H15 - Bobkat|
Electric solid body - sunburst
Production year(s) : 1963-1971 (other years possible, not verified)
38 images in database
mouse over image for file name - click to enlarge
Related to this model
43 comments | Add your comment !
- Ray - 2005-09-26
I have an H-15, 1965 Harmony. It was bought at a pawn shop a few years ago for $35 Canadian. I was astounded by the playability of this guitar. Light, fits just right in your hand and pick-ups sound great. This was a little treasure that I found! I've been playing for 35 years and had namy guitars (Fender, Gretsch, Gibson, Guild, Larrivée etc..) this little `feller` is wonderful. I wouldn't sell it (and I have been offered too). -Ray
- Rusty Ford - 2005-10-28
My experience is much like Ray's. I am continuously blown away by the tone of this little "GEM!!!" every time Iplug it in!!! I only wish it was full size . I found mine for $78.00 in almost mint condition. Then I found another one With a broken headstock that had been nailed to the wall of a blues bar for many years . I bought it for $50 . The pickups work fine and I plan to install them into a custum guitar soon.
- Jerry - 2006-08-24
Bought my H15 from a music store (Beaumont Music Co.?) over by Gateway Bowling Alley in Beaumont, Texas in 1966. Purchased a Kalamazoo model two amp to go along with the H15. Traded the amp for a Fender Vibro-Champ in the early 70s and only recently got rid of it. Why? I don't know. I should have kept it. Still got the H15 and the original case. It sounds today as good as it ever did.......played through a vintage Sansui 5050 and into two 15 inch Technics speakers. I even recently bought a vintage Electro-Harmonix LPB-1 on Ebay to put the H15 back into the combo I used when my friends and I used to jam on the weekends. Oh, the memories.............
- George - 2006-10-27
I've got a '67 Holiday brand H15 with three pick ups and individual on off switches for each one. Original case, strap, cord, and booklet. I play it through an '84 Peavey Heritage VTX. It sounds better than my Les Paul on the clean channel. I just wish I could find out more info about it.
- Kerry Ayres - 2006-11-24
Hi, great site! My first electric guitar was the sunburst yellow H-15, I can't recall if it was new or used, purchased for me by my parents at Atlanta's Rhythm City in Buckhead, circa 1967. I had to choose between the Bobkat and an old, off white scratched up Gibson SG or a very similar Gibson. I went for the shiny sunburst of the H-15, and my folks bought the Kalamazoo Model 2 amplifier to go with it. When I played the Bobkat through the Model 2, I was disturbed by all that fuzzy tone when I cranked the amp. I learned to enjoy the fuzzy tone, but wished the amp stayed clean. The Bobkat was hitting the amp with its hot pickups, and the fuzzy tone I was getting was later to be known as an overdriven, class A EL84 amp tone!!
I still have the H-15, with a broken pickguard. The neck on mine is not slim, it is in ballbat territory. Fat and jazzy on the neck pickup, twangy with bite on the bridge, and nice for rhythm with both selected. My guitar suffers from the same syndrome that lots of Harmony electrics do and that is treble is lost when you roll down the volume. I also have a two pickup '67 Rocket and a two pickup '69 Rebel. Great axes!
- Paul aka Chief - 2007-01-03
I have holiday H15 just like the red one in the pictures. I bought it from sears and it came with a case and holiday amp. My dad brought it to a music shop for me, and I had them put a vibrato bar on it. It's a little beat up, but still plays half way decent. I remember you could play a radio through the pickups and have it come out of the amp.
- Zero - 2007-02-09
I had an H-15 as my first electric. I sold it when I got a Les Paul Copy and sold that when I got a real Les Paul. But I always had a soft spot in my heart for my Harmony. Thanks to eBay I found another one, this time with the whammy bar. It gets more of a workout now than my Paul does. The Goldtone pickups are more powerful and expressive than the Humbuckers too. I'd like a Fender Jagmaster, but now I'm thinking about just putting these electronics in a Jag body to give it more heft. For the price these guitars can't be beat. I'd put it up against a Dan Electro Silvertone any day. They are the best of the Department Store / Catalogue Guitars of the 60's.
