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Do the very first Eric Johnson Strats have a plain neck plate?

Paleolith54

Senior Member
Messages
3,446
This topic isn't googling well so thought I would ask here. Thanks.
All I can tell you is that when they came out I was very interested in them, and looked at them very closely. My clear impression at the time was that among the several distinct features of that model from day 1 was the Kokopelli figure on the neck plate.

It sounds like you've heard something to the contrary, so maybe some very early ones came out without it, but Fender didn't check with me first!
 

Improbable Joe

Double Platinum Member
Messages
2,581
All I can tell you is that when they came out I was very interested in them, and looked at them very closely. My clear impression at the time was that among the several distinct features of that model from day 1 was the Kokopelli figure on the neck plate.

It sounds like you've heard something to the contrary, so maybe some very early ones came out without it, but Fender didn't check with me first!
That's my impression too, but I could be entirely wrong. Like, I remember seeing the kokopelli plate in the magazine reviews.
 

mortatort

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
1,342
All I can tell you is that when they came out I was very interested in them, and looked at them very closely. My clear impression at the time was that among the several distinct features of that model from day 1 was the Kokopelli figure on the neck plate.

It sounds like you've heard something to the contrary, so maybe some very early ones came out without it, but Fender didn't check with me first!

A guy showed me his today and said that he got one the moment he heard they were out and that it was before they started using the EJ neck plates. It was completely blank w/ no serial number anywhere. It looked just like an EJ strat as far as I know, bit I'm also not intimately familiar with them. It just made me curious so I thought I'd ask. Maybe he was BSing or maybe he got BSed. idk...
 

Improbable Joe

Double Platinum Member
Messages
2,581
A guy showed me his today and said that he got one the moment he heard they were out and that it was before they started using the EJ neck plates. It was completely blank w/ no serial number anywhere. It looked just like an EJ strat as far as I know, bit I'm also not intimately familiar with them. It just made me curious so I thought I'd ask. Maybe he was BSing or maybe he got BSed. idk...
I mean...

Are you planning on buying it from him? If not, it doesn't really matter. If he wants to brag, let him brag. Maybe he got ripped off, or maybe he has the real deal from someone who hated the plate. In any case, I wouldn't make a big deal about it.
 

mortatort

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
1,342
I mean...

Are you planning on buying it from him? If not, it doesn't really matter. If he wants to brag, let him brag. Maybe he got ripped off, or maybe he has the real deal from someone who hated the plate. In any case, I wouldn't make a big deal about it.
Typical. You have no idea about an answer to my question but want to provide one anyway. :jo
 

Mike Duncan

Staff member
Messages
7,673
The nameplate was part of the sales ad and one of the "features" of the guitar. I don't believe any were sold with a plain plate.
 

zztomato

Senior Member
Messages
11,391
I had heard that the first 300- or something like that- were made in the CS. I don't think any were produced with a plain un-stamped neck plate.
 

musicman10_1

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
3,006
I'd be surprised if any got out without that neck plate. It took a while for the EJ signature to come to market and I'm pretty sure that Fender spec'd the guitars properly from the very beginning.
 

SackvilleDan

Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
2,084
I remember when these first came out, and all of the ad copy and sales junk about them showed that neck plate with the figure on it... don't ever recall seeing one with a blank plate. Suspect that his isn't original, or someone fibbed to him...
 

mortatort

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
1,342
Thanks for the chiming in. I'm gonna put the question to FCS also, just wanted to ask here first because you guys are pretty fast and full of knowledge. :)
 

Jimmy R

Member
Messages
1,384
The neck plate should have "EJ," Kokopelli, and the serial number. If it's not there, it's not original.

There is a absolutely no truth to the fact that the first x amount were made in the Fender Custom Shop. I think the rumor has been spread to try to improve the value when selling, or because the build quality was/is so high that buyers could not believe it was a production model.
 

zztomato

Senior Member
Messages
11,391
There is a absolutely no truth to the fact that the first x amount were made in the Fender Custom Shop. I think the rumor has been spread to try to improve the value when selling, or because the build quality was/is so high that buyers could not believe it was a production model.
I kind of wondered about that. The CS rumour I heard was right after they were first introduced and came from music store people. I've actually heard very little about it after that.
 

NicDo

Member
Messages
1,765
While I was interested in the model from the first time I heard about it, and the kokopelli plate was always mentioned- I personally don't know if the very first ones came without.
I know there have been a bunch of these guitars parted out.
They could have sold it off the guitar for a premium price, or this strat could have been pieced together from other EJs and the correct plate was not acquired.
I'd say the person likely doesn't know the whole history of this guitar, or they are withholding some info.
 

Jimmy R

Member
Messages
1,384
The only exception is EJ's black prototype, which has his name in script on the neckplate without a serial number. There are a few 2005 EJs on eBay right now and they ALL have the aforementioned specs.
 






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