Fender Vintage RIs MIJ vs MIM

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by retrobob, Jul 27, 2008.

  1. retrobob

    retrobob Member

    Dec 11, 2005
    Western PA
    I'm wondering what opinions folks have on the imported Fender Vintage re-issue guitars. Namely Japan vs the Mexico guitars.
    Keep in mind I'm talking the 50s /60s re-issues only.

    I have been looking for a Japan re-issue for a good player guitar, but they aren't as readily available as they were a few years back.
    I recently stumbled upon a Mexico 60s RI Tele. which was really kind of nice.
    Heres my take: Both MIJ, MIM have junk pickups. Both MIJ & MIM use good wood. IE Maple necks and Alder bodies. Some MIJ have Basswood bodies. The Japan stuff is is pretty accurate and of very good quality. The Mexican guitars attention to detail isn't quite there, but
    if your willing to straighten a few things out, you can have a really nice guitar!

    Whats your take?
  2. coldfingaz

    coldfingaz Member

    Jan 28, 2008
    You can find great examples of either, but IMO the quality of the MIM's is a bit more inconsistent. I'm a CIJ guy because I find the fit, finish and general playability out of the box (and after shipping from Japan) to be fantastic. The one thing about CIJ's that I'd always recommend is swapping out the junky electronics parts... namely the pots, switch, jack & wiring. It's very, very inexpensive to do this. I would never change the pups until doing this first.
  3. japhy

    japhy Member

    Feb 3, 2003
    I have never owned a MIM Fender so I cant compare . But I have owned a few MIJ Fenders and they have all been very good .

    I recently bought a MIJ Esqiure . I pulled it apart last night and the neck pocket was so tight that the neck stayed in place after removing the screws . All of the MIJ Fenders that I have owned have been like this .
  4. fishlog

    fishlog Member

    Apr 5, 2008
    Red Sox Nation
    I've owned both CIJ and MIM. The quality is more consistant with the CIj but either way I am always out to just find the best playing guitar no matter where its made. I want the neck to be something that when I pick it up I say "oh this feels nice". I find the CIJ are a tad over rated because people automatically assume they are better and thus people usually have to spend more money unjustifiably to own one. Then again a couple of extra bucks is worth it if its like I said before an "oh this feels nice" type of neck.
  5. fuzzface71

    fuzzface71 Member

    Jul 26, 2007
    I think that CIJ/MIJ strats are more detailed and closer to the "real" ones than the MIM.
  6. johnh

    johnh Silver Supporting Member

    Nov 27, 2006
    Belfast, Northern Ireland
    To my eyes, the MIJ strats have a nicer finish than the MIM ones. I haven't quite decided why that is, but I've owned a couple, and played a couple more which looked a notch above the MIM strats I've owned or played.

    Maybe it was just that the MIJ ones I saw were particularly nice and on average they're the same - I obviously can't and don't say that all MIJ guitars look better than MIJ guitars.
  7. Vintage-tone

    Vintage-tone Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 21, 2008
    Scottsdale AZ,Paris, EU
    I ve refinished a lot of both and the MIM had a really thick finish on them.
    Wood underneath was pretty much the same but for the Ash bodies.
    Ash body I d tend to say go MIM and get a proper nitro on it, any solid color or sunburst I d go for a MIJ by a mile.
  8. shark_bite

    shark_bite Member

    Jun 30, 2008
    outer space
    Well, I have two Teles, one is MIJ (a 52 RI) and the other is MIM (a 69 RI). I find the pickups are pretty good in the MIM. The fit and finish is a little better on the MIJ. HOWEVER - the 52 came as a trade for a Classic Player 60s Strat, and that was also MIM. The quality, fit, finish, AND componentry was all on par with a much higher-level American Strat. I would say that from a quality standpoint, it was just as solid as my John Mayer Strat.
  9. Eagle1

    Eagle1 Member

    Mar 8, 2007
    The Twilight Zone
    At this price point you will find good and bad from both and I think you should just go out and play as many as you can till you find one you like and not worry about MIM or CIJ.
  10. crosse79

    crosse79 Member

    Aug 6, 2006
    One place at a time
    MIJ are very good insturments. Great quality guitars. I've owned both MIM and MIJ.

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