting thing to be able to do, in financial and historical terms it is vital.Even if you are not planning to sell your guitar knowing a bit about when it was made is a fun thing to do, from there you can read about the history of the company and work out just where your guitar fits into the story.The tube chart date code works like this: the first letter indicates the year and the second letter indicates the month.So if your blackface amp has a date code stamp of OB, it was made in 1965/February.There are some easy ways to find out when your vintage Fender was manufactured.
A – 1951 A – January B – 1952 B – February C – 1953 C – March D – 1954 D – April E – 1955 E – May F – 1956 F – June G – 1957 G – July H – 1958 H – August I – 1959 I – September J – 1960 J – October K – 1961 K – November L – 1962 L – December M – 1963 N – 1964 O – 1965 P – 1966 Q – 1967 Another way to get a close estimate of when your amp was made is to read the codes on the transformers.
In 1937 Gretsch had trademarked the name "Broad Kaster" for a line of drums and after advertising the Broadcaster in music trade papers in February 1951, Gretsch took notice and sent Fender a telegram asking them to change their name.
Therefore Fender was forced to drop the name Broadcaster.
Therefore, you can find No Casters with December 1950 neck dates, even though they didn't clip the decals and do final assembly till February 1951 (decal application was the last assembly step were always applied over the finish).
Making the body and neck (and dating them) was the first assembly step, and hence these dates can be a couple months before the instrument was finalized and shipped.
The majority of Broadcasters are dated November 1950.