- Phil Bleach - 2007-02-10
I own a modded Harmony H-15. Dated Sept. 9, 1965. Has the original DeArmond, plus a mid-60's strat pickup with staggered polepieces in the middle, in the same angle as the Dearmonds. Fitted a lo-fi circuit inside wich lifts the ground, cuts the lows and make the lead volume knob act as a balance knob between the strat pup and the bridge pup, or make the tone go in total AM-car-radio-through-2''-inches-paper-cone-speaker-tone. I grounded the tailpiece, ever noticed the strings were not grounded? I put 6 tuners from a Yamaha neck I had lying around, and I installed a Bigsby aluminium compensated bridge and a pair of straploks. I really like it.
- achord - 2007-08-19
I had a H-15 for 40 years (1965 - 2005) that looked exactly like the pictures on this site. This "Bobcat" was a little smaller and lighter than full sized guitars. It was sunburst with two pickups with beautiful covers and volume and tone controls for each pickup that produced an unbelievable tone that is hard to beat.
- felix 'siam - 2007-09-08
I have the 1967 model. it's my favorite guitar ever. i play it and also record. i would't replace 'er for the world. has it's own sound holds a tuning very well, this guitar is worn but every bit breatiful to me. gold pick ups, tremelo bar. i have owned it for as long as i remember...
- MikeyBass - 2007-09-26
I recently found an H15 at a yardsale, and purchased it for $50 cdn. I got the original case with it, and the pickups were in mint condition. I removed the pickguard and i found out that the production date was printed on the back. So the guitar I have was made june 14th, 1966. The pots and wires were garbage, so I removed them and bought new ones. After dismantling the electronics, I decided to refinish the guitar ( still in progress, newborns impede work ). Before I started my work, I couldn't believe how good the guitar sounded, and to think people still consider them nothing more than crap ( the opinion I recieved when I told my old music store co-workers about my purchase).
- Kayters87 - 2007-09-27
I just found one in a garbage pile and opened it up to find it is an H15 made in 1966...Sounds like an interesting guitar. Any comments or tips on refabing this guitar. It needs new everything and refinishing.
- kevin mc - 2007-10-19
I have a Holiday electric made 3 days after your Harmony (holiday is harmony appearently), with the same Rowe Ind, inc stamp
- Dan - 2008-01-13
The H-15 in those pictures looks exactly like mine...except mine is a single pickup model. Are these marked with the model number anywhere? Or does anyone know the model of the single pickup version?
My experience has been like everyone elses though. My friend rescued this from a dumpster. It didn't have volume or tone knobs, but the pots were still there...although the tone pot didn't work. I've since replaced the original pots and put on some good looking knobs. This thing plays and sounds like a guitar that should cost several hundred dollars. I couldn't be happier!
- Dominick - 2008-01-26
This was my very first electric guitar. I received it as a Christmas gift from my parents in 1964. Guess what? I still own it complete with original case. It still sounds and plays great. I have pictures of me including old home movies , playing it through a Ampeg Gemini II. I thought the guitar was long gone. When my mom passed away in 2001, my brother found it in my parent's attic. After 30 years the neck was straight as an arrow, even after being in an attic all that time
- Chris in the Breeze - 2008-05-18
I own a 1966 Holiday that I received for Christmas that year. I have abused, misused and did everything you can think of to destroy this guitar. I still have the original case lost the amp back in the 80's, bought a Fender deluxe reverb. I have let pros, Damon Fowler among a few play it and they are amazed. The tone is great. Mine is the red burst on black and is still a beauty.
- Hank - 2008-06-18
Had a 1963 (Sept 28) Bobkat given to me by a fan of our band. I painted it a cool 50's pink color. Used it for slide for awhile then just lowered the action and play it once in awhile. As other people have said, for a lower price range git, the ease of playing and the tone make it really special.
