INSTRUCTION STRINGS ACCESSORIES MUSIC LINKS
 Visit Our Catalog at SteelGuitarShopper.com for Steel Guitars, Strings, Instruction, Music and Accessories 
Forum Index
where steel players meet online
The Steel Guitar Forum

Post new topic Show or Tell Us About Your First Lap or Non-Pedal Steel
Goto page 1, 2  Next
Reply to topic
Author Topic:  Show or Tell Us About Your First Lap or Non-Pedal Steel
C. E. Jackson


From:
Mississippi, USA
Post Posted 19 Apr 2017 3:43 pm     Reply with quote

1949 SILVERTONE


My first lap steel was this 1949 Silvertone for Christmas 1949, a gift from my father and mother. It was purchased from a Sears catalog and the price was $29.00. The price included a 2 3/4 x 3/4 bullet-nose chrome plated bar and a SEARS HOME STUDY COURSE for ELECTRIC HAWAIIAN GUITAR, 40 Complete Lessons. The price on the study course was $1.50 and it was published exclusively for SEARS, ROEBUCK AND CO. The course was copyright 1939 by M. M. Cole Publishing Co., Chicago, Ill., and the featured Artist, Nick Manoloff. My father learned to play at about 15 years of age and taught me to play, before I got this steel. I learned to play by tab, sheet music and ear. The discoloration on the neck was caused when I glued a cardboard overlay showing every note on the neck. This steel still plays and sounds great, and I consider it my most valuable steel.
_________________
My Vintage Steel Guitars
My YouTube Steel Guitar Playlists
My YouTube Steel Guitar Songs
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website
Guy Cundell


From:
More idle ramblings from South Australia
Post Posted 19 Apr 2017 4:29 pm     Reply with quote

Still have it. A Sutton, Australian made, I think. A copy of... a National??
Made in the 50s, maybe, and purchased in the late 70s.

Used to rock. Here is some 'rough as' Aussie pub rock from my band in the early 80s.

http://picosong.com/i6QS


View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website
Rich Gardner


From:
Columbus, Ohio, USA
Post Posted 19 Apr 2017 6:21 pm     Reply with quote

I started on an Oahu lap steel. It had a matching amp. I do not have it any more as I traded it in on a double neck Rickenbacker steel. The picture is downloaded from the internet. My original steel was very similar to this one.
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail AIM Address
Michael Hogan


Post Posted 20 Apr 2017 2:32 am     Aussie Pub Rock Reply with quote

[quote="Guy Cundell"]Still have it. A Sutton, Australian made, I think. A copy of... a National??
Made in the 50s, maybe, and purchased in the late 70s.

Used to rock. Here is some 'rough as' Aussie pub rock from my band in the early 80s.

http://picosong.com/i6QS


What a pity the Pub Rock Scene died.Sounds fine Guy.

This was my first lap steel and it started a collector bug in me.

http://lapsteels.blogspot.com.au/

View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website
Tony Lombardo


From:
Alabama, USA
Post Posted 20 Apr 2017 2:58 am     Reply with quote

I've owned only three steels, and I never had more than one at a time. My first was an 8-string Magnatone Troubadour. I think it was from the 50s. I loved it, and I love my current one. The one in the middle was pretty expensive, and I did not like it at all.
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
William Hoff


From:
Missouri, USA
Post Posted 20 Apr 2017 3:04 am     Reply with quote

Found a beat to death and in pieces BR9 at a music store in Decatur IL. Paid very little and started the steep learning curve both in how to put it back together and how to learn to play it. I miss that steel; my Dual 6 Stringmaster is my favorite, but the BR9 was FUN!
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
Larry Lenhart


From:
Ponca City, Oklahoma
Post Posted 20 Apr 2017 7:37 am     Reply with quote

Some very cool stories and pics above..CE I love the fact that you have your first and how cool is it that your dad taught you to play !

