An interesting piece of Fender history, the 1967 Fender 'Smugglers' Telecaster.
With stocks of lightweight Ash dwindling, Roger Rossmeisl (prolific luthier who designed, amongst other things, Fender's range of acoustics and hollow body guitars) was tasked with solving the problem. His initial idea was to remove wood from behind the pickguard which resulted in what's been dubbed the 'Smugglers' Tele. Few were produced before the idea was shelved in favour of a more drastic approach that yield the Telecaster Thinline.
This particular example has had a body only refinish and has been expertly relic’d by Clive Brown. He also aged the pickguard to match the wear on the top of the body and overall, it just looks awesome...
The neck is in great shape. Dated September 1967, the original finish has worn comfortably. The frets have some life left in them and the headstock and original decal are in good condition. The serial number is late 1967
The hardware shows some corrosion on the saddles but elsewhere the chrome is in good shape.
Electrics are all period correct with a grey bottom pickup pencil dated January 1968 and 2 x pots dated 23rd week of 1966. The switch is a modern one.
The case included is an original Canadian export case from the mid - late 60's. If you bought Fender Strat or Tele via the Canadian Fender distributor in the 60's, this is what you would have received.
This guitar certainly delivers the classic tele tones, smoother neck pickup with a bitey bridge sound and nice blend when combined. The neck is comfortable, medium size and sleek.
At once simple and versatile, the telecaster should feature in everyones guitar journey at some stage. These 'Smugglers' Teles offer an interesting insight into the developments of the guitar in the late 60s.