- FastElder - 2008-10-10
Yeah, This was my first electric, bought from a pawnshop for $25 back in 196 - - ahem . .
I think my sisters boyfriend snagged it back in the day, but I had better stuff then and never pursued it. About 6 yrs ago, Got one on e-bay - exact model but a "Holiday" version. I was checking out an amp last week and grabbed it just to test the amp - the amp was crap, but when I plugged the guitar into another amp just to check - WOW! I had forgotten how good those pickups sound! Long story short, I wound up playing it like a solid two hours.
The ebay seller had the thing setup very well when he sold it, so really, it was far better than the one I had as a kid. Those pickups are worth their weight in gold.
- Timberic - 2008-11-04
I just purchased a H-15 after researching for quite a while and also reading the comments posted here.
I must say, this is one of the most comfortable guitars that I have ever played. I look forward to many happy hours with this one.
- Scott - 2008-11-16
I traded two tuxedo shirts for my sunburst H15 in Stillwater, OK, 1986, it's still in the original case and is a complete screamer with the Goldtone pickups. I have quite a few guitars, but this little Bobcat is very fun, especially mated with the Silvertone 1481 amplifier. When my daughter is old enough, she'll play this one.
- LarryFlew - 2008-11-29
Have my original H14 purchased in 1964 and still loving the sound. Still looks jsut like the 1st few pictures here including the like new case. Have had a couple of other H17 (oct 63)and H15 (1964)models at one time or another also and the sound of these guys is still awesome. Although currently more into my SG etc I still get the old Harmony out and play it from time to time and it sits out on a stand where I can see it nearly every day.
- Fastelder - 2009-01-08
I bought a used H-15 (labeled Holiday) about 6 years ago as a nostalgic piece, identical to my first electric, purchased at a local pawn shop 30 years before. It was set up well and I had some fun playing it and then packed it away, as I was playing acoustic more at the time.
Well, six years later and I'm playing more electric and have all kinds of gear laying around. I grabbed the H-15 to troubleshoot an amp and afterwards played it a bit. Man, I forgot how much that thing cranked! The old pickups have a punch that can't be beat. Now I keep it in rotation, I love it that much. For those interested, mine had a considerable amount of noise, part of which is inherent in the style of pick up, but more due to the fact that the tailpiece wasn't grounded. I had a tech wire from the the tail to the ground and now the only noise it makes is when you smack it. Great sound!
- ward nicholls - 2009-02-05
I have an H15 from 1967 I believe. It still goes on every gig I do, several times a month. I set it up a little high and use several open tunings. For me it is strictly a slide guitar. I do Mercury Blues and Move It On Over etc on this guitar. I too grounded the bridge but there is still a lot of hum when the volume controls are turned down. And those pups sound good too, the slide numbers we do are always a highlite of the night.
- Dave Richardson - 2009-05-07
I own one of these H15. It is in very good condition except the neck pickup no longer works. I have the original case but the case has fallen apart. My dad bought this for me when I first learned to play guitar 44 years ago. He also bought a Sears Silvertone 120 watt all tube amp with 6 ten inch speakers in it. This H15 Bobcat with that amp was unbeatable. I wish I still had the amp.
- Zero - 2009-07-23
Harmony has been bought out, and are reissuing their Classic Guitars! They are Korean made, but look even better than the originals, with glue on not screw on necks. They even have binding on them! With a Brand New Bobcat going for around what you'd pay for a mint original on eBay . . . I just may have to try one before Frankensteining a Jaguar into the Ultimate Missing Lynx.
