Serial Number Info for Parker Fly, NiteFly, Fly Bass, and Other Parker Guitars

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vjmanzo
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Serial Number Info for Parker Fly, NiteFly, Fly Bass, and Other Parker Guitars

Post by vjmanzo »

The following information was taken from the official Parker Guitars website. See also this post about Parker Guitars history.

===========================================
The Fly

PRIOR TO 2003: Flys will have the six digit code. The first three digits are the day of the year, the next two are the number in that days production, and the last digit is the year.

2003 - 2006: Both 6 & 7 digit numbers were reportedly used. The first three digits are the day of the year, the next two are the number in that days production, and the last digit (or two digits) designate the year. Any doubts regarding the year of manufacture during this period can be cured by a quick examination of the control layout. It is regarded as a "Refined Fly" if it is 2003 or later.

AFTER 2006: Flys [and NiteFlys] changed to a P followed by a seven digit code. The first two digits are the year, the next two are the number of the month, the next two are the number of the day it was completed, and the last number is that days production number.

The following abbreviations for wood used on the guitar in question (included at the end of serial numbers before 2006, placed elsewhere on the headstock after 2006) should help w/ identification of the model. Neck wood is always listed first.

B = Basswood
R = Redwood
P = Poplar
C = Cedar
MH = Mahogany
MA = Maple
SP = Sitka Spruce
SS = Sitka Spruce (the code was changed)
BN = Butternut
MM = Mahogany neck and body (Mojo)

===========================================
The NiteFly
The NiteFly uses a different system using either a five or six digit serial number. The first one or two digits show the month, the third is the last number in the year, and the last three digits show the number in that months production.

Here’s a NiteFly serial number example:
Serial Number 117123
11=(Month) November
7=(Year) 1997
123=(Number of guitar that month) 123


See also the NiteFly History and Manual


===========================================
The Fly Bass

The first Parker Fly basses (they used the same scheme as the Nitefly guitars) produced in Wilmington at the original Parker facility headed by Ken himself, used a 7-digit serial number, of the scheme MMYYSSS, where MM = month, YY = year and SSS = production number that month.

The Fly basses produced between the introduction in Oct 2002 and July 2003 apparently have the 7-digit serial number scheme.

The 6-digit serial number scheme was apparently adopted after the production was moved by USM to Vernon Hill in July 2003. These basses use a six digit serial # where the first three digits are an internal code and the last three digits are the sequence number in production.

Here’s a Fly Bass serial number example:
Serial Number 092075
092 = internal code
075 = number in the production sequence (75)

See also the Fly Bass History and Manual

===========================================
Additional Fly Serial Info:
Please note: in 1994, lower case letters were used in some Fly serial numbers. It's also worth noting that the Fly logo does not always appear on the back of the neck as shown in this photo of (from left to right) a 2010 Artist, a 2007 Deluxe, a 1998 Concert, a 2005 Mojo (I ordered directly from Parker Guitars), and a 2000 Hardtail (Stealth):
Logo.jpg
As shown, the wood letter codes and "USA" appeared on the back of the headstock around 2006, and, prior to that, after the serial number.

Redwood-neck Deluxe models from 1993 used a different font style:
RP_font.jpg
P Series Serials

See these posts for serial info on P Series guitars and P Series bases.
MrWalker
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Re: Parker Fly, NiteFly, and Fly Bass Serial Numbers

Post by MrWalker »

Referring to the Fly Bass History document, the first Parker Fly basses (they used the same scheme as the Nitefly guitars) produced in Wilmington at the original Parker facility headed by Ken himself, used a 7-digit serial number, of the scheme MMYYSSS, where MM = month, YY = year and SSS = production number that month.
The 6-digit serial number scheme was apparently adopted after the production was moved by USM to Vernon Hill in July 2003.
The Fly basses produced between the introduction in Oct 2002 and July 2003 apparently have the 7-digit serial number scheme. Mine is from March 2003.

Hence, I also would assume that Nitefly guitars produced between Jan 2000 and July 2003 have the same serial number scheme?
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Re: Parker Fly, NiteFly, and Fly Bass Serial Numbers

Post by vjmanzo »

Thanks @MrWalker, I’ve updated the main post above with this info; you’re correct, obviously, (I even checked with my FB-4!), so thanks for catching that.

Good question about the NiteFly serials—I have a ‘97, which has the serial as described, and I’d imagine that that NiteFlys from 2000+ had a two-digit year and this a seven-digit serial (like the FB-4).

Can anyone with a 2000+ NiteFly confirm a seven-digit serial?
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theFATangel
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Re: Serial Number Info for Parker Fly, NiteFly, Fly Bass, and Other Parker Guitars

Post by theFATangel »

Thank you for the above information everyone! Unfortunately, my Parker NiteFly seems to throw a monkey wrench in the serial number decoding process you’ve outlined above and I don’t have a viable suggestion myself.

I bought what was sold to me as a 2002 Parker NiteFly Swamp Ash in Transparent Red off of Reverb from a person who had bought it used from whom they claimed was the original owner/purchaser whom they knew personally and not just through the sale of the guitar. This would make me the third owner based on the information provided to me by the seller.

