Can you help me identify this body?

God of Thunder

Strat-Talk Member
Feb 19, 2010
68
Kansas City, MO
I have had this Japan Strat for quite awhile. Today - on a whim - I decided to take the neck off and see what the body looked like. I was surprised to say that it was incredibly different than what I was expecting - so much so that it may not even be a Fender body! Does anyone have any ideas on this?

Thanks for any help!!

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dirocyn

Most Honored Senior Member
Jan 20, 2018
7,490
Murfreesboro, TN
This has definitely had some aftermarket re-working of the routing. Looks like they used a rounded carving chisel, at least on that middle pickup route.
 

Colnago1

Senior Stratmaster
Sep 2, 2014
1,546
Where am I?
I’ve seen worse. That can be cleaned up with a template and a router if you care to. Otherwise, it looks to be an American Standard body with the micro tilt. What’s the neck look like? Does it say made in Japan on it? Just curious. Cheers!
 

Believer7713

The Pink Bunnyman Frankenstein
Silver Member
Dec 27, 2016
18,379
KC
Going by the shape of the routes for the pickups and the control cavity it also appears to be either a 70's or a 70's reissue body too. I really am digging on that dark fretboard though.
 

CB91710

No GAS shortage here
Platinum Supporting Member
Feb 24, 2019
11,771
SoCal
Ya, could be a CBS era Fullerton body, or MiJ, or an MiM Classic series.
It started life as a 3-bolt, and the neck bolt holes were filled and it was converted to a 4-bolt, so that neck did not originally come with that body (unless the neck was also converted from a 3-bolt).
Pickup and control cavity routing obscure whether it could be a later 70s Fullerton body... starting in '78 or '79, they had a notch routed for attaching a grounding lug, but that area has been cut down on this body.

So there is a good possibility that it actually is a legit Fender body... but no way of knowing from what time frame or factory.
Could also be a Tokai or Ibanez.
 

God of Thunder

Strat-Talk Member
Feb 19, 2010
68
Kansas City, MO
Here are some more photos of it side by side with my 1987 Strat. The upper horn looks smaller to me on the white one. Additionally, I've owned a few 70s Strats and they have all been very very heavy. This one is quite light. Doesn't necessarily mean much though!

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Additionally - here's the neck and a photo of the case that the owner said was original.

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1MT1JDxh.jpg
 

John C

Most Honored Senior Member
Silver Member
Jul 17, 2012
8,530
Kansas City
Interesting piece; the neck could be from one of the MIJ Standards that had the Contemporary features like the System 1 tremolo. It looks like the neck did have the System 1 string lock on it, but it was removed (leaving the 4 small holes) and the 2 butterfly string trees added - but those would have had modern Gotoh tuners - it kind of looks like the tuners were swapped based on the indentations around the bushings. This model did have a micro-tilt on them, but I have no idea how they were routed under the hood.

At any rate here is Antonio's page on the version 1 of that type of MIJ Standard - the FujiGen part number looks right for the neck (ST-562) but the photo on his page that shows the stamp doesn't have that "K" after it:


For what it's worth Fender stopped using the System 1 trem in early 1987 and used a Kahler 2520 bridge (he has it as 3/1987-12/1987) but they kept using the System 1 string lock on it; maybe that "ST-562-K" would signify it was originally one from that time period (MIJ Standard v2):


Either way a previous owner must have pulled the trem and replaced it with a traditional 6-screw trem as well as removing the string lock.

EDIT: Also the neck plate is wrong; it should have been longer and had a hole for the micro-tilt and one of those plastic gaskets under it.
 

CB91710

No GAS shortage here
Platinum Supporting Member
Feb 24, 2019
11,771
SoCal
Here are some more photos of it side by side with my 1987 Strat. The upper horn looks smaller to me on the white one. Additionally, I've owned a few 70s Strats and they have all been very very heavy. This one is quite light. Doesn't necessarily mean much though!

m3ETGZgh.jpg


TlXFTHNh.jpg


zCoO8Toh.jpg


5lsqeLth.jpg


LwauyNzh.jpg


4sUIYMIh.jpg


Additionally - here's the neck and a photo of the case that the owner said was original.

