The Stolen Broadcaster Guitar

Fender Broadcaster Guitar
Dave Bunker
Dave Bunker


In 1962 I brought my guitar ideas to Leo Fender at a Chicago NAMM Show hosted by my friend Irby Mandrell, father of 10-year-old Barbara, later to become the famous country music star. (Shown in a photo taken at the Namm Show in front of her three neck guitar.)

Because of those early designs, I became an associate of Leo Fender over the next decade.

On this day, I had traveled from my home in Seattle and was demonstrating my newly patented DuoLectar, today popularly known as the Dave Bunker “Touch Guitar.” I was displaying its new hex single-coil pickup technology in the Mosrite/Standell Guitar/Amplifier booth. Also featured in the booth were Chet Atkins, Joe Maphis, and ten-year-old Barbara Mandrell.

This new instrument was the first DuoLectar. It was historical and the very beginning of the era of Touch Guitar/tapping performers. Leo Fender offered me $20,000 for the rights to my upcoming individual string control instruments. I politely declined his generous offer.

Dave Bunker with DuoLectar

Several years earlier, at Olympic Music Store in Olympia, Washington, I purchased the 3rd Broadcaster ever manufactured, the predecessor to the Telecaster made by Fender. Several years later, it was stolen by a student of mine who I was teaching in Puyallup, Washington.

I was never able to find where that Broadcaster was taken. Today it would be worth a fortune. True story.

Dave Bunker

Dave Bunker

Dave has been building guitars for more than 60 years. He has introduced many innovations that are now considered features of the finest, custom-made instruments.

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