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98 SAN 3
The SA model lineup consists of Gibson ES-335 style semi-hollowbody electric guitars. They are considered by many to be one of Samick's best models. The first semi-hollowbody guitar sold as a Samick was the EG-1935. It was introduced in 1981 as their home-brand version of the Hondo H-935. In 1989, it was reworked into the SARC-302, with the SARC-902 and 912 slotting above that. Those were then replaced by the SAN-450 and SAT-650 in 1991.

From 1988-1992, it most closely resembled a ca. 1959 ES-335, due to the dot inlays, "Mickey Mouse" horns and large pickguard. From 1993-2000 (except the SAB-650), it most resembled a ca. 1961 ES-335 due to the smaller pickguard. In 2001 (the last year of production), the body shape was changed to the SAB-650 shape for all models.

Related models:

SARC-302

The name "SARC" denotes: Semi-Acoustic guitar, Rosewood fretboard, Chrome hardware.

Center block
  • 1988-1990

Body:

  • 5-ply laminated Nato arched top, back & sides (Cherry finish)
  • 5-ply laminated Maple arched top, back and sides (Sunburst finish)
  • Nato center block

Neck:

Binding:

  • Single-ply body (including f-holes), neck and headstock

Electronics:

  • Two ceramic humbuckers
  • 3-way switch
  • 2 Vol, 2 Tone

Hardware:

  • Chrome hardware
  • Schaller style tuners
  • Oversized 3-ply pickguard
  • Bell shaped truss rod cover
  • Black bell knobs
  • Tune-O-Matic bridge with stopbar tailpiece

Finishes:

  • Cherry (CH)
  • Tobacco Sunburst (TS)
  • Natural (N)

Also branded as:

  • Magnum
  • Encore
  • Cane 41-450

SARC-902

89 sarc902

1989 SARC-902 WA

Some examples came with Vantage logo in 1989.

  • 1989-1990

Body:

  • 5-ply laminated Maple arched top, back and sides
  • 5-ply laminated Nato arched top, back & sides (Walnut finish only)
  • Nato center block

Neck:

  • Set-in Nato neck
  • Medium profile
  • Rosewood fingerboard with acrylic snowflake inlays
  • Deluxe headstock
  • Ornate Mother of Pearl headstock inlays
  • Mother of Pearl Vantage logo inlay
  • Mother of Pearl Wave logo inlay
  • 14o headstock pitch
  • 22 frets
  • 24.75" scale

Binding:

  • Single-ply body (including f-holes), neck and headstock

Electronics:

  • Two ceramic humbuckers
  • 3-way switch
  • 2 Vol, 2 Tone

Hardware:

  • Chrome hardware
  • Schaller style tuners
  • Oversized 3-ply pickguard
  • Bell shaped truss rod cover
  • Black bell or speed knobs
  • Tune-O-Matic bridge with stopbar tailpiece

Finishes:

  • Black (B)
  • Cherry (CH)
  • Walnut (WA)
  • Cherry Sunburst (CS)
  • Golden Sunburst (GS)

SARC-912

The SARC-912 differs from the SARC-902 in that it features a flame Maple top and triple-ply bound body and headstock.

  • 1989-1990

Body:

  • 5-ply laminated Maple arched top, back and sides
  • "Tiger Tail" flame Maple veneer (all sides)
  • Nato center block

Neck:

  • Set-in Nato neck
  • Medium profile
  • Rosewood fingerboard with acrylic snowflake inlays
  • Deluxe headstock
  • Ornate Mother of Pearl inlays
  • Mother of Pearl Wave logo inlay
  • 14o headstock pitch
  • 22 frets
  • 24.75" scale

Binding:

  • Triple-ply body and headstock
  • Single-ply neck and f-holes

Electronics:

  • Two ceramic humbuckers
  • 3-way switch
  • 2 Vol, 2 Tone

Hardware:

  • Chrome hardware
  • Keystone style tuners
  • Oversized 3-ply pickguard
  • Bell shaped truss rod cover
  • Black bell or speed knobs
  • Tune-O-Matic bridge with stopbar tailpiece

Finishes:

  • Cherry Sunburst (CS)

SAN-450

98 SAN

1998 SAN-450 CH

The name "SAN" denotes: Semi-Acoustic, Nato body.

