Anyone leave MIJ Fender... stock?

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Anyone leave MIJ Fender... stock?

Postby Footbutt » Tue Jan 10, 2017 8:28 pm

so i've had this Fender Jazz Bass from '94 that's made in Japan.
I've left it stock all these years and have never looked back.
i love it. no reason to change it.

well, i just purchased a '95 Jaguar that's a MIJ and currently all stock.
....and it doesn't sound too bad at all!
the bridge pickup could be hotter (but i could always raise the pickup a little) and the Neck pickup is a little bassy, but still good.

so i'm thinking about just doing a black guard on the Jag and calling it a day/month/year.
"There's nothing more pathetic than an aging hipster." -Dr. Evil
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Re: Anyone leave MIJ Fender... stock?

Postby fraser » Tue Jan 10, 2017 10:46 pm

I have a 93 or 94 mij jag as well.
Shimmed the neck,
Loctited bridge screws etc.
But that's it.
Had it for 5 or 6 years and still happy with it.
Plays and sounds great to me.
It's a nice one tho, with all the old school shielding plates etc.

I do have mij strats from that era and before and all have replacement pickups along with various other part swaps. But that's mostly cause things broke etc.
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Re: Anyone leave MIJ Fender... stock?

Postby leokula » Wed Jan 11, 2017 3:56 am

Got a CIJ jag that's all stock except for a mint guard. Love it :)
Jaguar > Jazzmaster :)
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Re: Anyone leave MIJ Fender... stock?

Postby UlricvonCatalyst » Wed Jan 11, 2017 4:48 am

I may be wrong, but I think most MIJ/CIJ Fenders meet buyers' expectations of how they should sound, the glaring exception being the Jazzmasters which have pickups that bear no relation to the original design. Soundwise, Jaguars are definitely okay out of the box in my experience (that's someone with no meaningful experience of vintage Jags).
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Re: Anyone leave MIJ Fender... stock?

Postby Filipe » Wed Jan 11, 2017 5:43 am

UlricvonCatalyst wrote:I may be wrong, but I think most MIJ/CIJ Fenders meet buyers' expectations of how they should sound, the glaring exception being the Jazzmasters which have pickups that bear no relation to the original design. Soundwise, Jaguars are definitely okay out of the box in my experience (that's someone with no meaningful experience of vintage Jags).


My CIJ Jaguar sounded ok with the stock pickups, but they were microphonic as hell. Changed them for a pair of Jess Loureiro pickups, which sound great :-)
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Re: Anyone leave MIJ Fender... stock?

Postby itstooloudMike » Wed Jan 11, 2017 5:54 am

I have a 2004 CIJ Jag (LPB), and until last week it was all stock except for a tort guard. I did shim the neck, and use 11s. It plays great, and has always sounded very good. I did decide to try a set of AV65 pickups, since they are well recommended and don't cost a lot. The stock CIJ pickups are really OK, and don't necessarily have to be changed. That said, the AV65 pickups are a definite improvement. They are smoother and warmer, while still retaining the Jag brightness and clarity. Very nice pickups for a great price. I have no plans to make any further changes to my Jag. It's a keeper. I wanted a Jag that played and sounded like a good 60s Jaguar, and the CIJ does that for me. The stock (rocking) bridge gives me zero tuning/intonation problems, and I've never had a string jump the saddle slot. And the stock tremolo is a real joy to use. The CIJ Jag really is a lot of guitar for the money.
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Re: Anyone leave MIJ Fender... stock?

Postby Larry Mal » Wed Jan 11, 2017 6:09 am

I have a 1993 Jazzmaster that I left completely stock until I joined this site here, so whatever my join date is, that's when I gutted and completely rebuilt it. Up until that point, it was all stock, including the bridge!

And frankly, had I known that I would be getting an AVRI down the road, as well as a bunch of other guitars, I might have left it stock. It's arguably much better now, but it had a very distinct sound.
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Re: Anyone leave MIJ Fender... stock?

Postby MechaBulletBill » Wed Jan 11, 2017 6:45 am

My 2015 mustang sounded fine, it was a bit staticy and noisy (had that fixed), and the trem was not perfect, but definitely giggable.
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Re: Anyone leave MIJ Fender... stock?

Postby daemon » Wed Jan 11, 2017 8:08 am

I changed the pickups in my '94 MIJ to Antiquity IIs, but other than that totally stock.
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Re: Anyone leave MIJ Fender... stock?

