Much cheaper than the last of the Japanese Squiers, making a downgrade in quality inevitable.If you were looking for info on the Fender-branded '62 Reissue Strats exported from Japan from the mid 1980s to the mid 1990s (the Fuji Gen Gakki Fender MIJs), please follow this link.Although it was initially designed with a great deal of input from country and swing guitarists, such was its versatility that the Strat soon caught on with rockers like Buddy Holly and English instrumental band The Shadows, as well as blues, surf, and jazz players of all stripes.Today, the Strat is identified as the guitar of choice for such giants as Jimi Hendrix, David Gilmour, Stevie Ray Vaughn and Eric Clapton, as well as legendary pickers like Robin Trower, Rory Gallagher and Jeff Beck, to name just a few.Not only that, but these inexpensive instruments have often changed hands numerous times.
This article, along with its companion piece on the '80s Korean models, sets out to provide an impartial and realistic look at the sometimes great, and sometimes not so great, 1980s Squier Strat.
There are cutting-edge axes like the Roland G-5 Strat, equipped with Roland’s COSM modeling technology for an arsenal of Strat, Tele, acoustic and 12-string tones, as well as a bevy of alternate tunings at your fingertips; electrified old-timey innovations like the solidbody Mando-Strat electric mandolin; a dazzling array of Custom Shop beauties with never-before seen finishes and design flourishes; and Artist Series signature guitars modified to the exact specs of Strat masters like Eric Clapton, Ritchie Blackmore, and Dick Dale.
There’s even a Custom Shop replica of Stevie Ray Vaughn’s treasured Lenny guitar for some truly authentic Scuttle Buttin’!
The System I tremolo system uses a behind the nut string locking mechanism and was manufactured by Gotoh.
The System II and System III bridges have individual string height and individual string intonation adjustments.
Perhaps one of the biggest talking points regarding the Fender company’s history through the latter half of the 1980s, is the move in production of the Squier guitar range from Japan to Korea.