This lady is as mysterious as she is beautiful. I have seen about four of these with a metal Ibanez logo before, but never one in such great shape and with a ‘paint-on’ logo like Ibanez did in the transition year of 1967.
These pickups look like bass-humbuckers, and can be controlled separately. Operating this requires quite a manual:
The black switch on the left manipulates the two left oblong magnetic pickups; the black switch on the right manipulates the other two pickups on the right.
So… left switch for bass strings; right switch for treble strings.
If you put the left black switch in the upward position, then the upper left pickup comes to life. Put the left black switch in the downward position; then the lower left pickup works. Switch in the middle position and both left pickups are on.
The right black switch works the same way, but for the right pickups only.
The little white switch on the bottom turns it from mono into stereo. And yes – she even still has her original stereo plug!
That’s about all I know. Please add or contact me if you have any information.
11/18/2020 at 10:36
Greetings from South Africa, I picked up this same model about 18 years ago and have had her since, though she’s not in quite as good a shape as yours. The tremolo arm is missing and a lot of the screws have been stripped, pickup springs are shot and there is a ton of rattling. I hope to get her restored soon though!
Does anyone have any more information on this guitar? I’ve searched Ibanez back catalogues and every place I can think of but this post is the most detail I could find.
11/19/2020 at 12:11
Welcome to Ibanez-Vintage.net!
Ah – great to hear you’ve got one of these beauties, too. Cool! Good luck on restoring her to her original condition. A lot of ‘trem arms’ were taken off and lost over the years. Pity. Hope you can find a replacement. And I especially hope you will get the electronics right.
South Africa? It does not surprise me to hear you’re from South Africa, because almost all of the examples of this type of guitars seem to come from there. I’ve seen 4 specimens of this guitar on a South African ad-site. And I know of one other, that was found in Scandinavia. And that’s about it… She’s a rare and mysterious bird.
I bought my guitar from a UK seller… and he got it in South Africa, too.
Mine is the only one (so far) I’ve seen with a ‘painted-on’ logo (gold sparkle paint). They did that because they ran out of metal logos in 1967, and they didn’t know how to make an inlay logo yet.
All of the others I’ve seen had a metal logo on the headstock.
What more can I tell you about this guitar? Not a lot, I’m afraid.
This guitar was not shown in any known Ibanez catalog. First of all: we don’t have all the catalogs.
Two fantastic resources:
(scroll down to see the old catalogs)
But unfortunately… there are no Ibanez catalogs for 1967 to 1970. And that’s the period in which this guitar was built.
The second thing what makes it difficult is this:
In the 1960s, lots of Japanese guitar plants made guitars for lots of different brands. In the book “History of Japanese Electric Guitars” (by Frank Meyers), about 20 different guitar plants are shown in the Ibanez chapter. All of them made guitars branded Ibanez. And they also made (the same) guitars for other brands.
And to make it even more difficult: some plants made the exact same guitar.
A friend of mine has the same guitar, branded “Mark Twain”.
What about your guitar? Could we see a few pictures, please? I’m very curious!
Cheers from Amsterdam, Netherlands
01/08/2021 at 15:02
you made my day! Just joined the forum and saw your 60s Ibanez semi – I have an exact copy of it although without the label and I was wondering for quite some time what it is!
Cheers from Hannover area, Germany,
01/08/2021 at 15:24
Welcome to Ibanez-Vintage.net!
Cool to see you also have one of these beauties!
I have seen a few of these models without a brand name on the headstock. And one with the “Mark Twain” brand.
And: here’s one branded “Kimberly”:
I spoke to one of the people from this seller, and they confirmed that TEISCO is the manufacturer of these guitars. Teisco made a lot of guitars for a lot of different brands in those days.
Could you share a few pictures of your guitar? I’m curious!
01/08/2021 at 15:58
I’m just adding the guitar via “add guitar” – how do I add the pics?
