Fender / Stratocaster / 1974 / Lake Placid Blue / Guitar

Surely on of the most diverse of custom colour shades, this one is mega rare to boot. 1974 Fender Stratocaster in Lake Placid Blue

Unless you fancied olympic white or black, custom colour Fender Strats and Teles were rare birds by the early/mid 70’s. With CBS firmly holding the corporate reigns, trying to order a real custom colour Strat involved a lot of patience on the customers part and a fir bit of perseverance by the dealers. It seemed as if CBS were only really interested in churning out stock items by the many, many dozens, so finding a genuine custom colour from this period can be a pretty difficult task, in fact probably more difficult than finding an early sixties custom colour.

This guitar is in amazing shape. The colour has survived very well with hardly any fading at all, just a little yellowing of the clear coat and so remains as more of a blue hue than green. There are a few dings, most prominent is on the top edge, but these don’t detract from the overall look of the instrument. You’ll also notice the finish has been scraped from the control cavity near the tone pot. This was a sometimes seen procedure carried out in the factory when the pick guard wouldn’t go on due to inaccuracy with the body route.

The neck looks fantastic. There is no real wear to the finish on the back or on the fretboard, just a few very minor dings. The factory original frets have plenty of life left in them.

The plastics and hardware are well looked after as you’d expect with only some minor corrosion on the saddles. The electronics have been corrected as the guitar arrived with a 5 way switch which replaced with a 3 way switch that was in the case pocket, we can put that 5 way back if the buyer prefers. The pots and pickups are correct and the solder joint here are undisturbed.

1974 is of course the last year of the staggered pole Hendrix type pickups and is pretty much considered to be the final year before things got really, really messy at CBS Fender

The guitar comes with its correct Black Tolex Fender case along with the original sales receipt and Fender warranty (unfortunately that ran out in 1975!)

Sonically we are definitely in the ‘Strat’ zone here with regards to tone. The grey bottom pickups have a glassy tone which really evokes the sound you imagine when discussing the Stratocaster, in the writers opinion. This is in no way a criticism as these pickups deliver a wide variety of tonal colour which is especially pleasing in the ‘in-between’ settings. The maple neck also adds a brightness to proceedings which makes this guitar ideal for some Robin Trower-esque excursions into fuzzy-univibe-land (slight return). 

A rare thing indeed with a lot going for it in the looks and tone department. Don’t let the three bolt neck put you off, this one works very well and is rock solid!

Instrument sold

ATB Guitars, UK  

Contact name:
Mike Long
Vintage Gibson, Fender and Martin from 1940's-1970's
Opening hours:
24 hours

Hello we’re ATB Guitars.

We are one of Europes leading sellers of vintage and rare guitars. We only sell vintage Gibson and Fender electric guitars from 1950 until 1975 and have an extensive inventory to browse in our bricks and mortar store in Cheltenham, UK or in our online web store.

Payment and p/x:

All prices are in UK GBP £ Sterling. Payment can be made by Paypal, bank transfer, cash, or money order cashiers cheque etc. 

Should you not be absolutely delighted with your purchase you may return it to Cheltenham, at your own expense, within 7 days from the date of delivery for a full refund. The item must not have been altered or tampered with in any way, and it must arrive in the same condition as it left us.

Postage and shipping:

We ship within the UK by Royal Mail Recorded (small items under 2Kg), TNT or UPS and Worldwide by Royal Mail Airmail Signed For (small under 2Kg) Parcelforce, UPS or FedEx. All shipping prices include expert packing, cartons and packing materials but not insurance which is typically around 2% of items value. Currently approx shipping rates for a single guitar are as follows:

UK excluding Northern Ireland and Highlands £29
Most of mainland Europe £49
U.S.A. £129
Asia £149 - £190
Rest of World including S. America £149 - £275


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