Please help my dad get a fair deal on a used Fender Telecaster.
July 9, 2011 9:34 AM   Subscribe

What's a fair price for a second hand US made Fender Telecaster 52 Reissue and what's the market like? I'm hoping to prevent my dad from getting ripped off.

My father (in Malaysia) contacted this guy (in California) to help him procure a used Fender Telecaster. I've read the e-mails between this broker and my father, and the tone of the e-mails written by the former is setting off alarm bells for me. The broker claims that market conditions are not "ideal" for second hand Telecasters without stating why, and recommended that my dad get a Fender Telecaster 52 Reissue. The language used by the broker's a bit too "used car salesman" to me--"I need to purchase it outside the shop and pay cash"; "I'm doing this personally for you in good faith"; "the value (of the Telecaster 52 Reissue) will only appreciate"; "timing is absolutely essential"; etc.

I know absolutely nothing about guitars, but I don't want my father to be taken for a ride. Dad is looking to spend about $1000, and the broker said that it would be possible to get one around that price. How easy is it for him to get a used Fender Telecaster 52 Reissue for about $1000? And where can I shop for one by myself?
posted by peripathetic to Shopping (6 answers total)
There are three on Ebay right now for $1000, $860, and $756. They have the cases and paperwork. These are all blond wood: ash body, maple neck. I think the original was painted.
posted by StickyCarpet at 9:44 AM on July 9, 2011

Um, those are Japanese. The Japanese factories were set up and licensed by Fender, using the same machinery.
posted by StickyCarpet at 9:47 AM on July 9, 2011

The 52 reissue is one of Fender's most popular models and it should be easy to find one in any guitar shop or from an online dealer, or ebay. If I was buying one from a dealer I would expect to pay about $1000 for a used one, depending upon age and condition. You could probably pick up one for less from a private seller. Maybe the guy recommended that particular model because the USA version has good resale value compared with some other telecaster models currently being made.
posted by Mrs. Buck Turgidson at 10:01 AM on July 9, 2011

Best answer: (Answering for guitar-knowledgeable spouse as he is driving.)

Previous remarks are all good, just wanted to add that the broker's assertion that now is not an ideal time to buy and that there are "timing" issues is completely false. This is absolutely a buyer's market.

The market for upscale/boutique gear (such as your dad's desired Fender) is still very soft. The economy has affected the prices of upmarket gear and there is a lot of inventory out there.

In other words, there is no need to cave to pressure from this broker -- who clearly is in a hurry to make a sale before your dad does the research and learns that there are plenty of good 52 Tele reissues out there, and likely some under $1000.
posted by pineapple at 10:22 AM on July 9, 2011 [1 favorite]

Yes, you're absolutely right to see red flags here. That broker sounds like a scammer, and it's very easy to scam someone who is overseas and has no recourse.

The "broker" recommended the '52 reissue. I wonder why and don't know exactly what your Dad is looking for.

I suggest doing some more research for the guitar he wants and find a reputable dealer.

As mentioned above this really is a BUYERS market. There are many good deals to be had.

Check your MeMail.
posted by snsranch at 4:40 PM on July 9, 2011

Response by poster: Thank you all for your help! I'm going to forward this thread to my dad and hope that we'll manage to find something soon.
posted by peripathetic at 6:53 PM on July 9, 2011

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