Body:

  • 5-ply laminated Nato arched top, back & sides
  • Maple center block

Neck:

  • Set-in Nato neck
  • Medium profile
  • Rosewood fingerboard with small dot inlays
  • Deluxe headstock with "Stacked" joint
  • Mother of Pearl Wave logo inlay (1991-1994)
  • Silk-screened Artist Series logo (1995-2001)
  • 14o headstock pitch
  • 22 frets
  • 24.75" scale

Binding:

  • Single-ply body (including f-holes), neck and headstock
01 SAN-450

2001 Bodystyle

Electronics:

  • Two ceramic humbuckers
  • 3-way switch
  • 2 Vol, 2 Tone

Hardware:

  • Chrome hardware
  • Schaller style tuners
  • Oversized 3-ply pickguard (1991-1992)
  • Small 3-ply pickguard (1993-2001)
  • Bell shaped truss rod cover (1991)
  • Pointed bell shaped truss rod cover (1992-1993)
  • Headstock-matching truss rod cover (1994-2001)
  • Black bell knobs (1991-1995, 2001)
  • Amber bell knobs (1998-2000)
  • Tune-O-Matic bridge with stopbar tailpiece

Finishes:

  • Black (BK)
  • Cherry (CH)
  • Tobacco Sunburst (TS)
  • Antique Violin Sunburst (AV)
  • Antique Brown Sunburst (ABS)
  • Honey Sunburst (HS)

Also branded as:

  • Marathon DX
  • Silvertone SSAN-450

SAM-450

The name "SAM" denotes: Semi-Acoustic, Maple body (and neck). All other specs the same as SAN-450.

  • 1991-2001

Finishes:

  • Natural (N)
  • Cherry Sunburst (CS)
  • Tobacco Sunburst (TS)
93 SAM-453

1993 SAM-453 3SB

SAM-453

Same as the SAM-450 but with a VariTone-style rotary switch.

  • 1993-1994

Finishes:

  • Golden Sunburst (GS)
  • Tri-Tone Sunburst (3SB)

SAB-650

1991 SAB

1991 SAB-650 OS

The name "SAB" denotes: Semi-Acoustic, Bird's Eye body. The body shape differs from other SA models because it's based on the Aria Pro II TA. Early models had the neck set deeper into the body like the TA (which had a bolt-on neck).

SAB-650/V features Bigsby-style vibrato.

Body:

  • 5-ply laminated arched Maple top, back & sides
  • "Bird's Eye" Maple veneer (all sides)
  • Maple center block

Neck:

  • Set-in Maple neck
  • Medium profile
  • Rosewood fingerboard with Pearloid/Abalone split block inlays
  • Deluxe headstock
  • Mother of Pearl Wave logo inlay (1991-1994)
  • Ornate Mother of Pearl Artist logo inlay (1995-2001)
  • Joins body at 17th fret (1991-1992)
  • Joins body at 19th fret (1993-2001)
  • 14o headstock pitch
  • 22 frets
  • 24.75" scale

Binding:

  • Three-ply body, fretboard and headstock
  • Single-ply f-holes
00 sab650v

2000 SAB-650/V OS

Electronics:

  • Two ceramic humbuckers
  • 3-way switch
  • 2 Vol, 2 Tone

Hardware:

  • Gold hardware
  • Keystone style tuners (1991-1992)
  • Schaller style tuners (1993-2001)
  • Small 3-ply pickguard
  • Bell shaped truss rod cover (1991)
  • Pointed bell shaped truss rod cover (1992-1993)
  • Headstock-matching truss rod cover (1994-2001)
  • Gold reflector or Amber bell knobs
  • Wide Tune-O-Matic bridge with stopbar tailpiece
  • Optional Bigsby-style vibrato

Finishes:

  • Orange Sunburst (OS)
  • Burgundy Sunburst (BGS)
  • Antique Red Sunburst (ARS)
  • White (WH)

SAB-653

93 SAB-653 TR

The SAB-653 is actually based more on the SAT-650 than the SAB-650. It features a VariTone switch and the SAN/SAT body shape.

  • 1993

Body:

  • 5-ply laminated arched Maple top, back & sides
  • "Bird's Eye" Maple veneer (all sides)
  • Maple center block

Neck:

  • Set-in Maple neck
  • Medium profile
  • Rosewood fingerboard with Pearloid block inlays
  • Deluxe headstock
  • Mother of Pearl S-Diamond and Wave logo inlays
  • 14o headstock pitch
  • 22 frets
  • 24.75" scale

Binding:

  • Three-ply body, fretboard and headstock
  • Single-ply f-holes

Electronics:

Varitone

VariTone switch

  • Two ceramic humbuckers
  • VariTone switch
  • 3-way switch
  • 2 Vol, 2 Tone

Hardware:

  • Gold hardware
  • Small 3-ply pickguard
  • Pointed bell shaped truss rod cover
  • Gold reflector knobs
  • Tune-O-Matic bridge with Bigsby-style vibrato

Finishes:

  • Transparent (TR)
  • Orange Sunburst (OS)

SAT-450

91 SAT450

1991 SAT-450 CS/TT

The name "SAT" denotes: Semi-Acoustic, "Tiger Tail" top.