E4SdKbTh.jpg


9uOjilHh.jpg


WGhccGkh.jpg


1MT1JDxh.jpg
That case would be correct for a '72 to mid 70s, late 70s they added "Made in USA" under the first "E"

Whatever that body is, that neck did not come on it originally.
It *may* have originally shipped in the case, but that ST562 neck did not leave the factory on a 3-bolt body.
The original 3-bolt necks not only had longer neck plates, but the top two holes were slightly closer together, which you can see on the body.

3358e.jpg
Bothnecks.jpg

^^^ The original 3-bolt neck would not have had the two holes along side the "coin"


neckplates.jpg
 

God of Thunder

Strat-Talk Member
Feb 19, 2010
68
Kansas City, MO
That case would be correct for a '72 to mid 70s, late 70s they added "Made in USA" under the first "E"

Whatever that body is, that neck did not come on it originally.
It *may* have originally shipped in the case, but that ST562 neck did not leave the factory on a 3-bolt body.
The original 3-bolt necks not only had longer neck plates, but the top two holes were slightly closer together, which you can see on the body.

View attachment 610602
View attachment 610601

^^^ The original 3-bolt neck would not have had the two holes along side the "coin"


View attachment 610603

So - would your 'best guess' think that this body would be a 70-72 since the case would be period correct, and the body would have originally had 3 holes?
 

CB91710

No GAS shortage here
Platinum Supporting Member
Feb 24, 2019
11,771
SoCal
So - would your 'best guess' think that this body would be a 70-72 since the case would be period correct, and the body would have originally had 3 holes?
Impossible to say with any certainty, particularly with the routing in the pickup cavity obscuring some of the identifying features. The pickup routes do look correct for that era, but those were not the only bodies to have that shape routing.
The body could be anywhere from '71 to '81, it could be Japanese (Fender or clone), or it could be a more recent Classic series from Ensenada.
If the case is indeed original to the body, it could be from '72 to '75/'76, but the seller claimed that the neck is original, and it definitely was not original to that body and case.
Ultimately, any collector value went up in a cloud of dust when the router and chisel were taken to the body.
 

Believer7713

The Pink Bunnyman Frankenstein
Silver Member
Dec 27, 2016
18,379
KC
Why do you assume that? My first thought was bottom end MIJ from the 1970s or 80s.
I was looking at the shape of what was left of the pickup routes and the shape of the control cavity. Also, I didn't see any identifying stamp in the neck pocket like I have seen on just about every MIJ body that I have worked with.

There really wasn't much to look at on the OP but now that there are more pics I can see that it is an obvious partscaster. The neck is definitely from an MIJ. Either Standard or Contemporary model (I have had both) and I can say for certain that that body is not either one of them because the routing was different in both cases. As @John C pointed out, the neck came from a guitar that originally had a System 1 bridge assembly because of the 4 holes that indicate where the behind the nut string lock was and it is a distinct screw pattern to those lock systems. The body has also been drilled for a 4 hole neck and the micro tilt has been disabled as a result since it was originally a 3 hole and the guitars with the System 1 didn't come with a three hole. Plus, the body obviously never had a System 1 bridge because there would be signs of the post holes being dowelled and there would also be an extra set of pickguard screw holes in that area. The System 1 bridge has a post spacing wider than a Floyd Rose making it near impossible to swap out anything else into it without extensive work unless you use a Gotoh GE-1996. You still have a lot of tweaking to do with that one too. I also read that the body is fairly light and a lot of times people will equate that with an MIJ as opposed to an actual 70s body but really that is a crapshoot. I have played some seventies tanks and some that were on par with my MIC Squier in weight.

