Here is a rare find with an unusual story: a 1937 Rickenbacher Electro “Silver Hawaiian” Lap Steel in practically mint condition with a working amp!
I bought this Rickenbacher lap steel from the son of the original owner, a serviceman stationed in Hawaii just before WWII. He played in Hawaiian bands around Honolulu prior to Pearl Harbor, then packed it up in a custom built wooden case and shipped it home when his service ended. It comes with the original soft guitar case, a vintage steel bar, the original fingerpicks.. even the original colored pipe cleaners wrapped around the (new) strings!
The NS 100 “Silver Hawaiian” steel was introduced in 1937:
This baby’s serial # is D972. It has a large, single volume knob and the ¼” jack is mounted on the player’s side. The pickup has the patent number, which dates it to after August 1937, according to one source. The Silver Hawaiian was discontinued after WWll.
The guitar shows just a tiny bit of wear, merely some very slight discoloration of the chrome on the backside of the neck. Otherwise the chrome is in fantastic shape. It features the large classic horseshoe pickup for that huge Ric sound – take a listen to the sound files below. The tuners work well, and there are no issues of any kind with the electronics. It’s a real peach.
The original tube amp has some discoloration from the rubber bumpers in the wooden case. It has just been overhauled and brought back into working order. Everything is original, save for a new chord, and a capacitor or two. In the interest of playability, the tech removed the non-working attached cable and added a ¼” jack. The amp sounds fantastic, with a surprisingly full tone for such a little guy.
Both the guitar an amp fit into a custom-built wooden case — a sea chest, if you will. The case is quite heavy but it certainly is sturdy. I do not want to part the guitar and amp from the case so buyers should contact me about shipping options.
“Sweet Singing Bamboo” excerpt:
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