These guitars are highly regarded as being great value for money and as an affordable way to get that vintage feel Fender guitar I have owned a couple of these including a Simon Neil signature and they really do feel like a guitar that is double the price or more. They are made in China and all have Gold Logos and Vintage Style tuners making them relatively easy to identify, below are some headstock photos illustrating this
Early models had small Chinese made pots and later models full size Alpha pots if anyone knows more exact details I would appreciate knowing. I do know that a 2009 had small size pots and a 2012 had Alphas.
It has been said in various places that these guitars have Tonerider pickups. Strictly speaking this is not the case The factory that made the CVs also makes pickups for Tonerider and they have made Fender branded pickups to similar specifications to Tonerider sets:
Strat CV 50 has Alnico iii pickups marked STA5 which are very similar to the Tonerider Surfari TRS5 set
Strat CV 60 has Alnico v pickups marked STA3 which are very similar to Tonerider Classic Blues TRS3 set
Telecaster CV 50s has a set similar to the Tonerider Hot classic TRT2 set
The Simon Neil has a bridge pickup partly Alnico V and Partly Alnico 111 the rest are Vs similar to the Tonerider City Limits set.
Update May 2023
HighwayStar106 from the Strat forum has mentioned
The Simon Neil pickups were marked STA1, not STA3 or 5 like the standard CV sets.
Pickup Parts numbers are;
|CV 50||CV 60|
|Neck||007 4930-000||007 4933-000|
|Middle||007 4931-000||007 7517-000|
|Bridge||007 4932-000||007 7518-000|
A note from archetype of the Strat forum
In the original MIC line of 50s Telecasters, the Butterscotch Blonde ones had A5 pickups and the Vintage Blonde ones had A3 pickups. At some point in that same line, Squier marketing copy indicated that they were both A5. That only lasted 6 months, perhaps, then went back to the previous spec. I have no clue if that change was real, or just in the marketing copy.
50s Stratocaster Maple Fretboard in two colour sunburst
60s Stratocaster with Rosewood Fretboard in three colour sunburst
50s Telecaster Maple Fretboard in Blonde
50s Duosonic Maple Fretboard in desert sand
2010 and 2011
50s Stratocaster Maple Fretboard in two colour sunburst added Lake Placid Blue and Olympic White
It says Rosewood Fretboard in the 2010 catalogue but in the 2011 catalogue only says Maple Fretboard The Rosewood is a catalogue misprint.
60s Stratocaster with Rosewood Fretboard in three colour sunburst added Candy Apple Red
Added a Thinline and a Custom to the Telecaster range both three colour sunburst
50s Duosonic Maple Fretboard in desert sand
First left handed versions available. Stratocaster 50s in two colour sunburst with Maple Stratocaster 60s in three colour sunburst with Rosewood plus a Telecaster 50s in Butterscotch Blonde
50s Stratocaster Maple Fretboard Colours now two colour sunburst Olympic White Fiesta Red
60s Stratocaster with Rosewood Fretboard in three colour sunburst or Candy Apple Red
50s Telecaster Butterscotch Blonde and Vintage Blonde now the colour options
No Duosonic now discontinued.
This catalogue is the first appearance of the Simon Neil (Biffy Clyro) signature Strat. This is a variation on the CV 60s in Fiesta Red with a mint green pickguard and a mixture of Alnico 3 and 5 vintage style pickups. It may have been available earlier.
Added Stratocaster 50s 60th Anniversary model in Aztec Gold with gold hardware currently still available at around £478
At some point Lake Placid Blue 60s Classic Vibe Stratocaster with a matching headstock was introduced but isn't in any catalogue that I can find and isn't on the current UK website nor on the Squier USA website. See picture below
A quick look around shows that retailers are charging a bit below MSRP but usually less than 10% lower but with the odd
real bargain to be found.
Stratocaster 50s Now Available in 2 colour sunburst, Olympic White, Sherwood Green Metallic with a matching headstock now added. Left handed version unchanged £360.
