Bill Alston


TL-62



These guitars are made to similar specs to the original 1962 Telecasters, as always they are not styled as reissues and are not meant to be exact replicas.
General
All TL62 models unless I tell you otherwise later will have all these features in common
Neck Maple with a Rosewood board 324mm scale 7.25" radius
Truss Rod Adjustment at body end
21 vintage frets
Pickguard White 8 hole 3 ply
Standard Telecaster Controls Knurled Chrome
Bridge 3 saddle spiral brass through body
Vintage Tuners
1.65" Nut
Neck shaped varied from U shaped to full C and some V shapes I will clarify with each model were I can
A headstock that looks like this picture with this logo

Where I describe pickups as MIJ Vintage Tele they are almost certainly Ceramic
In the 60s models with a bound body were referred to as Custom it was only from the 70s that Custom implied different pickups.

Some additional info from Tprior of the Telecaster forum this from a 1986 MIJ-TL62 1- The neck plate only says FENDER in BLOCK letters 2- Made In Japan on the base of the neck 3- This may be the thinnest Telecaster neck ever , front to back, measured at the 1 st fret. Thinner than a 52 RI from the same era. The 62RI neck measures across the back of the neck, side to side, fret board to fret board , 2.5 inches even (2 and 8/16) , a 52/ RI measures 2 and 9/16, a 2008 AM Standard measures 2 and 5/8 ( 2 and 10/16) Each one adds just a tad more MEAT to the neck . Can be felt ? who can say . To me there is a slight difference which can be felt. The TL-62 and the 52/RI are both spec'd at 7.25 radius
Thank you


And saddles like these

The 80s

The first TL 62 models were made in 1983 JV models. I don't intend to cover these excellent guitars please look up the 21 frets website for these. As far as I can find there are no Extrad models

The 1980s

There were 3 models available from 1984 to 1989, these were: TL62-70, TL62B-70 and TL62-65. Wherever there is a B directly after the 62 it indicates a Bound body. In 1983 there was a TL62-65 available but I think this was the first version of the TL62-70 A comparison of specs

62-70 62B-70 62-65
Body Basswood or Sen Basswood Bound American Basswood
Pickups TL Vintage TL Vintage TL Vintage
Hardware Chrome Chrome Chrome
Colours Sen are Blonde or Butterscotch Basswood is Vintage White Sunburst, Black or Candy Apple Red Charcoal Sunburst

All have necks described as U shaped


This is an E serial number TL62-65 in Charcoal Burst

This is a 62B-70 from the 80s

1990 and 1991

In 1990 Fender Japan changed their designation system whereas the last number had represented the release price in 1000 yen the new system represented the price in 100 yen so a TL62-70 had been 70,000 yen the new TL62-700 was still 70,000 yen. The new models were TL62-700 TL62-600 and TL62B-650 and there were some spec changes. So we now have

62-700 62B-650 62-600
Body Lightweight Ash Alder Bound American Basswood
Pickups TL Vintage TL Vintage TL Vintage
Hardware Chrome Chrome Chrome
Colours Blonde, Butterscotch, Vintage White or Vintage Natural Sunburst, Black or Candy Apple Red Charcoal Sunburst

Necks are now described as Oval shape which can mean almost anything and they will continue to be described this way for some time.

1992 to 1996

1992 we had a return to the old system of model designation so we had TL62-62-70 TL62-65 and TL62B-70. However despite being the same model numbers as the pre 1990 guitars the TL62-70 had slightly different specs so a 1989 TL62-70 isn't the same guitar as the 1992 TL62-70.
In the second half of 1993 there was a price increase so the models changed to TL62-62-80 TL62-75 and TL62B-80 the only spec change was the 62B-80 has a Basswood body instead of Alder


62-70 and 80 62B-70 and 80 62-65 and 75
Body Alder Alder later Basswood Bound American Basswood
Pickups TL Vintage TL Vintage TL Vintage
Hardware Chrome Chrome Chrome
Colours Vintage White only Sunburst, Black or Candy Apple Red Charcoal Sunburst


TL62-70NS
This was a new model in the 1995 catalogue and appears to have been made only in that year. It's a Fotoflame model with all the usual specs. Features:
Body is Alder with a Basswood cap finished in Fotoflame
Pickups are MIJ TL Vintage
Colour Vintage Natural only
These guitars are quite rare and I have been unable to find any decent pictures other than a catalogue scan below


1995 catalogue scan

TL62B-77
This was another one off model this was in the 1995 catalogue it differed from the standard in that it has gold hardware. 6 section gold saddles and a Flame finish to the body.
Other details
Body Bound Basswood
Pickups MIJ TL Vintage
Colours FCH, FAM or FMR which I think are Flame Cherry, Flame Amber and possibly Flame Maroon


I believe this is Flame Cherry

1997 and 1998

Slightly strange happenings in the 1997 catalogue in that the models are TL62-60 and TLB62-70 which are described as new models. However these are identical in all ways to the TL62-80 and TLB62-80 and represent nothing more that a price reduction.


