| Exact Year: || 1957 || Country/Region of Manufacture: || United States |
| Series: || Vintage || Brand: || Fender |
| Model: || Telecaster |
Up for sale is this killer 1957 Fender Telecaster guitar. Featuring a body and neck with 7-57 and 5-57 dates, respectively. this wonderful instrument brings classic 1950s Telecaster tones at a more affordable price then a 100% all-original example. Video demo is found here: https://youtu.be/-URlL7eGip8. This was a very quick demo just to get something up, and I plan to upload a better one later. The last part of the video will give a 360 all around shot of the guitar close up in HD. I'm playing through a mid-1950s Fender Harvard tweed amp. Most importantly, this guitar has serious mojo as far as vintage tone and playability goes. The old growth Mississippi swamp ash body is dynamic and resonant, producing levels of volume and sustain that are noticeable even when strumming the guitar unplugged. There is a reason these guitars are sought after, and it is not just for their abstract rarity or cosmetics. They are the finest playing in sounding guitar is on the planet, and many of the materials are simply not available in the same form today. The reissues approximate the originals, cannot duplicate them. I'm going to be as detailed as possible here, and also fairly conservative in assessing what is original, what is era-correct, and what is a vintage-spec modern replacement. I have this price pretty competitively, even given the non-original aspects. Please read the listing carefully and ask any questions before purchasing. The guitar has a few replaced parts, but nearly all of them are era-correct for the late 1950s. As mentioned above,the core of this guitar is an original body and neck which both sport their original 7-57 and 5-57 grease pencil dates. The tuners are era correct single line Klusons which show some tarnish, but are fully functional (with the exception of one older Grover deluxe Kluson-style tuner). The tuner bushings and string tree evidence some rust, and are in all likelihood original to the guitar. The guitar at one time had 70s Fender "F" tuners on it, as can be seen from the extra holes that peek out along the edges of the currently installed Klusons. The bridge pickup is an era-correct 1957 Telecaster pickup, as can be seen from the raised d and g pole pieces. It has been professionally rewound to the appropriate specs for the year. The guitar is pictured with an early 50s Telecaster pick up with flat pole pieces (although it does has newer leads, which can be seen in the pics). I will install the '57 pickup prior to shipping. The pots both date to 1960, and are wired with a vintage astron capacitor. The bridge looks to be perhaps late 57 or 58, as it has holes both for a string-through setup, as well as holes for the infamous "top load" during a brief period in 58. The saddles also look to be later 50s, as they are grooved instead of smooth. The pickguard looks right and has the appropriate signs of aging, and also glows under a blacklight. I have carefully compared to one on a near mint 56 Telecaster, and everything checks out as correct. The control plate and knobs also look to be correct for 57, with the proper pattern to the steel and the right height to the smooth, rounded top. A few of the screws look to be replacements, but the majority are all original 50s parts. The neck pick-up is a modern Fender replacement, probably a custom shop 51 Nocaster. The top strap button looks right for the period, but the lower one is cleaner and may be a vintage spec correct replacement, although I am unsure. The input jack looks right for the year, although it is a tad "loose" in the body. You can plug it in and it stays in place fine, although it is worth noting to give a detailed and accurate description. The three way switch looks to be a later replacement. The neck has clearly been refinished or at least over sprayed and the fretboard sanded down to remove evidence of previous play wear. The sanding on the fretboard would logically indicate a re-fret, but the sanding patterns seem to have left a very slightly greater height to the wood at and under the frets, which may indicate that the original frets were left in and leveled, while the fretboard itself simply received a cosmetic "face-lift." The back and front of the headstock do not appear to have been resprayed in the same manner, and although the decal does glows significantly under a backlight, it is tough to see how it could be original given the overall condition of the finish on the headstock. The nut looks to be a later replacement as well. It's cut very nicely for the guitar as it's currently set up, although it looks like there is the very start of an additional groove on the low E-string. The string stays in place as is with no issues. The body looks spectacular, with a beautiful white-blonde nitro finish over a two-piece ash body. Removal of the pick guard reveals the appropriate nail holes for the era filled with what looks like a white-pinkish filler. This seems to have been the practice on some early Fender Telecaster bodies. The proper dowel hole can also be seen on the back of the body, right in the middle between the neck plate and the ferrules. Incidentally, five of the ferrules look original, but the one holding the high E string has lacks a bevel on the inner side. Everything looks right with the finish, and it does glow correctly under a black light. However, there is not much of a difference between the paint under the pick guard and the rest of the body. This leads me to believe that it may, in fact, be a very old and very good refinish. I am uncertain about this, although I am pricing the whole guitar as if it were a refinish. However, I also have an original finish 1956 Stratocaster which shows almost no difference in finish under a black light or otherwise under the pick guard and the rest of the body. Again, I'm pricing this as if it were a re-finish and you should assume as much in terms of this description when you purchase it. Removal of the neck and the back plate reveals the right kind of small bits of "paint peel" that would occur when these parts had been mated for a long period of time. In other words, small bits of paints from the neck plate area and neck pocket area show up on the neck and backplate when removed. The neck plate has a fairly rare but not unheard of negative serial number (look up other examples if you doubt it). I can send you a link to detailed pictures of another negative serial number 1957 Telecaster if you would like to confirm this and other details. The fretboard was sanded and re-sprayed, but it appears the original frets were left in. As you look at the edge of the fretboard, you can see where the fingerboard has been very slightly rounded from the sanding when the neck was re-sprayed. There is a tiny bit of extra height to the wood right where the fret meets the fretboard. The frets are the correct specs for this era whether they are original or not. The neck profile is a rounded-V or soft-V shape. My sense is to put more emphasis on the "rounded" than on the "V" on this particular neck, but again, that is just a matter of emphasis. It carries with it the expected thickness of a 1950s Fender guitar. Measured with a digital caliper, the thickness was just over .900" at the first fret, modestly increasing as you move to the twelfth. The guitar comes housed in a deluxe fender tweed case that is a more modern re-issue. The one it is pictured with is from the mid 1990s. I will include a nicer and newer tweed case when I ship it. I may need a few days to prep this for shipping, so please be patient. Also it's the holiday season so shipping does take a little longer than normal. I might be able to do second day air on this for a slightly higher cost if that is what you'd like. My price for this beauty is $9999.99. Shipping will be $99.99 to the domestic USA. I've left room here for the possibility that I missed a small detail in the description, but obviously I and eBay will cover you if it turns out something is significantly not as described. I may be able to ship this guitar internationally to some countries. I may have to ship the body and neck separately without a case in order to make it safer and more affordable, please contact me for details. Read my feedback and buy with confidence. Look at some of the other guitars I have sold. I'm a collector and view myself as a caretaker of these historical artifacts while they are in my possession. Please email with requests for more pictures. And if you have any questions or are in doubt about anything in the pictures or in the listing, please ask before purchasing. I have lots more pictures, but eBay only lets me do 12.