Dating a strat neck
A few bolt on neck instruments had a date ink stamped onthe heel area.
In 1977, Gibson first introduced the serialization methodthat is in practice today.
Although the "American" Series guitars were made by ESPin Japan, they were assembled in the US.
In general, the following is a goodway to determine if your Kramer is USA made or an "American" series: The following wood neck guitar models were NOT Made in USA or "American" Series guitars.
This updated system utilizes an impressed eightdigit numbering scheme that covers both serializing and dating functions.
The pattern is as follows: YDDDYPPP YY is the production year DDD is the day of the year PPP is the plant designation and/or instrument rank.
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All material contained within is the property of the Tokai Guitar Registry.
These neck plates are smooth flat neck plateswith no "Neptune, N. Keep in mind that just because the neckplate is imprinted with "Kramer, Neptune, NJ" does NOT mean that the guitar was Made in the USA or an "American" series.
Kramer was very careful to not stamp "Made In USA" anywhere on its neckplates starting in about 1985/1986.
Starting in late 1985, virtually all Kramer guitars were being made by ESP Guitars in Japan.
Check out the picture from the '85/'86 catalog, on the catalog page, to see what I mean.
Also, this may have taken place earlier we just haven't been able to determine how much earlier.
The other indicator on Fender copies is the Tokai logo on the headstock.