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Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Maruha/F. Hashimoto Guitars

In investigating the Maruha badge, this is what I've found thus far:

Long ago in the 1960's in Japan was a small company known as Maruha Gakki (maybe).  Maruha made badged acoustic, archtop and parlor guitars (which are REALLY nice with great pearl inlays!).



Maruha parlor guitar...sweet!

 Jedistar quotes another source that says these guitars were made by another company:  Gakki Seizo.  I've not been able to figure out if Maruha Gakki really existed or if Maruha guitars were in fact, produced by Gakki Seizo which DOES exist.  It looks like the run they had was through the 1970's and some Maruha guitars were badged F. Hashimoto... although who he was or if it was just a name they picked is a mystery.  The F. Hashimoto badges seem to be valued by blues and folk players for the guitar's sound quality and are more valuable than the Maruha.  Here's a few examples:



Maruha cherryburst from Japan


Check out the scroll label...


Maruha Archtop


F. Hashimoto


F. Hashimoto


7 comments:

  1. Looking at Japanese sites, allowing for poor transation, specs on my F100M was spruce top and mahogany sides and back, all plywood construction. Obviously a Martin copy, but it has more of a Guild sound (another often plywood constructed guitar). I've read that the guitars had both maple or mahogany, so aren't sure. Sound is very gentle, very sweet bass, highs very Martin'ish. Mine is in excellent condition and is an early 70s model, so I would have to say that construction quality is superb. The thin neck reminded me of an old Epiphone Texan, which is what attracted me to it, and it's tone is closer to Gibson or Guild than Martin.

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  2. I just found a F. Hashimoto W315 in mint condition. All I had to do was to lower the action to my taste (some neck and saddle adjustment), now it plays like a charm. This W315 doesn't carry any stamp inside, while my W350 has the stamps. It isn't ornated: simple features, even no dots on the side of the neck. The W315 is plywood all over ( but high quality plywood), spruce top (beautifull grain), mohagony back and sides (dense nervature, quality wood). The X - brace crossing is covered with cloth to enhance stability. After nearly 40 years the construction is still impeccable. Soundwise, it has the typical mohagony sound, and good sustain. No dead spots higher up the neck. Lots of joy playing it. Neck profile is more D - like, while the W350 has a stronger V - neck profile. The W315 is easier on my hands. For piceters please view:
    http://s232.photobucket.com/albums/ee127/Laserpuls/Hashimoto%20W315/

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  3. There is one for sale currently on Guitar Museum
    Ben

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  4. I picked up a Maruha D18 copy about 10 years back. Paid $85 at a used instrument store. It sounded great but the low E buzzed on a high fret (7th or 8th). I found a way to fix that. Great little guitar.

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  5. I have a Maruha FB320
    Can any one tell m,e what it would be worth

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  6. Maruha Instrument Manufacturing Limited produced the Hashimoto Guitars. Maruha is closed now but, was located in the city of Kurume, Fukuoka Prefecture. Mr Hashimoto was an avid guitarist and also known as a decorated military man. It is said he designed a fighter plane during the Second World War according to the research I have come across on Japanese websites.

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  7. I found a w330 at a yard sale and paid $40 cdn. This guitar, in my humble opinion, has it all - looks, playability, and sound. It's a fabulous instrument. I only wish that I could learn more about F. Hashimoto and perhaps the true value

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