Ole’ Ibanez part 2: Lawsuit era and beyond

Above: The Ibanez Double Axe lineup circa 1974.  Bass/Guitar, 12 string/Guitar, and Guitar/Guitar models.

Today as PS dot com: a few more interesting bits of Ibanez history.  Last week’s Ibanez-early-eighties post brought a tremendous number of new visitors to the site courtesy of Ibanez USA, who found us and spread the word.  See here for that post.  Hope y’all enjoyed yr visit; here’s some more for ya.

An interesting phenomenon to note: although the 70’s ‘lawsuit’ Ibanez Gibson-copies were sold as lower-cost alternatives to American-made instruments, time has been kind to them: prices for set-neck 80’s Ibanez guitars are now often close to that of 70’s Gibsons.  This is partly due to rarity, but I think we’ve also begun to collectively embrace the idea that ‘copies’ are more desirable than ‘originals’ in some sense; in a world of endless duplications, fakes, and forgeries, the unapologetic ‘copy’ can actually seem more authentic than a supposed ‘original.’

The Ibanez Rocket-Roll Flying-V copy circa 1974

After Ibanez was compelled to cease US distribution of their Gibson copies, we see some interesting new lines to emerge.  This ‘Studio Series’ was part of the Alembic-inspired ‘hippie sandwich’ guitar-style of the mid/late 1970s. 

Follow this link for more 70’s Ibanez coverage on Preservation Sound dot com.

4 thoughts on “Ole’ Ibanez part 2: Lawsuit era and beyond”

  1. The hippie sandwich guitars, even the cheap ones are often amazingly playable and good sounding once you set them up and dress the frets, adjust the truss rod, etc. Unfortunately they are “not worth fixing” so only DIYers will even bother with them.

    I think they sound a lot better with American pickups, especially EMGs if you have effective tone controls on your amp.

  2. I disagree. I’d take an old MIJ Ibanez over any of the major US brands being made these days. Ibanez quality was great and the prices aren’t out of control. That’s why you never see them at your local music shop. They all get bought up on ebay. In 32 years of playing and collecting guitars I’ve owned a lot of everything. The older MIJ stuff is the best buy out there and well worth fixing up. After all, now a days almost anything you buy in any price range needs work. Sad, but true.

  3. Hi,

    I have an opportunity to purchase an Ibanez double neck guitar 6/12 in white (model 2402). However, I cannot find a date match for the serial number (6 1225)which is stamped into the 12 string neck. Both neck plates are stamped made in japan. Both have bookend headstocks. Would you know if this was a guitar made in the mid 70’s?



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