MARLIN guitars

Electric guitars (1)

Parent brand: 

product types: 

  • acoustic guitars
  • bass guitars
  • electric guitars


Marlin was a guitar brand used in 1975 by the Eaton's mail order catalog in Canada.The Marlin brand was later used by British Music Strings Ltd in the 1980s on a range of Korean made electrics and acoustics. The Marlin sidewinder was the best selling guitar in the UK from 1986 to 1988 - its secret was acceptable quality at a low price. BMS owner George Ozstreich was the pioneer of importing Korean made guitars into the UK. The Marlin guitars supremacy did not last however as other manufacturers like Fender switched production of their budget brands to Korean factories.

Marlin guitars and basses are instantly recognisable by their Marlin fish shaped inlay at the 12th fret.

Source: Eaton's catalog 1975


Marlin SH505 Acoustic Dreadnought

The Marlin SH505 is a copy of the Martin D28. Mine was made in Japan so it must pre-date the Korean manufacture. I bought it second hand in Hull in 1978.


Bought a Marlin acoustic

Bought a Marlin acoustic which sounds like your SH505 from a pawn shop in 78 as I missed playing because I joined the navy. Kept it behind my sleep rack. That guitar has been to every corner of the earth with me. I still have it and it hangs on a wall in my den lots of sentimental value. Don’t know if it’s worth having the action worked on though. It wasn’t a high end guitar to begin with

Marlin sh505

My Marlin is now over 45 years old, and MIJ. Its timbre is great and its the most keepr guitar in my colleciton

Marlin guitars

I have a Marlin acoustic I bought in 1975 from the Eaton's catalog when I was 13 years old.  I still remember the price was $39.95.  The neck has a thin crack in it, up close to the body which I'm sure a good luthier could fix quite easily.  I have it hanging on the wall in my music room as a nice old conversation piece seeing it is no longer playable.  To be honest, I always thought these guitars were pretty much junk, but I'm surprised to see one poster comparing the Marlin to a Martin.  Just curious, are these guitars really worth anything?


I read on a Japanese vintage guitar site that that covers many badges and manufacturers, that some early Marlin "may" have been produced at fuggien gakki ( spelling tch ! ) a well respected company, I have a white Marlin acoustic which plays ok..