Well I have been through about 5 or 6 Strats only to sell them later becuase I was never wowed by them. Thought I would be but oh well. I cam close recently with a MIM Classic 60's which was cheep and real nice but alas I put it up for sale last week becuase it just did not feel "special" to me in any way. I don't have many guitars and I really want each one to feal particulalry special in my hands. Well I think "finders crossed" I found it. Totally unexpeced and something I dont think I would have ever even considered but I wandered into a Sam Ash yesturday and took a quick glance at the wall of Strats and immediately was taken by an older SRV. I pulled it down and I immediately noticed the coveted brazilion board, so I knew it was an early year. The neck was not particulalry fat (which is good for me) but it felt simpy spectacular. It was obvioulsy owned by a player becuase it was set up great, had some honest wear but was very clean and had been fitted with Rio Grand pickups which sounded incredible. Also had a Stelly in the bridge which I could not believe how fat and punchy the sound from this bridge was. It took about 2 seconds for me to run to the counter and buy it. Was marked at $999 and got it for $970. I don't know how much value the brazilion board adds but it sure looks nice with gentle curves of chocolate brown goodness. I will post pics this weekend. But wow. Played it for hours last night. It is gently and honeslty reliced and for the first time I understand how a really, really good playing and sounding strat should be. I have not taken the neck off and I know the serial numbers on these early ones are a bit misleading on the year but it looks to be around a '94 or so.