Take one Ash Artist (model 2617), one Randy Scruggs Professional (model 2671), put them into a guitar blender and push the button. What do you get? Answer: a beautiful hybrid guitar... with no name! Well, the good luthiers at Ibanez were nice enough to give it a number. Meet model 2672.
This "natural" beauty is one of Ibanez's best kept secrets and so it certainly deserves to be dubbed a truly rare guitar.
The proud owner of this sterling specimen is player and collector, Harold Wherry. Mr. Wherry has owned over 40 Ibanez guitars (his current collection contains 30 guitars). Yet, this is the only model 2672 he has ever seen.
There's not a lot of published information, but here's the specifications known about this fine guitar (the list price was gleaned from a '77-'78 price list):
This closeup gives you a nice look at the detail of the gold plated bridge and fancy tail piece. This style tail piece is a definite connection to the Randy Scruggs. You'll also remember it from the stunning model 2674 previously showcased in Guitar Tours. Surprisingly, this tail piece found it's way onto a few Les Paul replicas, circa '77-'78...some of these models have half vines on the fingerboard.
The pickups, bridge and tail piece sit on the highest part of the arched ash top. The contour rolls gently down toward the german carve edge, which gives this guitar a "bi-level" look. One of the nicest cosmetic touches is the wide strip of abalone, sandwiched between alternating black and white binding, that runs around the entire perimeter of the top.
The transparent/gold knobs and 3-way toggle are standard issue for dual volume, dual tone, dual humbucker Artists. It's the addition of the mini-toggle switch that tells you there's something different inside the control cavity. This phase switch, connected to the bridge pickup, was one of Ibanez's first ventures into advance circuitry. This was the precursor to the highly successful Tri-sound circuit that first appeared on the model 2619 Artist.
From the back the 2672 looks just like any standard Ash Artist. The symmetrical double-cutaway is a simple and elegant design. The body's figured ash and the neck's maple are a perfect combination. You'll note that this guitar does not have the "smooth-heel" neck joint that typifies solid body Artist guitars from the late '77 through early '79 period.
The headstock of the 2672 is the early "castle" design. This shape eventually found its way onto every Artist solid and semi-hollow body guitar, as well as a few acoustics and even some jazz boxes. At some point, (approx. 1987) the width at the end was narrowed, giving the headstock a more tapered appearance.
Note the script-style Ibanez logo. This logo design was standard on all Ibanezes in the early to mid '70s, but appears to have been in use on some post lawsuit LPs as late as 1978.
The back of the peghead reveals the gold "star" tuners, secured with top and bottom screws, that are common on high-end Ibanez guitars of the period.
Because there is no serial number, it's impossible to calculate the exact year of manufacture for this guitar. But taking into account unique features like: the script-logo, early neck/heel joint and Ibanez embossed pickup covers, it could be as early as 1975. But anything is possible and this model was apparently available in '77-'78 because it was shown on a price list.
Years ago, I received sage advice from an experienced Ibanez collector: "If it's got a vine on the neck, buy it!" Apparently, Harold agrees with the philosophy. The 2672's ebony fretboard is inlaid with the distinctive MOP and abalone vine of life found on all the high-end models in the Professional series.
Maybe you're thinking the same thing I am: "How could such a beautiful guitar fade from the production line-up in just a few short years?" Beats me! But, if this were not the case, we'd never have any guitars that truly rose to the status of "rare."
Ibanez Collectors World is very grateful to Harold for sending these fantastic pictures and giving us a glimpse at the "natural" beauty of the model 2672.
If you have an Ibanez guitar that you feel deserves to be showcased in the Guitar Tours section, drop us an email.