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FDP Forum / Fender Guitars: Stratocasters / 1954 strat vs 2016 strat, what would a person in 1954 choose if presented both options?

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cka1973

U.S.A.

May 7th, 2016 10:29 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

A hypothetical question of course. If presented with both options in 1954, which do you think would win out? What percentage would choose today's standard American strat option vs. the 1954 model in your opinion?

Pinetree
Moderator Emeritus
(with many stars)

NW Pennsylvania

May 7th, 2016 10:34 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

One time my dad told me that he'd owned a '55 Chevy.


Me: "HOLY COW, YOU HAD A '55 CHEVY?!?"


Dad: "It was 1955".




reverendrob
FDP Data Goon
Moderator

When I sin

I sin real good
May 7th, 2016 11:41 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Assuming no value difference was retained, I'd realistically rather have the modern one.

I don't want a maple fretboard.

I like modern pickups.

I like modern tuners.

Etc.

Viera
Contributing Member
**********
****

Santee CA

Poser extraordinaire
May 8th, 2016 12:00 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

There was more choice wood available in 54'. I would take the 54' and mod as needed.

SinisterStrat13

USA

sin-is-ter, adj. on the left side
May 8th, 2016 02:24 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

There's a lot of vintage junkies out there. Vintage instruments are cool, but production techniques and the tech itself is so much better on modern guitars.

reverendrob
FDP Data Goon
Moderator

When I sin

I sin real good
May 8th, 2016 04:24 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Assuming '54 Strat, no Brazilian rosewood (since maple board).

Rest of what's used in a Fender of that era is pretty pedestrian.

budg
Contributing Member
********

ohio

Home of the Goodyear blimp
May 8th, 2016 05:17 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I like the vintage specs such as vintage tuners( dont stab my finger with the E string when changing strings) and vintage bridge spacings , so it would be 54 for me.

stratluvr
Contributing Member
*********

Alcohol- Because No

Good Story Started by Eating a Salad
May 8th, 2016 06:22 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I like the true original contours that the '54 had that the standard American strats just don't have. I'm not sure about the V neck carve. I do have a Jimmie Vaughn Strat that has a V neck but not ever holding a 54, I'm not sure if it's more V shaped or not. Also, the finish on a real '54 seems to chip and fall apart just by breathing on it as well as the bakelite knobs and pup covers that seem to wear quickly. Other than that, I do like vintage tuners, vintage tremolo, vintage pups and the whole look of the original strat.

reverendrob
FDP Data Goon
Moderator

When I sin

I sin real good
May 8th, 2016 06:37 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

There'a LOT of variance in the vintage models - neck profile isn't CNC so....you get what it is.

Played vintage stuff that was shredder-class and baseball bat gone wrong.

Peegoo
Contributing Member
**********
**********
******

Eat. Sleep. Guitar.

Repeat
May 8th, 2016 07:13 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Precisely, Rev. Quality (and spec) control today is light years ahead of what was available in 1954.

At that point in Fender history, the factory had no inventory control, no production manager, no real QC. Forrest White was brought in because he actually had some training in this stuff, and he turned the company from a large 'garage operation' into a globally-recognized brand.

Peegoo
Contributing Member
**********
**********
******

Eat. Sleep. Guitar.

Repeat
May 8th, 2016 07:24 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I think the player in 1954 would choose the 2016 Strat based mostly on the finish. Modern finishes are a whole lot more durable than nitrocellulose lacquer, which is really soft.

And remember that back in 1954 nobody was claiming nitro (and a thin finish) made a guitar sound better. Fender, Gibson, and even the bottom-dwellers like Kay and Harmony used nitro on their instruments at the time because it was inexpensive and easy to apply.

Up until the late 1970s a banged-up guitar was considered hideous by pretty much everybody in the universe.

Modern finishes keep a guitar looking shiny and new a lot longer. That was important to performers (and makers) in 1954.

Remember why Leo switched to rosewood boards in the first place: he saw a player with a maple-board Fender on TV and was sickened to see how the fingerboard was turning grey and nasty looking. That was not the image he wanted his products to present.

Te 52

Laws of Physics

strictly enforced
May 8th, 2016 11:07 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I think a player in 1954 would look at the 2016 Strat and say "What's with these ridiculously skinny strings and gigantic railroad track frets? Chords are all out of tune, and it's too hard to do slides."

And those would be valid observations considering the style of play that prevailed in 1954.

(This message was last edited by Te 52 at 02:19 PM, May 8th, 2016)

urby
Contributing Member
*********

Seattle, Wa

Not quite my tempo
May 8th, 2016 12:11 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I don't like the modern tuners. I don't like the modern C profile neck. I don't care for the two point trem.

I really like the vintage tuners. I like the big U profile neck. Better woods used for the old guitars. prefer the vintage finish over today's poly finishes. 1954 was my birth-year.

Give me the '54.

Charente
Contributing Member
****

France

May 9th, 2016 05:25 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I reckon the 1954 player would choose the one they didn't already have - i.e. the 2016.

If Fender hadn't ever changed the recipe one iota (including the company ownership) I wonder would we still hanker after vintage axes?

Grey Goose
Contributing Member
********

USA/MN

What?
May 9th, 2016 05:51 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

When are we going back, I'll get ready.....

littleuch
Contributing Member
**********
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Subtropical Florida

May 9th, 2016 06:35 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

They'd choose the one from 2016, to go along with their 2016 flying car.

teemon

Florida

A Piece for Assorted Lunatics
May 9th, 2016 02:02 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I have my perfect blend, 50s Classic Player

5Strats
Contributing Member
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********

Edmond/OKC

AXE VICTIM
May 9th, 2016 02:26 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Modern all the way if it were me in '54 (particularly the American Deluxe HSS Strat).

Standard24

San Antonio, Texas

Jun 20th, 2016 04:56 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I've often wondered what my Dad would have thought of my PRS guitars.

He was born in 1916, and played Gibson. He preferred solid body guitars and told me... "You'll own a Gibson someday".

I'd love to have been able to show him the PRS quality and tone. I think he'd have liked them.

Gene from Tampa
Contributing Member
*****

Tampa, FL

I had amnesia once or twice.
Jun 23rd, 2016 01:04 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

What if reversed this? That is if we could choose today? Say it's a just discovered cache of NOS '54s I'd take the 2016.

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FDP Forum / Fender Guitars: Stratocasters / 1954 strat vs 2016 strat, what would a person in 1954 choose if presented both options?




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