06/18/2021 at 23:03
Hello. Greetings from Argentina. I inherited the same guitar from my father, although without any brand. We always thought it was a Luthier guitar. It only says “Aircaster” in the truss rod cover, but nothing else. But it’s the exact guitar. I’ve been trying to find it for a while, and the closest I’ve found was a vintage Kimberly guitar with 4 pickups, but it’s not stereo. Thanks for sharing this!!
06/21/2021 at 10:30
Welcome to Ibanez-vintage.net!
First: Wow – I’m so sorry to hear you lost your dad. Best wishes to you and your family.
About this guitar: Yes, I’ve seen a few of these with different brand names, and also a few without a brand name. Does your guitar have two little ‘holes’ (maybe filled holes) where a nailed-on logo might have been?
In the 60s, a lot of Japanese guitar plants were building guitars for different brands. So it’s common to see the same type of guitar under different brand names. We know this guitar was made by TEISCO, and I’ve seen it under at least 4 different brand names.
I have seen about 10 of these branded “Ibanez”, most on the forum of my favorite site: http://www.ibanezcollectors.com, and a few on a South African ad-site. Most of these have a metal nail-on logo stating “Ibanez” – mine is about the only one that has the gold-flake painted-on logo (which dates mine to 1967, when they ran out of metal logos and weren’t really sure how to create a good inlay logo).
I hope your guitar sounds and plays well!
All the best
Greetz from Amsterdam
06/22/2021 at 00:18
Hi Leo. Thanks for the reply.
As English is not my native language, when I said I inherited it from my father, I meant he gave it to me. Fortunately, my father is alive, he read this, and swore me he is not dead.
The guitar indeed has two screw holes where I supose a label where screwed, but I don’t know what it said.
Unfortunatly the guitar has a broken neck which was glued about 20 years ago, and broke again. Now I’m repairing it (I glued it, and I’m going to make wooden splints to strengthen it). After that, I will probably refinish it and rewire it. It needs knobs and potentiometers replacement.
My father says it used to sound really good.
Here are some bad pictures:
Thanks for replying
06/23/2021 at 11:00
Really lovely to see some more examples of this guitar out in the wild! Here are some pics of mine. She is also in need of some restoration work, pots need replacing, coil springs are shot. Hopefully I will be able to restore her one day!
06/23/2021 at 16:37
I also came across this one that sold in Dublin 7 years back https://www.adverts.ie/electric-guitars/1960-s-ibanez-335-vintage-hollowbody/5658594
06/24/2021 at 08:23
Well… I’m really glad your dad is still alive.
Apologies to you and your dad for misreading that. I’m Dutch (Amsterdam), not a native English speaker either.
Wow… a neck break. That’s a pity. I’m not a luthier, but I would not try to fix that myself. The tension of the strings pulling at that neck can be quite strong, so I would go to a repairman for that, to make sure it is repaired correctly, with the right glue.
Thanks for the pictures. She’s worth repairing, I think!
06/24/2021 at 08:38
Nice to hear from you again!
Wow – Am I seeing this right? The first guitar you posted (with the Ibanez logo)… is that a real inlay logo, or is it gold-flake painted-on (like mine)?
If this is an inlay logo, that is completely new to me… I didn’t know they existed!
The other one (from Dublin) I’ve seen before. This is an ‘unbranded’ one. The owner of that guitar had some questions about that guitar (how to restore it). We discussed it on my favorite site “www.ibanezcollectors.com’.
07/15/2021 at 16:06
Yes, as best as I can tell it is an inlay logo – it’s definitely not painted on! Really fascinated by these guitars, thanks for all the info!
08/17/2021 at 22:56
I found this guitar in a shop in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan about 7 years ago.
It was a mystery to me until I took it to a local luthier at Royal Harp Instruments.
He linked me to this site where I found other guitars very similar that had been built by the shops that built Ibanez guitars for Hoshino Gakki.
I would appreciate any info anybody can give me about it. Thanks to my luthier, I have found others like it but with different tailpieces that include tremolo.
