1974 Carvin Catalog Cover




1974 saw no significant changes in Carvin's bass lineup.  In fact, the bass models, and the catalog itself only had minor changes from 1973 - 1975 (except for some minor price increases over the years).

Click each picture to see a larger version.

On the far right (below) of the bass page is the SB60, which had minor changes from 1972, including a chrome cover on the bridge pickup and an inlaid design on the headstock.  The SB60 was made from solid Eastern hardrock maple, with a clear satin finish.  It had the short-scale 22 fret Höfner bolt-on neck with rosewood fingerboard, APB4 humbucking pickups, and aluminum bridge and tailpiece.  Electronics included a 3-way pickup selector switch, and volume and tone controls for each pickup.  Prices increased slightly from 1973, with the SB60 now selling for $189.95, or $199.95 for a lefthanded model, plus $32.95 for the SC18 hardshell case.

1974 Carvin Basses

Next is the SB40, which had similar changes from the 1972 model as the SB60.  This model sported the same electronics and neck of the SB60, but was made from unspecified wood - probably some variant of plywood, and was finished in sunburst.  The SB40 sold for $169.95, and wasn't available in a left-handed model.  

1974 Guitars

1974 Guitar Amps

1974 Bass Amps

The last model was the AB45 semi-hollow-body bass. This bass also featured the same Höfner neck and electronics of it's solidbody counterparts, with aluminum bridge and tailpiece, MOP pickguard, and sunburst finish with white binding.  The AB45 jumped in price to $199.95, or $209.95 for a left-handed model.  The AC21 softcase was $18.95.

Click here to see the actual catalog page featuring the descriptions.

To see the doubleneck models offered in 1974, see the 1974 Guitar Page.

In the 1960's and early 1970's, Carvin bought necks from Höfner, and used them on their own guitars and basses.  Höfner was founded in Schönbach, Germany in 1887 by master luthier Karl Höfner, and was the largest manufacturer of stringed and fretted instruments in Germany in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. His two sons, Josef and Walter, joined their father's company in 1919 and 1921, and they successfully expanded Höfner's worldwide market, enabling them to survive the years of recovery following World War II.

Carvin's relationship with Höfner began in the mid-1960's, and would last until the late 1980's.  Carvin guitars and basses from 1964 until 1978 had bolt on Höfner necks, and the SH225 was made by Höfner and sold under the Carvin name.

The Höfner 500/4 bass above is remarkably similar to the Carvin AB45.   Obviously, Carvin got the body as well as the neck from Höfner, as the body shape, F holes , binding and finish are identical.  Note that the headstock logos are also the same.  The significant difference is that Carvin used their own electronics and pickups in the AB45.

For more, see 1969 and 1981.