17 Facts About Rickenbacker


Rickenbacker International Corporation is a string instrument manufacturer based in Santa Ana, California.

FactSnippet No. 1,599,089

Rickenbacker first conceived of a guitar fitted with a phonograph-like amplifying horn.

FactSnippet No. 1,599,090

Rickenbacker approached inventor and violin-maker John Dopyera, who made a prototype that was, by all accounts, a failure.

FactSnippet No. 1,599,091

Rickenbacker made Spanish and Hawaiian style tri-cone guitars as well as four-string tenor guitars, mandolins, and ukuleles.

FactSnippet No. 1,599,092

Adolph Rickenbacker became a shareholder in National and, with the assistance of his Rickenbacker Manufacturing Company, National boosted production to fifty guitars a day.

FactSnippet No. 1,599,093

Rickenbacker subsequently formed the Dobro Manufacturing Corporation, later called Dobro Corporation, Ltd, and began to manufacture his own line of resonator-equipped instruments.

FactSnippet No. 1,599,094

In 1934 the name of "Rickenbacker" was added in honor of the company's principal partner, Adolph Rickenbacker.

FactSnippet No. 1,599,095

In 1956, Rickenbacker introduced two instruments with the "neck through body" construction that became a standard feature of many of the company's products, including the Combo 400 guitar, the model 4000 bass, and, later, the 600 series.

FactSnippet No. 1,599,096

In 1963, Rickenbacker developed an electric twelve-string guitar with an innovative headstock design that fit all twelve machine heads onto a standard-length headstock by mounting alternate pairs of machine heads at right-angles to each other.

FactSnippet No. 1,599,097

Rickenbacker eventually had the guitar's natural alder body refinished in black, and made other modifications, including adding a Bigsby vibrato tailpiece and regularly changing the control knobs.

FactSnippet No. 1,599,098

Rickenbacker made two new 325s for Lennon and shipped them to him while the Beatles were in Miami Beach, Florida, on the same 1964 visit to the United States: a one-off custom 12-string 325 model and an updated six-string model with modified electronics and vibrato.

FactSnippet No. 1,599,099

Rickenbacker used this newer six-string model on the Beatles' sequentially "second" appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show.

FactSnippet No. 1,599,100

Rickenbacker basses remained popular through the 1970s and beyond.

FactSnippet No. 1,599,101

Rickenbacker has produced a number of uniquely designed and distinctively trimmed acoustic guitars.

FactSnippet No. 1,599,102

In late 2006, Rickenbacker gave a license to build Rickenbacker-branded acoustics to Paul Wilczynski, a luthier with a workshop in San Francisco, California.

FactSnippet No. 1,599,103

Rickenbacker continued to offer all eight models of the Rickenbacker flat top guitar line, building each instrument to order, until his license expired on February 1,2013.

FactSnippet No. 1,599,104

Rickenbacker are known for their proactive approach to preventing the sale of counterfeits of their instruments.

FactSnippet No. 1,599,105