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Vintage Epiphone Guitars
Electric guitars and basses manufactured by the Epiphone Guitar Company

The Epiphone plant at 210 Bush Street, Kalamazoo, Michigan
The Gibson Kalamazoo guitar factory. Gibson occupied a whole block; their main address was Parsons Street (top), Epiphone instruments were built side by side, but the company was officially situated on Bush Street; just the other side of the block (below).
Epiphone guitar catalogues

Have a look at some vintage Epiphone guitar catalogues


Vintage Epiphone

The Epiphone company of New York, USA, was created by the Stathopoulos family, making various musical instruments with the first electric guitar in 1935. In many ways, it was just like rivals Guild and Gibson; a very highly respected guitar manufacturer, producing superb jazz boxes for the top end of the US market. Guitars like the Emperor and Broadway established a fine reputation, which still stands with vintage guitar collectors today. But tragedy occured, with the death of Epaminondas Stathopoulos; the driving force behind Epiphone at the time.

The Epiphone content on this site is sorted into categories:

Epiphone bass guitars
Epiphone guitar catalogues
Epiphone electric acoustic guitars
Epiphone solid-body guitars
Epiphone thinline guitars


Latest posts on Epiphone basses at the VintageGuitar forum
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Epiphone 50th Anniversary 1962 Rivoli Bass Guitar
0 replies
last message by Goingdownslow
27/09/2013 10:00

1967 Epiphone Rivoli- with two pickups
2 replies
last message by Bigfatgeordie
23/08/2013 15:09



Latest posts on Epiphone guitars at the VintageGuitar forum
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Help to identify vintage Epiphone
2 replies
last message by mdch
29/10/2013 16:20

1960 epiphone zephyr e312t
1 replies
last message by VintAxe
17/08/2012 19:05



Chicago Musical Instruments; the CMI-period

But perhaps the best known guitars built by Epiphone were those manufactured at the Gibson Kalamazoo plant - the CMI period. CMI bought out a struggling Epiphone in 1957, buying tooling, parts, and even unfinished instruments. Production of hollow-bodied jazz guitars and acoustic (upright) basses began immediately. But before long Epiphone was producing new lines, unrelated to the output of previous years. Thinline semi acoustics like the Epiphone Casino, Sorrento, Riviera and Sheraton were soon joined by solid bodies like the Epiphone Wilshire, Crestwood and Coronet; all distributed to dealers that wanted Gibson-quality instruments, but did not qualify to be Gibson stockists themselves.

Gibson ran a whole block in Kalamazoo giving their address as Parsons Street, whilst Epiphone were officially situated on Bush Street; just the other side of the block. The instruments were made side by side, both using the same woods, construction methods, and many of the same components. Numerous Epiphone models had a direct Gibson equivalent that sold at more or less the same price; for example the Epiphone Casino and the Gibson ES330 - or the Epiphone Rivoli and the Gibson EB2 bass. Unlike today, the 1960s US-built Epiphone line was aimed at exactly the same market as the Gibson equivalent instruments.

Epiphone Granada 1967 Epiphone advert featuring a psychedelic fish playing an Epiphone Riviera

Epiphone guitars quickly found favour in the mid-1960s music scene; bands like the Beatles, Rolling Stones, Animals and the Kinks all played Epiphones, along with many more. But as the decade ended, CMI gave way to Norlin, and Epiphone production went to Japan.

The Norlin period

Norlin period Epiphones were initially made in Japan; they were no longer rebranded Gibson guitars, but a new budget line aimed at younger guitarists. Although some of these guitars are interesting, they are not as widely regarded by musicans or collectors as the CMI-period instruments. Towards the very end of Norlins tenure, a few Epiphones were again built in Kalamazoo, but these are very much the exception.

Todays Epiphone guitars are typically reissues of the 1960s Gibson and Epiphone instruments made in Kalamazoo - but being made in China and Korea are naturally very much cheaper instruments.

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Vintage Epiphone guitars for sale


US ebay listings

Epiphone Casino with added "John Lennon - 1965" style upgrades.

Current price: $450.00
buy it now
Time left: 28d 14h 24m
Epiphone Les Paul 1960 Tribute

Current price: $400.00

Time left: 4h 35m
1970s Epiphone FT-145 Acoustic Guitar Body Japan Project Vintage Free Ship LOOK

Current price: $85.00
buy it now
Time left: 6d 20h 50m
Vintage 1960's Epiphone Pacemaker EA-50T Guitar Amp with Tremolo. Made in USA.

