FENDER TELECASTER Custom Color Sunburst, 1968
Not one single screw has ever been changed in this super-original and super-rare custom color '60s maple-cap neck Telecaster! The sunburst finish was only offered as a custom option on Telecasters, since the regular finish was blond (which by the way you can see in the other '68 Tele from our list). The red shading has almost disappeared from the top of this guitar, due the excessive exposure to the sunlight, except for the areas covered by the pickguard (see pictures below), while it is still unfaded and shiny on the back of the body. Along with the maple fretboard, the "almost two-tone" color of the top strongly evokes a '50s vibe, enhanced by the beautifully checked 100% nitro finish.
The body is made of alder and is very light. Under the 'guard, besides the original sunburst color, we can see the typical pre-69 diagonal route used for the connection between the neck pickup and the control section. The bridge pickup cavity shows a red-inked "SB", hand written before the body was sent to the finishing dept. The neck, dated July 1968, is the classic and sought-after "maple-cap": a single-piece of maple without the skunk-stripe on the back, with the truss-rod inserted from the front side and sealed by the glued-on maple fingerboard.
The logo is the classic CBS-era black logo, the tuners are the original "F" model. Original nut and frets, which show some wear but are still playable. The clear finish of the fingerboard is worn in in the first positions only. The three-ply plastic binding is crack-free and shows no warping, just some scratches and normal pick-wear. The metal plate of the control section has two original potentiometers dated 17th week of '66 (exactly the same week of the pots of the other '68 we have in stock). Both pots and the original three-way switch have the original knobs and tip.
All the guitar's wiring has typical mid-'60s features with two-colored wires, and 100% original solderings. Both pickups work great: we have been the first ones to ever disassemble them to take these pictures! The bridge unit is dated 1968 (month is not clear, it can be either 4 or 9). The bridge has the grooved saddles and the original "ashtray" metal cover.
The guitar hasn't heavy signs of wear. A scratch on the back-side of the "horn", the fading of the red from the sunburst top, the fretboard wear - and that's all. There is a lot of checking on both sides of the guitar, but no finish flaking-off, except for some small spots of the clear finish on the headstock. The beautiful checking texture adds an incredible vintage charm to this great guitar.
This Telecaster sounds great and has no functional issues. It's a very rare instrument, exceptional for beauty, light-weight and sound! How many more have you recently seen around? The only real flaw is the absence of a nice original case, so until we locate one it will be priced like a regular blond one....