Most 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.


1961 Basses

1961 Guitar Amps

1961 Bass Amps

1961 Carvin Catalog Cover
1961 Carvin Guitar Features

An 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.

1960 Carvin #31-SGB Guitar

The model #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. 

The #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 here.

1960 Carvin #61-SGB Guitar

The model #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.

The #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 $79.90.

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.

1961 Carvin C8806-D Steel Guitar 1961 Carvin #C-8806B Steel Guitar

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.

On 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 less.

1961 Carvin 6DHG-5B Steel Guitar 1961 Carvin #60-C Steel Guitar

1961 Carvin Steel Guitars

Carvin also offered a wide assortment of accessories for their steel guitars, including hard and soft cases, telescoping legs, and string changers.