Fender dating serial pot
If the code does not fit the above criteria, don’t force it and skew your dating results.
The Fender serial number decoder currently supports all documented MIA, MIJ, MIM, MIK and MII formats with the exception of Custom Shop, Relic and Reissue instruments.
Stamped on every potentiometer (volume and tone pots) is a six- or seven-digit source code that tells who made the pot, as well as the week and the year.
The source dating code is an element of standardization that is administered by the Electronics Industries Alliance (EIA).
This also means that various parts used on a particular guitar may have come from different points in time, so no single number can absolutely define when the instrument was built.
Instead, the best approach to dating a Fender is to combine indicators from the design of the instrument, the dates found on the neck and body, along with the serial number.
Like the body and neck dates, using serial numbers to date a Fender is not a sure bet.
Please note that fender serial numbers tend to overlap by at least a year, and thereby the date of your guitar can only be approximated.
So you need to figure out the year of production for your Fender guitar or bass. Fenders rank as the most frequently bought and sold instruments on Reverb, and finding a precise date of manufacture can be key to determining the value and specifics of an instrument.
If the pot is an original, it indicates a date before which the guitar could not have been built – so it’s always a good idea to have extra reference material around.
Finally, a word of caution: This method applies only to American made pots and not all potentiometer manufacturers subscribed to the EIA source code date.