Shedding Weight, Bucking The Hum

Shedding Weight, Bucking The Hum

The original Thinline arrived on the scene in 1968 and was revamped in 1972 with the introduction of the 2nd generation model (Thinline II). Several theories exist for the Thinline's creation- two of which are to create a lighter working guitar for players, or combat the diminishing supply of "light-grade" ash wood available at the time.  

Therefore it's a semi-hollow body guitar. Literally it's a partially hollowed-out Tele Standard. The Thinline shed approximately a pound of weight compared to the solid-body Tele.

1968 Thinline Telecaster (below)


Enter Roger Rossmeisl in 1962, the famed designer from Rickenbacker who helped deliver Ricky’s Capri 300 Series, 4000 “cresting wave” bass, and redesigned the Combo 600 and 800. Rossmeisl is also credited for popularizing the German carve on American guitars. Semie Moseley, founder of Mosrite Guitars, was an apprentice of Rossmeisl’s while at Rickenbacker and the German carve is a legacy feature of his style. 

Leo Fender hired Rossmeisl in 1962 to create a line of acoustic flat-top guitars which were released in 1964. Rossmeisl remained at Fender until 1970, working his way up to the head of R&D. He went on to design the Coronado in 1966, Fender’s first jazz guitars the LTD and Montego (yes, Fender jazz boxes) and brought about the Thinline Tele in 1968.  

In 1972 it got more interesting.

Before 1972 Thinlines featured standard Telecaster single-coil pickups, but this year Fender introduced the "Wide Range Humbucker" pickups designed by Seth Lover, formerly of Gibson. 

Seth invented the humbucker pickup for Gibson around 1955 and they were introduced on Les Paul models in 1957.   

Humbucker’s get their name because they “buck the hum”. Having two wound coils rather than one (single coil) the interference is canceled out making for a thicker or warmer tone when compared to a single coil.

Production of the first run of Thinline’s ended in 1979.  

1972 Thinline Telecaster (below)

Smaller details originating from 72-

Three-bolt neck attachment
Redesigned pickguard to surround the pickups
Headstock was stamped "Telecaster Thinline"


Body: Semi-hollow Ash
Pickups: 2 Fender Wide Range Humbuckers
Tuners: "F" style
Maple Neck with skunk stripe

1 comment

Très cool! I did not know that. I had my eye on one for a while. Thank you.

Moatti Pierre

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