80's MIJ Squier Strats--What's the deal?

atomheartmother

Senior Member
Messages
594
I was told that there is a lot of variation between the MIJ Squiers of that area. Can someone tell me more about this one. Here is the sellers description:

"1983 Japan Squier Cream color, Graphtech saddles, Gold Lace Sensors in front and middle, Duncan Hot rail in rear. This is one of the Japan Squiers they talk about in the Fender book that rivaled the USAs. 340 shipped"

The saddles and pickups are obviously aftermarket.

He later told me that the serial number starts with: sq...

Here are some pics:








BTW: I have an opportunity to get a Jimmie Vaughan Strat for around the same price. Any opinion on which is better?
 

Thelonius

Member
Messages
290
Ok, the early 80s squiers were in general as good as anything that came out of Fender Japan in the early and mid 80s. Those first few years Fender Japan were only squiers and supposedly this was a time when Fender America had quality issues so the MIJ fenders were supposed to be better than a lot fo the MIAs. This is all of course open to a ton of arguement and emotion so take it for what you will.

The early 80s MIJ squiers were terrific. They had wonderful fit and finish. The very early ones with the JV serial numbers came with American hardware and pickups which was a boon. the SQ serial numbers came next and the notable change is supposed to be they stopped using MIA guts and switched to the MIJ electronics and pickups that in general sucked. But the build quality was supposed to still be top notch in the SQs and the later E series.

So since the pickups are already changed, I would say you might consider new pots and a 5way switch and it would be golden.

For the price, 340 shipped, I think it is a great bargain. I frequently see these on ebay going a bit higher. Being a fan of MIJ in general and having played both the JV and SQ squiers and the JV strat I would take the SQ hands down.

If you don't buy it, let me know your source, I'll take it in a second!

Good luck.
 

atomheartmother

Senior Member
Messages
594
Hmmmm....interesting. One thing though: I was told by a few people that the early 80's MIJ Squiers used basswood for the body. That sounds kind of dissapointing to me.
 

Thelonius

Member
Messages
290
I couldn't tell you for sure. I was told the same thing about the mid 80s MIJ Fender strats, but my particular model is Alder.
 

Unburst

Member
Messages
4,215
Good build quality and nice sounding wood.

The older MIJ Squiers were Alder or Ash, I have an '83 JV Strat and it's one of the better Strats I've played.

I have to say it's not quite true that "This is one of the Japan Squiers they talk about in the Fender book that rivaled the USAs"
That would be the original Fender logo MIJ and the early JV Squier.
The SQ are less sought after.

Still, for $340 you are getting a 22 year old Strat.
 

Lex Luthier

Member
Messages
1,765
My brother has 4 big head Squiers like that one, and I also have one. Real nice guitars, but could use upgrades in the electronics. The bodies feel too heavy to be basswood, my guess is Alder or some sort of Asain equivalent. $340 seems like a fair price to me.
 

stephenyi

Member
Messages
470
I also have an 83 Squier. Look for the serial number. If it starts with a JV or SQ, it's one of the coveted early Japanese Squiers.
 

pesocaster

Member
Messages
140
the EARLY 80's Squiers were great... had a Tele that was killer .... sold it like an idiot.... that was one I should have kept....
 




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