It has an older logo from an out-of-business Austrian kinderwagen (baby carriage) manufacturer, “Knokin”.
I am curious how a guitar with the Knokin logo wound up in a shop in Saskatoon.
08/26/2021 at 10:59
Welcome to the Ibanez Vintage site!
Cool to know you’ve got one of these beauties, too!
Well… we don’t know that much about these guitars. They were made by the TEISCO-company in the mid-to-late 60s. TEISCO made guitars for many different brand names in the 60s; one of those brand names was Ibanez.
We can date these guitars like this. Note: this is very specific to the Ibanez logo!
– If it has a metal nail-on logo, then we know they’re made before-or-in 1967.
– In 1967, Ibanez ran out of these ‘metal nail-on logos’. So they used a painted-on logo with a very distinct gold-flake paint.
– Late 1967 and later: They used an inlay logo.
Now… Ibanez started using FujiGen Gakki in 1971 (and stopped using other companies in 1970/1971, like Teisco and Matsumoku).
Glad to hear your guitar could be repaired. The switches and electronics can indeed become ‘funky’ over the years.
08/25/2021 at 00:47
Wow! So glad to find this post!
I inherited the exact same guitar from my Grand dad when he passed away in 2007. He had it since 1968. It is an Ibanez exactly like yours but a Sunburst colour. ( Also from South Africa )
I have been searching everywhere for this guitar online to find out more about it. It is in need of some restoration as the switches needs some repairing.
08/25/2021 at 20:20
Thanks for your reply.
The switches were funky on mine too. I took it to a luthier who cleaned the switches and the jack socket. They work perfectly now.
I’d love to see photos of your guitar.
08/26/2021 at 11:06
Welcome to the Ibanez Vintage site!
Wow – a sunburst one, branded Ibanez? That’s extremely cool!
I have seen this type of guitar with other brand names in different colors, but I only saw the ‘burgundy-walnut’ color in the Ibanez brand.
What kind of Ibanez logo does yours have? Nail-on, painted on or inlay?
I would also love to see a few pictures of your guitar!
12/10/2021 at 21:39
Hi all and greetings from Australia.
I have one of these and never have been able to find much info on it. This one i have is labeled “challenge” and i’ve only ever been able to come across one on reverb someone locally was selling (as of yet i have not had a response from them) got as far as the brand name TEISCO and Ibanez always popping up but its interesting to see so many other brand names of the same guitar.
pictures of mine “challenge”
other persons listing:
12/11/2021 at 10:52
G’Day, Keiron, and welcome to the Ibanez-Vintage.net site!
Awesome to see another brand of these wonderful semi-hollow guitars! Thank you for sharing.
Your ‘Challenge’ looks to be in great condition! Cool after so many years. The ‘Challenge’ has one switch, only on the ‘treble’ side of the guitar. I’ve seen that version more often.
How do those switches work?
Mine work like this:
Left black switch (bass side): Upward position turns the left upper pickup on.
Left black switch (bass side): Middle position turns both the left pickups on.
Left black switch (bass side): Down position turns the left lower pickup on.
Right black switch (treble side): Upward position turns the right upper pickup on.
Right black switch (treble side): Middle position turns both the right pickups on.
Right black switch (treble side): Down position turns the right lower pickup on.
The little mini-switch (near the input) turns the guitar from mono to ‘double-mono’.
Thanks again for sharing!
12/11/2021 at 16:42
Thank you and yes it’s in fair condition, only issue being the treble side pick ups seem to work when they want to or not at all.
The toggle switch is labeled “stereo” at top position and bottom position labeled “mix” but because they’re all not functioning correctly its hard to tell what they do. Other than that just usual stuff that would occur over 50+ years.
Its Interesting that your model is so complex and can have so many variations. Looks like a beautiful guitar and i bet sounds great!
I’ve ordered some replacement tone knobs that are matching to this guitar as somewhere down the line they have been replaced with generic ones. Luckily the volume’s were kept.
I’ll upload some higher quality pictures and details once i’ve cleaned it and set it up.