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1966 Kalamazoo KG1

Solid-body one pickup electric guitar

Kalamazoo KG1 and KG2 main page | 1966 Kalamazoo KG2a | 1966 Kalamazoo KG1 |

1966 Kalamazoo KG1
1966 Kalamazoo KG1
Model 1966 Kalamazoo KG1
Pickups One single-coil Gibson Melody Maker pickup
Scale 24 3/4"
Body Pressed board body. 16 1/2" long, 11 3/4" wide, 1 5/16" thick.
Neck Maple bolt-on neck, rosewood fingerboard. Adjustable truss rod. 22 frets.
Hardware 1 volume and 1 tone control. Gibson TPBR bridge. Open gear strip tuning keys.

Similar Models

The Kalamazoo KG1 was Gibson's attempt to compete with the likes of Fender for the mid 1960s student guitar market. Previously Gibson had only offered students 3/4 size versions of relatively expensive hollow bodies, under the Gibson brand. But now, under the name Kalamazoo it was producing very simple guitars, but well-made, and with above average components.

There were no labour intensive nitrocellulose finishes, no expensive hardwood bodies, no glued-in neck joints requiring skilled woodworkers, and easily assembled electronics pre-wired on a scratchplate. Assembly was just a matter of screwing it all together; but the result was a cheap, popular and highly playable guitar.

1966 Kalamazoo catalogueFrom the 1966 Kalamazoo catalogue

Distinctively styled, superb quality solid-body guitars of rugged, lightweight design. Available in brilliant Flame Red, Glacier White or Las Vegas Blue, one or two pickups, with or without Vibrola. Slim neck, streamline styling in an economically priced guitar for years of rugged use

The solid body Kalamazoo KG guitar range consisted of four models: the KG1 and KG2; equipped respectively with one or two pickups, and the KG1a / KG2a which had an added Maestro vibrola. This guitar, with one pickup and no vibrola is the KG1.

Kalamazoo KG1 body detail Kalamazoo KG1 reverse body detail showing neck plate Kalamazoo KG1 body with no components assembled
The Kalamazoo KG1 came in three finishes; the guitar pictured here is in Flame Red. (See also a Las Vegas blue KG2a and a Glacier White KB1) Unpainted maple necks were bolted onto pressed board bodies In order to reduce production costs, the unassembled guitar bodies were identical, irrespective of pickup configuration and tailpiece
Kalamazoo KG1 control knob detail Kalamazoo KG1 pickup (single coil PU380) and TPBR 8513 combined bridge/tailpiece Kalamazoo KG1 strap button
White plastic control knobs were fitted to all Kalamazoo electrics. The KG1 has just one volume and one tone control Hardware included two very widely used Gibson parts; the single-coil Gibson PU380 Melody Maker pickup and Gibson TPBR 8513 combined bridge/wraparound tailpiece, both of which appeared on many lower end Gibson instruments throughout the 1960s This guitar comes with simple cream plastic strap buttons
Kalamazoo KG1 reverse headstock detail, showing open gear tuners Kalamazoo logo detail Kalamazoo serial numbers were stamped into the back of the guitars headstyock
Thunderbird-style headstock and open gear strip tuning keys The scripted Kalamazoo logo is engraved into the wood of the headstock Six digit serial numbers are impressed into the back of the headstock in typical Gibson style

This guitar is one of 1020 Kalamazoo KG1 guitars in Flame Red produced in 1966 - see the Kalamazoo KG shipping figures for more details.

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