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They were stamped on the back vibrato cover plate (early '50s Strats), and on the bridge plate between the pickup and the saddles on some Telecasters.
But once again, due to the modular nature of Fender's production methods, and the fact that most serial numbers schemes are not sequential and usually overlap from between 2 to 4 years, (from the early days of Fender, through to the mid 1980s), dating by the serial number is not an exact science.
So, obviously a neck date, while being helpful in providing a date range of production, it cannot be a definitive reference.
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Most notably, production dates have been penciled or stamped on the butt end of the heel of the neck of most guitars and basses.
However, this serial will always begin with the "A" letter (Fender Japan serial number chart will not apply in this case), and unfortunately it will be possible to know only if there is a written date on the bottom of the neck (if the neck is the original from the guitar... If there is not anything written, all the parts will have to be analised and compared to the models showed in Fender Japan catalogs over the years...
it is not an easy thing to do and it may not be possible to know the accurate date...