History of Yamaha Guitar
YAMAHA is really huge organization, starting from the Organ repair, I have heard.
Now, they are offering the engine, motorcycle, musical instruments and many....
Maybe you could check Yamaha detailed on other WEB, you could get a huge info.
Only for their electric guitar during 1972-1983 (what I handle JV), I would like to
explain here. 1972 is one of important year for Japanese Guitar Industry.
They started to make the replica or consider making a replica of Gibson and Fender seriously. Yamaha started to make the electric guitar in 1966. They offered S-201 and S-302 series. A Japanese famous actor, Yuzo Kayama, used several Yamaha Guitars on his movie. He became a very popular /famous singer. After watching his movie, the young generation started to play the electric guitars.
This booming made a great sales era for Japanese Guitar Manufacturers.
In 1967, Yamaha have changed the series # from S to SG series. This is early time SG history. Well, these SG are collectorsf items here with very expensive trade pricing.
These are original designed guitars away from Gibson or Fender. I believe that Yamaha oriented the original products with brand name. They developed many original after that. However, the electric guitars sales were dropped in 1968-71.
From 1972, Japanese guitar industries started the new-era (please refer Greco History).
In 1972 APRIL, Yamaha developed the new design solid guitars. They used the production code as SG. The design was completely different from previous SG series. First, they designed the guitar like Les Paul (single cut-way) with very soft line (Japanese said this line is Germany line, I donft know reason why). These are detachable neck constructions. Very regretfully, these guitars were very poor sales, I have heard.
As showing the poor sales of this design, same year, December, Yamaha started new SG series. The design was still one cut-way like Gibson. However, they gave up soft line, then change the design more closed to Gibson style. The pickups were all hum-bucking type with Alnico magnets. Top model, SG-85 used the Honduras Mahogany body and ebony finger board. These are set neck construction. I believe these are first set-neck solid electric guitar from Yamaha. Again, very regretfully, the sales of this SG were not really good. They added the adjustable neck, double cut-away SG in November 1973.
Well, this is really first design double cutaway closed to the nowadays SG.
In 1974 November, Yamaha suddenly announced the NEW SG/SX series. The design of
SG was established. It is beautiful design. Maybe, everybody knew, SG-175 was made
this time. This SG has the arched-top construction with trimmed abalone inlays. Of course, top model have the first class wood material in use.
Yamaha approached Carlos Santana with this SG-175 to be endorser. Santana received this SG-175, later, he advised several points for developing. 1) Weight---too light. Need more weight for getting enough sustain. 2) Frets---Need 24 frets--- Maybe he needs it which Gibson LP hasn'tft. 3) Buddha Inlay.
After that, Yamaha started to develop. They have modified body thickness, back contour, Tune-O-matic Bridge, Switchcraft selector switch and Buddha inlay. Santana didnft accept this proto type. He needs more long sustain.
As a result of several corresponding, Yamaha made:
1) T-Cross Construction One-Piece Neck
2) 2-piece Top in teakwood
3) Sustain Plate below bridge
4) Wide-Travel Bridge
5) New Pickup OPG-I
Santana started to use this special guitar for his live acts.
Yamaha received many requests for SG-175. Well, most of people thought Santana use
the SG-175. However, SG-175 and His Buddha SG were completely different construction. Yamaha management made a decision to start SG-2000.
SG-2000 is almost same specification with Santana Buddha SG. The different should be
the pickup (Santana changed it to Gibson PAF), the top wood material (Maple 3 piece) and the number of frets (22F). Of course, the neck (Mahogany+Maple+Mahogany)is a through neck (T-Cross) type.
Yamaha started to export new SG-2000 series as SBG for the overseas market. They didnft use SG prefix because of Gibson SG model. Yamaha just protect the lawsuit for the trade name. The difference between domestic SG and SGB is on the tone potentiometer. SG-2000 hasnft got the Push/Push coil Tap switches (Domestic SG-1000 has this function as standard).