As the bridge floats, the instrument has a tendency to go out of tune during double-stop string bends.
As a general rule of thumb, serial numbers can be used to denote a year range for a particular guitar. As a broad generality V000001-V004000 denote a 1982 guitar, V004000-V010000 denote a 1983 guitar, and V010000-V016000 denotes a 1984 guitar.
A few popular books state that the serial numbers re-started with V0000001 when the new Corona, Ca factory opened. If you look at my fullerton inventory, you can see that this is just a broad generality.
From my experience, any serial number below V016000 denotes a guitar made at the fullerton plant (1982-1984).
Of course, there are exceptions to this generalization.
There is considerable debate about the effects on tone and sustain of the material used in the tremolo system's 'inertia bar' and many aftermarket versions are available.
The Stratocaster features three single coil pickups, with the output originally selected by a 3-way switch.
The "quacky" tone of the middle and bridge pickups, popularized by players such as Jimi Hendrix, Stevie Ray Vaughan, David Gilmour, Rory Gallagher, Mark Knopfler, Bob Dylan, Scott Thurston, Ronnie Wood, John Mayer, Ed King, Eric Clapton and Robert Cray, can be obtained by using the pickup selector in positions 2 and 4.
This setting's characteristic tone is not caused by any electronic phenomenon—early Stratocasters used identical pickups for all positions.
Some players, such as Eric Clapton and Ronnie Wood, feel that floating bridge has an excessive propensity to detune guitars and so inhibit the bridge's movement with a chunk of wood wedged between the bridge block and the inside cutout of the tremolo cavity and by increasing the tension on the tremolo springs; these procedures lock the bridge in a fixed position.