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1945 Rickenbacker Model B Vintage Lap Steel w/ Horseshoe Pickup, Rickenbacher


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Up for sale, a 1945 Rickenbacker Model B lap steel in near mint condition and in perfect working order. Offered in a very narrow window at the end of World War II, this is one of the very last Model B steels to feature the "Rickenbacher" logo text.

The successor to Rickenbacker's "Frying Pan" steel (appropriately the Model A), the Model B has the highly sought-after “horseshoe” pickup, bakelite molded body and bolt-on neck with white enamel accent plates on top. Other distinctive features of this production era include the chrome-plated string anchor, 1 1/4" wide horseshoe pickup, and frets framed by white pinstriping.

The steel has a rich, nuanced sound with plenty of sparkle and clear, percussive cut. Each string has equal presence and definition, and it's a silky sound that's quintessential Rickenbacker. The scale length is 22 1/2", and the nut width is 2 1/4". All but one of the original tuners are intact (with one very similar vintage replacement), and new white buttons have been installed. A couple of the tuner arms are a bit shorter than the others, yet all function equally well. The headstock retains the stamped vertically oriented Rickenbacher Electro logo plate.

The electronics function as intended, with original IRC pots and a Bumblebee tone capacitor, and the pair of molded bakelite knobs are intact and practically perfect. The molded bridge is equally pristine, and the chrome plating on the tailpiece and pickup bezel is positively gleaming. There is sparingly little wear on the molded bakelite body and neck.

A gigbag is included.