Body:

  • 5-ply laminated Maple arched top, back & sides
  • "Tiger Tail" flame Maple veneer (all sides)
  • Maple center block

Neck:

  • Set-in Maple neck with "Scarf" joint
  • Medium profile
  • Rosewood fingerboard with acrylic snowflake inlays
  • Deluxe headstock
  • Ornate Mother of Pearl inlays (1992-1994)
  • Mother of Pearl Wave logo inlay (1992-1994)
  • Ornate Mother of Pearl Artist logo inlay (1995)
  • 14o headstock pitch
  • 22 frets
  • 24.75" scale

Binding:

  • Three-ply body and headstock
  • Single-ply fretboard and f-holes
95 SAT-450-0

1995 Artist Series headstock inlay

Electronics:

  • Two ceramic humbuckers
  • 3-way switch
  • 2 Vol, 2 Tone

Hardware:

  • Chrome hardware
  • Keystone style tuners (1992)
  • Schaller style tuners (1993-1995)
  • Oversized 3-ply pickguard (1992)
  • Small 3-ply pickguard (1993-1995)
  • Pointed bell shaped truss rod cover (1992-1993)
  • Headstock-matching truss rod cover (1994-1995)
  • Black reflector knobs
  • Tune-O-Matic bridge with stopbar tailpiece

Finishes:

  • Black (BK)
  • Cherry Sunburst w/ Tiger Tail top (CS/TT)
  • Cherry w/ Tiger Tail top (CH/TT)

SAT-650

00 sat650

2000 SAT-650 finish options

Same as SAT-450 but with Gold hardware.

Body:

  • 5-ply laminated arched Maple top, back & sides
  • "Tiger Tail" or "Bird's Eye" Maple veneer (all sides)
  • Maple center block

Neck:

  • Set-in Maple neck with "Scarf" joint
  • Medium profile
  • Rosewood fingerboard with acrylic snowflake inlays
  • Deluxe headstock
  • Ornate Mother of Pearl inlays (1991-1994)
  • Mother of Pearl Wave logo inlay (1991-1994)
  • Ornate Mother of Pearl Artist logo inlay (1995-2001)
  • 14o headstock pitch
  • 22 frets
  • 24.75" scale

Binding:

  • Three-ply body and headstock
  • Single-ply fretboard and f-holes
91 SAT 650 CS

1991 SAT-650 CS/TT

Electronics:

  • Two humbucker pickups
  • 3-way switch
  • 2 Vol, 2 Tone

Hardware:

  • Gold hardware
  • Keystone style tuners (1991-1992)
  • Schaller style tuners (1993-2001)
  • Oversized 3-ply pickguard (1991-1992)
  • Small 3-ply pickguard (1993-2001)
  • Bell shaped truss rod cover (1991)
  • Pointed bell shaped truss rod cover (1992-1993)
  • Headstock-matching truss rod cover (1994-2001)
  • Gold reflector knobs
  • Tune-O-Matic bridge with stopbar tailpiece

Finishes:

  • Cherry Sunburst w/ Tiger Tail (CS/TT)
  • Natural w/ Tiger Tail (TT/N)
  • Pink w/ Bird's Eye (PBE)

SA-1 (Japanese Market)

90 SA-1 - Copy

1990 SA-1 CH

Same as SARC-302, but with Open Book headstock, Pearloid Script logo inlay and bell shaped truss rod cover.

Finishes:

  • Cherry (CH)
  • Brown Sunburst (BRSB, BST)
  • White (WH)

SA-1 WH (Japanese Market)

Body:

  • 5-ply laminated Nato arched top, back & sides
  • Maple center block

Neck:

  • Set-in Nato neck
  • Medium profile
  • Rosewood fingerboard with Pearloid block inlays
  • Open Book headstock
  • Pearloid Script logo inlay
  • 14o headstock pitch
  • 22 frets
  • 24.75" scale

Binding:

  • Single-ply body (including f-holes), fretboard and headstock

Electronics:

  • Two ceramic humbuckers
  • 3-way switch
  • 2 Vol, 2 Tone

Hardware:

  • Gold hardware
  • White oversized 3-ply pickgaurd
  • Bell shaped truss rod cover
  • Gold bell knobs
  • Tune-O-Matic bridge with stopbar tailpiece

Finishes:

  • White (WH)

SAN-451 (Japanese Market)

Same as SAN-450 but with Script logo (Pearloid inlay or silkscreen).

 Meriken SAB (Japanese Market)

90 SAB

1990 SAB BRSB

  • ¥55,000 Yen / ~$389 USD (1990 MSRP)

Body:

  • 5-ply laminated Nato arched top, back & sides
  • Maple center block

Neck:

  • Set-in Nato neck
  • Rosewood fretboard with dot inlays
  • Open Book headstock
  • Silk-screened Meriken logo
  • 21 frets
  • 34" scale

Binding:

  • Single-ply body and f-holes

Electronics:

  • One EB-style single coil pickup
  • 1 Vol, 1 Tone

Hardware:

  • Chrome hardware
  • Raised 3-ply pickguard
  • Bell shaped truss rod cover
  • Witch Hat knobs
  • Individually adjustable bridge

Finishes:

  • Cherry (CH)
  • Brown Sunburst (BRSB, BST)

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