Retrofret Stock # 7167. Magnatone Jeweltone S-6 Model Lap Steel Electric Guitar (1950), made in Los Angeles, serial # G110, pink Lucite finish, Lucite and aluminum body, original blond hard shell case. This superb piece of 1950's Populuxe is certainly one of the most unique lap steel guitars ever offered for sale-and considering the variety of steels out there that's saying something! Available for only a short time around 1949-50, the Jeweltone models were the top of the Magnatone steel line for a fleeting reign and simply one of the most incredible examples of industrial design ever brought to fruition as a musical instrument. Three color combinations could be had, "Vibrant Ruby Red and Crystal" (this version), "Lovely Sapphire Blue and Crystal", and "Striking Onyx Black and Opal White".The construction of the Jeweltone is totally unique. Starting with a felt clad sheet of colored Lucite on the bottom, followed by a sheet of clear and topped with a second sheet of color, the body was formed as a 3-ply plastic sandwich. This was topped with the structural core of the instrument, a sheet of polished aluminum that stretched from one end of the guitar to the other. The tailpiece was simply recessed holes for the strings and at the other end, the tuners were screwed right into the metal, which tipped back a few degrees to form the peghead. A thin sheet of colored Lucite was used as a peghead veneer with the company logo decal applied across the top.The fifth layer in this musical club sandwich was a sheet of clear Lucite for the fingerboard, painted from the backside and routed for fret markers. The headstock mounted 'Safti-String Post" Kluson Deluxe tuners capped with matching hand-cut Lucite tuning buttons. The look was and complemented at the other end by transparent octagonal knobs the color of the body. Polished aluminum was used for the rather large nut and bridge. Capping the whole look was a large, rectangular pickup cover, lined on the sides with more colored Lucite and covered with a square chrome handrest. The Jeweltone models were available in regular (22 1/2) or long (25) scale length with six or eight strings; this is the six-string standard scale model. This is one of the most interesting early examples of the use of non-standard materials in electric guitar construction, pre-dating many more recent standard guitar designs using metal and/or plastics instead of wood. Most likely due to the complexity of construction the line was quickly discontinued but the rare survivors like this one stand as testament to how far-out the steel guitar can get, while still remaining fantastic instruments both functionally and aesthetically. Thanks to our mate John Teagle for help in sorting this story out!Overall length is 29 1/8 in. (74 cm.), 7 1/8 in. (18.1 cm.) width, and 2 1/2 in. (6.4 cm.) high. Scale length is 22 1/2 in. (572 mm.). Width of nut is 3 1/2 in. (89 mm.). All original with some light wear-and-tear, but no major issues. There are some small scratches and scuffs overall, and one small glued-up crack on the bass side of the fingerboard by one of the retaining screws. Two of the bass-side tuner shafts are fairly seriously bent, but still functional. While its spectacular looks are obviously the main selling point, this is a good sounding steel guitar and perfectly useable instrument. Includes the original tan HSC with a lucite handle. Excellent - Condition.
|1950||Excellent||pink Lucite||Original Hard|
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