Late 70s Strats - thoughs?

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Late 70s Strats - thoughs?

Post by JustMatt »

I am well aware of what the internet says about 70s Strats, but I always wonder how much of it is from folks that have played them, vs folks that have regurgitated shit from the back of thier grandmas cupboard.

If you have played or owned one, what are your first hand thoughts?

And what do you reckon they are worth in 2024?

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Re: Late 70s Strats - thoughs?

Post by olegmcnoleg »

I bought one new in '79--my first proper electric guitar. Cost me 200 Quid I think. I sold it about 25 years ago whilst living in Australia and got a great price for it. I loved it at the time, but I would not want another one. It was not well made by today's standards, it was heavy, had thick poly that went soft then came off in chunks, poor quality steel on the trem, average pickups and tuners. I would much rather have a newer Strat, almost anything from the 90s onwards would be preferable in terms of build and materials.

I totally get the appeal of the vibe of an old guitar--but I'll pass on a 70s or early 80s Fender.

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Re: Late 70s Strats - thoughs?

Post by Bg »

The only one I looked at and played with a view to buying, had a good 2mm gap right around the neck pocket and was as resonant as an ironing board.

Good and bad were in all periods though, so if you trip over a good one, then you're laughing. Just make sure you don't buy it sight unseen.
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Re: Late 70s Strats - thoughs?

Post by robthemac »

Played two. Hated two.
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Re: Late 70s Strats - thoughs?

Post by JustMatt »

Bg wrote: Wed Mar 13, 2024 7:59 pm The only one I looked at and played with a view to buying, had a good 2mm gap right around the neck pocket and was as resonant as an ironing board.

Good and bad were in all periods though, so if you trip over a good one, then you're laughing. Just make sure you don't buy it sight unseen.
….. well this is awkward 😬

Unseen but at a price that allows for a few issues to be fixed up. Worse case it will be total shit, and I fit a Floyd and some active pickups.

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Re: Late 70s Strats - thoughs?

Post by Bg »

JustMatt wrote: Wed Mar 13, 2024 8:15 pm
Bg wrote: Wed Mar 13, 2024 7:59 pm The only one I looked at and played with a view to buying, had a good 2mm gap right around the neck pocket and was as resonant as an ironing board.

Good and bad were in all periods though, so if you trip over a good one, then you're laughing. Just make sure you don't buy it sight unseen.
….. well this is awkward 😬

Unseen but at a price that allows for a few issues to be fixed up. Worse case it will be total shit, and I fit a Floyd and some active pickups.
meh you can fill gaps and a floyd sounds like a good choice :)
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Re: Late 70s Strats - thoughs?

Post by GrantB »

Late 1972. Grey bottom pickups, light, tight and resonant. Great neck. Up to '73 will be light and 60's style, and therefore spendy. After that, pot luck, and therefore cheaper. But the pickups post 76 can be really awesome. Hotter and more upper mids.
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Re: Late 70s Strats - thoughs?

Post by JustMatt »

GrantB wrote: Wed Mar 13, 2024 8:35 pm Late 1972. Grey bottom pickups, light, tight and resonant. Great neck. Up top '73 will be light and 60's style, and therefore spendy. After that, pot luck, and therefore cheaper. But the pickups post 76 can be really awesome. Hotter and more upper mids.
That is truly beautiful. I hope one day to stumble upon a well played but cared for early Strat, in some back water pawn shop, but until then…

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Re: Late 70s Strats - thoughs?

Post by murky »

LOT of legendary tones have been recorded with 70’s strats. Not necessarily “good” ones either. Big fan of the big headstock.

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Re: Late 70s Strats - thoughs?

Post by Slowy »

Just watch out for the grey ones with 'Anniversary' printed on the body. Horrible objects. The only good things I've heard said about them were from owners desperate to find a buyer.
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Re: Late 70s Strats - thoughs?

Post by kdawg2a »

I've owned a 76 and a 79 during my time and all the negative comments above completely relate to those two guitars.
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Re: Late 70s Strats - thoughs?

Post by GrantB »

I just sold my BIL’s 76 Strat to a forum member and it’s a great guitar. Awesome neck, really good pickups. I wouldn’t have put my name to it if it had have been anything less than excellent.

And just read the thread title carefully...tough question.
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Re: Late 70s Strats - thoughs?

Post by GrantB »

Current recession mean the below have high levels of variability. Esp in NZ market.

Price wise (all three bolts) - '70 to '73 with 60's specs, up to $12K (sometimes more) depending on rarity of colour, condition, etc. 74 - 76 say up to $6-7K (if it's a "good one"). 77 to 79 $2K to 3K generally speaking, but most hit that $2K - 2.5K mark.

It's like Gibson's from the mid 60's - early '65 SG standard with wide nut and nickel hardware - somewhere between $17-20K, late '65 with narrow neck and chrome hardware, $8-12K (assuming both in good condition, no breaks etc).

Values can change over short periods of time.
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Re: Late 70s Strats - thoughs?

Post by The Scarecrow »

First (decent) guitar was a '79 sunburst with black guard and pickups that I got off the guitar teacher mid-1996 when he left to go on his OE. I paid $600 which was a whopping amount for a 17 year old kid with a supermarket job and I fully lied to my folks about the cost (told them it was half that) as that $ was supposed to be car savings. I wasn't that keen on a strat at the time (wanted a Jaguar or Jazzmaster) but nabbed it when I found the serial number was exactly 1 month after my DOB.

Sold it in early 2000 on the Trade & Exchange for $1500 to fund my OE. it cropped up on TM about 10-12 years ago (serial number was a giveaway and it looked in pretty decent shape, but seller (not the the guy i sold it to) was asking nearly 4k which seemed extravagant.

All I remember was the weight pissing me off and the pickups sounding a bit scooped, but it had a nice neck profile and I love a big CBS headstock.
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Re: Late 70s Strats - thoughs?

Post by Reg18 »

I don’t have experience with 70s Strats but I do own a 72 Tele. Having owned a number of Teles from USA modern down the line it’s an excellent guitar. It’s very heavy as is often attributed to 70s guitars, but the neck feels very nice and the playability is as good as any other I’ve tried. It’s a keeper due to how nice the neck feels and plays and it’s nice to have something with a some history for me.

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