- tweeder - 2009-07-29
i got a bobkat from my grandfather and i had a strat les paul jaguar mustang sg and charvel cx290 before i got this guitar and needless to say after one gig with this guitar the others have been in cases since then the guitar plays and feels like a dream weighs practically nothing and it has such a smooth sound mine is a 63 all original and i cant find a recently made guitar from 1990 till today that even comes close to the sound of my 63 bobkat harmonies are cheap but unbeatable
- Toes - 2009-08-07
Picked up one of these about 10 years ago because it matches a vintage poster I have for the same model. It looks like it was never even played. Works well set up for slide, and is kinda funky all things considered. However, it is what it is and I would never suggest that it can compete head-to-head with better quality guitars, including just about anything available in today's market. I have 45 guitars and this one ranks 45th in tone, playability, and workmanship. Still, its vintage and I aim to keep it. YMMV
- Matt K. - 2010-03-01
Hey Guys, I just wanted to say I Love the guitars! I have a Holiday that is exactly like the Harmony.
- Tony - 2010-05-10
I have two H-15 Bobkats still in the original boxes they were shipped in. One was mine and the other I inherited from my brother.We got them for Christmas in 1965.
- JonG - 2010-11-14
My grandpa had one of these. I've been on a quest to recover it but its long gone. I disagree with alot of people about the craftsmanship and tone of these guitars. The unique tone from the gold foil pickups is amazing...but some people have to feed their ego by paying over a grand for a good guitar
- Aluboy - 2011-01-23
My Aunt in Hawaii has a Holiday Bobcat guitar with 3 pick-ups and is red sunburst. It also has the tremlo bar on the bridge. It's in the original case and has literature on the use of the Bridgeother parts that I can't remember off hand.
- Naptown Pete - 2011-02-20
I got a H15 and a Fender amp for my birthday when I was 13 in 1971. Unfortunatly my guitar teacher taught a conservatory method, and all I wanted to do was play the blues, so I lagged on my enthousiasm (sorry friends...).
My youngest son picked up the guitar 3 years ago and got hooked and now plays 1 to 3 hours every day but has a Peavey T-60 for his regular axe. I play an Ibanez Artcore AM73T. I'm planning on my luthier buddy to set-up the H15, and maybe put a better bridge (fully adjustable that's bolted to the body) and better nut, & machines if they need it. Yes, the sound of those pickups are very cool.
- glampkin - 2011-06-12
I just bought what I figure to be a Harmony H15 It has 2 pickups with a fixed saddle (no tremolo). It is in it's original case with original papers and strap. It is the yellow sunburst model as seen in the pictures above. The body shows minor wear and scuffs but overall the guitar is in very very good condition. A friend brought it over for me to check out, thinking that I may be interested in it. He snagged it at an estate sale. Right away I was captured by it's ease of play. I am a seasoned guitarist and own many guitars. I thought at first it was just a novelty guitar but became more attached to it as I continued to play it. It does blues very well. But it gets even better... He also brought over an old amplifier, a Valco-Chicago 16T.
It is in near mint condition. Pristine grille cloth, very clean tolex covering... Everything works. I am very sure that all components on both items are original stock (maybe not the strings, but that's to be expected). The combo sounded wonderful. My price for the whole lot was $100 US. I think I got a good deal here. Gonna restring the H15 today. Will make a nice addition to my arsenal.
- Waynerainy - 2011-07-08
Bought one of these from Sears in 1964. I traded it for a better Harmony in '65 and started my frist band. After all these years without one, I picked up another H-15 from a music store in Va, a couple of years ago. I just can't remember this guitar sounding that great in 1964. Of course I had no proper amp and was using an old reel tape recorder to amplifiy the thing. Now playing it through a Fender all tube Pro Reverb, this thing sounds great. The Gold Foil pickups are hot. Does it play like a Gibson, Gretsch or Fender? No. Can it produce any of the tone? Yes it can! The neck is a little chunky and thick but that's typical Harmony Bobkat. The guitar (at least this one)stays in tune relatively well and also plays very well. I have a lot of expensive guitars but I love this one for what it is. It just brings back a lot of childhood memories of the time I was going to be the next Beatle.
- Dan - 2011-10-01
I have a 1966 H15 and I love it. It was given to me by a friend and the only problem with it was a little volume knob crackle which was easily fixed by spraying WD40 on it. Great guitar, love to have a guitar that's actually from the 60s.
