The Fender Stratocaster, often referred to as "Strat", is a model of electric guitar designed by Leo Fender, George Fullerton, and Freddie Tavares in 1954, and manufactured continuously by the Fender Musical Instruments Corporation to the present. It is a double-cutaway guitar, with an extended top horn for balance while standing. The Stratocaster has been used by many leading guitarists and can be heard on many historic recordings. Along with the Gibson Les Paul, the Gibson SG and the Fender Telecaster, it is one of the most common and enduring models of electric guitar in the world. The design of the Stratocaster has transcended the field of music to rank among the classic industrial designs of all time; examples have been exhibited at major museums around the world.
In its original form, the Stratocaster was offered in a 2-color sunburst finish on a solid, deeply contoured ash body, a one-piece maple neck with 21 frets, black dot inlays, and Kluson machine heads, until 1956, when Fender started making bodies made from solid alder. There was also a set of available custom colors that wasn't standardized until 1960. These custom colors were mostly automobile lacquer colors made by...