Maton Goldline

Some great photos of the rare precursor to the sharkbite Fyrbyrd… the Maton Goldline.

I was going through my guitarnerd hard drive today and came across these photos that I’d saved about a year or so ago. These are from an eBay auction for a rare Maton Goldline, which was kind of Maton’s first or second attempt at the weird/cool solid body guitar, away from the slightly more traditional looking Mastersound. This ebay seller posted some fantastic photos of his guitar, so I saved them and promptly forgot about them until now. They show this rare beast in great detail, and again you will see how forward thinking Maton was back in the late 50’s & early 60’s.

I definitely think that this guitar was the inspiration for Maton’s later Fyrbyrd. The Bigsby-esque sharkbite, along with the sharp upper horn and red pointy scratchplate are very familiar looking, as is the tremolo and bridge.It’s like they combined the Goldline and a Strat and then came up with the Fyrbyrd. I’m taking a wild guess and thinking the name Goldline comes from the fantastic German carve around the edge of the body.

It’s very elegant and nicely done, especially the treatment around the Bigsby.

The headstock is taken from the typical Maton archtops of the time, along with the cool art deco pin striping. I’ve also seen a later version of this guitar with a Flamingo headstock which looks fantastic. There’s one for sale on eBay at the moment for an insane amount of money.

The pickups are the very sweet looking Maton branded models with were also used on a few of their archtops.I’m not sure why Maton stopped using these… they’re a very nice piece of design and would’ve looked fantastic on a Fyrbyrd.

The knobs are unique to this model… I haven’t seen them on later Matons.

The neck join is strange for a Maton. Instead of the curved, sculptured  heal found on the later electrics, here we have a more traditional looking square heel. I’ve heard the necks on these Goldlines are tree trunks.The strap knob placement is strange. My Aunt’s Fender Coronado has the same thing and it’s a pain if you have a thick leather strap.

This guitar ended up selling for around $3,500 which seems to be the value of these as I’ve seen around three go for this price now. While they’re great looking guitars, that’s out of my price range especially with the big neck shape on them.

So there you go… another rare Maton documented in guitarnerd. Hope you enjoyed the photos. If anyone out there has one of these… write in and let us know what you think of your guitar. I’d love to know what they’re like as a live playing instrument.

••• update: Here’s some images of the later Goldline with the Flamingo headstock that I mentioned earlier. I tracked down the auction.

As you can see, it’s also got a Flamingo tremolo, which doesn’t work as well visually as the Bigsby as it look right with the straight edge on the bottom of the guitar. The knobs are straight of the Fyrbyrd.

The pickups are also different, probably the same ones as the later Maton Apollo’s.

But that headstock…looks…AWESOME!

This design is a prime example for a modern version… but with the neck join not so far into the body.

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