Washburn HM-20V

Washburn HM-20V

Guitar Gavel Lick Of The Week with Stevie K - Double Stop Fun

Steve gets down to business, how to use dyads to create harmony moves and add texture. Embellish with hammer-ons and pull-offs for an extra voicing layer.

It's like free bacon on a cheeseburger. Thanks for the clinic Steve!

The Washburn brand goes back to 1863 when founders George Washburn Lyon and Joseph Patrick Healy opened a retail music store in Chicago.

Twenty years later the duo decided to manufacture guitars and the line-up included mandolins, banjos, zithers, and ukuleles.

Some of their "presentation" grade parlor guitars, highly ornate and decorative, were of the most expensive of the late 1880s.

By 1889, Washburn was also the largest mandolin maker in America.

Like most guitar companies from 100+ years ago there were many iterations of ownership and brand name transfers. The Washburn brand as we know it today was resurrected in the early 1970s and really put on the map in 1978.

1978 was the first year Washburn produced electric guitars and it did well with the Wing series body style (played by Bob Marley, Nancy Wilson & John Fogerty).

In the mid 1980s Washburn jumped on the super strat and pointy guitar bandwagon with their Stage and Tour series of guitars.

One of those Tour models was the exceptionally sharp HM-20V with dual humbuckers and its cousin the HM-5V with an HSS configuration.

There was also a very rare one-off that wasn’t cataloged, the HM-80 which is essentially the same as the HM-20V but it has a hockey block headstock. If you dig way deep into Washburn forums it appears the HM-80 was potentially the prototype for the HM-20V or Washburn didn’t follow through with a full production run. While they exist, an HM-80 rarely comes up for sale.

If it can be said this guitar was ever famous, it’s because the HM-80 can be seen in Robert Palmer’s video “Addicted to Love”.

Washburn HM-20V specs:
Ash Body
Maple top
Ebony fretboard
Sharkfin inlays
Washburn Power Sustain humbuckers
Washburn “Wonderbar” tremolo


Great gavel! Wow, you could poke someone’s eye out with thought thing!

Pierre Moatti

Great sound & btw what is the tuning?

Frederick R Shellman Jr

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