- Chiricorp - 2012-04-01
This was my first guitar. I found it gathering dust under my uncle's bed as a child and my father had it set up for me and I got it Christmas morning of 78'. Over the years I have made improvements; adding a fixed bridge, neck radius and meatier frets. I play it through an old vibro-champ and a swollen pickle and it grinds and moans with the best of them. Great little guitar!
- racefanrob - 2013-02-08
I have a 1964 H-15 that I bought in 1981 from a local pawn shop. I got the Harmony and a Teisco Checkmate 22 amp for 80 bucks. Love playing this guitar.
- Justin Schrank - 2013-02-20
i love how the pickups sound, whether grounded or not, very hot rich tone. curious though, what kinds of woods were used for the holiday version?
- Jeriann - 2013-12-30
I came home from school in 1965 to find my dad and my brother waiting in the living room to give me my NEW Aldens HOLIDAY/Harmony Bobkat guitar/case/amplifier that they surprised me with! To this day it is one of my most cherished guitars, and I'll never part with. I still play it daily. One of the Dearmond pickups doesn't work anymore, the amp is long gone, but the pickup that lives on (the bridge) is just lovely. Mine is dated Nov 8, 1965 located inside the white electronics cover plate!
- Robert aka "The Bass Beast" - 2015-01-04
Although I gig on a bass now I still have the Bobcat I received at the age of 13 (I'm 59)... Still plays good. I've refinished it twice since then. It's a blonde now!I play it a time or two every year just to reminisce. Plays just as good as my LP, and yeah, they haven't printed enough $$$ to get it from me now!
- Sparky2 - 2015-02-22
This comment is for the H802 which does not have a complete page here yet. It is near to the design of the H15. Maybe someone can move this to the H802 page if it is finished in the future. I just restored an H802 for a young man who inherited it from his late uncle. My changes were: Adjusted reinforcement rod to flatten fretboard, added 1/16 inch cardboard shim under the end of the neck heel to pitch the neck properly and drop the string height at high frets. Removed tune-o-matic bridge, filled the post holes with wood dough, re-drilled both post holes 1/8" downward (low E string was off the fretboard at high frets), and 1/8" toward the neck for the high string post only (to get sharper intonation for high-E string). Replaced open tuners with Gotoh closed tuners. Spray-cleaned switches and pots. It plays and sounds great now. It was perfectly horrible before. It was fun to fix it. Only one problem left, the neck wood is some old low-density stuff, and it bends with the slightest hand pull, shifting the string pitch like a vibrato arm. I will probably leave it like this until the guy learns to play, then encourage him to get a Fender or Gibson. I could put on a Fender Maple neck, but then it wouldn't be original anymore.
- sparky2 - 2015-02-26
Please see my last comment about the 802H. Now, about the H15. My dad started me on a 1956 Martin 0018 that he bought my mother for Christmas that year. He said he would buy me an electric guitar if I would learn to play on the Martin. I looked at the Sears catalog every day and dreamed that he would buy me a Harmony H15. After 3 months of lessons and my Dad's instructions, I was playing almost any rock or country song that existed in 1965. He bought me the Harmony / Silvertone Jupiter and an Alamo amp with two 8 inch Utah speakers. After playing all summer with my cousin and friends and playing in the middle school folk band, he traded the Harmony up to the Fender Mustang in January 1966. The rest is history. I am now a retired Electrical Engineer and still an absolute music nut. Starting on a cheap Harmony or Kent guitar is not a bad thing. Chet Atkins said at one of his concerts I saw that he started on a Silvertone (Harmony) like everyone else. Just play!!
- Whitenacho - 2016-07-12
I picked up my 64 Bobkat on EBay about a year ago it's the red burst with tortoise shell pick guard it also has transparent amber control knobs. Besides being super cool the thing I like most about it is how dirty it can sound. I play rock and roll and this thing really sounds trampy sexy. Unfortunately I didn't pay $75 for mine.