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The ball ends of the strings are mounted in slots right in the bakelite at the rear end of the guitar.
There does not appear to be any serial numbers on it.
So, don't be blended by a shiny set of plated body cover plates.
Look at the body first; check the edges, the frets and the orientation of the plug, then the pick-up size and style and any patent information.
Parts as control knobs, screws and especially tuning machines seem to have been put on these guitars as they came available...A friend of mine just bought an old Rickenbacher off of an old gentleman last week and he is trying to find out what year it was built and what it is worth.As I have no knowledge concerning lap steels I thought I would check here for him.The word is, that the company wanted to set itself apart from it's "German" roots of the name (funny however is, that ol' Adolph Rickenbacher and Beauchamp were both of Swiss background...). But most interestingly, on it's last models, the company returned to the much preferred "string thru the body attach" approach.In the 1950's the logo changed again, to a vertically mounted and spelled arrow shaped logo. There have also been some brownish bakelite models made for a third party company.