#1
American standard starts, gibson usa guitars, any of these large companies really.

I was speaking with local guitar luthier Dean Campbell of campbell american guitars. He told me that a woman brought him an American Standard strat to relic. He opened up the tuners to see that they were all made in china. So this makes me wonder, what makes an "american" standard strat so american?
#2
Made and manufacture in America. I'm not sure about all the parts though...

I think that they say MiA (usually) if the word has been shaped and assembled there. But I do know the Highway One series of Fender guitars are merely assembled in America and they claim it's MiA.

I think the pups are usually American made too. Perhaps just the tuners and bridge? Still, I'd of thought that'd be American too. Kind of a gyp if it's not. I know the Japanese and Korean guitars I have are all done in their domestic countries.
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#4
Quote by Kurapica
Made and manufacture in America. I'm not sure about all the parts though...

I think that they say MiA (usually) if the word has been shaped and assembled there. But I do know the Highway One series of Fender guitars are merely assembled in America and they claim it's MiA.

I think the pups are usually American made too. Perhaps just the tuners and bridge? Still, I'd of thought that'd be American too. Kind of a gyp if it's not. I know the Japanese and Korean guitars I have are all done in their domestic countries.


actually the luthier I was speaking with went on to say that even the american standards are merely assembled in America. It might be because he is a luthier, but he said they don't even cut their own bodies for the american standards.. They just assemble and finish the guitars
#5
Obviously, I can't be 100%, but I think that the standards are cut in America. That's why there was a lot of talk about how "MiA" the Highway Ones were, as they were merely assembled in America.

The American and Mexican factories are only about 50 miles apart or something.
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#6
If this is your primary concern, then get a G&L Strat, not a Fender Strat.

The quality in the MIA Strats comes from the better specifications (mainly the 22 frets vs 21 & 2 point trem vs 6 point), better grade woods (regardless of where they were grown/shaped), better metalurgy in the frets, & better fretwork so you get smoother edges. The Deluxes use the S-1 switching system embedded into the volume knob instead of an extra button near the tone knobs.
#7
Quote by ghiyath
he said they don't even cut their own bodies for the american standards.. They just assemble and finish the guitars


i wouldn't doubt it, but it would be hard to find out i think. fender wouldn't want to own up to that. anyway i'm a believer in the MIM = MIA argument. i think the quality is very much close to the same, and i wouldn't pay more for a different set of very similar pickups or slightly better electronics. i know there are a few other details, but they're practically the same bodies and necks; just assembled in a different location.

anyway, i think too many people worry about where things are manufactured. there are kids on this site who would trash talk anybody with a USA gibson while the only guitar they have is a korean made squier. i think a guitar can be good no matter where it's made. i've played korean guitars that blew away some higher end gear, and i've owned a USA made gibson that i couldn't find a single flaw in (aside from the scale length just not for me).
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#8
Quote by LifeIsABullet16
i wouldn't doubt it, but it would be hard to find out i think. fender wouldn't want to own up to that. anyway i'm a believer in the MIM = MIA argument. i think the quality is very much close to the same, and i wouldn't pay more for a different set of very similar pickups or slightly better electronics. i know there are a few other details, but they're practically the same bodies and necks; just assembled in a different location.

anyway, i think too many people worry about where things are manufactured. there are kids on this site who would trash talk anybody with a USA gibson while the only guitar they have is a korean made squier. i think a guitar can be good no matter where it's made. i've played korean guitars that blew away some higher end gear, and i've owned a USA made gibson that i couldn't find a single flaw in (aside from the scale length just not for me).


the point isn't just where it's assembled, it's how it's assembled. I used to think American standards were all cut by great fender workers but I guess I never looked at the reality that these guitars need to be mass-produced. Knowing this, I'd rather make my own Warmoth strat rather than spending forever looking for a strat... Also I like the feeling of making gear my own rather than just buying a premade model.
#9
Its assembled in America, the parts were made in China.
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#10
Quote by ghiyath
I'd rather make my own Warmoth strat rather than spending forever looking for a strat


i'll be the first to tell you to make a warmoth strat
https://www.ultimate-guitar.com/forum/showthread.php?t=1228295&highlight=warmoth

anyway, i think the whole MIA vs MIM thing is way over rated. i know people who swear by MIA fenders, but i've never noticed a huge difference. at least not a difference worth the extra money.
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#11
^ I have. The just tend to have a silkier feeling to them.
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#12
Many of the parts are going to be made elsewhere, but I believe all the building is done in the US. Maybe tubadude can weigh in, he used to work at fender, but if I remember properly the wood came in raw and got turned into a guitar start to finish in California.
As far as the hardware goes, who cares? It's not like the tuners are handmade. I can see pickups being a more sensitive process, but I think those are made in the US anyway.
#13
if they say they where made in america im pretty sure the wood and everything will be from here and cut her. assembled and pained all in the same place most likely due to the size of fenders company. parts like the bridge and tuners being made over seas isnt uncommen. it costs less for fender to use those parts and still make a bit more profit. it's american made. it has to have a few things from over seas on it. how would it be american made if it didnt?
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#14
like said, the tag line from fender used to be that the

