Standard (“Dan Smith”) Stratocaster (1981-1983)
Model info: Though formally named the Standard Stratocaster, it’s widely known on the street as the “Dan Smith Strat” due to significant features attributed to Smith. Design features of note include: smaller, pre-CBS-style headstock; 4-bolt neckplate; the hotter X-1 pickup in the bridge position; abandonment of the Bullet truss rod adjustment; and, a CBS-style headstock logo. For more information, see this article: Dan Smith Stratocaster, 1981-83.
Notes: Naming this model the “Standard Stratocaster” probably indicated Fender’s desire to return to pre-CBS design elements that had proved popular. This new, 1982 version of the Stratocaster was intended to represent the standard Strat. The word Standard would again be applied to the 1986 American Standard and the subsequent MIM Standard Stratocaster. Also, there is room for discussion as to the year of introduction of the Standard Stratocaster (Smith). Some say 1981, others say 1982. In all probability, manufacture was begun in 1981 with public introduction taking place at the January, 1982, Winter NAMM Show. The same situation arises a few years later with the American Standard – manufacture begins in 1986 with public introduction at the 1987 Winter NAMM Show (January).