2012 Small Jazz Guitars – Hagstrom

Hagstrom GuitarWe Americans tend to associate imported guitars with countries across the Pacific. But there are guitar companies on the other side of the Atlantic too. This post is about Hagstrom guitars. They currently have a nice looking collection of Jazz Boxes. These are all mid-range in price.

I had to email the company to verify that these meet the specifications I’ve arbitrarily set for “small” jazz guitar. I received a prompt reply that all these guitars have a lower bout dimension of 15 3/4″.

Here are the other specifications that are shared by all the Jazz line models.

  • Resinator™ Fingerboard, 15″ radius. Peal block inlays for position markers. The fingerboard is made from a wood composite. 1
  • 24 3/4″ Scale length (except for the HL-800).
  • A Tusq nut by Graphtech. Another synthetic material which is often used on electric guitars. 43 mm width (~ 1 11/16″).
  • Ebony bridge except (except on the HL-800).
  • Trapeze tailpiece.

HJ-500

The body, top and neck are all maple on this guitar. The product literature doesn’t specify whether this is laminated or carved maple. The guitar has two surface mounted humbucker pickups. The estimated online price is $850.

Image links to product page at Musician’s Friend.
Hagstrom Jazz Model Hj-500 Semi-Hollow Electric Guitar Natural

HL-550

This guitar is all laminated mahogany. That includes a mahogany neck. It has a single mini-floating humbucker pickup. The estimated price is $850, the same as the HJ-500. (Note that this model number begins with H L. All the other Jazz models begin with HJ).
Image links to product page at Music123

HJ-600

The HJ-600 has a laminated spruce top with laminated flamed maple back and sides. The neck is maple. There are two surface mounted humbucker pickups. The estimated price is $880.

Image links to product page at Musician’s Friend.
Hagstrom Jazz Model Hj-600 Semi-Hollow Electric Guitar
HJ-800

This is the one model which is not like the others. The scale length is 25″ instead of 24 3/4″. The top is made from solid carved spruce. The neck joins the body at the 16th fret (like a Les Paul) not the 14th like most Jazz boxes. 2 The bridge is made from the same Resinator™ material used for the fingerboard (instead of ebony as on other models). Other specifications are similar to the other guitars in the Jazz series.

I could not find this guitar from Music123 or Musician’s Friend, even though they sell the other guitars in this series. However, I did find the guitar online at Best buy. The price seems to be not very different from any of the other guitars. That is, all are currently available online for between about $800 and $900 USD.

Image links to product page at Best Buy.

Hagstrom Vintage Series Jazz 6-String Full-Size Electric Guitar - Vintage SunburstHJ-800

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Footnotes

  1. Other guitar makers are also experimenting with alternate materials. Martin uses a substance called Micarta for fingerboards on some models.
  2. Hofner jazz guitars also have necks that join the body at the 16th fret.

2 comments

    1. The small image at the bottom of the post is the HJ-800. I couldn’t find a decent larger image that showed the guitar (that is one where the copyright allowed me to share the image). But the neck does not join at the 14th fret. Try this link to the Hagstrom site for HJ-800. You can see more clearly how it joins at the 16th fret.

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