H44 - Stratotone|
Electric solid body - Copper
Production year(s) : 1952-1957 (other years possible, not verified)
1 pickup - "Neck-through" construction : one piece of wood from head to tailpiece, and two added "ears" to form the body.
115 images in database
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|Body depth||1"3/4||43 mm|
|Neck at nut||1"3/4||44.6 mm|
|Neck at 12th||2"1/4||55.8 mm|
26 comments | Add your comment !
- Jedson - 2006-04-19
Have one H44 from -53, best sounding bluesguitar I played !
- Phantom Jazz - 2006-04-20
Man, these H-44 Harmonies are so great. i ahve a gold finished all orignal, made for Silvertone name by harmony. The exact same as the one above. It has the thicest blues tones around and it just has character that many of my handmade guitars just wish they had. Through a vinatge tube amp, it doesn't get better. Plus it is solid as a rock with the neck trhough construction. It isn't a d'Angelico but it wasn't built as one. I actually do love it to play solo Jazz tunes for myself. It is so fun to play and i love the big neck. The DeArmond PU is the ticket. I only use Rhythm Chiefs on my archtops and in this guitar the mounte PU is unmatched by other Pu I have had. These are rare and fetch a pretty price now and i can see why. It is resonant and just a great old guitar.
- Dave C. - 2006-11-03
I have a harmony H-44. I originally bought as a teenager. The copper paint started to change color with sweat and the paint scratched very easily. Soooo I painted it with a 1965 oldsmobile aqua colored paint and in the 70s I painted it white otherwise everything else is original.
Shame on me for painting it I understand it might be worth something today.
- rok n rol - 2006-12-15
Could someone clear up for me what Harmony's connection to Silvertone is and what "Stratotone" is or stands for? thanks a lot.
- - 2006-12-26
Everything was rocket, stratospheric, meteor, space-related in the fifties... So I guess Stratotone means nothing more than strato(spheric) tone... It's interesting to note that Harmony invented this name and sold the H44 (1952) before the Fender Statocaster (1954), so they did not copy the name as we read from time to time. But Fender may have been inspired by the Stratotone...
Silvertone was a brand name for guitars sold in the Sears & Roebuck catalog, since 1941. Harmony made many of the Silvertone guitars, but not all of them. Kay also made many Silvertone's.
- Jason Gutierrez (Jimi Hairless) maintainband.com - 2006-12-28
I will always associate this guitar with Richie Valens. The H-44 Stratotone was probably his first electric guitar. He painted his green in his school woodshop and recorded all of his early demos and probably most of his songs with that guitar. I have an original copper one that definitely has that Richie sound. A very hip guitar with a big natural woody tone!
- durite - 2007-07-24
i recently dicovered the treasure i have,, it belonged to my dad,, it is copper just like the photos,, i would like to refinish it for him,,, where would i find the correct paint???He bought it when he was 16,, he played it for several years in the FFA band in high schooll and several in the early 70's. i would like to put it back in mint condition for him..he will be 62 in Jan,, it would make a great b'day present.
- Shufflin - 2008-01-01
durite, don't refinish that old guitar! It has more value in original condition. The wear and patina gives it irreplaceable character. New is not better!
- sensory77 - 2008-03-24
Hello can anyone tell me where to find the serial on my H44? In addition my H44 only says harmony with no stratotone logo is this an older model possibly more rare? ANY HELP WOULD BE APPRECIATED!
- - 2008-04-08
Sensory, yes, we saw some very early models (1952) without the usual logo, only wearing the Harmony name.
- Sensory77 - 2008-04-13
Wow thanks a ton for the info! ill take some picks and send em over soon as i get it back from the shop having a pickguard fabricated other than that she is all original! the tone is outta sight! regards!
- HARMONYCAT - 2008-05-19
It took me 2 years,but I finally snagged one on these beauties off of EBAY.I thought I paid too much for it,but when I heard the great,woody,bluesy tone thru my '70 Fender Champ amp,I knew I did no wrong.
I hear that Tom Waits is playing these now.I am thankful to have got it before the price goes up more. Mine was played hard by the prev.owner,a blues cat from the Midwest. The pickguard is broken and cracked and it's missing a knob,but it sounds fantastic. It needs no pedals or anything to improve it's tone. It is just right,going into a slightly overdriven amp.
It is the crown jewel of my Harmony collection alongside the H-76 I own.
- Gladys - 2008-05-30
Beautiful Guitar, No wonder Keith Urban likes to play the one he has like this.
