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December 23rd, 2008:

Collectable Guitars pt 3 – 1950’s Danelectro Range



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This time I thought I’d go for a whole range of guitars, which were meant as budget instruments when they were first made in the mid-1950s.

1950s Danelectro Range

Originally meant as budget guitars and sold through the Sears catalogue under a variety of names, Nathan Daniel’s company, Danelectro, soon started marketing the guitars as Danelectros, not Silvertones and Airlines as they had before.

The guitars were a huge hit with beginners  as they were very cheap and the various shapes available looked good, unusual for budget guitars of the time.

There were several different models, all very simple, fun to play and utilising the innovative Danelectro own-brand pickups, single-coils mounted inside lipstick tubes, so novice guitarists, or even experienced musicians on a tight budget, could choose a good-looking and playable guitar. However, the guitars were killed off in 1969, only to be reissued recently to rave reviews.

1950s-60s Danos are surprisingly rare now, and fetch upwards of £600 when found by collectors. They are highly prized because of their rarity, and are well-known for their unique tone, which is bright and resonant because of the chambered bodies and cheap materials (a mix of chipboard and plywood).

If you can find an original and have the money, they’re prized and playable vintage collector’s items. If not, the reissues are great, and all the models are only about £200.

Models include the 59 (as used by Jimmy Page), the 56 (a single-cutaway budget Les Paul-type guitar), the 63 (originally the Silvertone 1448 amp-in-case guitar sold by Sears in the USA) and the Dano Pro (an unusual, almost completely rectangular guitar).

Collect them all!

You can read a full biography of Nathan Daniels, written by his son, Howard by following this link

Collectable Guitars pt 2 – Burns Marvin



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This guitar was used by Hank Marvin of the Shadows during the 60’s, along with his iconic Red Fender Stratocaster

Burns Marvin (1964-65)

Hank Marvin Burns Guitar

The Burns is a whole lot rarer (and cheaper) than a sixties Les Paul – it isn’t worth the tens of thousands one of those commands, but they only made 350 or so, so if you want one it’s possible to find the official Burns-made reissue model, and alos a 40th anniversary special edition.

The Marvin featured a whole host of innovative features, including a sculpted “scroll” headstock, a knife-edge vibrato and tuning pipes in the body.

These are seriously rare guitars, and chances are you’ll never find a “real” one. However, if an old one does come your way and you have the cash, then why not…