I dont have a picture but have a story:

My very first steel in 1968 or 69 was a Fender Quad,,,sounds strange but true...I was teaching guitar in a studio and the owner, who had been my guitar teacher, was teaching someone how to play "Steelin' the blues" and I said wow, I have to learn how to play that...sooo. he said well I have an extra steel back in the closet I will sell you for $150, and I bought that Fender quad and started lessons on it from him..I had no idea what I had !..it had been his...pictures of it are another thread...I wish I still had it ! Thats my story ! Smile
_________________
Zum Stage One, 1956 Fender stringmaster T8, 1956 Rickenbacker D8 console, JB Frypan, Melbert S8, 1976 Ibanez L5, Gretsch 6122-1959, Telonics pedal, Taylor 214 CE, Squire Tele, Recording King Banjo, 3 Roland cubes 30s and 80, Carvin combo bass amp
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
David Venzke


From:
SE Michigan, USA
Post Posted 20 Apr 2017 8:16 am     Reply with quote

Wanted to give lap playing a try, so I made this to try out my interest:



It was my "reso-on-a-stick" guitar (25" resonator scale and reso string spacing). After a couple of modifications it turned into a nice practice instrument that I just kept in my car.
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
Jack Hanson


From:
San Luis Valley, USA
Post Posted 20 Apr 2017 8:51 am     Re: Aussie Pub Rock Reply with quote

Michael Hogan wrote:
This was my first lap steel and it started a collector bug in me.

My first was a B6 that looks exactly like Michael's with the exception that mine has white flying saucer knobs, and a few of the position marker dots have gone missing. Purchased at Island Guitars in Honolulu in the early '80s along with a Weissenborn that is labeled "Maui Maid." Still have and play both of 'em.

View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
Jack Aldrich


From:
Washington, USA
Post Posted 20 Apr 2017 4:32 pm     Reply with quote

My first steel was (and still is) a 1946 Fender Champ. In 1974 I'd been playing Dobro, but I got a gig playing behind Patsy Montana, and she asked me ig I could play an electric steel. So I got it and played it for about a year. Then the pedal steel bug, and off I went.
_________________
Jack Aldrich
Carter & ShoBud D10's
D8 & T8 Stringmaster
Rickenbacher B6
3 Resonator guitars
Asher Alan Akaka Special SN 6
Canopus D8
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
Levi Gemmell


From:
New Zealand
Post Posted 20 Apr 2017 7:11 pm     Reply with quote

In July 2015, for my 21st birthday, I received my first steel, one of those little MOTS Dickerson/Magnatone numbers. I hate to say it, but I pawned it a few days ago so that I could cover my rent, and I think that's some kind of guitar player initiation anyway. I have my Commodore, and my JB Frypan now anyway, so I hadn't played that Magnatone in some time. Secretly, I curse that little guitar for giving me this steel guitar player's obsession!
_________________
Bunny Milne Commodore #287
Shot Jackson JB Frypan #A023
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
David M Brown


From:
California, USA
Post Posted 21 Apr 2017 4:27 am     Reply with quote



The one on the left is my first steel, and I still use it.

it's a National "Waikiki" model from circa WWII, one of the cheaper finishes with fake wood grain, and Lollar has repaired the pickup.

I got it as a teenager in the mid 1970's when working at a music store as stock boy.

It's been through rock bands - and survived to play Hawaiian and Western Swing and Jazz and whatever else these days.
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website
Paul Arntson


From:
Washington, USA
Post Posted 21 Apr 2017 11:19 am     Reply with quote

Homemade from a 2x4. The "Weyerhauser". Actually played some rock shows with it back in 1970's.
_________________
Excel D10 8&4, Supro 8, Regal resonator, Peavey Superslide, homemade lap 12(a work in progress)
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
Keith Glendinning


From:
United Kingdom
Post Posted 21 Apr 2017 11:55 am     Reply with quote

A rescued Gibson BR3 carcass. I fitted an Artec Humbucker pickup and a decorative ftetboard. Also "decent" no-name tuners. The amp is a Gibson EH-150 re-issue and the set really sings.
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
Miles Lang


From:
Rincon Beach, California, USA
Post Posted 21 Apr 2017 2:01 pm     Reply with quote

Grey Rickenbacher Model 59
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website
C. E. Jackson


From:
Mississippi, USA
Post Posted 21 Apr 2017 4:20 pm     Charlie Norris's First Steel Giuitar Reply with quote

I would like to share a little historical information about the first lap steel owned by a very special departed friend.

