Some of the earlier had no corresponding dates to the number, except for the invoices.
Below are some of the most common serial number variations.
Would you be able to provide information regarding features of Rickenbackers, other than the jackplate serial, that may be helpful in dating the instrument?
Outside of the knowledge of what instruments or specific features were introduced during a particular period, can you provide hints with respect to specific code numbers on potentiometers, capacitors, cavity markings and so on, that might assist in dating Rickenbackers should the jackplate be missing?
I bet your serial plate would have been between December 1981 and February 1982.
Perhaps Paul Boyer or Joey could give oyu more info. Look at my 08-1982 4001 pot route picture (hyperlink below), and notice 82-7-7-14, and the same signature as yours (Zana).I have an August '73, which was one of the last 4000 series basses made with binding as a standard feature. A real 4001 says Rick-O-Sound (not Stereo Sound) and Standard on the output jack plate with the serial number stamped into it's top and bottom. Have taken off the truss rod cover, and there is only one truss rod. Brought it from a guitar shop in Cape Town and the guy who sold it to me has had 15 years in the industry.If the bass does not have two truss rods, you have a copy. Definately no markings of any sort inside the control cover etc. Obviously doesn't come across a lot of Ricks over here. The first letter is the year, the second letter is the month.From 1987 a prefix number, instead of a letter, was introduced.Another thing, If you really want to know structural stuff..can get nit picking.I suggest as a reference for anyone a book; Gruhn's Guide To Vintage Guitars by George Gruhn and Walter Carter ISBN#0-87930-195-3 This has been recently updated and is excellant. Wow, here's an ancient thread and one that's ripe for resurrection.This is basically the same but; in a 7 digit code ..4th and 5th digits corresponds to the year the pot was made.One last piece of pot trivia..last 2 numbers tell you what week of the year it was made. The easiest way to date a Rick is the fretboard/neck and then combine it with the pot codes.The error in pot codes are two fold; 1- they can be replaced 2-just because a pot code says that it was made in 1965 doesn't make the guitar a 1965 guitar.If the manufacturer got a real deal on pots in 1965 but had to buy a train load of them ,then you might have pots that lasted a few years.