Fiesta Red available on the USA website. Now discontinued in US also Nov 2015
Stratocaster 60s Three colour sunburst (left handed version available) £360 Candy Apple Red £420
Burgundy Mist with matching headstock available on USA website
Stratocaster 50s 60th Anniversary model in Aztec Gold still available £415
Telecaster 50s Butterscotch Blonde (Left handed version available) and Vintage Blonde both black pickguard both £360
Telecaster Custom Three colour Sunburst Rosewood neck, mint green pickguard £380
Telecaster Thinline Natural Finish white perloid pickguard Maple neck £405
New Model introduced in the previous year but not in 2014 catalogue Deluxe HSH Stratocaster Crimson Transparent White Pearl pickguard Rosewood neck 2 point bridge £445
Simon Neil (Biffy Clyro) signature Stratocaster £370
Update November 2015
The 50s Strat is no longer available in Olympic White.
The 60s Strat is no longer available in Candy Apple Red but the matching headstock Burgundy Mist is available in the UK
Stratocaster 50s Available in 2 colour sunburst, Olympic White is back and Sherwood Green priced £360 to
£390 depending on colour
Stratocaster 60s Burgundy Mist or 3 colour sunburst £390
Simon Neil Still available £390
Telecaster 50s Butterscotch Blonde or Vintage Blonde £390
Telecaster Custom Sunburst £410
Telecaster Thinline Natural £410
On Fenders UK website as at July 2018 the following models are on offer
Strat 60s 3 colour sunburst only with Indian Laurel board on maple neck and perloid pickguard
Strat 50s Sherwood Green Metallic or 2 colour sunburst with a white pickguard left handed version in sunburst only
Telecaster 50s In Butterscotch Blonde or Vintage Blonde a pine body, maple neck and board with a black pickguard the left handed version in Butterscotch Blonde only.
Thinline 68 Telecaster Natural only Maple neck and board white pickguard
All models show a price of £455 except for the Thinline and the Left Handed Telecaster 50s which both show £480. Obviously retailers charge less.
Not on the UK site but still on the USA site is the Telecaster Custom in 3 colour sunburst with an Indian Laurel board. Some UK retailers do have this model but whether the site is wrong or they are selling old stock isn't clear.
All models have Modern C shaped necks with a 9.5" radius board so not strictly vintage, some later models had Indian Laurel boards instead of Rosewood because of CITES.
|Model||Body||Fretboard||Neck Finish||Frets||Nut Width||Pickups see also above||Bridge||Finish|
|Strat CV 50s||Alder||Maple||Gloss Polyester||Medium Jumbo||1.65"||Vintage Style SC Alnico iii||6 saddle vintage style||Gloss Polyester|
|Strat CV60s||Alder||Rosewood||Gloss Polyester||Medium Jumbo||1.65"||Vintage style SC Alnico V||6 saddle vintage style||Gloss Polyester|
|Tele CV 50s||Pine||Maple||Gloss Polyester||Medium Jumbo||1.625||Vintage style Tele SCs||3 saddle string through body brass barrel saddles||Gloss Polyester|
|Tele Custom CV||Alder||Rosewood||Gloss Polyester||Medium Jumbo||1.625"||Custom Vintage SC Tele Alnico||3 saddle American Vintage string through body threaded steel barrel saddles||Gloss Polyester|
|Tele Thinline CV||Mahogany Semi Hollow||Maple||Gloss Polyester||Medium Jumbo||1.625"||Custom Vintage SC Tele Alnico||3 saddle American Vintage string through body threaded chrome barrel saddles||Polyester|
|Strat HSH Deluxe CV||Basswood Maple Venner top||Rosewood||Polyurethane||Jumbo||1.65"||Bridge HB Ceramic Middle Vintage style SC Alnico Neck HB Alnico Alnico||2 point sync trem block saddles||Polyurethane|
|Simon Neil Strat||Alder||Rosewood||Gloss Polyester||Medium Jumbo||1.65"||Bridge Alnico V and iii others Alnico v||6 saddle vintage style||Gloss Polyester|
Fender have added to their classic vibe range by renaming the Vintage Modified series production of these continues in Indonesia. See separate page
GilmourD from the Squier forum has pointed out that the above statement isn't correct. They did not rename the VMs but stopped making them and made new classic vibes instead. These had different specs but were made at the same factory.