Postby spacecadet » Wed Jan 11, 2017 10:26 am

My CIJ JM bears no relation to what it was when I bought it new. It's been 100% Americanized and upgraded. Only way to tell it's Japanese is the finish and the plastic nut.

My MIJ Jazz Bass, though, is 100% bone stock.

For one thing, maybe it's just me but I'm naturally more of a bassist than a guitarist (started on bass) and I feel like there's just less to worry about on a bass. I played a terrible Cort P-bass copy for many years and got along fine with it for the most part. So I'm less inclined to make changes to a bass to start with. I think bass issues usually are in things like weight and balance, which you can't really modify (I have sold basses for that reason). Or the bridge.

But I really like my JB as it is anyway. Mine actually has a Badass Bridge II stock, which is maybe the one change I *would have* made if I had to. I think it's pretty cool that Fender Japan was making basses like that. Pickups sound fine, and everything else works and looks like it should. Maybe the pickguard's a little "Japanese" looking in the way they all are (not quite the right thickness, bevel angle or color), but it's ok. Not really worth worrying about. Otherwise it's a great bass.
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Re: Anyone leave MIJ Fender... stock?

Postby dugwolf » Wed Jan 11, 2017 10:46 am

Had my MIJ Jazzmaster stock for maybe a year before I found this site. I upgraded the pickups and wiring and it made a big difference. Honestly, the original pups weren't tooooo bad. It just sounded like a strat to me. Kinda thin.
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Re: Anyone leave MIJ Fender... stock?

Postby kosta » Wed Jan 11, 2017 11:01 am

My CIJ squad:

- Jaguar Baritone Custom "Bottom Master" : 100% stock. Rips incredibly and with authority!
- Jaguar Bass : 100% stock save for an aftermarket pickguard. New acquisition, but appears to be AOK as-is.
- Bass VI : 90% stock, but swapped for a Staytrem bridge which was a big improvement in adjustability and tone.
- ESP Bass IV : Not a Fender, but Fender'ish. (Essentially a 4-string, 34" scale length, hardtail Bass VI.) 100% stock and glorious.

I love the MIJ/CIJ stuff. 8)
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Re: Anyone leave MIJ Fender... stock?

Postby goldwax » Thu Jan 19, 2017 11:08 am

I've left my 1990 MIJ stock since I bought it 25 years ago, but I'm not a bass player. Pickups seem fine to me.

I got my 1992 MIJ Jaguar at the same time, and despite being a novice player, I never liked the sound of it--way too ice-picky, so I'd play it through the rhythm pickup exclusively, sometimes using the separate rhythm circuit to make it even darker. Finally put some Fender Pure Vintage pickups in a year or two ago and it's much more usable for me.

For this reason, I immediately swapped out the pickups on my 2010 MIJ Jazzmaster when I got it recently. I stumbled on some used Fralins on Craigslist on, holy crap, do they have a sound I love!

The only other things I've changed are:

Jaguar:
-Bone nut to replace broken plastic nut
-Lead paint to replace copper shield, to reduce hum
-Mustang bridge because I lost a couple screws on the stock bridge

Jazzmaster:
-Tort pickguard to make it matchy-matchy with my JB and Jag

At some point I might replace the electronics on the JM and Jag, as well as the trem units.
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Re: Anyone leave MIJ Fender... stock?

Postby eternal learner » Thu Jan 19, 2017 3:32 pm

I have a Japanese jazzmaster , only mods are SD vintage for jazzmaster pups, mustang bridge and possibly a bone nut, all mods were by previous owners. The guitar is an absolute gem to play, the tone through my gibson ga15rv is bliss to me. Even unplugged it resonates tone . One day i will replace the wiring but for now i don't want to mess anything up. Since having this guitar i have big regard for mij/cij fenders. Shortly after buying my Japanese jazz i had the opportunity to play a used avri with a view to buying it, i genuinely found my japanese jazz nicer to play and had no trouble passing on the avri.
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Re: Anyone leave MIJ Fender... stock?

Postby marqueemoon » Thu Jan 19, 2017 4:08 pm

My 90's MIJ JM has a Duncan Quarter Pound in the bridge and a replacement trem arm (lost the original :fp:). That's it. It even still has the fugly red tort guard.
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