Epiphone Electar Model M 7-string Lap Steel Electric Guitar (1938)

Epiphone  Electar Model M 7-string Lap Steel Electric Guitar  (1938)
$1,250.00 + shipping
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Item # 11990
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Epiphone Electar Model M 7-string Model Lap Steel Electric Guitar (1938), made in New York, NY, serial # 1668, black lacquer finish, maple body with etched metal top, original tweed hard shell case.

This is a the much rarer 7-string version of a very cool interesting early lap steel from Epiphone, the Model M. The black-painted wooden body is oblong with stepped edges; Art Deco ornamentation is etched into a metal top overlay. The whole effect is very "1930s skyscraper at night." This is the second version of the Model M with the earlier Rickenbacker-style horseshoe magnet pickup replaced by an in-house Epiphone design. This primal unit has a narrow coil wrapped in black tape featuring the very first adjustable polepieces, which were an Epiphone innovation. This is all hidden under a metal coverplate with a rough black finish. There are three black octagonal knobs on the top, two of which are tone knobs with different high-end rolloffs and the third (on the treble side) the volume.

The bound rosewood fingerboard has multicolored dot inlay and inlaid fret lines. The nut and tailpiece/bridge combination are milled aluminum, There are purple felt-covered pads on the back of the instrument. The tuners were individual open back Grover Sta-tites with metal buttons, replaced on this example with look-alike newer repros. The headstock metal plate reads "Epiphone Electar" and there is a metal plate on the back referencing the licensed patents of Meissner Inventions, a firm that in the 1930s claimed patent protection on the concept of electric musical instruments and demanded royalties from all manufacturers, Epiphone being one that acquiesced. This cool old 7-string steel is still housed in the original rectangular tweed-covered case with an Electar log plate on the lid.
Overall length is 30 1/4 in. (76.8 cm.), 7 1/4 in. (18.4 cm.) wide at lower bout, and 1 3/4 in. (4.4 cm.) deep. Scale length is 22 1/2 in. (572 mm.). Width of nut is 2 3/8 in. (60 mm.).

This 85 year old steel is generally excellent overall with minor play wear, most noticeable on the metal pickup cover. The finish has some minor checking, scuffing, dings and dents but no serious wear. The instrument remains original except as noted the tuners were replaced with correct style modern reissues, except the top bass side unit which is an old 1960s piece. Somebody (NOT US!) probably poached the originals for an old Martin! In any case the instrument is fully functional and at least easier to tune. The original case is somewhat worn a but perfectly functional and overall this is a nice example of this rarer 7-string version of a classic Deco New York Electar piece. Excellent - Condition.