Late 60's Teisco R2

I've written a lot about Teiscos and Mosrite copies and inspired guitars so this one should be no surprise to any of you. This one definitely falls in the Mosrite inspired category as it shares very little with an actual Mosrite, except of course the aesthetic.

Teisco was no stranger to Mosrite inspired guitars and this offset "the wrong way" became very popular in Japan during the mid to late sixties. This shape was introduced by Teisco in late '67 and came in a few different models introduced after the Kawai takeover. This one here is the first version with the great square pole piece pickups. Later Teisco branded (Kawai made) ones had top mounted more gold foil style pickups and very few had the bar magnet style as used on the similar V2.

The RS was the simple, small body version of this shape. It has a "contour" to give a German carve feel and is actually closer to a Mosrite Combo/Joe Maphis shape than a Ventures which is commonly referred to. The V2 was the slightly more upmarket model with a thicker body and carve top and back. The V2 (more on them later) also had a bound headstock and trussrod adjustment at the headstock end.

This simple little R2 was available in guitar or bass (BR1 and BR2 for pickups respectively) versions until the early seventies. The V2 was also available as a guitar or two pickup bass version in the BL2 as was the Vamper.


The neck is multi laminated maple as used by many Kawai made guitars of the time with a rosewood fretboard. This method had been adopted after Kawai bought out Shinko Gakki in '66 which was the factory that made Pleasant guitars this way. It's a 24.75" scale thin neck with a zero fret which was common on many Kawai made guitars at the time.

The pickups are the great square pole piece Teisco units probably left over from the takeover as many Kawai made Teiscos around this time used them and then phased out. I've mentioned before how much I love these pickups for their output and response.


The bridge is the simple, entry level non intonatable roller version and the vibrato is the very common Teisco unit based on the Mosrite design. Controls are simple with a three way toggle and master volume and tone. Everything here is original and works great. The chrome, especially on the pickups has corrosion and flaking but everything works fine and the rest of the guitar is in great condition and plays well.


This shape, apart from being offered in the V2 was also offered in the very upmarket Vamper and EV-52T versions. The Vamper was a bigger version of this shape in hollow body with proper German carve and binding with fully bound and blocked fretboard with headstock binding. The EV-52T was the same as the Vamper WITH onboard electronics and sliders for controls. These were both VERY nice instruments and share little with these cheaper versions except the approximate body shape.

While these little entry level Teiscos are cool guitars, like their Guyatone counterparts, were Mosrite inspired aimed squarely at the entry level player who loved this shape. They share none of the quality or sound with an actual Mosrite but are very cool in their own right. Solid and well made with good pickups, these can still very much be used as gigging and recording guitars if looked after properly. I would suggest an adjustable bridge if you're going to record with one but they're nice to play and sound great. 


I have a few of these (yeah, I know .... my stoopid Mosrite obsession) so a few of these may end up in the shop soon. This one will be there this week for anyone interested.


Apr 26 2018 Written By: Tim Brennan