First, if we inspect the saddles on the bridge, we’ll see they are labeled “FENDER FENDER”, while the original 1957 ones were labeled “FENDER PAT. The Fender logo used between 19 had a pointier “E”.
The font used in “With Synchronized Tremolo” is also slightly different.
Neck dating can be useful in finding the approximate age of your guitar.
Since the neck is only a component of the guitar, it could have been produced a number of years before the actual instrument was assembled, hence the date on the neck is not necessarily the production date of the whole guitar.
The production model of October and beyond featured an ash body with 2-color sunburst finish and a single-piece maple neck.
More information on the original 1954 Stratocaster can be found in my article about the history of the Fender Stratocaster.
No one likes it when you forget their birthday and neither does your Fender. For most of Fender’s production history they have applied serial numbers and production dates that can help you determine their production date (within a few years’ margin, at least).
The neck cavity on this ultra collectible Stratocaster is dated 4/56.