1966 Fender Jazz Bass

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1966 Jazz necks were made with a white plastic binding, although some instruments were fitted with leftover 1965 necks without any binding. As 1966 began Jazz necks still had pearloid dot fret markers. By mid year Fender/CBS replaced the dots with pearloid block fret markers. The block inlays were accompanied by heavier fret wire. 1966 was the first full year of production with the new F Series neckplate. This plate featured the large backward F logo which generally indicated it was a CBS manufactured instrument. The serial number was still at the top of the plate, but the L prefix was gone. As 1966 started, Fender were still using Kluson no-name riveted clover reverse tuners. CBS then introduced Fender name imprinted non-reverse tuners with no ® mark and no rivet. Their first design had oval pegs, then quickly returned back to clover shape keeping the Fender name imprint and no rivet. There were far more oval tuners installed on Jazz basses than on Precision basses. Headstock backs had eight shallow divets routed in the wood, to accommodate the tuner protrusions. These divets were hidden underneath the tuning machines. When the tuner design changed to oval, the divets were no longer needed and discontinued. The silver plastic Fender logo was first riveted onto the black tolex case in 1966.

Other 1966 Jazz bass characteristics: Two piece logo including five individual patent numbers applied on top of the finish, strapholder on headstock back, curved rosewood fretboard, neck butt date etc. ink stamps, fifth hole on neck butt for hanging while painting, neck pocket paint stick etc., tortoise shell/white/black/white vinyl pickguard or white/black/white vinyl pickguard on custom colors, thumb rest under G string, grey bobbin pickups (often hand dated), ground shields under pickups, chrome pickup cover and bridge cover with foam rubber string mute, countersunk fastening screws on chrome bridge/pickup covers and pots assembly plate, heptagonal shaped knobs, CTS or Stackpole potentiometers, ground shield under pots assembly, round orange or yellow tone capacitor, cloth wiring, ground wire route underneath bridge, threaded bridge saddles, input jack, hang tag, Parker body guard.

Serial numbers ranged from roughly 110000 to 193000 although there are many overlapping exceptions. For more precise dating, cross reference the serial number with the instrument's neck butt date, pickup date and potentiometer codes.