Guild serial number dating
You can then read the year the case was manufactured using the dates going down the table.
Serial numbers show approximate date of manufacture.
There are more prefixes and ranges yet to be completed for these and other case manufactures. This table has 3 manufacturers listed - Gruen, Keystone, and Star.
And there are more movement serial numbers to be decoded as well. They way it is read is you read the first 2 or 3 characters from the CASE SERIAL NUMBER and locate them in the corresponding columns.
Consequently, some 1990 guitars bear 1999 “N9” serial numbers. American Deluxe Series instruments use the same dating convention, but with the addition of a “D” in front of the “Z”, i.e., DZ1, DZ2, etc.
“Z”-prefix serial numbers denoting the new millennium appeared on U. As always, there is typically some number prefix overlap and carryover from year to year.
Serial numbers are also helpful in determining an instrument’s production year.For example 55395 = 1955 920874 = 1959 1977 Forward - finally a standard serial number was used.The first and fifth numbers are the year, for example 8997653 = 8997653 or 1986 ES (Electric Spanish - hollow body with fixed pickup(s) T - Thinline D Double - 2 Pickups C Cutaway or Cherry Finish 3/4 - 3/4 side and short scale SV - Stereo and Veritone wiring option Please keep in mind that Serial numbers show approximate date of manufacture.Neck-dating can be useful in determining the was produced, rather than the complete instrument.
Given the modular nature of Fender production techniques, an individual neck may have been produced in a given year, then stored for a period of time before being paired with a body to create a complete guitar, perhaps, for example, in the following year.
Information on Japanese and Mexican-made instruments is included towards the bottom.