Dating a fender amp

latest updates; small changes to a few amp batches dates, Dec 2015, Feb 2016, July 2016, Sep 2016, March 2017, Feb 2018 small changes to 4 amp batches, Nov 2015 typos found, two edits, thanks Ben H, June 20 info updated, totals unchanged Oct 2014 really nifty table design Aug 2014 small data and totals updates Jan 2014 (info updatedthe website I developed for this amp's care and feeding, .Eventually, I thought, I'll get a rough idea what the highest and lowest s/ns were.

There are a handful of amp types for which I'm still running the searches because I don't have so much data for those (mainly in the solid-state range).

In addition Greg Gagliano sent me the Rivera-era-relevant numbers from his huge research info, for which, along with his friendly encouragement over several years, I thank him.

A little light Googling revealed serial numbers for a few other amps in the range - they seemed all mixed up together.

Then the terrible truth dawned on me: they WERE all mixed up; Fender had decided to change their 35-year-old system of serial numbering so that, starting in 1982, every amp had a unique number.

It represents fourteen years of hobby time, so if you quote it elsewhere, I'd appreciate a link and/or a name-check, either as "Stratopastor" or under my real name.

All these amps have serial numbers beginning F2, F3 or F4 followed by another 5 digits. However Fender couldn't maintain that system for long, and there are no F5 or F6 amps.Subtract one from the other and I'll have a rough-cut figure for how many were made. PRII owners were kind enough to start sending their serial numbers in.I was puzzled to see how some of them were separated by over 100,000.I would have to collect data for ALL the amp types, just to work out how many were made of mine.Then I became aware of the amazing work Greg Gagliano had been doing since the 1990s - the summary of his latest results are here - and that his research didn't take in the Rivera-era, or anything later. However for this range of amps at least, I reckon it's not just a policy of withholding company-confidential information. It's no criticism of Fender to suggest that they were too busy making great amps to keep records just so some amateur could use them thirty years later.Advertisers and politicians make decisions based on smaller percentages!

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