With all that said, it very well could be a Japan made body. But the electrics are definitely not from a Japanese made guitar of that era. The pots would be 19mm bodies instead of the smaller ones that are in it and the switch is questionable because the MIJ and many other east Asian made Fenders and Squiers had that one. Also IIRC the Contemporary and the MIJ Standards at the time had Ceramic magnet pickups. Many people change pickups though so that is almost not worth mentioning but the originals were actually quite nice sounding pickups.

My best guess would be that someone really liked that neck but didn't like the System 1 and built this. I really liked the old System 1 but many people didn't, especially the string lock, and removed the lock then eventually swapped the body or just got rid of them in general.
 

Mentor

Strat-Talk Member
Nov 22, 2021
24
USA
It appears to me to be an SQ Series body that has been butchered and a later E Series System one neck, also the electronics are from much later because all MIJ strats had larger pots until after 1987
 

Fretmeltkid

Strat-Talker
Feb 10, 2018
338
United Kingdom
I would agree that the body is a refinished Squier SQ 70s body 26-750 series from 83-84
the scratch plate etc is from a very different guitar so that would explain the electrics
 

John C

Most Honored Senior Member
Silver Member
Jul 17, 2012
8,530
Kansas City
That case would be correct for a '72 to mid 70s, late 70s they added "Made in USA" under the first "E"

Whatever that body is, that neck did not come on it originally.
It *may* have originally shipped in the case, but that ST562 neck did not leave the factory on a 3-bolt body.
The original 3-bolt necks not only had longer neck plates, but the top two holes were slightly closer together, which you can see on the body.

View attachment 610602
View attachment 610601

^^^ The original 3-bolt neck would not have had the two holes along side the "coin"


View attachment 610603

I was looking at the shape of what was left of the pickup routes and the shape of the control cavity. Also, I didn't see any identifying stamp in the neck pocket like I have seen on just about every MIJ body that I have worked with.

There really wasn't much to look at on the OP but now that there are more pics I can see that it is an obvious partscaster. The neck is definitely from an MIJ. Either Standard or Contemporary model (I have had both) and I can say for certain that that body is not either one of them because the routing was different in both cases. As @John C pointed out, the neck came from a guitar that originally had a System 1 bridge assembly because of the 4 holes that indicate where the behind the nut string lock was and it is a distinct screw pattern to those lock systems. The body has also been drilled for a 4 hole neck and the micro tilt has been disabled as a result since it was originally a 3 hole and the guitars with the System 1 didn't come with a three hole. Plus, the body obviously never had a System 1 bridge because there would be signs of the post holes being dowelled and there would also be an extra set of pickguard screw holes in that area. The System 1 bridge has a post spacing wider than a Floyd Rose making it near impossible to swap out anything else into it without extensive work unless you use a Gotoh GE-1996. You still have a lot of tweaking to do with that one too. I also read that the body is fairly light and a lot of times people will equate that with an MIJ as opposed to an actual 70s body but really that is a crapshoot. I have played some seventies tanks and some that were on par with my MIC Squier in weight.

With all that said, it very well could be a Japan made body. But the electrics are definitely not from a Japanese made guitar of that era. The pots would be 19mm bodies instead of the smaller ones that are in it and the switch is questionable because the MIJ and many other east Asian made Fenders and Squiers had that one. Also IIRC the Contemporary and the MIJ Standards at the time had Ceramic magnet pickups. Many people change pickups though so that is almost not worth mentioning but the originals were actually quite nice sounding pickups.

My best guess would be that someone really liked that neck but didn't like the System 1 and built this. I really liked the old System 1 but many people didn't, especially the string lock, and removed the lock then eventually swapped the body or just got rid of them in general.


All that makes sense - particularly since I had forgotten that the 3-bolt neck plates were longer than the 4-bolt and therefore any 4-bolt wouldn't cover the micro-tilt hole.😓
 


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