Mr. Charlie Norris 9/13/28-2/7/15
Inducted into the Texas Steel Guitar Hall of Fame (1995)
President of the Texas Steel Guitar Association (2002)

My first meeting with Charlie was at his music store, Norris Family Music in Mesquite, Texas. Several of his guitars were at the store and he would play for me when I visited. He played pedal and lap steels and had recorded on both. His steel guitar that interested me most was a 1935 National Electric Hawaiian 7 string, shown below.

1935 NATIONAL ELECTRIC HAWAIIAN 7 STRING




After talking with Charlie, I soon learned why he prized this steel so much. He had purchased it as a teenager and picked cotton for $0.03/lb. (2,265 lb.), after school, to pay the cost of $67.95. The guitar was purchased in Las Cruces, NM. The Hawaiians came by his home once a week, and he took lessons for $1.00/wk, paid in eggs (3 dozen /wk.). Before going into the Marines, he sold the guitar in Roswell, NM. The guitar was then bought by a man from Colorado. A man brought the guitar into Norris Family Music in 1985, and wanted to trade for a pedal steel. Charlie recognized his old steel that he sold in Roswell, NM, and immediately made a deal, getting his old steel back. I tried to purchase the steel from him for several years without success. Finally in 2004, as he was nearing retirement, he agreed to sell the steel to me. I was really pleased to become the owner of this historic steel.
_________________
My Vintage Steel Guitars
My YouTube Steel Guitar Playlists
My YouTube Steel Guitar Songs
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website
Stephen Baker


From:
Lancashire, UK
Post Posted 21 Apr 2017 4:42 pm     Reply with quote

A Guyatone plywood plank identical to this about 30 years ago from a junk shop. Cost me £5 (about eight dollars).

I didn’t have a clue what to do with it for the next 15 years, no internet then and not many Hawaiians living in north west England. Then Paul Godden showed me a C6 tuning and I managed to order Cindy Cashdollar’s videos from my local music shop (it took 10 months to get them) and the world opened up. I eventually sold it on ebay for about £70 so in retrospect it was the best investment I ever made in more ways than one
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
Robert Mac Neilage


From:
Glasgow, United Kingdom
Post Posted 22 Apr 2017 7:24 am     Reply with quote

Below are pictures of the first steel guitar I owned, built by myself in order to see if I could handle ten strings before I went for a pedal steel. The idea was to learn to play it first then perhaps convert it to pedals.


The guitar was made from solid mahogany 8" X 2 1/2" X 36" shaped at the headstock in the same manner as a Gibson console, the scale was 25", and a split coil pickup was used.


My good friend Jimmy McGregor advised me on the sizes and scale length at the time it was made, about 37 years ago!
The fretboard was made from plastic with paper stars stuck on and varnished over, the tail stock was over engineered but gives terrific sustain with the thick body. The headstock was machined and rollers added in case it ended up as a pedal steel!
The tone from it is great and several times I have been going to let it go, but when I get it out and play it once more, it goes back in the case, because I think I would regret selling this one as it's part of my DNA, but there's a limit to how many I can hold onto according to my dear wife!

