What Kind Of Stratocater Do I Have

What Kind Of Stratocater Do I Have? Identifying Fender Strats

What kind of Fender Stratocaster do I have? What is the model of my Fender Strat? Are all Fender Strats the same? How to identify my Fender Strat? If you had purchased a Fender Strat but did not know what its model is and when it was manufactured, do not lose hope as there are some ways that you can still determine its origin.

So, when was the first Fender Stratocaster made? Fender Stratocaster has established a reputation of being one of the best electric guitars the world has ever seen, if not the best. It has been one of the most sold units since it was introduced in 1954 and is still one of the most sought-after electric guitars these days.

Fender did the design of the Fender Strat from 1952 to 1954, but all the company’s hard work has paid off. Stratocaster was just the fruit of a company wanting to produce a better guitar than their first model, the Telecaster.

Fender Strats are maybe one of the most comfortable electric guitars I have ever played, thanks to the guitarist Rex Gallion, who suggested to Leo Fender to give the guitar’s body a comfortable contour. The name “Stratocaster” was given by the company’s sales chief, Don Randall. In its introduction to the market, the Stratocaster was introduced as an improved version of the Telecaster.

The Stratocaster was also known to have a better design and components compared to other Fender guitars. One of its innovations is that it has three pickups, which is still a unique configuration at that time.

Since it was introduced in the market, there were already many variations of the Fender Stratocaster that were also introduced, which is why determining the model of a Strat can be a little difficult sometimes.

How Do I Identify My Fender Stratocaster?

Through the years, Fender was able to produce different variations of Stratocasters, which is why it can be a little challenging to determine their models. These are some of the models that Fender introduced in the market:

Player Stratocaster

For Player Strats, they always have an Alder body with a gloss finish and three Alnico 5 magnet single-coil pickups. Their fingerboards are either made of Maple or Pau Ferro, and it has a 9.5″-radius fingerboard, which is bigger compared to other Stratocasters. Lastly, it has 22 frets and a 2-point tremolo bridge with bent-steel saddles.

Player Plus Stratocaster

Player Plus and Player Strats have the same body as they are all made of Alder, but they differ in their pickups as Player Plus Strats are equipped with noiseless pickups. These guitars have a 12″ -radius fingerboard, which is bigger compared to the Player Strat, and a 2-point Tremolo with block steel saddles.

Vinterra Stratocaster

Vintera Stratocaster bodies are made of Alder, and its fingerboards are either made of Maple or Pau Ferro, but these guitars are equipped with three Hot ’50s Strat single-coil pickups, which is really specifically made for these guitars.

It has a 9.5″ -radius fingerboard and a V-shape neck. These guitars feature medium jumbo frets and only have 21 frets, which is unique compared to other guitars. It also has an S-1 Switch feature that adds more tone options for the Strat.

Noventa Stratocaster

Noventa Stratocasters are easier to identify as they are equipped with two single-coil pickups but look like a humbucker pickup. It has 21 medium-jumbo frets and a 9.5″ -radius fingerboard. It also has a hardtail bridge with six bent steel saddles.

JV Modified Stratocaster

The bodies of the JV Modified Stratocasters are made of Basswood, and its fingerboard is made of Maple. It has a V-shaped neck but is thicker compared to other Stratocasters and has a 9.5″ -radius fingerboard. It is equipped with vintage-voiced pickups and vintage-style locking tuners. Lastly, it comes with bent steel saddles and a six-point synchronized tremolo.

American Performer

The American Performer is equipped with three Yosemite single-coil pickups made explicitly for these guitars. Its body is made of Alder, and it has a modern C-shape neck, which is a slightly thinner neck compared to regular C-shape necks. It has a 9.5″ -radius fingerboard and 22 jumbo frets.

These Strats also come with a Greasebucket Tone System, which is unique for Fender guitars, and a push-pull potentiometer that gives you a lot of tones that you can choose with.

American Professional II

American Professional II Strats are equipped with three V-Mod II single-coil pickups. These guitars also come with cold-rolled steel block saddles and 2-point tremolo. It has a deep C-shape neck and has 22 narrow-tall frets, which is great for bending. The bodies of these guitars are made of either Alder or Roasted Pine.

American Original

American Original Strats are equipped with pure vintage Strat pickups, and their bodies are either made from Alder or Ash. These guitars have a 9.5″ -radius fingerboard and are either made of Maple or Rosewood. American Original Stratocasters have 21 tall vintage-style frets and have either a C or V-shaped neck.

American Ultra

The American Ultra Stratocasters are equipped with Fender’s flagship pickup, the Ultra Noiseless Vintage Strat single-coil pickups. The guitar’s bodies are either made from Ash or Alder, but they have a unique sculpted rear contour. The American Ultra Strats have a modern D-shaped neck, which is smooth to play with.

These guitars have a 10″ up to 14″ compound-radius fingerboard and 22 medium-jumbo frets. These guitars are also equipped with high-quality locking tuning machines, which secures the guitar to stay in tune for a long time.

How To Determine Some Models Of Pre-Owned Fender Stratocasters?

If you have bought a pre-owned Fender Strat, but you do not know what the model of the guitar is, you can still possibly determine it by looking at its serial number. Although this method is not a hundred percent accurate, it can still help you determine the model of your Fender Strat.

If the prefix of the serial number of your guitar is “L,” then there is a very high possibility that it was made in the 1960s. If the first letter of your Strat’s serial number starts with the letter “S,” then it was manufactured in the 1970s. If it starts with “E,” then the Strat is made in the 1980s.

If the serial of your Fender Strat starts in the letter “N,” then it was made in the 1990s, but if your Strat’s serial number starts with the letter “Z,” then it is possibly made in the 2000s.

There are also some exceptions with their serial numbers, as if they start with the letter “V,” then it means that the Strat is from the US Vintage Series, which was launched in 1982.

How To Find The Serial Number On Your Fender Stratocaster?

You can locate the serial number in your Stratocaster in either of these spots: On the back of the vibrato cover plate, on the front or the back of the headstock, at the top of the guitar’s neck plate, on the cover plate of the vibrato, or at the heel at the end of the guitar’s neck.

To conclude, if you are really curious and you start to ask yourself, what kind of Fender Stratocaster do I have? Then it would be best if you either looked at the serial number of your guitar or you check the component of the Strat so that you can determine the model of your guitar.

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