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    Dating Fender Japanese guitars

DATING JAPANESE-MADE FENDER INSTRUMENTS SERIAL NUMBERS CIRCA JV+ 5 digits 1982-1984 SQ + 5 digits 1983-1984 E + 6 digits 1984-1987 A + 6 digits 1985-1986 B + 6 digits 1985-1986 C + 6 digits 1985-1986 F + 6 digits 1986-1987 G + 6 digits 1987-1988 H + 6 digits 1988-1989 I + 6 digits 1989-1990 J + 6 digits 1989-1990 K + 6 digits 1990-1991 L + 6 digits 1991-1992 M + 6 digits 1992-1993 N + 6 digits 1993-1994 O + 6 digits 1993-1994 P + 6 digits 1993-1994 Q + 6 digits 1993-1994 S + 6 digits 1994-1995 T + 6 digits 1994-1995 U + 6 digits 1995-1996 N + 5 digits 1995-1996 V + 6 digits 1996-1997 Crafted in Japan A + 6 digits 1997-1998 Crafted in Japan O + 5 digits 1997-2000 Crafted in Japan P + 5 digits 1999-2002 Crafted in Japan Q + 5 digits 2002-2004 Crafted in Japan R + 5 digits 2004-2005 Fender began making guitars in Japan in 1982. At that time, ALL Fenders were marked *MADE* In Japan (with a few unmarked exceptions, which I may post another guide detailing). Up till 1997, that's the way ALL Fenders manufactured in Japan were marked: MADE In Japan. At some point a decision was made by Fender, for whatever their reason(s), to change this to CRAFTED In Japan. And, in 1997 Fender began using the Crafted In Japan marking. During that year - it is my understanding - guitars were marked both "Made" and "Crafted" In Japan. In 1998 and since, all Fenders manufactured in Japan have been marked "Crafted" In Japan.

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