FENDER TELECASTER THINLINE, 1968
What a great guitar! A very early Telecaster Thinline from the first year of production of this model, 1968, in exceptional and 100% original conditions. Among the instruments conceived in Fender's CBS era, the Thinline is one of the very few models that have achieved the "classic" status - and that really look, sound and play like an old Fender should.
The natural-finished body is made of beautifully-figured ash, with a nicely "bookmatched" back and a really striking top. The maple neck is figured as well and sports the highly desirable "maple-cap" fingerboard, which was the more common option found on the Thinline, as you can see from the other '68 we have had. It's interesting to compare the two guitars, both for their similarities and differences.
The neck is dated October 1968 (the other one was November), the headstock sports the classic CBS black logo and no other tuners than the original "F"-styles have ever been there. No modifications whatsoever, no holes, no extra string retainers and almost no wear. After removing the neck from the body and lifting the pickguard, we have noticed a very interesting detail: the typical '60s diagonal route made to house the wires connecting the neck-pickup to the pots is still there, but it is undrilled and has NO wires in it. Instead, these go through a channel drilled through the body which goes from the neck-pocket to the pots. In other words, it one of the earliest examples of the late '60s solution that replaced the diagonal-route, already shown in a '67 plan drawing of which we post a picture below. In this guitar we see both the new solution and the old-style body which came out of the lutherie dept. already diagonally-routed, but was later used following the new operational scheme.
The original three-ply pickguard has a pearloid top layer. The plastic has lightly shrunk and there is a small crack next to one of the screws. This early version of the Thinline still has the beloved solid-body Telecaster electronics, with twin single-coils and the metal control-plate. The pots are dated 12th week of '66. All the solder-joints are original and untouched, and so are the cap, the selctor switch, the jack, with no trace of any modification. The bridge pickup, after disassembling, reveals that masking tape hides the ink-stamped date, which has only one readable digit (either 6 or 9).
The hardware is completely original: the grooved-saddle bridge, the knurled knobs (with a slight difference between the two, as commonly found in a transitional time when both mid and late '60s parts were used), the "top-hat" switch-tip marked Daka-Ware, etc. etc.
Also the body is in excellent conditions, with only some normal playing & belt-buckle wear and a few dings clearly shown in the pics below.
This Thinline sounds great! It's a real Telecaster and both pickups have the tone the model is known for. It's a joy to play, thanks to a smooth fretboard and a straight neck. Zero issues for this great '60s guitar, with a breath-taking look and sound, and absolutely gig-ready!
It comes with the original black tolex hardshell case with the Fender logo, in excellent condition.