National Newport 88 Semi-Hollow Body Electric Guitar (1965)

National  Newport 88 Semi-Hollow Body Electric Guitar  (1965)

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Item # 6569
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National Newport 88 Model Semi-Hollow Body Electric Guitar (1965), made in Chicago, black finish, molded fiberglass body with wooden core, maple neck with rosewood fingerboard, original two-tone hard shell case.

The National Res-O-Glas guitars of the 1960s remain one of the most exuberant examples of vintage American guitar design, and utterly distinctive even 50 years on. With a molded fiberglass body, aluminum-cored neck and electro-acoustic "Silversound" pickup in the bridge they did not lack for innovative features. The line was perhaps more stylish than entirely practical, however, and emerged more as collector than player favorites. While they do have a sort of funky blues/trash culture connotation today, these Nationals were actually quite expensive when new.

The Newport 88 (called the Val-Pro 88 earlier) was the midline guitar in this series, with a striking "Raven Black" finish on the "half-map" body, "quadrant" fret markers and the new-for-1964 Valco "box" vibrato unit. The most useful feature is the provision of a full three pickup array-two of the excellent familiar Valco standard magnetic units and the aforementioned internal bridge unit. Many of the less expensive Res-O-Glas instruments lack the magnetic pickup at the bridge and thus are much less versatile playing instruments. Each pickup has its own tone and volume controls mounted above the string line, plus a master volume on the lower bout. The Newport 88 is the highest grade of the "lower line' of these Nationals, a super cool and utterly distinctive guitar by any standard.
 
Overall length is 39 3/4 in. (101 cm.), 14 1/2 in. (36.8 cm.) wide at lower bout, and 1 1/2 in. (3.8 cm.) in depth, measured at side of rim. Scale length is 24 3/4 in. (629 mm.). Width of nut is 1 11/16 in. (43 mm.). This is a very nice example of this rare Res-O-Glas beauty. There is some light play wear (mostly to the neck finish) and some loss to the stenciling on the pickup covers (which is pretty much inevitable) but overall the guitar does not show a lot of use. Plays quite well-as muuch as these do, and comes complete with a lovely rectangular HSC. Excellent - Condition.