Since 1890, Kay has been making instruments of the highest quality for both students and professionals
It has a V neck profile, stenciled headstock label, ladder braced, paddle head, pyramid bridge, O-sized, the marking, "K-2" is impressed into the back of the head and D-81 is stamped inside the guitar. The fretboard is the same material as the rest (looks and sounds like Birch) although there is a wood pattern painted over it... then weirdly enough the fret markers are proper dot inlays and the entire fretboard is bound in tortoise shell. I was told that it was made in 1939, is there any way to determine if that is correct? I may need to get the neck reset but it will be worth it, the sound is fantastic!
I know very little about guitars. I just bought a K100 guitar with plain front and sunburst back. It has steel strings. Through research I found it was made by the Kay company. How would I find the age? Is it valuable? Thank You
Most of the questions in this thread could be answered by studying the Kay catalogues available for free download here:
The numbers stamped inside hollow-body arch-tops beginning with the letter L in the format "L-xxxx-xxx" are not the model numbers, but factory-specific batch and serial numbers, and do not identify the year or model. Kay model numbers begin with the letter K in the format "K- xxxxx". Identification is complicated by the fact that Kay re-assigned these numbers around 1960, so many models have two different model numbers, one which was used in the '50 and another in the '60s, despite being the same guitar.
But it's not hard to go through the catalogues, and to date most guitars by noticing slight changes in the models over the years -- such as pick-guard shape, tail-piece type (open or closed end), etc. By going through the catalogues, most guitars can be pinned down to within a couple of years. More specific dating is possible with electric models by checking the stamp on the back of the pickups, in the format "mmddyyyy" e.g. 12251964 would be Christmas Day 1964. Of course, that only dates the manufacturing of the pickups themselves, which may have been in stock for some time before they actually went into an instrument, so strictly speaking that stamp only establishes an easliest possible date for the instrument as a whole.
As for the vexed issue of monetary value, most posts naively assume that there is an absolute answer to this question, but of course, there is not. Value is set by two factors: demand and supply. How many people are shopping for one + how many are up for sale = how much they are worth. This equation changes on a daily basis, and so no answer can be given to these questions other than saying check these links regularly, and watch how prices are evolving.
Remember, all "Buy It Now" prices are the price the seller would LIKE to get, and not necessarily what a buyer SHOULD pay. Auctions are a much more accurate guide of actual market value. And finally, to the so-called "experts" who will tell you that Kay guitars are not really collectable, I will quote a slight variation on the immortal words of P.G. Wodehouse from the dedication of his autobiography of 1957, "Over Seventy": SUCKS TO YOU, EXPERTS! -- I love each and every one of the dozen or so Kays in my collection, and have spent years and years searching them out at bargain prices, and have enjoyed every moment of repairing and restoring them. It's a great way to learn lutherie. Who's going to practice re-setting a neck on a 12 grand Gibson? -- but turning a hundred buck bargain basement Kay into a great playing instrument, learning by trial and error, is what real guitar collecting is all about.
Hi I have a Blonde hollow body Guitar with two pick ups and a single cut away, fitted with a Bigsby tremelo arm.
Can anyone tell me how to check out the serial number printed inside.
Serial number : L8975
Trying to find info (date, value, etc) of my Kay archtop L7103 and Custom Kraft LP copy, stock #2244 ser #520. Can not find any info on either and have been looking for years. Both are excellent guitars, play and sound great. The acoustic has a vintage DeArmond pickup with vol/tone controls. Can email pics if necessary. Thanks for any and all help...
I have the wiring diagram for anyone who still owns the Kay guitar with effects.
I have an acoustic guitar, not an archtop, it has a gold sticker on the top with the letter "K" exactly like the Kay logo. It has a model number inside of K410. Can anybody tell me anything about this guitar and it's value? I can't find anything on it. It's in great condition, seems to be all original and I believe it's from the 70's.
I would like to know the value of a like new Kay guitar mentioned in the subject line. This was a Fathers Day gift to me.
i want to know if it is a kay acoustic guitar ,there are no markings on the headstock ,2 very small holes ,looks like it could have had a badge on it. inside the soundhole it is stamped in looks like blue ink ,L1834. i looked at some pictures on the web and the pickguard ,tuners and bodystyle look like a kay. thanks ,nick koga.
I have a k405 grand concert guitar i was wondering what it was worth?
