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Vintage Kalamazoo
Guitars, basses and amplifiers

Kalamazoo guitars

Kalamazoo is, of course, a city famous for it's guitars. It was the hometown of Gibson for most of the twentieth century, until 1984; many people would say the best Gibson guitars ever built were the Kalamazoo-built models.

But Gibson also produced a US-built budget line in the 1930s, and again in the mid-late 1960s, and these guitars were branded Kalamazoo - in honour of the town in which they were produced.

1930s-40s Kalamazoo

In the years before and during the second world war, the Kalamazoo line consisted of acoustic guitars, banjos and mandolins; relatively well-built with quality woods, but definitely a cut below Gibsons of the same period.

1960s Kalamazoo KB basses

The 1960s solid body Kalamazoo KG guitars and Kalamazoo KB basses came in two body body styles; Fender Mustang-style, then later SG-style; from top to bottom 1966 Kalamazoo KG2a, 1966 KB bass, 1967 KB bass (SG style).

1960s Kalamazoo

1966 Kalamazoo catalogue

In the mid-1960s, guitar sales increased dramatically; though many of these sales were to new players, inspired by the rock and roll and beat booms of the previous years. A high-end Gibson was out of the question to these players, so Gibson re-introduced the Kalamazoo line, with great sucess.

There was one acoustic guitar, the KG10, four versions of a solid body electric the KG1/KG1A/KG2/KG2A, and the KB bass.

To keep the solid bodies cheap, Gibson used cheap wood and easy non-skilled construction. The bodies were actually some sort of chipboard/fibreboard, outsourced to a toilet seat manufacturer in Wisconsin. Necks were bolt-on, electronics were assembled on the pickguard, remote from the guitar and simply screwed on. They did have the foresight to use all Gibson hardware - admittedly some of it was obsolete, having been replaced on Gibson models, but it was still quality hardware none the less. Another nod to Fender came in the Fender Mustang style body of the early KG guitar and KB bass. This was later updated to an SG style. Kalamazoo KG guitar shipping figures do not show body styles, but the Mustang body shape seems to be more abundant.

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Latest posts on Kalamazoo basses at the VintageGuitar forum
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Kalamazoo KB bass
2 replies
last message by fuzzbass
03/06/2013 06:39

Kalamazoo Restoration KB bass
8 replies
last message by jules
26/12/2012 19:53



Latest posts on Kalamazoo guitars at the VintageGuitar forum
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Kalamazoo one off? Prototype? very early model?
8 replies
last message by jules
10/03/2014 05:53

Kalamazoo KG1 and KG2 guitars
0 replies
last message by jules
16/03/2012 06:46



Back to the KALAMAZOO INDEX | comment



Kalamazoo guitars for sale


US ebay listings

Vintage 1930's Gibson Kalamazoo Model KG-14 Guitar

Current price: $1350.00
buy it now
Time left: 2d 20h 28m
1936 KALAMAZOO (GIBSON) KG21 ARCHTOP ACOUSTIC GUITAR W/TRAPEZE TAILPIECE & CASE

Current price: $875.00

Time left: 2d 18h 3m
Kalamazoo KG-1 guitar

Current price: $400.00
buy it now
Time left: 7d 20h 52m
Vintage 1968 Kalamazoo KG-1 KG1 Electric Guitar in Light Blue Finish

Current price: $749.00
buy it now
Time left: 27d 18h 18m
1967 Gibson Kalamazoo USA KG-2 Pelham Blue Satin Finish Electric Guitar KG2

Current price: $649.99
buy it now
Time left: 12d 13h 22m
Vintage Kalamazoo by Gibson KG-2 Red SG Electric Guitar Made in USA 1960's

Current price: $575.00
buy it now
Time left: 23d 18h 55m
1930's Kalamazoo KG-11 Tenor Guitar

Current price: $1100.00
buy it now
Time left: 27d 17h 33m
KALAMAZOO KG 1 PICK GUARD CUSTOM

Current price: $27.99
buy it now
Time left: 5d 9h 16m
Gibson Kalamazoo KG-31 KG-32 KG-22 archtop guitar pickguard tortoise shell

