Carvin solidbody guitars were changed significantly in 1961.
The bodies were more like the bodies being made by Fender, versus
the singlecut bodies that had been produced previously.
Although this took away some of the uniqueness of Carvin's early
models, it did provide more contemporary styling, which presumably
increased the popularity of the line.
interesting item appeared in the 1961 catalog - this diagram showing
all the various parts and components of Carvin's guitars. This
was the only year such a feature was included. The photo was
obviously the same as the #61-SGB below, cut onto a white
background, but it was still an innovative feature.
#31-SGB (left) and the model #61-SGB (right) were
dramatically different from their 1960 counterparts. These new
models had offset double-cutaway bodies, similar to the guitars made by
Fender, whereas the 1960 and earlier models had a singlecut body style
with an unusually scalloped waist.
Both these models had "hardwood"
bodies, with maple necks and rosewood oval fingerboards. Both
models came with Carvin's AP-6 series pickups - the #31-SGB had two, the
#61-SGB had three. The #31-SGB had volume and tone controls for
each pickup, as well as a 3-way selector switch. The #61-SGB had
volume and tone controls for the bridge pickup, and volume and tone
controls for the middle and neck pickups combined. The 3-way
switch was for neck & middle, bridge or all 3 pickups.
#31-SGB sold for $129.90, or $109.90 with non-adjustable pickups (model
#41-SGB). The #61-SGB sold for $159.90. It was not offered
in a non-adjustable version. The Guitar-Vibro (shown on both)
could be added for $19.50. For more on the Guitar-Vibro, see
#10-LSGB (left) was the same as the #31-SGB above, but
in a left-handed version. Features, controls and
construction were identical to it's right-handed counterpart.
It sold for $139.90.
The model #1-SGB (near right) shown in the catalog was the same as the 1960
version, but presumably, it too was updated with a new body in
1961. In previous years, it had been based on the 2
and 3 pickups guitars, but with a single AP-6 adjustable pickup,
and single volume and tone controls. All other aspects
were the same. The model #1-SGB sold for $79.90, and was
also available as the model
#2-SGB, which had a single, non-adjustable A-1 pickup.
#1-MB (far right) mandolin was also unchanged from 1960. Despite
the radical changes in the solidbody guitars, it would be about 1966
before the #1-MB was updated (or at least until an updated photo was
added to the catalog). Like it's predecessors, 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
Carvin's doublenecks, the model #4-BS (left) and #1-MS
used the same photographs as the 1960 catalog, and would not change
until 1964. The #4-BS used the same neck as the #71-BG bass
and #31-SGB guitar, and the #1-MS used the neck from the #1-MS
mandolin and the #341-SGB guitar. Each neck on each model had
a volume and tone control assigned to it, and the single three-way
pickup switch would select the bass pickup, the two guitar pickups,
or the guitar bridge pickup. The model #4-BS sold for $229.90,
and the #5-BS, with non-adjustable pickups, sold for $199.90.
The model #1-MS also sold for $229.90, and was offered as the #2-MS,
with non-adjustable pickups, for $199.90.
Carvin offered an assortment of doubleneck steel guitars in 1961.
On the far left is the model #C8806-D
which was a double-8 steel guitar, that had the 3-position changer on
the outer neck. The body was made of maple, with a plastic
fretboard (like most other steel guitars of the day). The #C8806-D with adjustable AP
series pickups sold for $179.00, and the #C8806-E, with
non-adjustable pickups, sold for $159.90.
The model #6606-B
(left center) and the model #8806-B (near left) were essentially
the same as the #C8806-D, without the 3-position changer. The
#6606-B double-six with adjustable AP-series pickups sold for $89.90,
and the #6606-C with A-1 non-adjustable pickups sold for
$75.00. The #8806-B double-eight was $119.90, and the A-2
equipped #8806-C sold for $99.90.
Carvin also offered several single-neck lap steel guitars in 1961. The #6DHG-5B
(near right) and #8DHG-5B (2nd from right) were both constructed of maple, with plastic fretboard, molded nut and bridge, ivory tuners and single AP-6
(6 string) or AP-8 (8 string)
adjustable pickup with volume, treble and bass controls. The
model #6DHG-5B 6-string sold for $49.90, and was also available as the
#6DHG-6B, with non-adjustable pickup, for $39.90. The
model #8DHG-5B 8-string sold for $69.90, and was available as the #8DHG-6B,
with non adjustable pickup, for $59.90.
the far right are the model #60C 6-string and the Model #80C
8-string lap steel guitars. 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. Either was available with an A-Series pickup for $10.00
offered a wide assortment of accessories for their steel guitars, including
hard and soft cases, telescoping legs, and string changers.