Hi, I have a Kay Archtop guitar and the model No. stamped inside is L5307 but the 07 has been written over with the No. 19. Does anyone have any info on this model and why the "19" was written in?
I was wondering if anyone could give me any info on a Kay acoustic guitar I purchased at an estate sale. It's 34 5/8 inches long overall with a white Kay logo. Inside is the model number L2228. Excellent condition but I just can't pinpoint any information. I'm wondering about the year of manufacture and the small size. Again any info would be greatly appreciated. Thanks
Have a k made in korea with double pick guards SN k240 85-433-7 adj bridge laminated wood back sides know anything about it
I have been all over the internet searching for information on my guitar. Either this a one of a kind, or I haven't found the right website.
It's a Kay acoustic arch top 6 string with F holes. The identification inside is N2 and L5586. It has a Kay V and Kay pick guard that I haven't
been able to find in pictures. I know it is over 50 years old. Does anybody know any history on this guitar and what it might be worth ?
It's got to be a rare model.
Mine is similar. I think you might have a Kay Upbeat Full Kelvinator guitar fror the late 1950's. Inside of my guitar, there is L1156. These guitars are around $1,500 lightly used. If you look up this guitar on google, it could give you some hints of what type of guitar you have.
L7736 , two F holes, arched top..probably pre 1967 or earlier.. Anybody have a clue what year it could be ???
Double F hole, Floating bridge, Serial Number "L8290". Anyone have a clue?
I just bought this guitar with no markings and am driving myself crazy digging around trying to figure out what it is. The serial number is on the inside "L8290". It is a double F hole acoustic, with a floating bridge. Silvertone? Kay? Harmony? Airline? I wish I had more info but the previous owner sanded down anymore info, hope someone knows about serial number lingo. Thanks.
I have a Kay guitar and I don't know what year it is. My grandfather gave it to my a few years back. Can someone please tell me what year my guitar is?
My husband found this guitar of his dad's and was wanting info on the year etc. Of the guitar. Does anyone have any information on this acoustic guitar? Thank you.
i have a kay guitar dont knw anything about it on the inside it has these numbers L1732 6858 . I would just like any info on this guitar please.
I have a Kay arch top semi acoustic with numbers L9484 8982 inside. Can anyone tell me the age?
Ive had my guitar for aprox 30 years n was old wen I got it how much is it worth its a kcl100
Hi, bought a Kay Busker for my son but unfortunately it needs some TLC for it to be playable. There is minimal fret wear so that tells me it has not been played a lot, there are some cosmetic issues but the black finish is still glossy and has a touch of class with the red trim. This is a guitar for someone who understands electronics, the pots are fine but there is no sound. Also the fretboard needs to be reglued onto the neck. For a guitar-builder-handyman it would be a great project resulting in a unique 80's instrument. If anyone is interested I am open to any offers. I can send photo's.
I'm interested in your Kay Busker. Is it still available and, if so, would you be willing to post to the UK?
On that note, could you send me some photos showing its condition (inc. showing the cosmetic issues you mention).
What would be your very best price for it, and what is the postage to the UK.
Hi, I have a Busker in good condition. Battery compartment has a repaired crack in plastic. I can send a picture if interested. I need $ 250 plus shipping for it . Thanks
What color is your Busker? I am looking for a red one - it doesn't necessarily need to be a Kay-branded Busker. In addition to being sold under the Kay brand, it was also sold as a Cort, Rendano, and a no name on the headstock from Sears. There may be other brands.
I HAVE AN OLD KAY ELECTRIC WITH WO 20383 NUMBER LOCATED ON BACK BY UPPER NECK. TELL ME IF YOU KNOW THE AGE AND WORTH OF THIS PIECE. YES IT'S USED, WORN, PREOWNED ETC. THANKS
I'm looking for any info and/or wiring diagram for a Kay Busker Electric Solid Body Guitar (Les Paul type). The serial number is: WO.20582 / 559-1482. Any help would be very much appreciated. Thanks/Frank
Hi, I was wondering if you could tell me anything about my guitar. I have a K-135 I cannot find much on it. Its an acoustic. I also know that it is over 30-45 years old.
I have an old Kay L3655 "beginner" acoustic guitar.I can't find any information on this guitar. It belonged to my uncle and he gave it to me when I was a kid. He told me it was his first guitar. I would appreciate any info on what I have.