Current price: $34.95
buy it now
Time left: 29d 11h 32m
Vintage 1930's KG-11 Kalamazoo By Gibson Sunburst Acoustic Guitar w/ case

Current price: $1250.00
buy it now
Time left: 11d 18h 40m
Kalamazoo vintage Guitar - model KG 11 - 1930,s

Current price: $1250.00
buy it now
Time left: 9d 16h 28m
Gibson Kalamazoo KG2

Current price: $380.00

Time left: 6d 20h 42m
vintage Gibson Kalamazoo KG-14 Guitar KG14

Current price: $1895.00
buy it now
Time left: 27d 19h 26m
VINTAGE 1960'S GIBSON / KALAMAZOO BRAND KG-1 KG-2 SG GUITAR NECK GOOD (2J)

Current price: $100.00
buy it now
Time left: 25d 18h 16m
Gibson Kalamazoo KG-21 KG-16 archtop guitar pickguard tortoise shell

Current price: $24.95
buy it now
Time left: 19h 45m
See more results on eBay here


UK ebay listings

1937 Kalamazoo KG-14 Sunburst Guitar in stunning condition!

Current price: £1299.00
buy it now
Time left: 19d 10h 19m
1936 Kalamazoo KG11 Acoustic Guitar - Robert Johnson .Will Ship Ask Details

Current price: £600.00
buy it now
Time left: 1d 10h 24m
KALAMAZOO KG 1 PICK GUARD CUSTOM

Current price: £17.46
buy it now
Time left: 5d 9h 16m
Vintage 1930's Gibson Kalamazoo Model KG-14 Guitar

Current price: £842.04
buy it now
Time left: 2d 20h 28m
Vintage Kalamazoo by Gibson KG-2 Red SG Electric Guitar Made in USA 1960's

Current price: £358.65
buy it now
Time left: 23d 18h 55m
Vintage 1968 Kalamazoo KG-1 KG1 Electric Guitar in Light Blue Finish

Current price: £467.18
buy it now
Time left: 27d 18h 18m
Gibson Kalamazoo KG-21 KG-16 archtop guitar pickguard tortoise shell

Current price: £15.56
buy it now
Time left: 19h 45m
Gibson Kalamazoo KG-31 KG-32 KG-22 archtop guitar pickguard tortoise shell

Current price: £21.80
buy it now
Time left: 29d 11h 32m
VINTAGE 1966 USA KALAMAZOO GUITAR KNOB KG KB BASS ORIGINAL

Current price: £24.33
buy it now
Time left: 4d 20h 11m
KALAMAZOO KG 2 CUSTOM PICK GUARD

Current price: £19.95
buy it now
Time left: 16d 9h 12m
Original Vintage 1965 Kalamazoo Gibson KG-1 KG-2 neckplate

Current price: £18.68
buy it now
Time left: 23d 17h 36m
1967 Gibson Kalamazoo USA KG-2 Pelham Blue Satin Finish Electric Guitar KG2

Current price: £405.42
buy it now
Time left: 12d 13h 22m
VINTAGE GIBSON / KALAMAZOO BRAND KG-1 KG-2 GUITAR TUNER GOOD USED (KK)

Current price: £31.19
buy it now
Time left: 19d 20h 13m
VINTAGE 1960'S GIBSON / KALAMAZOO BRAND KG-1 KG-2 SG GUITAR NECK GOOD (2J)

Current price: £62.37
buy it now
Time left: 25d 18h 16m
1940 Gibson Kalamazoo KG 12 Vintage Acoustic Sunburst w/case USA

Current price: £1213.16
buy it now
Time left: 7d 20h 46m
See more results on eBay here


German ebay listings

1965 Kalamazoo (Gibson) KG 1 - Sonic Blue

Current price: €510.00
buy it now
Time left: 28d 7h 48m
See more results on eBay here

There are 1 comments on this article so far. Add your comment
virgil stice Comment left 19th May 2014 18:06:58
My mom has a kalamazo guitar,with the numbers 3803G-16.Need info if gibson made it or martin made it??????

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