1999 to 2009

There were in effect 2 guitars for the whole of this period and a 3rd added in 2003 this was a model incorporating a Fender Bigsby Trem unit . There were of course some designation changes so the guitars are as follows: These were now using USA made pickups either Texas specials (TX) or Vintage Single Coils (US)

1999 to 2002 62B-75TX 62-65US
2003 to 2006 62B-75TX 62-65US 62B-100BTX
2007 Price change 62B-82TX 62B-72US 62B-107BTX
2008 designation system change 62BTX 62US 62B-BTX
2009 Bigsby Model change 62BTX 62US 62B-BIGS


This is a 62B TX from around 2007 so only by opening it up could you tell whether it's a TL62B-75TX or a TL62B-82TX, but they are the same guitar anyway


This is a nice looking TL62B-100BTX with a changed bridge pickup

Here are the specs


62B-65US and others 62B-75TX and others 62B-100BTX and others
Body Alder Alder Bound Alder Bound
Pickups USA made TL Vintage USA made Texas Specials USA made Texas Specials**
Hardware Chrome Chrome Chrome
Colours* Vintage White only Sunburst, Black or Candy Apple Red Sunburst, Candy Apple Red,

** The change from TL62B-BTX to TL62B-BIGS was due to the Pickups changing from Texas Specials to MIJ Vintage Tele pickups, all other specs the same.
In this period there were several colour changes and FSRs as at 2009 the colours available were
62US Sunburst, Old Candy Red, Black, Old Lake Blue,Vintage White or Ocean Turquoise Metallic
62BTX Sunburst, Black, Old Candy Red, Cherry, Old Lake Blue, Trans Blue or Vintage White
62B-BIGS Sunburst, Black, Old Candy Red, Old Lake Blue or Ocean Turquoise Metallic



This is a TL62BTX in Trans Blue

2010 Onwards

In the 2010 catalogue the TX model has gone but the 62US and the 62B-BIGS remain unchanged . 2 new models appear the TL62B and the new Vintage Special range has a TL62B/VSP. The TL62B/VSP was quite an expensive guitar RRP being 133,350 yen compared to the 62US at 64,000 yen or the new 62B 87150 yen
Specs of the new models

62B/VSP 62B
Body Alder 2 piece with Ivory Binding Alder Bound
Pickups MIJ Alnico Custom Tele MIJ Vintage Tele
Hardware Chrome Chrome
Colours Sunburst Only Sunburst, Black, Old Candy Red, Vintage White, Old Lake Blue, Cherry, Trans Blue, Ocean Turquoise Metallic or Mystic Ice Blue

Some sources are now describing the necks as a Medium C



This is the 62B/VSP from 2012 the neckplate is an Anniversary one other years are plain



And this is the new 62B

These 4 models continued until about 2016

A mysterious LE

TC Gakki have a guitar for sale described as a TL62BSSV. Which I can only assume stands for Bound Silver Sparkle Vintage. Serial number places it around 2007 I have no idea how many more if any were made
Body Alder and having Texas Special pickups otherwise normal specs except for the very bling finish

Here it is

Japan Traditional

From around 2017 to 2020 the equivalent of the TL62 is the Japan Traditional 60s these have all the same features except the pickguards are not all white they are black on the Arctic White and various whites, off whites or mint green on other colours. There are also a couple of special editions and a Bigsby model.
Specs of the Standard Models Body Alder Bound (I have seen a candy red unbound guitar)
Pickups MIJ Vintage Tele
Colours Arctic White, Torino Red, California Blue, Black Sunburst, Sonic Blue, Daphne Blue, Sunburst and probably others
The Necks are Said to be U shaped
The Bigsby model is same specs except for having a Chrome Fender Bigsby , the only colours I have seen for the Bigsby are Candy Blue and Butterscotch Blonde
Some Pictures will show more


This is apparently Candy Blue

California Blue

Daphne Blue

Arctic White

Japan Traditional Limited Editions

There are 2 gold hardware LEs they again have all the usual specs with the exception of the gold hardware and the pickguard colours. They also have matching headstocks. There is one in Black called the Midnight and one in Olympic White Called the Daybreak both have bound Alder bodies, MIJ Vintage Tele pickups. Again the necks are U shaped




Fairly obvious which one is which

Japan Exclusive

I am grateful to TokyoPortrait from the telecaster forum for information and a link to the Japan Exclusive Classic 60s Telecaster. There are two models a Standard and a Custom as usual the only difference is that the custom has a bound body and probably different colour options. Not sure what the colours are but I have been able to find a standard in Vintage white and Customs in Vintage white, Sunburst and Candy Apple Red. They have all the standard 62 specs etc except for a slim C neck. What may appeal to some is the pickups
Details
Body Alder, Bound on the Custom
Pickups SS USA made Vintage 62 Custom SCs
Amazon say that they first had these available in 2014. They are now discontinued.


Japan Exclusive Custom in Sunburst

 
A custom in Candy Apple Red and a standard in Vintage White

Japan Heritage

In March 2020 Fender Japan Launched the Heritage Series which included a 60s Custom as far as I can find it is in Sunburst only. It has an Alder Body with a Nitro over urethane finish on the body and neck. It has a Mint Green Guard and what are described as Premium Vintage Tele Pickups which could be anything. It has Nickel Chrome hardware and "Custom" on the headstock. It was launched at 160,000 yen and is domestic only. Otherwise it all as the standard 62 specs.
For those interested here is the full specs of all the Heritage series
Dealers Heritage specs

The Heritage


Deluxe

I am struggling to find any real information on these. Xhefri shows an image of the neck markings TL62D on his pages and I can find one Reverb sale with little information. What we can see is that they made a Fotoflame 62DT in the mid 90s, the one for sale is 1995. It is possible that other runs maybe non Fotoflame were made in other eras but I can't find any nor do I have any specs.
Best I can do is some pictures.





Hybrid 60s

Though not really a 62 I thought I should cover it so I have done it on a separate page here:
Hybrid Telecaster
Back to top