• cklingo

    Help id. old Strat-"NY 120" neck

    Hi All,

    I have an old ESP Strat that I'd like to indentify. Sorry, I can't post pictures at this time, hopefully in the near future. Here's a description....
    -The neck has "NY 120" written in pencil in the neck pocket.
    -It's a 22 fret maple neck with V shape.
    -Appears to be a '57 copy, I think. Single ply pickguard, trad. Strat features. 3 pu, fulcrum wammy, 5 pos. sw.
    -I believe it's Lake Placid Blue, nitro finish, and alder. Plays like a dream.
    -It has a grey logo over the finish on the headstock. The logo says ESP SERIES, it looks like something above "SERIES" was cut off. Perhaps "VINTAGE", "400", or "800"? I don't know, I'm asking.
    -Tuning keys say "DELUXE". Kluson Deluxes?
    -No serial #'s anywhere.
    -Truss adj at heel requiring removal of neck to adjust.
    I haven't had the neck off for awhile to describe pots, sw, etc. I do remember the pickguard has some shielding foil on the guard in the area of the circuit.

    Anybody know the model/origins?
    Maybe a parts era ESP?
    Were ESP's ever American made?
    If you can id. the model? Is there anything special about the original pu's? Manufactured by whom?
    The reason I ask is, I immediately removed them and put a in set from a US '62 reissue.


    Thanks in advance.

    • 1point8t

      Sounds like a 48th Street guitar. I'm pretty sure that they had a large stock of different necks and bodies, and customers could pick which neck, body, hardware, etc they wanted and have it built. I have an old 48th St. body that has 'NY 12-8-88' written in pencil in the neck pocket. ESP housed their main US operation out of that location from '88-91 before moving back out to Cali. Pretty cool time era for the company, but hard to track down exact build dates and whatnot. Please post some pics!

    • cklingo

      Hi, I've attached some photos. I was only able to upload two at this time. I will add the neck pocket shot next. Here's a copy of what I emailed to ESP tech info...

      Atached are 3 photos of an old ESP strat-type guitar. I would like to idetify the model, year, etc.

      Is it an early parts guitar?
      What can you tell me about the grey neck decal? It says "ESP SERIES", is over the finish, and appears to be crudly cut out. Was there once something above "SERIES"?
      Do the markings on the neck help? It says "NY-120" in pencil. What does this mean?
      I can't find a serial number on the guitar.
      Do you know what kind of body wood?
      Is it a nitro finish?
      The guitar is very light and plays great!
      I bought it on ebay about 10 years ago.
      What did/does ESP call this color?

      The guitar, I'd say, is basically a '57 reissue type. Single-ply pickguard, etc.
      It has a V-neck that is very narrow.

      Thanks 1point8t, you confirmed all my suspicians.


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    • 1point8t

      Whoa, holy post revival!

      That's definitely an odd one... I've seen a couple with 'ESP Series' on the headstock, but I don't know if they're an actual model that was released, or just a decal that was added at some point. I'm gonna say more than likely that's a 48th St. guitar... don't know about a '57 model since it has 22 frets, but who knows. Definitely diggin' the looks of that one, I think it's Lake Placid Blue in color... very nice. Probably alder body, not sure if it's nitro or poly finished, but nitro would probably have cracks in it by now so that would be a dead giveaway.

    • 1point8t

      Probably has to do with production numbers or something... but we all know how good ESP is at keeping track.

    • cklingo

      How about this for resurrecting an old post (again)? I rec'd this reply from ESP Tech Info...

      Definitely 80’s.
      1984-1987 is the era this was made.
      Alder body. Polyurethane finish.
      No production records available for these old ESP’s.
      Very nice guitar!

    • Matt L.

      I have one of these.  I bought it new in late 1983 or early 1984.  Not sure if it is 83 or 84 because I think I saw it at the store in 83 while taking lessons and possibly put it on layaway and bought in 84.  Mine is red with a maple neck.  Headstock is black letters "ESP Series", no logo on the the neckplate just a 5 digit serial number starting with 0.  Neck heel is penciled with "NY-23" I think but haven't had it apart in 20 years.  Actually haven't adjusted the truss rod in that long and the neck is still perfectly straight an has the best action I've ever had on a Strat type guitar.  It has original vintage size frets.  Not sure if it is Japan or possibly USA made.  I've seen a few of the 400 Series but I've never seen another one that just had "Series" on the headstock.

    • Matt L.

      Actually it could have been late 84 early 85.

    • cklingo

      Hi Matt. Thanks for the info. Apparently our guitars are siblings. Does your headstock decal look like mine? As you can see, mine is above the finish and looks like a model name could have been cut off above SERIES. I'm wondering if back in the day the shop offered a service to piece together instruments from parts, including logos. Mine plays like a dream also. Pretty narrow neck with vintage frets. Thanks again for the info.


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