According to this Parker NiteFly history document the model I have was actually from the “pre-refined” era of NiteFlys manufactured between 12/1999 and 07/2001.

Mine has a flat white/black/white sandwiched pickguard and a “stereo/mono” push button toggle switch to alternately separate and sum the magnetic and piezo pickups. The newer versions that would have gone into production in July 2001 had a pearloid white pickguard instead and the Fishman Power Chip circuit with “Smart Switching” on the output jack which deprecated the need for the manual push button “stereo/mono” switch that mine has. (See attached photos.)

This leads me to believe that although this guitar may have been purchased new in 2002 as explained to me from the claimed second owner, it seems pretty clear it is actually from the manufacturing window of December 1999 to July 2001 based on the above outlined details and nuances.

The serial is 68210 USA which doesn’t seem to fit any of the conventions outlined above since it is only 5 digits long. Hopefully this information will help guide us to ultimately deciphering these serials though. Thanks for the post and for reading.

Maurice
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Pick guard and “stereo/mono” push button toggle switch
Pick guard and “stereo/mono” push button toggle switch
Serial
Serial
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Re: Serial Number Info for Parker Fly, NiteFly, Fly Bass, and Other Parker Guitars

Post by vjmanzo »

Hi @theFatangel,

Yes, using the info above (originally provided by the Parker Guitars website), your NiteFly serial 68210 would denote:
July 1998 210th guitar that month

It's not unheard of for an instrument made in one year to be sold later (even much later) with the newer updated electronics, but the updated electronics were introduced in the NiteFly line in 1998. However, page 2 of the Parker Guitars NiteFly History document you noted shows:
Screen Shot 2020-10-02 at 2.29.39 PM.png
So, it seems like you have an NFV6 or NFV7. Is that not how you're interpreting it?
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Re: Serial Number Info for Parker Fly, NiteFly, Fly Bass, and Other Parker Guitars

Post by ThePedroDB »

I think the Serial Number format stated for post 2006 Fly models is incorrect. Based upon my own Fly Mojo, S/N: P0808452, I would submit that the number format is YYMMNNN where YY = Year, MM = Month and NNN = Production Number for that month

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vjmanzo
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Re: Serial Number Info for Parker Fly, NiteFly, Fly Bass, and Other Parker Guitars

Post by vjmanzo »

Hi @ThePedroDB, this is what’s shown under the Fly section:
vjmanzo wrote: Sat Sep 21, 2019 12:11 am AFTER 2006: Flys [and NiteFlys] changed to a P followed by a seven digit code. The first two digits are the year, the next two are the number of the month, the next two are the number of the day it was completed, and the last number is that days production number.
Seems to be the same as what you’re suggesting, right?

FYI - we’re trying to reconcile the narrative that was originally posted on the official Parker Guitars website with what is actually accurate. However, I will add a note to the NiteFly section to reflect the “P” years.
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Re: Serial Number Info for Parker Fly, NiteFly, Fly Bass, and Other Parker Guitars

Post by ThePedroDB »

VJ,
the statement you quoted is not the same as I suggested.

Your statement suggests the format YYMMDDN, which includes DD = Day of the Month and N = Production Number for that Day.

If that were true my guitar would have been produced on the 45th of August... :D
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Re: Serial Number Info for Parker Fly, NiteFly, Fly Bass, and Other Parker Guitars

Post by vjmanzo »

:lol: Haha I missed that!!!
sawatchboy
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Re: Serial Number Info for Parker Fly, NiteFly, Fly Bass, and Other Parker Guitars

Post by sawatchboy »

I'm trying to track down all pertinent info on this PM-series Parker I picked up. Can anyone help me?
S/N 09090126. Quilt top with Parker-branded pups. I tried a post a pic but couldn't figure out how. Photo tab doesn't appear to function.
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Re: Serial Number Info for Parker Fly, NiteFly, Fly Bass, and Other Parker Guitars

Post by vjmanzo »

vjmanzo wrote: Sat Sep 21, 2019 12:11 am P Series Serials

See these posts for serial info on P Series guitars and P Series bases.
Did this help, @sawatchboy?
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Re: Serial Number Info for Parker Fly, NiteFly, Fly Bass, and Other Parker Guitars

Post by vjmanzo »

ThePedroDB wrote: Tue Jun 08, 2021 1:04 am I think the Serial Number format stated for post 2006 Fly models is incorrect. Based upon my own Fly Mojo, S/N: P0808452, I would submit that the number format is YYMMNNN where YY = Year, MM = Month and NNN = Production Number for that month
So, the suggestion would be that 452 is a production number? It might be more likely that 452 is some sort of internal code as I can confirm that—unless “production number” refers to all guitars they produced—Parker Guitars never came close to producing 452 Fly guitars in a month, especially in the USM years. That number was about 170, but usually much lower.

I’ve looked at my 2008 Fly Mojo (P0803218) and it is also a high number if we’re talking about “Flys produced that month”.
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