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 Post subject: 1985-86 Contemporary Strat MIJ question
PostPosted: Thu Nov 12, 2009 11:49 am 
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After reading another thread, I got to researching my 1985-86 Contemporary Strat, and found some interesting info. I got some good info from the site CA Feathers posted, and found an unusual bit. It seems I have a guitar that does not fit into any US specs.
Specs of my guitar;
1985-86 Contemporary stratocaster HH
serial # A 039XXX, neck pocket stamp = ST-555EX
neck stamp = ST-555
Controls = 2 humbuckers, 1 vol, 1 TBX, 3 way switch, System 1 tremelo
My guitar does NOT have a coil splitter switch, as model 27-5000 does, and it has a TBX tone control as model 27-4200 does not. I have found the ST-555 model number, along with the model name "Boxer" in the Fender Japan site.
It does not fit any of the specs for a Contemporary Strat. I even have the original owners manual for the model, and the specs arn't in there.
Is it possible I have a MIJ model for non-export?? In other words, is it possible that I have a MIJ that was made for the Japanese domestic market, and somehow made it to the USA??? It doesn't really matter, I am just curious. Here are the prerequisite photos of said guitar. Image
Image
ImageImage
Image
Thanks, and sorry if it was too wordy!!


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 12, 2009 1:31 pm 
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I bought the guitar used, it had no fine tuners or trem bar. The controls also have new knobs, as the tone knob had no plastic disk on the top denoting "tone", so I put on stock Strat knobs instead of the OEM "F" knobs. I do beleive that all is stock under the hood. Everything was taken completely apart when purchased, and cleaned, polished, tweaked and set up. I noticed very clean wiring, consistent with OEM standards. It is the lack of a coil split switch that has me baffled. This model should have one, according to my owners manual. The pickguard is the original one, as it would be very difficult to obtain a perfectly fitting, 1 ply, 2 humbucker unit the required no re-drilling of screw holes. Everything is stock as far as I can see.
Check out the term "Boxer" and see what you come up with in reguards to Contemp. Strats from Japan.
I have really come to like this guitar, and look foward to playing some live gigs with it, as well as some recording. It sounds really good to my ears.


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 12, 2009 3:02 pm 
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Hi Paisley Strat,
It looks to me like the 027-4200 you mentioned. 027-5000 was a Tele body style.
Here's the Specs that I have for the 4200. Since we're talking about an 80's model (85-maybe 88) its certainly possible that its been tinkered with.
THe pics you show look like a 4200 to me tho.
Hope that helps!
Best regards,
rob
Model Name: Contemporary Stratocaster®
Model Number: 027-4200-(Color #)
Series: Contemporary Series
Body: Basswood
Neck: Maple
Fingerboard: Rosewood 12" Radius (305mm)
No. of Frets: 22
Scale Length: 25.5” (648 mm)
Width @ Nut: 1.625” (41 mm)
Hardware: Black
Machine Heads: Standard Black
Bridge: Black System I Tremolo
Pickguard: 1-Ply Black
Pickups: 2 Humbucking Pickups
Pickup Switching: 3-position Switch
Controls: Master Volume, Master Tone
Colors: (506) Black,
(543) Pewter,
(555) Frost White
(566) Bergundy Mist
Strings:
Unique Features: Black Painted Headcap
Source: Japan
Accessories:
U.S. MSRP: $429.99
Specs: Prices and Specifications Subject to Change Without Notice
INTRODUCED: 1985
DISCONTINUED: 1/1987
DISCONTINUED COLORS:
COMMENTS: Mid to Late 80's
WRENCH SIZES:


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Nov 12, 2009 3:33 pm 
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You can get the fine tuners from here

http://www.fretsonthenet.com/new_page_2.htm


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Nov 13, 2009 7:22 pm 
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I also have similar. HH, black on black with black painted neck back. I have TBX but likewise no coil split. Will try to get some pics up. I never took it apart, so not sure what lurks underneath


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 14, 2009 3:35 am 
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Dude.. That is one badass guitar!! That thing would never leave my grip if it were mine. I love the black headstock. Freaking killer look there. That's exactly what I'm talking about when I say the the new Am. Std. SE guitars blew it.. They had to go with powdery colors and that awful fiesta red.

That paint color scheme, with the black, Rosewood neck, 2 hum, that bridge is awesome.. That whole guitar is awesome. What a great find!!

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Nov 14, 2009 4:11 am 
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That is a nice find. A lot of MIJ Strats find there way here via ebay stores located in Japan. The color reminds me of the 25 anniversary Strat, that is one kick $@! looking guitar. If it sounds like it looks you made out well.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Nov 14, 2009 8:42 pm 
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Model 27-4200 has no coil splitter, but also has no TBX circuit. Unless a previous owner installed the TBX tone control, this model does not fit the 27-4200 model specs. It is no big deal, I would just like to solve the mystery. Doing the research isn't a chore, it's kinda fun!!
As far as the System 1 tremelo, the 6 threaded holes in the tremelo are intact, just the fine tuners are missing. I have 1 fine tuner that fits it, and it screws into all 6 holes without problem. I just have to order the fine tuners and the trem arm. Christmas is coming, and little projects tend to take a backseat to presents for the family.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Nov 15, 2009 10:37 am 
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BigJay wrote:
paisley strat wrote:
Model 27-4200 has no coil splitter, but also has no TBX circuit. Unless a previous owner installed the TBX tone control, this model does not fit the 27-4200 model specs. It is no big deal, I would just like to solve the mystery. Doing the research isn't a chore, it's kinda fun!!
As far as the System 1 tremelo, the 6 threaded holes in the tremelo are intact, just the fine tuners are missing. I have 1 fine tuner that fits it, and it screws into all 6 holes without problem. I just have to order the fine tuners and the trem arm. Christmas is coming, and little projects tend to take a backseat to presents for the family.


Not trying to imply anything or pick a fight, but how do you know you have the TBX system?

You know what else is curious about your guitar? Your headstock lacks information that mine has....like a serial number and other verbiage. Curious, indeed.

Well, as I mentioned, it may be a version that was never intended for the United States. Your owners manual appears to suggest otherwise, as its in english. But Fender USA will not support these guitars. They cant even answer questions about them.

Mine is a mystery too. There are no models in Owners Manual that meet mine. I'd assumed its a mod until I started to find references to this so-called "Unknown" model that fits mine perfectly.


The tone knob on the guitar has a center detent position. If I twist one direction, it acts as a regular tone control. If I rotate in other direction, it changes the timbre, or mid-freq. cut. It is not a standard pot, as veiwed from behind pickguard. I looked at the solder joints, and they all look original. The one photo, the 5 way looks sketchy, but in person, the solders are large, but not messy or redone.
As far as the owners manual, I got that at a music store back in the 1980s and kept it since. It seems to be the one that would go with my guitar.
I checked the Fender Japan site, and found info on the ST-### guitars( The Japanese model # system) and our Contemporary models were under the heading "Boxer" series.
Just trying to get to the bottom of this axe. Good luck heading into the "Unknown"


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 Post subject: Count me in on the mystery
PostPosted: Wed Dec 16, 2009 1:12 pm 
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I too have a "Mystery" Contemporary Stratocaster.

I bought it in 1986 from a Music Store in Fredonia, NY. Right off the rack...New.

It has a System-I Tremolo system, but it has a Humbucker with two single coils. Pearl White with a black neck, headstock and pick guard. It too does not appear in the model list of the owners manual.

No mods....I have been the only owner for 23 years. I will post some picks when I get home.

Rock on!


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