Epiphone SB-722 Olympic Single Solid Body Electric Guitar (1965)

Epiphone  SB-722 Olympic Single Solid Body Electric Guitar  (1965)
$2,450.00 + shipping
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Item # 10856
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Epiphone SB-722 Olympic Single Model Solid Body Electric Guitar (1965), made in Kalamazoo, Michigan, serial # 254675, cherry lacquer finish, mahogany body and neck, rosewood fingerboard, black tolex hard shell case.

The Olympic is the Epiphone equivalent to Gibson's Melody Maker, a budget-oriented but highly playable member of the Kalamazoo-made Epi fold. With physical and sonic characteristics slightly more Fender-like than most Gibson guitars the Olympic is a very comfortable, easy handling and surprisingly good sounding little guitar. This second-generation example features the standard Gibson cherry finish on an asymmetrical body and long slim neck, a Fender-line headstock and one single-coil Melody Maker pickup under a plastic cover at the bridge. One neat feature of this example is it is a factory stoptail that never had a vibrato fitted, a setup many modern players prefer.

This guitar likely dates to early/mid 1965; the pots are dated to the 49th week of 1964. The (minimal) hardwater is chrome plated, the Kluson Deluxe tuners on the single-sided headstock are integral strip with plastic buttons. The neck is slimmer at the nut than earlier models but still has some meat to it compared to many later examples. These asymmetrical-bodied Epiphone solids were phased in in late 1963, replacing earlier more symmetrical models. The Olympic shared the same body as the higher end models after that point, with a top-mounted pickguard holding all the electrics to reduce the cost by limiting routing required to one side and speeding assembly.

1556 of this basic Epiphone model are recorded as having been shipped in 1965, the peak guitar boom year. This was the Olyimpic's best showing, but still a small number compared to the nearly 7,000 single pickup Melody Makers the Kalamazoo factory sent out the same year. While appointments are basic in the extreme this is a neat and very functional 1960's Epiphone solidbody, cool looking, great playing as Gibson student instruments were designed to be and offering a surprisingly full tone from the combo of the Melody Maker pickup and light mahogany body.
Overall length is 38 3/4 in. (98.4 cm.), 13 in. (33 cm.) wide at lower bout, and 1 3/8 in. (3.5 cm.) in depth at side. Scale length is 24 3/4 in. (629 mm.). Width of nut is 1 9/16 in. (40 mm.).

This is a slightly worn-in but still nice playing example of this rather unsung Epiphone rarity, played but not abused and dialed in for maximum fun. The finish shows some dings, dents and scrapes, rather randomly distributed. There are no large areas worn away; the back of the neck does have some small but feelable dings and the headstock edges are the most banged up. The cherry finish has faded somewhat on the top as is typical but retains good color elsewhere.

The neck joint is very solid and there are no cracks or breaks on the instrument. The guitar remains all original and complete, the frets have been worn a bit and the fingerboard shows a few scars from pervious work but they have been cleaned up now and play fine. This is still an affordable and quite friendly vintage 1960s American guitar, housed in a later HSC. Overall Excellent - Condition.