It Stays in tune and even when put away for about ten years it was playable! The scale length gives great tone, now apart from " the Boss", the only problem I have with it, is the weight, it's OK sitting on legs but not so easy to lift and carry when in the case, I'm getting older now, but who knows, I now have more guitars to choose from, then again I only have one ten stringer! Whoa! Robert Laughing
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
Bill Sinclair


From:
Hagerstown, Maryland, USA
Post Posted 22 Apr 2017 10:10 am     Reply with quote

Here's mine. Purchased off ebay 3 years ago this month. The amp was purchased more recently but would have been contemporary to the guitar. Including consoles and projects, I now have 9 lap steels but I still think this one is the coolest. '53 Supro Airliner, 2-tone MOTS, great sounding string through pickup w/Rick Aiello magnets.
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
Blake Hawkins


Post Posted 22 Apr 2017 2:16 pm     Reply with quote

My first steel guitar was a Teisco, purchased in Japan in 1952. The picture is the same model but not my original which was sold when I went into the Army.
This one I found on e-bay about 10 years ago. It was in poor shape. I restored it and put on Grover tuners, The scale is 20.25 inches.
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
Paul Honeycutt


From:
Colorado, USA
Post Posted 24 Apr 2017 2:34 pm     Reply with quote

A friend had a beat to crap National Tri-Cone that I bought for $75. I let a pedal steel playing friend use it for a few years, got it back and had the headstock break repaired. I ended up trading it for a 12 string Taylor acoustic that is one of the best guitars I've ever owned. I also had a '70's Dobro, for a while both at the same time.

My first electric was a Rickenbacher with a grey steel body and black horseshoe pickup. I learned a lot on it and had it until I got my National New Yorker and sold it. I wish I'd kept it. I found the Ricky in a pawn shop in Santa Rosa, CA and paid about $125.00 as I recall. Early '80's, I think.
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
Erv Niehaus


From:
Litchfield, MN, USA
Post Posted 25 Apr 2017 8:12 am     Reply with quote

The 1st guitar pictured is an Oahu acoustic. That is the guitar I learned on when taking guitar lessons eons ago.
I traded it in on the little Gibson in the 2nd picture.
This guitar was traded in when I got my T-8 Stringmaster.
The guitars pictured aren't the same guitars I had way back then but over the years I was lucky enough to pick up replacements.




View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
C. E. Jackson


From:
Mississippi, USA
Post Posted 25 Apr 2017 9:18 am     Reply with quote

Erv, you are now bringing back some old memories for me. My father told me he learned on and played a Gibson Acoustic as a teenager. However, his Gibson Acoustic burned when our home was destroyed by fire when I was age 4. Later, he bought a Kalamazoo Acoustic, and that was the steel he played until he purchased a 1949 SILVERTONE DELUXE BLACK, at the same time I got my 1949 SILVERTONE for Christmas. Thanks for the memories.

C. E.
_________________
My Vintage Steel Guitars
My YouTube Steel Guitar Playlists
My YouTube Steel Guitar Songs
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website
Erv Niehaus


From:
Litchfield, MN, USA
Post Posted 25 Apr 2017 10:20 am     Reply with quote



This picture was taken when I was playing the little Gibson with a polka band.
We had a Saturday morning program over KDUZ in Hutchinson, MN.
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
C. E. Jackson


From:
Mississippi, USA
Post Posted 29 Apr 2017 4:07 am     Reply with quote

Thanks everyone for the photos and comments. All were very interesting.

Erv, your comments and photos brought back lots of memories for me.
The Gibson BR6 steels have great tone, harmonics, and sustain. The polka band
you played with certainly had a handsome steel player.

C. E. Smile
_________________
My Vintage Steel Guitars
My YouTube Steel Guitar Playlists
My YouTube Steel Guitar Songs
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website

All times are GMT - 8 Hours
Jump to:  

Our Online Catalog
Strings, CDs, instruction,
steel guitars & accessories

www.SteelGuitarShopper.com

Steel Guitar Music
Instrumental steel guitar CDs for your permanent collection
www.SteelGuitarMusic.com

Please review our Forum Rules and Policies

The Steel Guitar Forum
148 South Cloverdale Blvd.
Cloverdale, CA 95425 USA

Support This Forum


BIAB Styles
Ray Price Shuffles for Band-in-a-Box
by Jim Baron
HTTP