Rickenbacker Guitar Color Guide

by C.K. Adams
Rock musicians like the custom design and color of a historic Rickenbacker guitar.

Rock musicians like the custom design and color of a historic Rickenbacker guitar.

Dave Etheridge-Barnes/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images

Rickenbacker, established in the 1930s, is an American maker of electric, bass and acoustic guitars. Most of Rickenbacker's guitars come with traditional coloring, but there have also been many customized styles over the decades. Custom Rickenbacker guitar galleries abound on the Internet, but if you want to get a new custom-colored guitar, online retailers offer rare styles.

Wood Styles

The brown wooden styles of Rickenbacker guitars include most models, from the 300 series Model 370 to Vintage Model 500. These guitars use different wood, such as maple, walnut and rosewood. The body usually shows a light gold to tawny reflection, either with a gloss or no glass. The fingerboard is always darker, the color of rosewood, although the acoustic Rickenbacker guitars, such as Model 730 Laramie also used maple for the neck, which gave a lighter color than rosewood styles.

Traditional Colors

Rickenbacker also produces most of its models in red, blue, black, green, yellow and white. The 600 series also comes in black and wood or electric blue, either with a maple or rosewood neck. The C series claimed a blend of light peach and red for the body and fret. The 300 series showed off the most colors, ranging from golden yellow to electric blue.

Glo Finish

Older Rickenbacker styles also came in "Glo" finished styles, which ranged from "Fire Glo," a red-and-tan guitar, to "Jet Glo," or a black-and-tan guitar. "Maple Glo" was an all-wood guitar with a white soundboard on the front. The "Glo" style was discontinued in 2007, but the older guitar colors are still available. The instrument's color also differed from pictured "Glo" colors, according to Rickenbacker, because of the hand-finishing process.

Custom

Some specialty retailers sell custom Rickenbacker guitars, such as a custom green glow or "Union Jack" as sold by Ed Roman. This retailer also sells special Rickenbacker styles, such as the blueburst, blue boy and turquoise. Rickenbacker takes on custom work but also blocks custom requests when backlogged. To get a custom guitar, Rickenbacker provides telephone and email customer service. For telephone service, call 714-545-5574 or email service@rickenbacker.com.

Photo Credits

  • Dave Etheridge-Barnes/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images