1962 Hofner Verithin
Thinline electric acoustic guitar
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The Verithin was a thin semi-acoustic electric guitar produced by Hofner in Germany, specially for distribution by Selmer in the UK and beyond. It was a time when new American guitars like the Gibson ES-330TD and ES-335TD were highly desireable but largely unobtainable for the vast majority of UK guitar buyers.
Like other Hofner guitars produced in the 1960s, the Verithin changed somewhat over the years it was produced, most notably with regard the pickups fitted, and associated controls. The earliest examples were produced in mid/late 1960, but by the end of 1961 the pickups had already changed from the 'toaster' style units, to the 510 'diamond' pickups shown on this example, which comes from early/mid 1962. The vast majority were fitted with two pickups, as shown here, but some three pickup Verithins were also produced, along with examples with stereo wiring.
This guitar is finished in translucent Cherry (nitrocellulose), rather similar to the forementioned Gibsons, with a fully bound body and neck, including front, back, headstock and f-foles. The body binding is 6-ply black and white (b-w-b-w-b-w), whilst the neck features the famous striped neck inlays. The headstock flower motif and Hofner logos are inlaid in pearl. Althoughly very nicely appointed, Hofner actually made quite a few significantly more elaborate guitars, even than this.
Selmer Hofner guitars were assigned serial numbers, unlike the European equivalent guitars (model 4574 in this case). Selmer Hofner serial number charts do exist, although they are perhaps not infallable, but when combined with specific hardware and potentiometer codes, allow for easy dating. The potentiometers in this case are marked 142 which signifies a production date (of the pot, not the guitar!) of week 14 of 1962. But in the early 1960s, potentiometer dates correspond fairly well with guitar production dates. Hofner serial numbers (on hollow body guitars) were generally stamped on the label in the soundhole. See also the Hofner Verithin register at vintagehofner.co.uk which lists Verithins by serial number, with approximate date and hardware specifics.
As the name implies, the Verithin indeed had a shallower body than similar guitars by other manufacturers; catalogue descriptions state 1 1/4" at the edges, although this example is actually a 1/16" thinner, and measures 1 3/16" exactly. But in fact, the body front and back is arched, as can be seen in the side profile picture above, giving a maximum depth in the centre of around 2".