The Kramer Pacer History

Prelude: In 1980-81, Kramer was in rough financial shape. Sales for the aluminum necked guitars were dwindling. The times were indeed changing. Kramer needed to reorganize. The turning point of the Kramer lines to change to wooden necked guitars were indeed highly influenced by Guitar Centers who was major investor and GC also had a significant amount of involvement in on the new designs. The first products of the new line up consisted of three guitars and one bass. The Pacer(Strat-style), Vanguard(V), Voyager(Explorer) and the Pioneer bass which was also based on Fender P & J bass designs. This page is dedicated to the Pacer and some of the finer details surrounding the guitar from it's first appearance in 1981 to it's demise with the Kramer company in 1990.

Early Strat Head
Classic Headstock
"Banana or Hockey Stick"
Lasido Made Hockey-stick
Block Logo Pointy Head
Big K small r Pointy Head
Reverse-Bound Pointy
Very Late Model Classic

Rather than focus only on a year by year basis, This guide also will follow the different models under the Pacer name. Also it may be simplier to trace the dating of the line through it's different headstock designs as a starting point. With this in mind, here is a list of the different headstocks to serve as a reference. Serial numbers are also included.

1981-82 Strat copy headstocks (A8000s-B2000)
1982-84 "Classic" headstocks (B2000s-C5000s)
1984-late 85 "banana" or "hockeystick' headstocks (C5000s-E2000s)
1985-86 "Custom Shop" numbers (XXXX-XXXXX)
1986-90 "pointy droopy" headstocks(E2000s-G series)
1990-"hockey stick" heads again (these were sold as NOS parts at the close
out and mostly never associated with a serial number or neckplate).

Pacer Imperial (2 hums) 1981-1989
Pacer Special (1 hum) 1981-1985
Pacer Custom (mach 1)(2 hums) 1981-82
Pacer Standard (1 hum) 1981-82
Pacer Carrera (2 hums black) 1982-1986
"The Pacer" (SSS) 1982-1985
Pacer Deluxe (HSS) 1983-1987
Pacer Custom I (slantH-SS)1987-1989
Pacer Custom II (HSS)1987-1989

It is also important to remember that the shapes of necks, bodies, pickups etc. changed without warning throughout the evolution of the line. Kramer was very inconsistent in it's manufacturing as well as employing a number of outside providers making every guitar unique. I will try to note the major changes and try to pinpoint the approximate dates of the change as they unfold.

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