Dating fender precision
The assets of Kay/Valco were auctioned off in 1969.
The upright bass and cello lines were sold to Engelhardt-Link, a new company formed by a previous Valco member, which has continued production (see #Kay basses for details).
They also sell the Chicago Blues line of inexpensive harmonicas.
One of the best known Kay electric guitars during the 1950s was the K-161 "Thin Twin", most visibly used by blues artist Jimmy Reed.
These pickups appeared on Kay instruments through the late 1960s and are sometimes called “Kessel” or “Kleenex Box” pickups.
The Jazz Special Bass has a single blade pickup as used on the K-161 and K-162 (tilted slightly towards the neck at the treble side), as well as a distinctive, oversized headstock.
These instruments featured a flat top with no f-holes, a free-floating arched back, and two braces running along the top.
The result was a semi-acoustic instrument that was feedback-resistant while retaining natural acoustic resonances.
However, the Kuhrmeyer-owned Stromberg-Voisinet brand had produced the Stromberg Electro even earlier, in 1928, making the short-lived model arguably the first commercial electric guitar.
Also in 1952, Kay introduced the matching K-162 "Electronic" Bass, which was the first commercially available thinline-hollowbody electric bass guitar, and the second production electric bass guitar after the Fender Precision Bass debuted in 1951.
Due to the use of K-162 by a bassist of Howlin' Wolf, Andrew "Blueblood" Mc Mahon, it is commonly known as the "Howlin Wolf" bass.
Gold models had single coil pickups with clear silver plastic covers and phillips head bolt adjustable pole pieces.
The Upbeat model came with an optional transparent black plastic cover.