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stratman323
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PostPosted: Sat May 23, 2009 4:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Some of the Fender Japan stuff looks rather cheaply made to me. Here's a recent CIJ Tele for sale:

http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&ssPageName=STRK:MEWAX:IT&item=120422571912

Have a look at the pic of the back of the body - have you ever seen a Tokai Strat or Tele with such badly matched joins? I would prefer to stick to Tokai, thanks.
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ganzua
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PostPosted: Sat May 23, 2009 8:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

stratman323 wrote:
Some of the Fender Japan stuff looks rather cheaply made to me. Here's a recent CIJ Tele for sale:

http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&ssPageName=STRK:MEWAX:IT&item=120422571912

Have a look at the pic of the back of the body - have you ever seen a Tokai Strat or Tele with such badly matched joins? I would prefer to stick to Tokai, thanks.


My Tele is a CIJ TL-52 and it has nothing to do with that stuff The cut of wood is great, well matched and the neck is impressive. However, I had to replace all electronics and I passed through 4 different set of pick ups until I could get any decent sound.

I had to shield too because this guitar was extremely noisy regardless the kind of pick ups you installed, I don't know why. Two of the sets that I tried were humbuckers in single-coil casing and you still had a lot of hum.
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stratman323
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PostPosted: Sat May 23, 2009 8:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh the original pickups in the Tele were rubbish. The neck one fell apart when I tried to take the cover off, & had to be sent back to Fender!
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ganzua
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PostPosted: Sat May 23, 2009 8:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

stratman323 wrote:
Oh the original pickups in the Tele were rubbish. The neck one fell apart when I tried to take the cover off, & had to be sent back to Fender!


What model did you have?
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stratman323
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PostPosted: Sat May 23, 2009 8:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

62RI, bound body. It should have been called a Tele Custom, but the Japanese ones left off the Custom bit. The later USRIs got that bit right, but there weren't any US ones till about 1999.

This is the only pic I can find of it in original condition.

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ganzua
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PostPosted: Sat May 23, 2009 9:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Regarding telecasters and strats, more than looking at one particular brand, lately I'm interesested in building a custom Tele and Strat with my own specifications so no more Fender Japan for me.
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ArKay
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PostPosted: Sat May 23, 2009 9:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yup, the newer sunburst Fender Japan teles usually have horrible bookmatching, that's why I got mine in OLB (Old Lake Placid Blue). The finish looks a little uneven. I have seen a few examples where the neck plate wasn't even centered. Those are a little older than mine and the serial number looks different.



But the sunburst looked pretty good then!



I also have a 62RI. They are selling them here in Germany, but I got mine from Ishibashi.



http://arkay.de/guitars/fender/index.html

Joe can probably tell which factory made them... Both seem to have flaws though.

To be fair, I consider those guitars budget models. 75,000JPY with US pickups for mine isn't a lot of money for a MIJ guitar so they have to be cutting a few corners.
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ganzua
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PostPosted: Sat May 23, 2009 3:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ArKay wrote:
75,000JPY with US pickups for mine isn't a lot of money for a MIJ guitar so they have to be cutting a few corners.


Well, in my case I had a strange experience with the texas special set that came with my CIJ 52.

When I received the guitar, it came with an allegedly set of US Texas Specials and japanese electronics; mini-pots and a plastic switch. The guitar was extremely noisy and useless. However, when unplugged, it was extremely resonant and the whole thing was a very light weight.

I was advised to change the pots and switch first, and so I did but with no good results, same degree of hum/noise and the sound was somehow microphonic, piercing, still useless.

I started to try different pick up sets and somebody passed me a boxed texas specials set from the Fender custom shop. First, I thought it was no sense to try them because it was allegedly the very same set that it came stock.

I tried anyway and... it was another guitar. Good sound, no microphonics but still noisy. I purchased for cheap on ebay an "original vintage" bridge from the custom shop (the 52ri one), I shielded and now I have the ultimate twanggy machine.

I lent the stock texas special bridge to a friend, he installed in his american standard tele... and wtf, it sounded amazing. I have read this same history on the internet several times so I don't know what's going on with Fender Japan and its electronics. Pick ups do not sound good in their guitars but they do sound great in america made teles? WTF
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TOKAI JOE
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PostPosted: Sat May 23, 2009 4:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

http://www.21frets.com/


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TOKAI JOE
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PostPosted: Sat May 23, 2009 4:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

http://www.stratcollector.com/


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ArKay
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PostPosted: Sat May 23, 2009 4:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's really weird! Some people I know who got the same model as I do, or the one with the Bigsby don't like the sound of the guitar at all.

The electronics should do their job...



At least they are using full-sized pots which work great. I haven't checked the cap value.

Mine wasn't set up AT ALL when I got it, had plenty of neck relief which was difficult to adjust since it meant taking the neck off (access is at the neck heel). I also tweaked the height of the pickups... sounds pretty good to my ears.

I have since replaced the stock saddles with Wilkinson compensated ones, wasn't fond of the stock (period correct) ones.




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Last edited by ArKay on Sat May 23, 2009 4:14 pm; edited 1 time in total
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TOKAI JOE
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PostPosted: Sat May 23, 2009 4:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

http://www.fenderjapan.co.jp/


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ArKay
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PostPosted: Sat May 23, 2009 4:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, I'd rather have one of those old MIJ Fender models

I love the finishes Fender Japan uses.
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ganzua
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PostPosted: Sun May 24, 2009 1:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

ArKay wrote:
At least they are using full-sized pots which work great. I haven't checked the cap value.


Mine has the same switch but mini-pots I had to replace the whole tone-control because regular CTS pots didn't fit the plate holes nor the top hat holes.
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stratman323
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PostPosted: Sun May 24, 2009 4:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

ganzua wrote:
I started to try different pick up sets and somebody passed me a boxed texas specials set from the Fender custom shop. First, I thought it was no sense to try them because it was allegedly the very same set that it came stock.

I tried anyway and... it was another guitar. Good sound, no microphonics but still noisy. I purchased for cheap on ebay an "original vintage" bridge from the custom shop (the 52ri one), I shielded and now I have the ultimate twanggy machine.

I lent the stock texas special bridge to a friend, he installed in his american standard tele... and wtf, it sounded amazing. I have read this same history on the internet several times so I don't know what's going on with Fender Japan and its electronics. Pick ups do not sound good in their guitars but they do sound great in america made teles? WTF


It's not just Fender Japan. Texas Specials are strange pickups. I assume you experimented with pickup height? TSs are very sensitive to that, they can sound awful if you get it a bit out.

It also doesn't help that not all TSs have markings - some come with the Custom Shop stamp, some don't. So how are you supposed to know what you have? Incidentally, why do so many pickup manufacturers not bother to stamp on the bottom who made the pickups and what model they are?

But it's true, they can sound great on one guitar, and terrible in another guitar. They work best with ash/sen bodied guitars, in my experience. They were awful in my US Strat, but great in my sen Springy, so they do work in Japanese guitars!
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