Greco SE

Product number determination “Greco SE” Part 1 (’76-’79 model)

Greco SE the Stratocaster type guitars have similar classification method like Greco EG series Les Paul type that was described on former blog. This article explains the 1st generation SE series from 1976 to 1979, before 2nd generation of SE series called “Super Real” started in 1980.

- Models
SE1200/1000: Semi order model called “Project Series”
EG800 Pre CBS style small head stock
EG700 “Early Sixties”
EG600 “Sparkle Sound”
EG500/450/380 “Super Sound”
SE800J/600J/500J “Jeff Beck Model”
SE500PR “Peter Frampton RED Strat”

Greco SE500PR

- Serial number
Same numbering method as EG series such as starting with alphabet followed by 6 digits, which is engraved on neck joint plate, which has 4 bolts joint even for large headstock type.

Greco SE serial number

- Body Material
Normally Sen wood is applied. Sen (Sennoki) was commonly distributed in Japan to be used for furniture and other wood products. As Sen has clear grain looks like Ash and is easy for wood works, it was major material for guitar body alternative for Alder or Ash. Greco catalog says that body is “Alder or Sen”, but Alder is quite rare. Some SE500/450 applied Agathis and SE380 had Basswood body.

- Pickup
“PU-119 excel” is well-known Greco single coil PU, which is said as applied on SE700. But I saw many “excel” stamped pickups installed on SE600 and SE500.
Greco PU-119 excel

Some SE800 has Schaller tuners with 2 screws fixing with “Made in W. Germany” mark. It is easiest way to define SE800 even the label is missing. Others have MH-803 Rotomatic type and SE450/380 tend to have F key type tuners.

Greco SE Schaller tuner

Greco MH-803 tuner

Greco F key

- Fingerboard
SE800/600 has one piece maple neck. SE700 has ’60 style slab rose fingerboard. SE500/450/380 has maple cap finger board. On SE600/500/450, Rosewood fingerboard is only applied for white body model (reason unknown….).

- Others
Different “Hand Crafted” marking on head stock is applied on SE800.
Greco logo on SE450/380 does not have gold rim

Greco SE800 headstock

Greco SE600 headstock

Greco SE450 headstock

As Stratocaster type guitar is easy to modify and replace the parts, there are many old Greco SE that is hard to define its model name. And there are many exceptions that happens a lot in ‘70s MIJ guitars as well.
So, it is just a small tips for you.

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