The first Fender solidbody model, the Esquire, lasted (in name only) from April 1950 to October 1950.This model name was replaced by the "Broadcaster", which lasted (in name only) from the October 1950 to January 1951.The majority of Broadcasters are dated November 1950.
All Telecasters basically have the same features: single cutaway slab body, 2 chrome knobs, 3 position toggle switch, 3 paired adjustable bridge saddles, strings anchor thru body (except in late 1958 to 1959). Body date moved from neck pocket to under lead pickup (late 1955). Single layer thick white pickguard (custom color Teles used 3 layer celluloid mint green pickguard).
Mid 1955 Telecaster : Staggered pole pickup in treble position. Tele Custom introduced with 3 layer celluloid mint green pickguard. "F" style tuning gears replaces Kluson-Deluxe gears.
Polyester thick finish replaces nitrocellulose lacquer. String ferrules on back now stick out, no longer flush.
In 1937 Gretsch had trademarked the name "Broad Kaster" for a line of drums.
After advertising the Broadcaster in music trade papers in February1951, Gretsch took notice and sent Fender a telegram asking them to change their name.
Therefore Fender was forced to drop the name Broadcaster.Starting in February 1951, Fender cut the word "Broadcaster" off of their headstock decals.These models (February 1951 to summer 1951) are known as "No Casters".Starting in the summer of 1951, Fender adopted the name "Telecaster" for this model, and started using new decals after all the old clipped decals were used. But be aware that Fender was a month or two ahead in making body parts.Therefore, you can find No Casters with December 1950 neck dates, even though they didn't clip the decals and do final assembly till February 1951 (decal application was the last assembly step were always applied over the finish).Making the body and neck (and dating them) was the first assembly step, and hence these dates can be a couple months before the instrument was finalized and shipped.