Current price: $149.00
buy it now
Time left: 9h 40m
Epiphone LE 50th Anniversary "1964" Caballero A/E Guitar Ebony 888365263847

Current price: $199.20
buy it now
Time left: 27d 14h 15m
Epiphone 1960 Les Paul Limited Edition Reissue

Current price: $309.00
buy it now
Time left: 9h 53m
Epiphone 50th Anniversary "1962" Sorrento Hollowbody Guitar

Current price: $499.00
buy it now
Time left: 5d 13h 32m
VINTAGE 1970's EPIPHONE FT-145 TEXAN DREADNOUGHT KALAMAZOO MATSUMOKU JAPAN MIJ

Current price: $179.00
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Time left: 17h 55m
Epiphone 1963 EJ-45 Ltd Ed Round Shoulder Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar - Ebony

Current price: $179.00
buy it now
Time left: 19d 14h 16m
epiphone sorento 1962 limited edition 50th Anniversary

Current price: $363.63

Time left: 17h 59m
1964 Epiphone Pacemaker Amplifier.

Current price: $399.95
buy it now
Time left: 4d 15h 5m
Vintage USA 1963 Epiphone/Gibson Tube Amp

Current price: $500.00
buy it now
Time left: 2d 9h 22m
See more results on eBay here


UK ebay listings

1970s Epiphone ET-270 Guitar, Powerful Pickups, Ex. Condition, Video Demo!

Current price: £279.19
buy it now
Time left: 8h 6m
Epiphone Caballero USA Made 1965 PROJECT Body Badly Damaged NO RESERVE!!

Current price: £151.51
buy it now
Time left: 5h 1m
Epiphone J45 1963 Ltd edition acoustic second hand

Current price: £219.00
buy it now
Time left: 2d 7h 48m
1970s Epiphone Hollow body electric guitar

Current price: £650.00
buy it now
Time left: 1d 6h 2m
Vintage Epiphone 6830e 1971 Kalamazoo Blue Label Acoustic Guitar Gibson

Current price: £450.00
buy it now
Time left: 6d 4h 3m
Pair of Limited Edition John Lennon Epiphone Casino Blonde & Sunburst No8/1965

Current price: £5000.00
buy it now
Time left: 3d 14h 4m
1964 EPIPHONE WILSHIRE CORONET SOLID BODY ELECTRIC GUITAR! OHSC!

Current price: £805.25
buy it now
Time left: 1d 12h 56m
1963 Vintage Epiphone Rivoli Bass Guitar with case

Current price: £1500.00
buy it now
Time left: 28d 6h 39m
Epiphone Limited Edition 1966 SG G-400 Silverburst Guitar

Current price: £160.00
buy it now
Time left: 2d 2h 14m
1967 Epiphone Riviera (#EPE0278)

Current price: £3105.96
buy it now
Time left: 19d 14h 28m
Epiphone by Gibson 1971 strat

Current price: £80.00
buy it now
Time left: 3d 5h 6m
EPIPHONE CASINO 1967 ROYAL TAN SUNBURST

Current price: £3750.00
buy it now
Time left: 21d 11h 59m
See more results on eBay here


German ebay listings

1967er Epiphone Riviera Ausgabe 1996

Current price: €450.00
buy it now
Time left: 2d 1h 33m
Epiphone 1966 G-400 SG Pro Pe - Top Zustand

Current price: €295.00
buy it now
Time left: 18d 7h 15m
Elektr. Gitarre EPIPHONE Elitist 1963 ES-335 DOT/CH , gebraucht

Current price: €1390.00
buy it now
Time left: 16d 3h 8m
Epiphone, FT-165, 12-Saiten, Westerngitarre, 1970, USA, Kalamazoo, wie neu

Current price: €500.00
buy it now
Time left: 1d 12h 29m
EPIPHONE® CASINO BLACK WHITE BLACK 3 PLY PICKGUARD SEMIAKUSTIK JAZZ 1961-1970 ++

Current price: €23.95
buy it now
Time left: 16d 17h 55m
EPIPHONE® RIVERA® BLACK WHITE BLACK 3 PLY PICKGUARD KALAMAZOO ARCHTOP 1972-1970

Current price: €21.95
buy it now
Time left: 4d 3h 14m
See more results on eBay here

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