By the late-'70s, years of incremental spec changes made the Stratocaster practically unrecognizable compared to Leo Fender's iconic pre-CBS designs. Nowadays, the concept of a "vintage reissue"—that is, a modern recreation of historic specs—is integral to Fender's brand, but they actually didn't start exploring this idea until 1981.
As the story goes, Fender execs had grown weary of players asking them to build guitars like they used to, and while prices for pre-CBS originals began to outpace the prices of new Fender instruments, the company decided that should take a look at what made those old guitars so special. In 1982, historically-correct Fullerton-made Stratocasters and Telecasters hit guitar stores across the country, and ever since, American-made vintage reissues have been a cornerstone of Fender's brand.
As many players and collectors agree, the original Fullerton reissue guitars from 1982 are among the finest guitars Fender has made since Leo sold the brand to CBS in 1965. This 1982 AVRI Stratocaster is a fantastic recreation of an early '62 slab board strat in black finish. While other guitars from the '80s feature Floyd Rose tailpieces and overwound humbuckers, this '62 Reissue looks, feels, plays, and sounds every bit as good as the Stratocasters that were made under Leo's direction 20 years earlier.
This 1982 Fender '62 American Vintage Reissue Stratocaster is in excellent condition with no repairs, modifications, or issues. As expected, it shows some honest playwear, and its top shows some scratches from the Tremolo arm rubbing against it (see photos). It includes an '80s molded plastic Fender case, even though it should have originally shipped in a tweed case. Its setup is exceptional, and playing it feels as close as you might get to a real '62 without spending a small fortune.
This first-year '62 AVRI Stratocaster shows you why the early Fullerton-reissue guitars are so sought after, and it also demonstrates why the "vintage reissue" concept has resonated so much with the Fender faithful. A good Stratocaster is a good thing to keep around.