- jim - 2008-06-18
I have had a mystery guitar in its original case passed onto me from my grandpa and could never figure out what the heck it was... a reapintes solid black solid piece of wood with a baseball bat for a neck, a 50's style tele bridge on it and an old gretsch pickup... the thing sounds amazing but looks like a bus hit it... basically its a vintage frankenstein.
Last night i saw Tom Waits in concert and almost crapped myself when he pulled one of these babies out onstage... with a little research i found i had an H44. lo and behold!
- PhlegmSerpent - 2008-08-12
I have an H44 date stamped F-52 under the pickguard, and without the stratotone name or atomic logo, but instead a cursive-style "Harmony" written on the headstock. It also has a metal jackplate that looks original, and the neck is very fat but tapers sharply under the first three frets which is a different profile than the few other H44s I've seen. This must be one of the first H44's and confirms that they were made in 1952. More than the tone, which is nice, I love the feel of playing this guitar due to its short length, extreme lightweight, tiny body, and monster neck... something about all that comes together to make playing this FUN.
- Andy Russell - 2008-11-08
I have a copper colored 1953 harmony h-44 stratotone.my dad bought it new when i was first born.it plays like new.it has discoloration from wear.best thing about it is when people see it they say "wow ,where did you find one of those?"if it wasn't for that h-44 and my dad, i would probably had never learned to play a guitar
- Eric K - 2009-04-25
I just bought an H44. The pickup is slightly different than what I am seeing in the photos. Instead of a smooth chrome bar, it has two pair of paralell slotted depressions. Looking at the soldering and the rivets, it looks original. July, '57 is stamped on the backside. Does anybody know why these are different?
- email@example.com - 2009-04-30
have a 53 h44 and absoluetly in love with it has a amp and gold case which came with it. I have had it since 1969!! jonny
- firstname.lastname@example.org - 2009-10-04
Just bought a 1953 H-44 (copper) from a guy for $50. It came with a great looking case, it was like new. In 1960 , this guys father (it was his father's guitar) had decided to add a "DeArmond" pick up. So basically.for $50, if I "part out" the case and pickup I could make some bucks.
I did not. Left it like it was-restung it,took the thing to a gig tonight. I played it the entire 2nd set. The bass player, who had laughed at the "monster", was so suprized on how great this guitar soounds . I am looking to find another one, if someone wants to part with 1 sendme a note. I may want to purchase if the neck is straight. This a neck like a Lousiville Slugger, or a boat paddle. I liked it very much, recieved a lot of looks and compliments on its tone. I was running through and old Marshall, it was very nice.
- Scott - 2014-07-29
I have the Silvertone version of the H44. It was my Dad's and it was white and has a black pick guard. The head stock is still painted white with the black painted Silvertone logo but I stripped the white paint off the body in the 1970's. My Mom ordered the guitar from the catalog for my Dad's birthday. It was only available for one issue of the catalog. I have been looking and I have never seen another but they must have produced a limited number for Sears.
- Scott Mittelstadt - 2014-08-27
I would appreciate it greatly if someone could post the dimensions in detail for the bridge that is unique to the H44. I have been trying to find one but have had no luck and I will have to make one.
- jeff - 2015-08-07
what is the exact pickup in this guitar. i'm trying to find one.
- The Minimalist - 2015-12-01
I have an H44 with the stamp Y12 on the back of the headstock and mine has black tuners. Can anyone tell me what they know about that. All the pics I have seen have no stamp on the back of the headstock and they have white tuners.
- Hillbilly cat - 2015-12-31
Ritchie's original is the first item you see at the Rock n Roll Hall of Fame. Fitting.
- Scooter - 2017-02-07
Can anybody tell me how to date an H44 Stratotone? I can't find a serial number - or maybe just don't know where to look. I know how to date the pots, but also know that those aren't necessarily the date for the guitar. Thanks for any help!
- Kyle Moran - 2017-12-04
I've read a lot about Buddy Holly's first electric guitar before his famous Fender Stratocasters. Most of the books and literature I've read say it was a Les Paul gold top, but I wonder if that's true ? I have seen pictures of Buddy holding a copper H44 and he looked young enough to still be playing country & western with Bob Montgomery in high school... way before he met Ritchie Valens. Plus I figure a gold top back then cost about $280 to $300 at the time, and his Stratocaster would have been about the same or even cheaper, even if he did borrow the money from older brother Larry, he wasn't "Buddy Holly" yet! I have also seen a picture of Buddy & Bob playing on stage, and it looks like Buddy is playing an LP gold top with a trapeze tail piece... so if you ask me Buddy Holly's very "first" electric guitar was a Harmony copper top H44 !! If any one can verify my claim, that would be awesome. Great guitar !