CIJ vs. MIJ ... what's the difference?

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by bigredhaus, Nov 17, 2005.


  1. bigredhaus

    bigredhaus Member

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    So I just picked up a CIJ Tele and I realized I have no idea the difference between CIJ and MIJ ... so what's the difference?

    Scott
     
  2. woof*

    woof* Member

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    hi scott

    MIJ= made in japan for export
    CIJ=made in japan for japanese market, not for export.
    many feel the CIJ's are better, i dunno.
    hope that helps
    rand
     
  3. drolling

    drolling Member

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    My '93 54 strat says 'Made in..' and my '96 Jazzmaster RI say 'Cratfed in..'. Both bought at retailers in Canada. There's no difference as both are export models, they just changed the wording in the mid 90s.
     
  4. woof*

    woof* Member

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    sorry,
    i should have qualified my statement better. what drolling wrote is possibly true for the guitars made in the 90's. if you take two stock 80's japanese vintage reissue style strats apart... MIJ vs CIJ.. you will see some differences, as the CIJ will have better electronics and usually will have U.S. texas specials PU's and a better selector switch. im sure there is overlap here and probably no definate statements can be made. i have owned several of both kinds and this has been the case. its not just changing decals.
    (in my opinion based on what i have seen :))
     
  5. drolling

    drolling Member

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    I really had no idea they were doing that back in the 80s, and I've certainly never seen a domestic Japanese strat up here in the small town I live in.

    But I've seen the question come up before at the Fender forum & the tele page, so there's lots of players out there who've never heard of those early CIJs.

    I do know that ordering direct from Ishibashi is becoming more & more popular. Fender Japan has always made great guitars.

    Thanks for setting me straight, woof*
     
  6. trisonic

    trisonic Member

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    I've got a MIJ VJ '57 Strat from the very early eighties (it actually is a Squier series) all the hardware and the Pick ups are Made in the USA............I got it in England.

    Best, Pete.
     
  7. johnmfer

    johnmfer Supporting Member

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    My MIJ Jazzmaster (made in '94 or early '95) had a skinnier neck profile with a vintage tint. When I wore out the frets, it was cheaper for me to buy a CIJ jazzmaster neck with a December '97 date on the heel than to refret. It's a bit beefier and doesn't have the vintage tint. I like it better.
     
  8. woof*

    woof* Member

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    your welcome for anything i can add to the discussion but
    im absolutley no expert on this. however i do know what i have witnessed. there is so much misinformation and rumor on the net as it is and id like to know more fact myself. i remember the first CIJ i got off ebay about six yrs ago, a blond 50's strat. i dont remember the exact yr it was made but it was somewhere mid 80's by the serial as i recall. when i received the guitar and tore into it thats what i found inside, full size american pots,Texas S PU's,all cloth wireing and the other parts i mentioned earlier... and it was all stock. ive seen two more the same. tight neck pocket, everything well made.

    rand
     
  9. dangerine49

    dangerine49 Member

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    MIJ = pre-1997
    CIJ = post-1997

    Marketing 101 = Crafted sounds better than Made
     
  10. blind radish

    blind radish Supporting Member

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    :D

    You ARE correct, Sir!
     
  11. Cybercat

    Cybercat Member

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    Yes, but there is more to it than that. 1997 is when Fuji Gen Gaaki stopped making Fender Japan guitars. I understand Fender had been negotiating with Tokai on & off since 1981 to produce their guitars, but final agrement was only reached 8 years ago.

    Most of the non-export Fender Japan guitars made, erm, sorry crafted after 1997 are made for Fender by Tokai. Tokai now makes Fender Japan models, but not those models that are exported to the USA (which are made by Daita Gakki).

    From an interview last month with Mr. Shohei Adachi, president of Tokai Gakki : -

    "We started to make guitars for Fender Japan 8 years ago. All of the guitars are made in our factory, Japan. One other factory, Daita Gakki, is making guitars for Fender Japan. So we do not make some of the models of Fender Japan. They export some of them. But we do not."

    You can read the full interview here : -
    http://www.tokaiforum.com/viewtopic.php?t=4434

    How do the CIJ Tokai Fenders compare to the MIJ Fuji Fenders? Seems the Tokai CIJ are better, albeit probably only slightly so when compared to the earliest MIJs.

    However, the Tokia CIJ Fenders are apparently considerably better than the Daita CIJs, and are not allowed to be exported for fear of hurting MIA sales in the US.

    An amusing story concerning Fender / Tokai back in 1981/82 : -
    As there was no US factory for a while around 1982 (the buy out from CBS didn't include the old Fender plant) all Fender guitars had to be made in Japan for a short period. It seems Fender had originally negotiated with Tokai to make the original VIntage re-issues too, (contract eventually went to Fuji). However, when advertising for the first Stratocaster reissues began in mid 1982, the guitars in the ads were in fact Tokais!

    From George Gruhn: -
    “When Fender introduced the vintage series in the earliest vintage replica catalog, it was really rather hilarious,” said George Gruhn. “If you get out a magnifying glass or have good eyesight, and you look at the rear-view picture of the vintage Stratocaster reissue, you can read the brand name on the back of the tuners. It says ‘Tokai’!

    “It would appear that Fender didn’t have their own thing ready, and they simply photographed a Tokai vintage replica Strat and either superimposed or stuck the Fender name on the peghead for the catalog and ran with it,” he added. “But sure enough, the tuners say Tokai on them.”


    Full article here : - http://www.vintageguitar.com/brands/details.asp?ID=188
     
  12. woof*

    woof* Member

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    thanks bill for that info!
    rand
     
  13. bigredhaus

    bigredhaus Member

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    Thanks for all the input. With all that said, the Tele sounds great and feels solid! I love it.

    scott
     
  14. LithiumLulu

    LithiumLulu Guest

    I had a chance to play a Tele Thinline CIJ recently and it was really nicel. It had a maple fretboard... mmm, I loves me some maple. :)
     
  15. Dezzy

    Dezzy Member

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    man their are so many variations of MIJ CIJ and then CIJ at another plant, I just buy plain old USA strat's, as I don't have to work out who made them lol,
     
  16. zastruga

    zastruga Member

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    Not entirely true. My J Mascis Jazzmaster is a 2007 or so and is MIJ.

    EDIT: Sorry, didn't realize this thread was THAT old. Of course you couldn't have known about a guitar that hadn't been made yet :D
     
  17. Greg Becker

    Greg Becker Member

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    Haha Yeah I was gonna reply to him but then I seen how old the thread was. Funny thing is my jazzmaster is a cij and was made in 1993-1994, hard to believe its only a couple years younger than me! :drink

    Actually I'm wrong, aparrently you don't count the zero on the serial number so it's only 1999-2002.. Only a young pup!
     
  18. Loobster

    Loobster Member

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    No difference apart from the writing.
     

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