Vintage 60`s-style japan made Fenders

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by jock, Feb 23, 2002.

  1. jock


    Jun 7, 2000
    Stockholm, Sweden
    Are they any good?
    I found a used candy apple red jazz bass with vintagetinted neck and vintage reverse tuners.
    What would you compare them to qualitywise and soundwise?
  2. I haven't spent enough time with one to be able to compare the Japanese vintage J:s to other basses/Fenders/J-basses, but the few ones I've tried (made in the mid-late nineties I believe) had a similar, sturdy but light, feel and nice necks.
    If you like the feel and playability of the one you've come across (may I ask how much the seller asks for it? If it's under 5 000 SKr, I would buy it, på vinst och förlust, even if I couldn't try it out first), sound is, IMO, secondary. You can always change the pick ups if you want another sound, right?
    Bottom line: Play it, and if it feels and maybe even sounds good, it is good!
    If you can't try it out first, remember what Galenskaparna and After Shave's said about buying the pig in the sack. You might be lucky and hit the jackpot (sorry for the non-understandable direct translation of a crappy song, dear non-Swedes ;) )!

    Lycka till!
  3. They are good, I think much better than U.S made ones, an interesting story is that Fender moved the Made in Japan models to Mexico because Fender was afraid that people might soon discover that the Japanese made ones were consistently better than the U.S made ones. Thus as any good business, they'll make a less superior ones like the Mexican ones. Get a cheap Fender, you'll get 90% of the performance of the more expensive ones.
  4. That is an interesting story, but at the same time it seems to resemble a myth, at least to my ears. The most reasonable argument for moving the production of guitars from Japan to Mexico probably has something to do with the fact that Fender owns it's Mexican factroy, while the Japanese Fenders are made by a company that makes other brands as well. Owning a factory gives a company better control over the products made, and maybe even gives them a chance to make cheaper guitars (yeah right, as if Fender wouldn't use the power of the brand name to it's fullest...). And it's probably eeasier, i e cheaper, to ship things from Mexico to USA than all the way 'cross the Pacific, as well.
    Anyway, you can still order Japanese Fenders from the factory, Ishibashi (sp?), and they're still quite cheap and as good as ever, if I've understood things correctly. That's probably what I would've done, had I been living in Asia/Oceania and wanting a Fender (and why wouldn't I, I'm no Fender hater).
    Anyways, anyone interested in why Fender moved it's production from Japan to Mexico should do a search over at the Fender Forum (, it's been talked about a lot over there. Makes me wonder if there aren't more exciting subject to debate out there...
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