First, to get a general idea,there’s the appearance/style of the amp.
A – 1951 A – January B – 1952 B – February C – 1953 C – March D – 1954 D – April E – 1955 E – May F – 1956 F – June G – 1957 G – July H – 1958 H – August I – 1959 I – September J – 1960 J – October K – 1961 K – November L – 1962 L – December M – 1963 N – 1964 O – 1965 P – 1966 Q – 1967 Another way to get a close estimate of when your amp was made is to read the codes on the transformers.
Most post tweed Fenders had trannys manufactured by Schumacher.
There were periods of time when this was not consistently done, (between 19), and there are certainly other examples of short periods of time, and individual pieces, where the dating was simply omitted.
While this neck dating is useful in roughly determining the age of a guitar, it is certainly not definitive.
If you have serious interest in learning about the history of Fender instruments, or if you just want to try to establish the year of production of your own axe, we would highly recommend that you pick up one or more of the following books.
They are detailed reference resources with a wealth of information for helping to either establish the vintage of your guitar or bass or for just learning more about Fender history in general.They have been placed at the top of the neck plate, on the front of the headstock, on the back of the headstock, and on the back of the neck near where the neck bolts onto the body.They were stamped on the back vibrato cover plate (early '50s Strats), and on the bridge plate between the pickup and the saddles on some Telecasters.If you have what you consider to be a somewhat "odd" serial number, please check the following chart to see if you find your serial number configuration here.This chart contains If you are unable to place the approximate year of manufacture of your instrument using the above charts, there are a few great books available, which have invaluable information on the history of Fender instruments.You will notice that there is quite a bit of overlap of numbers and years.