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FDP Forum / Fender Bass Guitars and Bass Amps / Clay dots??

iammr2
Contributing Member
**

Lower Slobovia

Pass me the onions..Yeah, the green ones
Oct 22nd, 2017 11:06 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I was at the guitar show in Arlington yesterday. One of the vendors asked if I knew how Fender came up with the clay fingerboard markers. Said that Fender was getting ready to move to a new facility and were tearing up the flooring when Leo realized he could punch out dots from the floor tiles. Leo was pretty frugal...

Anybody ever heard of this?

Taildragger
Contributing Member
*********

USA

"toxic masculinity personified"
Oct 22nd, 2017 01:59 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I can't answer definitively to its veracity, but it wouldn't surprise me if that's a true story. I think that the lacquer colors he painted the bodies with were readily available and chosen from factory automotive paint chip books of the day: he didn't come up with a whole new set of custom hues mixed specifically for his guitars.

edmonstg

Newberg, Oregon

Fender...never say never.
Oct 22nd, 2017 06:53 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Long time forum member and participant Uncle Stack Knob should be able to shed some light on this.

I'll contact him off-line and let him know about this thread.

George

uncle stack-knob
Contributing Member
**********
****

united kingdom

Oct 23rd, 2017 04:34 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Well,the story about the floor tiles has been around forever it seems.
There appear to be two types of "clay dot".
When first introduced the dots had a slightly glassy and very slight transparency to them.Indeed,you could argue that the surface of the dot looked a little like the surface of a polished floortile maybe.
By 1961 the dots took on a duller appearance without that glassy look,to the extent that some collectors and dealers refer to them as "powder dots" rather than clay dots.
However,rosewood is a moderately oily wood,and over time,colouration from the wood leeches into the dots,sometimes unevenly,and they take on the slightly pinkish or brownish beige colour you see today.
If during,say,a refret of an old pre-C.B.S. instrument, the dots are sanded along with the fingerboard (sadly),then the dots expose a fresh surface and appear off-white/beige again.
This is lost with further playing and wear,also the effect previously mentioned.
Some years ago a restorer over here sent a small sample of original dots from a trashed neck for analysis to I.C.I. laboratories.At that time they offered such a service (at a price).
The findings stated that the early dots were made up from a material akin to Linoleum (flooring material....), and the slightly later dots were of "a phenolic nature".
Certainly they stamped the dots out on one of Leo's presses,and then inserted them into the pre-drilled holes in the fingerboard having applied wood glue into the drilling.They were then sanded flush.To this day the sanding marks are still present on many of the instruments.Bill Carson describes this process in the book Fender the Golden Age,by Kelly,associated with a photo of workers carrying out this exact task.
Stack-Knob.

iammr2
Contributing Member
**

Lower Slobovia

Pass me the onions..Yeah, the green ones
Oct 25th, 2017 04:27 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Thanks, guys.

Just for your info, the dots we were looking at were on a '60 stack-knob J.

(This message was last edited by iammr2 at 06:31 PM, Oct 25th, 2017)

uncle stack-knob
Contributing Member
**********
****

united kingdom

Oct 26th, 2017 06:34 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

And what did those dots look like,if you recall?

Stack-Knob.

iammr2
Contributing Member
**

Lower Slobovia

Pass me the onions..Yeah, the green ones
Oct 27th, 2017 07:21 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Lets see if this works.

External link

iammr2
Contributing Member
**

Lower Slobovia

Pass me the onions..Yeah, the green ones
Oct 27th, 2017 07:24 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

While we're at it...

External link again

(This message was last edited by iammr2 at 09:33 PM, Oct 27th, 2017)

liverbird

UK

Searching for L40278.
Oct 29th, 2017 06:01 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Nice...

From Gary's Classic Guitars if I read the business card correctly?

Do you recall how much it was up for?

iammr2
Contributing Member
**

Lower Slobovia

Pass me the onions..Yeah, the green ones
Oct 29th, 2017 11:09 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

The card in the strings said $29,995. That's just what they throw out there, not what they'll let go of it for. Haggling is half the fun of buying.

liverbird

UK

Searching for L40278.
Oct 30th, 2017 04:56 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Well, it's not on his website... Someone must have had some loose change!

edmonstg

Newberg, Oregon

Fender...never say never.
Oct 30th, 2017 05:33 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Does Mr. Gary haggle very much?

George

iammr2
Contributing Member
**

Lower Slobovia

Pass me the onions..Yeah, the green ones
Oct 30th, 2017 08:59 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Not sure, George. It was a bit out of my haggling range.

Need his number?

edmonstg

Newberg, Oregon

Fender...never say never.
Oct 31st, 2017 08:35 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

NO! LOL. That kind of money is a bit rich for my blood.

George

FDP Forum / Fender Bass Guitars and Bass Amps / Clay dots??




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