When Def Leppard first embarked on their career Steve Clark would be seen live on stage most frequently with a white Hamer Standard, a Hamer Special, a Gibson Les Paul Standard and a Gibson Les Paul Deluxe.

The Hamer Standard’s style and design bears resemblance to the Gibson Explorer.

It’s a 1979 model with matching white body and headstock. Both the body and neck are handcrafted from Honduras mahogany but has no maple top like many of the other stock Hamer’s had and it’s also unusual in that it has no body binding. The neck consisting of 22 frets, a rosewood fingerboard and mother-of-pearl dot inlay’s. The headstock would most likely be fitted with Grover tuners. (During mid-to-late ’79 Hamer changed the Grover tuners to Schallers).

Steve’s Standard was fitted with two DiMarzio PAF Humbuckers, wound to Hamer’s specifications, a three-way selector switch, two tone and one volume control and an adjustable bridge and tailpiece.

The Hamer Special was introduced in 1980. This guitar features a double-cutaway unbound mahogany body with a flamed maple flat top. Like the Standard the Special featured a mahogany neck, rosewood fingerboard with 22 frets and a headstock with 3 pegs to a side.

Hardware consisted of two Di Marzio PAF humbuckers (a zebra for the neck and cream for the bridge), a Sustain Block bridge, Schaller tuners (although Steve may well have had his fitted with Grovers) and the selector switch and tone and volume controls. Steve’s Special is finished in Sunburst.

The Gibson Les Paul Standard, pictured in the photo on the right, was initially a factory spec. Gibson. This guitar features a lovely vintage sunburst finish and has a three-piece top as was more common in the late 70’s and early 80’s. Steve at some point in the High’n’ Dry era made a couple of modifications to the guitar. These would be changing the tuners on the headstock to chrome-plated Grovers and removing the pickup covers to expose the coils or switching out the pickups altogether. The Les Paul Standard would go on tour with Steve again later for the Pyromania World Tour.

Steve’s Cherry Sunburst Gibson Les Paul Deluxe was also a factory spec. Gibson when Steve first took ownership of it, equipped with the mini-humbucker pickups. By the time it went on the road with Steve for the High ‘n’ Dry tour the pickups had be switched to full sized Seymour Duncan ’59’s. This guitar also appeared occasionally later on the Pyromania tour.

Photo copyright: Ross Halfin and Alan Perry with kind permission.

Steve Clark with Gibson Les Paul Standard