Dating fender telecaster pickups
Leo Fender never intended for his guitars to become collectors items.
He never invisioned a need to pinpoint the manufacturing date of any of his guitars.
Dating a Fender guitar with the serial number is a hit or miss propisition.
It helps narrow things down, but in most cases is an inexact science.
So, they ordered neckplates that were supposed to have numbers above 100,000.
But the stamper misread the order and thought that the number “1” was an “L” and so instead of plates starting with 100,000 they started with L00,000. But it took a while to manufacture and number the plates.
So, the company just used the L Plates not wanting to let them go to waste.
Unfortunately, there is also some overlap in serial numbers between years — again due to the fact that neckplates were re-ordered various times from various manufacturers.
So, the information on the peghead could be off as much as two years.
Generally speaking, a “S” prefix equals the 1970’s (In March 1985, CBS sold Fender to a group of private investors made up of the management of the corporation at the time.
At least not while he was at Fender Musical Instrument Corporation.
Before 1977 Fender guitars hd a serial number on the bridgeplate or neckplate.