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TBJ number - Tur-bo Jet

Started by chigalihape, February 08, 2023, 05:28:12 AM

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Hi every one,

As I was still wondering what TBJ meant, and I guess I'm not the only one, I put here the informations found on this forum, as well as a nice old picture present on the actual TBJ website, which probably speaks to all of us here!

Quote from: Ben Bove on October 12, 2015, 04:47:18 PMAll the date codes were not put on by Fender themselves, some of them are dates applied from the vendors they subcontracted parts from.  For example, the most consistent date code on a Rhodes is in the upper right hand corner of the harp, or 2272 in your case.  This was actually applied by Turbo Jet (TBJ) upon completion of the pickup rails, who supplied the pickups for Rhodes pianos.  This date isn't a completion date of the whole piano - just the pickup rail by another vendor, which was then put into a piano later on.   

Quote from: Ben Bove on June 07, 2016, 02:54:22 PMTur-Bo Jet (I guess is the actual spelling), which also goes by "TBJ Designs" on its site, was a vendor that Fender used to outsource the pickups.  Just like the keys, Fender didn't make the Rhodes pickups in-house.  Looks like they're still in business, and still specialize in electro-mechanical devices including coils.

Quote from: Tim Hodges on February 24, 2010, 03:56:59 AM
QuoteBy the way, who turbojet is?

QuoteAs a quick background, the pickups were installed by a company called Tur-bo Jet. Fender would send the wood rails to them, Tur-bo Jet would install their pickups onto the rail, and then send it back to Fender.

All the dates in the upper right hand corner were applied by Tur-bo Jet as their dating for completing assembly on the pickup rail (most believe it's a Fender date). So when they finished, they stamped "4375" on yours.

The TBJ1-5 stamp, usually a little circular stamp is a quality control stamp. So it looks like an inspector OKed the rail and stamped his number, can't confirm but I see a lot of circular quality control stamps on Fender stuff.

Whenever you see a "TBJ" number in the top right hand corner of a Rhodes, it's actually a part number. All 73's have a TBJ number of 010254 which is the part number (size of the rail), and all 88s have an 010459 TBJ number {size of 88 rail}. they changed in late 1979 with Mark IIs I guess maybe dimensions were changed so new part number... but it's more of an inside thing.

TBJ pickup rail picture
'66 Sparkle top, '71 Suitcase MKI 73, ยด77 Suitcase MKI 88  & '81 Stage MKII 73