Description of the Hagstrom HIIN-OT from the 1972 Hagstrom catalogue
This is the HAGSTROM SPECIAL. A solid body guitar with two "anti-hum" peak efficiency pickups. Separate volume and tone control for each pickup. Also a 3-position switch enabling a choice of pickup sounds. A treble position to create a vigorous bright rock sound. A neutral position for a more round and warm tone, often preferred for rhythm chords, and a bass position for the lush and lovely, but still melodic blues sounds.
Model: Hagstrom HIIN-OT
Pickups: Two humbuckers, 2 volume, 2 tone, 3 way selector switch
Scale: 24 3/4"
Neck: Birch, rosewood fingerboard, dot inlays. 22 frets. Width at nut 1 3/4"
Weight: 3.19 kg
The HIIN, and this variant, the HIIN-OT descended from the Hagstrom II and III guitars of the late 1960s. It had the same birch body, bolt-on birch neck, and Stratocaster-crossed-with-SG body shape. But now upgraded 'anti-hum' pickups, Gibson-style 2-volume-2-tone controls, and 3-tuner-a-side headstock configuration.
Produced by Hagstrom in Alvdalen, Sweden, but also distributed variously as the F200-OT or HG800 Special. Hagstrom guitars were widely available worldwide, this model distributed in the US by Arc and later Ampeg. This is, of course, the non-tremolo version of the HIIN/H801/F200N, with standard Hagstrom tremolo unit.
A highly playable vintage Hagstrom guitar
This is a superb playing guitar, with a typically easy-playing neck - thanks to Hagstrom's H expander-stretcher truss rod; and far better tonal control, thanks to the new improved control circuitry. The Hagstrom tremolo fitted to most HIIN guitars is pretty good, but this stop tailpiece version offers a little more stability regards tuning. As vintage Hagstrom guitars go, this has to be one of the most useable. Great guitar! If you get a chance, try one.
Hagstrom anti-hum pickups, with adjustable pole-pieces. From 1969 Hagstrom solid-bodies were gradually produced, fitted with humbucking pickups with adjustable pole-pieces; mounted with black plastic surrounds, and Hagstrom's usual slot-headed screws. These pickups replaced the older single-coil units as fitted to the HII and HIII guitars (see here, as fitted to a 1966 HIII
The HIIN, aswell as having new humbucking pickups had Gibson-style volume-volume-tone-tone controls with a three-way pickup selector switch. Control knobs are standard Hagstrom black plastic with silver insert: two volume, two tone. Caps are labelled either volume or tone, numbered 1-10 and held in place with a hex grub screw. Hagstrom guitars prior to 1969 had typically had a single volume control, and a series of switches to turn pickups off/on and set tonal options.
Angled 'Strat-style' input jack mounted to the guitar scratchplate with three slot-head bolts; typical of most Hagstrom solid bodies at this time.
The HIIN-OT had a fixed tailpiece, but the same adjustable bridge as the standard HIIN. Only about one in seven HIIN guitars was fitted with the stop tailpiece rather than the standard Hagstrom vibrola - these were given the model designation HIIN-OT. The bridge is the same design as used by Hagstrom for many years previously. The bridge base is mounted onto two posts, and kept in place with string pressure alone. The saddles are positioned by tiny slot head screws either side of the bridge base; this allows a small amount of movement for intonation adjustment, though probably less than many other bridge designs.
To go with the more conventional volume-volume-tone-tone control layout, the HIIN was also fitted with a three-way pickup selector switch, situated on the horn of the lower cutaway.
Most Hagstrom guitars were fitted with a kill switch, scratchplate-mounted on the top bout. This allowed the guitar to be turned off without adjusting the volume controls.
The three bolts through the neck-plate held the neck to the body; the six-digit serial number was also stamped onto this plate; 845026 signifies that this was instrument number 26 (026), from batch 845. The Hagstrom blue book lists this batch as a run of 250 guitars produced in 1972.
Hagstrom, along with numerous other guitar makers, used these covered Van Ghent tuning keys for many years throughout the 1960s and 1970s
Headstock, showing logo, tuners and nut. The Hagstrom logo is a decal - as is usually the case with Hagstrom guitars. The three per side tuning key layout replaced the six per side Fender-style layout more widely used throughout the 60s.
Two-piece birch neck with individual Van Ghent machine heads. These keys were used by Hagstrom on the majority of their 60s and 70s guitars. Hagstrom guitars typically had no markings on the reverse of the headstock.
From the 1975 Hagstrom catalogue
There's good reason for calling this solid-body guitar the Special: it combines outstanding musical quality and workmanship at a moderate price.
Hagstrom serial numbers follow the pattern of batch number, then number within batch. So in this case, number 845026 signifies instrument 26 (026) from batch 845 - Hagstrom records show this to be a batch of 250 instruments produced in 1972. There were five batches altogether (of the non-tremolo version) produced between 1971 and 1975; about a seventh of the total HIIN output.
The Hagstrom HIIN scratchplate with metallic back - two pickups, each with a volume and tone control (right), three-way pickup selector switch (bottom left), and on/off switch (top left). Pots are made by Spanish manufacturer Piher - all four are rated 500k log with code 6S37.