HIghway one strats were american assembled, parts from all over.

and

american strats were basically born and built in the US.

now i'm sure more parts are shipped in, but
even still,
american strats are made with better parts than mexican made strats.
regardless of where those parts were made.
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#15
Where it's made says nothing about quality. It's not like America has the best luthiers in the world. It's about the amount of time they spend on it and the quality of materials. Keep in mind that the guitar hierarchy doesn't suddenly end when you get to American made instruments. There are high and low quality American guitars.
#16
Quote by JELIFISH19
Where it's made says nothing about quality. It's not like America has the best luthiers in the world. It's about the amount of time they spend on it and the quality of materials. Keep in mind that the guitar hierarchy doesn't suddenly end when you get to American made instruments. There are high and low quality American guitars.


There's a lot of truth in what you say. With an American made instrument, you're usually buying from a certain level of quality in terms of materials etc. As in, if I buy a Korean guitar, it can be anywhere from bottom of the barrell, to being so good it'd make a Gibson Custom Shop cry and hide. Whereas in America, they don't make lower end guitars (perhaps maybe the Melody Maker? That's not even bad sounding though...) so people assume that all American made instruments are fantastic.

Also, history. America has a long history and rock n roll heritage. Korea doesn't. People put far too much emphasis on these things when making a decision.

But then again, I am still vintage guitar hunting >.<
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Boss GE-7

Orange Rocker 30 Combo

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#17
most of the time 'made in america' only means, ASSEMBLED in america. sad but true, unless your paying up the nose for custom shop stuff..

this is made in USA from scratch, blank boards of wood to finished product. %100 by hand for under $1000
http://cgi.ebay.com/ATOMIC-CUSTOM-GUITARS-STD2-USA-Handmade-Electric-Guitar_W0QQitemZ230393394449QQcmdZViewItemQQptZGuitar?hash=item35a4843511
#18
M.I.A. strat just plays, sounds, and feels fantastic! I've owned quite a few guitars in search of the right one for me, and the strat is my favorite guitar I've ever owned... so far

but i also have a MIM Telecaster that i love equally as much, but the differences in finish and fretwork and hardware are very noticable
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Last edited by LPstudioWRz28 at Nov 16, 2009,
#19
It really depends on quality control on production and the quality of the components. There are alot of good guitars out there at a variety of prices. It is more about getting the right guitar for you and making sure you get one that has been well made.
#20
Obviously that wasn't a real American Standard Strat then, TS, 'cause they have German-made Schaller tuners.

An American Standard Strat's body and neck are definitely made in the US; they have a factory dedicated to making them. The trem, I dunno. Tuners are German; pickups are presumably MIA.

Otherwise, I dunno.
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#21
the one problem I have is that they aren't open about where their parts come from. for all I know the pickups could be made somewhere else. Campbell American let's you know that the hardware is usually gotoh, and the pickups can come from a place of your choosing, but the guitar is cut, assembled, finished, and wired in house.
#22
American Fenders are made in the United States out of parts predominantly made in the United States. They have to be, as an item cannot legally be called "Made in U.S.A." if a certain percentage of the parts and work are not done here. The fines and penalties for violating this law are quite severe. The tuners may be made elsewhere, just as the radio in an American-made car certainly isn't made in the United States. The bridges on U.S.A.-made Fenders are made here, as Fender just went through a major revamp of its guitar and bass bridges. As for pickups, the American-made guitars and basses have their pickups wound in Corona, CA.

The Highway One series guitars and basses are at least 85% made in the U.S.A. (see The Stratocaster Chronicles: Celebrating 50 Years of the Fender Strat pg. 253). The pickups are wound in Mexico, and the bridge, tuners and pickguard are (usually) made in Mexico.

Only the highest-end Custom Shop models are hand-cut to any degree by master luthiers. Everyone uses CNC machining to cut the bodies and necks in order to keep the specs accurate. Rest assured, if your Fender says "Made in U.S.A.," it is made in the U.S.A.
#23
I was reading about this on the Fender website.

By law, to able to be called MIA, the guitar needs to have the majority of components made in America .
What this means is, is that all the wood, frets work, etc. is American made, as well as some of the hardware, BUT, the rest of the hardware can be made in other non-American locations.

EDIT: FatalGear41 said what I said too.
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