As the fifties drew to a close, Carvin continued to offer a wide variety of electric solidbody guitars and steel guitars.  It was sort of a transitional period, as well - some of the budget guitars and other stringed instruments that were offered as far back as 1955 were still being sold, but the new SGB series of guitars that would continue through the mid-60's were also offered.

Click each picture for a larger version.


1959 Basses

1959 Guitar Amps

1959 Bass Amps

1959 Carvin Catalog Cover
1959 Carvin #6-SGB Guitar

Carvin's flagship model for 1959 was the model #6-SGB.  This was a 3-pickup guitar, constructed from hardrock maple, with an adjustable maple neck, rosewood fingerboard, bone nut, and nickel-plated hardware.  An interesting feature was the Gibson Vibra-rest tailpiece, which was a basic vibrato unit, similar to the Bigsby, without the complicated string paths.  Electronics consisted of 3 Carvin AP-6 pickups, with a master volume control, tone control for the front and middle pickup, and a 3-way selector switch, which meant you could chose any one pickup, but not a combination or two or three.  Price on the #6-SGB was $169.90, and the #3-SGC hardshell case was an additional $24.00.

The Model #3-SGB was similar in construction to the Model #6-SGB, but in a two pickup configuration with a standard stop tailpiece/bridge assembly.  Electronics consisted of a pair of AP-6 pickups, with two volume controls, two tone controls, and a 3-way selector that allowed selection of the bridge, neck or both pickups.  The #3-SGB sold for $119.90.  The Gibson Vibra-rest could be added for $19.90.  Also offered was the #4-SGB, which had non-adjustable A-1 pickups.  It sold for $99.90.

1959 Carvin #1-SGB Guitar

On the left is the Carvin Model #1-SGB guitar.  This was a basic guitar, constructed from maple with a natural finish, with an adjustable maple neck, rosewood fingerboard and nickel-plated tuners.  Electronics consisted of a single AP-6 pickup with volume control, and treble and bass tone controls.  The Model #1-SGB sold for $79.90.  It was also offered as the #2-SGB, with a non-adjustable A-1 pickup, which sold for $69.90.

On the right is the Model #1-MB electric solidbody mandolin.  This instrument had a single AP-4 pickup, with master volume control and bass and treble tone controls.  It sold for $89.90, and was also offered as the #2-MB, which had a non-adjustable pickup, and sold for $79.90.

1959 Carvin #1-MB Mandolin
1959 Carvin #1-MS Doubleneck Mandolin/Guitar

Carvin offered a pair of doubleneck s in 1959 - the #1MS (left) 6-string/mandolin doubleneck, and the #4-BS (right) 6-string/bass doubleneck.  Both these models used AP-series pickups, with dual tone and master volume controls, and a 3-way selector which selected which pickup was on (only one pickup could be on at a time).  The #1-MS sold for $229.90, and was also offered as the #2-MS, with non-adjustable pickups, for $199.90.  The #4-BS also sold for  $229.90, or 199.90 with non-adjustable pickups (#5-BS).

1959 Carvin #4-BS Doubleneck Bass/Guitar
1959 Carvin Guitars

At the upper left is the Model 140 Spanish electric.  It was a single-pickup arch-top model, with a spruce top, and rosewood fingerboard and bridge.  It had white binding on the front and back, and a white pickguard, and a single AP6 with volume and tone controls.  The finish was antique brown.  It was also available as the Model 1744, which was a non-electric version.  The Model 140 sold for $59.90, and the Model 1744 sold for $39.90.  The case for either was an additional $9.90.

The Model #6-B (upper right) was the big brother to the Model 140.  Like the Model 140, it was an arch-top design, with spruce top and curly maple back.  It also had a rosewood fingerboard and bridge, and had body binding as well as neck binding and a bone nut.  Finish was natural, and it was also available in shaded dark brown.  Electronics consisted of a pair of AP6 pickups, with pickup selector switch and volume and tone controls.  The price on the Model 6-B was $119.90, or $89.90 for the Model #7 non-electric version.  Case for either was $15.00.

On the lower right was the Model #44.  This guitar had a spruce top, mahogany back and sides and mahogany neck with a rosewood fingerboard and a single pickup with volume and tone controls.  This model sold for $59.90, plus $9.90 for the case.

On the lower left is the Model 6512 electric mandolin, which had a single pickup, with volume and tone controls.  This instrument sold for $59.90, and the Model 1735 non-electric mandolin sold for $39.90.  Case for either was $7.00.

The Model #6DHG-5B (near right) and the Model #8DHG-5B (far right) were featured on the inside front cover, with Carvin's traditional Introductory Letter.  These were maple-bodied instruments with a single Carvin AP-Series pickup, dual tone controls, master volume control, ivory tuners, and molded nut.  The model #6DHG-5B sold for $49.90, and the #8DHG-5B sold for $69.90.  Both these were also available with A-Series non-adjustable pickups for $10.00 less.

1959 Carvin #6DHG-5B Steel Guitar
1959 Carvin #C8806D Steel Guitar

On the left is Carvin's #C8806D steel guitar, which was a doubleneck 8-string model with a tone changer installed, and on the right is the model #88806D, which was a triple-eight.  Like the other models in this series, it was constructed from maple, with AP-Series pickups, single volume and tone controls, and nickel hardware.  A variety of combinations were available, with one, two, or no changers, AP or A-Series pickups, and different string and neck configurations.

1959 Carvin #C88806D Steel Guitar
1959 Carvin #8806B Steel Guitar

On the left are more configurations of Carvin's "88" series steels - an #8806B on the far left, and an #8808B on the near left.  These were also available with AP or A-Series pickup configurations.

Carvin also offered the Model #60C and the Model #80C steels.  These models were constructed from eastern hardrock maple and black walnut, with otherwise similar features as Carvin's other steel guitars.

The Model #60C, with changer, sold for $99.90, and the Model #80C with changer sold for $129.90.

1959 Carvin Model #60C & #80C Steel Guitars
1959 Carvin Pickups

As had been the case for many years, and would continue to be the case, the AP-Series pickup would be the primary pickup in all Carvin instruments.  The Alnico V pickups were also very popular with other guitar manufacturers and musicians, and could often been seen retrofitted into other famous instruments.

The back cover of the '59 catalog had not only the standard order form, but also showed something you wouldn't expect in a Carvin catalog - accordions!

1959 Carvin Catalog Back Cover