Kirk Hammett's iconic glow-in-the-dark Ouija Board ESP KH-2 is up for auction

Kirk Hammett KH-2 Ouija Auction
(Image credit: Gotta Have Rock And Roll)

One of Kirk Hammett’s most extensively played ESP signature electric guitars is up for auction. The KH-2 in black with Ouija Board graphics was the Metallica lead guitarist's number one guitar for a number of years, and the iconic S-Style is expected to fetch up to $350,000.

Hammett first started using the KH-2 with the glow-in-the-dark Ouija Board graphics on the Black Album, and kept it with him right through to Metallica’s S+M era.

The Ouija Board guitar, which is signed and annotated by Hammett in gold marker, is a remarkable piece of heavy metal history. It is also a triumph for the ESP Custom Shop Japan. 

To apply the finish, luthiers used the original Hasbro board game for reference, and using a copy machine and a pair of scissors they positioned the artwork on the body. 

Under the lights it looked incredible, and it paved the way for a number of Hammett’s custom graphic KH models. Indeed, ESP reissued a limited edition KH-2 Ouija in Purple and Red Sparkle finishes in 2019.

Tone-wise, you know what you are getting. You’ve seen it on stage. You have heard it on record. It has a maple neck-through build, alder body, active EMG humbuckers and a double-locking Floyd Rose vibrato. It will be interesting to play this guitar, as Hammett is not your typical shredder; he likes his action a little higher and typically uses a set of 11s once he is into the groove on tour. 

From the pictures, this guitar is in pretty good condition, which is remarkable given how many road miles are on it. 

Also included is a signed, stage-worn strap, the original hard case, and other bits of memorabilia such as photographs of Hammett signing the back of the guitar.

Bidding starts at $250,000 and opens tomorrow, 14 April 2020. Head on over to Gotta Have Rock And Roll for more details. The listing comes just a couple of days after Hammett's ESP 400 series S-Style was sold for $112,500 / £82,000. Hammett had most famously used it for the One promo video. 

If all this is a little steep for your liking, you could always go for an LTD KH-202, one of the most affordable options in Hammett's signature guitar series.

Jonathan Horsley

Jonathan Horsley has been writing about guitars and guitar culture since 2005, playing them since 1990, and regularly contributes to MusicRadar, Total Guitar and Guitar World. He uses Jazz III nylon picks, 10s during the week, 9s at the weekend, and shamefully still struggles with rhythm figure one of Van Halen’s Panama.