I have a kay guitar..its an electric bass.... old......solid oak.....tunes from bottom...is that called a flat top???cant find any sereal number or any markings besides the kay emblem and says estlabished 1890...please help..n
This is my first visit to this site. My girlfriend dug this guitar of out storage in her parents garage, she paid $30 for it @ a pawn shop while she was in high school. Sixteen years ago, but the case did a good job of protecting it, and its in good condition. (It's nylon-stringed.) I have a rough idea of the age by the tuning machines and the parlor style tailpiece. Again, it's a Kay American Heritage Series Acoustic Model K100. Any information would be appreciated! Particularly the age? Thanks!
I have a Silvertone Semi Hollow Acoustic guitar. It is a P4 L7709 model. Can anyone tell me how much its value is and any additional information. It would be greatly appreciated.,
I have a Kay archtop acoustic only marking is inside the body stamped L 5249. I haven't been able to find any info on this model. I mainly would like to find out how old it was. I anybody has info it would be appreciated thank you.
beautiful vibrant tri burst colors, not like any of the kays i`ve owned. truss rod extends from base of neck where meets the body [for external adjustment.has a zero frett,rectangle pearl inlay on fret board. logo is a K inside a chrome circle with black background. no numbers of any kind,has a nice soft [muted voice] any help?
I just purchased something very similar to what you described but mine has a number right under the neck plate. KH-90T mine is a sunburst semi-hollow archtop with f holes and a bigsby style tremolo system. it has a black pickguard with a vine design. instead of round knobs, mine has sliders for the volume and one slider for tone. Cant find anymore info on it yet. hope this helps
Same color and description. I have same guitar. Do you have info on this guitar? What year is it etc? Any info sites,etc.? SL
I have a Kay lap guitar with the model number on the back as K15. Does anyone know how old it is? Any information would be great. Thanks.
I have what I believe to be a Kay Busker. All images I could find were of the front and the only difference is there is no Kay trademark. If someone knows how to tell I will gladly send pics.
Ok THIS IS STRANGE!!!! I have been trying to find anything and everything about this guitar all it has as the model number is K503 same as the other ones I have seen posted but there is nothing else wrote on it besides the whole established blah blah blah....as well it says made in Korea................SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO I NEED HELP figuring out how much this guitar is worth....someone plz help!!!! Thanks
I'm also wondering how much it is worth now. I bought it in 1985 at between $150 and $200.
My mother bought a guitar from Houck's Piano in Memphis around 1934. It was used at the time so I assume it pre-dates '34. She's always called it her Gibson but I cannot find out for sure. I have people who say it is a Gibson and others say it's not. Still others say it might be an Epiphone or Kay. It looks like the picture of an old 1934 Gibson L-5 but the dots on the frets are diferent. There absolutely no markings anywhere on it and we have looked inside the best we can without taking it apart.
I would post pics but don't know how. If you'd like to see it, email me and I'll send you some (or tell me how to post them here).
Thanks for any info. My email is firstname.lastname@example.org
Today I picked up a Kay American Heritage series #K520R at the Goodwill for 100 bucks. I don't know that I got the best deal --as i have since learned it is not an actual "Kay" but a korean-made guitar from the 80's or 90's. However, for the money, it is a GREAT sounding guitar! Really nice ring and clarity--especially in the mid-range, with great resonance. And, this is with the old strings still on it...can't wait to put on a medium gauge set and hear it pop.
Anyone know what this guitar would sell for?
I have been trying to find out what year and it's value of my f hole hollow body electric. The numbers inside say n-6 l-5867. If anyone could help me Iwould sure appreciate it. This is for sale
I have a Kay steel guitar, goes across your lap. Also have a amplifier for the guitar and carrying case original bar and picks that Ihave owned over 50 years ago. Prior to my owning this guitar it belonged to another family member. It is a beautiful wood guitar.
I have a Rex Royal six string guitar... it was a high school graduation present from my Grandparents to my Dad. He graduated in about 1937... The guitar is in excellent condition, and I have the original strings that came with it... What is the current value?
Can you show me a pic of the top of the neck where the writing is (Rex )? These are guitars that I collect, thanks.
Send me a pic, I'll tell you, what you have..Carmen
They were relatively inexpensive back in the day, today depending on condition the value varies.Send me a pic at email@example.com
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