Fender, Gibson, Rickenbacker, National… all the big name US brands offered double-neck slide guitar models – or Hawaiian guitars, in the parlance of the day – some as early as the late 1930s. Maton’s ‘Silvertone’, catalogue item ES-100/12, made its first appearance just before the Beatles took over the world and ended its run around the time the Sex Pistols called it a day. (Completely unrelated, but it’s hard to believe that ‘Anarchy In The UK’ was released only six years after Let It Be)
In their promotional material, Maton described the Silvertone as a “Deluxe double console model, in modern styling, with elevated rear scale. High powered “magnamettle” pickups. Volume, Treble and Bass controls, separate switch for quick change and effects.” Available colors were Black, White, Mahogany and Red.
Most instruments were built as double six-string units, though some double-eights were also produced. The console could be had with or without telescopic aluminium legs, but it seems many buyers opted for a DIY job, with wooden legs bought from the local hardware store. (The wooden legs here can be height adjusted by being unscrewed in the middle)
Over $3500 today
Out of the 106 Silvertones built, some will have been damaged, or pulled apart for spare parts, put out with the hard rubbish, lost to natural attrition – an educated guess might be that there’s maybe between sixty or seventy still around. Selling for £64.15.00, in 1962 – which would have been roughly $150 when Australia converted to decimal currency in 1966 – the final retail price, in 1978, was $796. Adjusted for inflation, that would be well over $3500 today!
Well-known Geelong musician
Previously owned by a well-known Geelong musician, our Silvertone double-neck is in Excellent condition, with just one changed volume pot preventing it being 100% original. Out of respect to its previous owner, we have left his masking tape notation as is – you can remove the tape if you wish. There is no case, but the console and legs will be packed extremely well for shipping – which, of course, is free to any address in Australia. ($100 airfreight to New Zealand, $175 to the US, Canada, UK and mainstream European countries. International freight added at checkout)