Fender / Telecaster / 1973 / Blonde / Guitar

Early 1973 Fender Telecaster anyone?

By 1973, CBS Fender had pretty much settled on using poly for their finishes (aside from the headstock face) but occasionally you got one with the body finished in nitro. They are not common in blonde as they tended to use nitro for custom colours at this juncture but they do occur occasionally and this, is one of them. The obviously pleasing result of a nitro body is you get a ‘73 Tele that looks and checks like a 1969 one.

This guitar has certainly has a certain something about it. Though maybe not the clean, factory fresh blonde finish, this guitar does have a striking look thats veered towards the butterscotch end of the spectrum. The body is finished in nitrocellulose as you can see by the checking and the way its yellowed over the years. This seems to have been applied quite thickly compared to the pre-CBS years and still retains its glossier finish. There are a few wear marks and dinks as you’d expect but nothing too extensive.

The neck has been finished in poly and is in good shape, a few marks but nothing serious. The fretboard shows no real signs of wear and the original frets have plenty of life left in them. The headstock face has been finished in nitro, as was the case until the late 70s. As such it too has faded like the body. The logo is still strong

Hardware shows signs of mild corrosion but nothing too extensive. The plastics are in good order too.

Electrically everything looks correct without any sign that solder joints have been disturbed. Even though we have a variety of pots under the control plate, the solder joint suggest that these are from the same period. Don’t forget that CBS are firmly in control by this stage. 

The guitar comes with what appears to be a black tolex hardshell case from the late 60’s but with a yellow interior. We do not think this interior has been replaced so maybe it was some kind of export case…?

Our previous experience with 70’s tele has been somewhat on the shrill side, almost certainly from the fact that they were fitted with 1 Meg pots during this period. This guitar on the other hand delivers that classic tele tone without taking your head off. The neck pickup has that chewy quality that holds its own so well when combined with the bridge pickup. Once in that bridge position, there is a depth to the sound which which is so uniquely Telecaster and flies in the face of your expectations of this guitar.

These 70’s Fenders can be surprising. With tone and looks like this, it goes to show you should never prejudge a guitar before its on your lap. Grab it before it gets away.

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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