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1965 Southern Jumbo - is it a (very good) fake?

#1 User is offline   lake_marie 

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Posted 05 March 2019 - 04:53 AM

Howdy,
I have a '65 Southern Jumbo that I bought from GC Hollywood (the "Vintage Room") back in 2013. It plays beautifully. As you'd expect from an instrument with such a long story, it has its idiosyncrasies, but man can it hold a note!


I had a local musician/fellow acoustic enthusiast take a look at it last week and he's convinced it's a fake. He was most concerned by the logo (I can't see the problem), the truss rod cover and the bridge pin (which might be aftermarket, but I really don't see the significance). His guess was that the guitar is "most likely Indonesian".

I'm completely stumped. I'm no expert, but the guitar seems consistent with the info I can find online. It also seems unlikely that such a reputable vintage dealer would pass it off as authentic if it wasn't. That being said, he has worked in some fine guitar stores in his time, and owned a number of quality instruments, so it's hard to disregard his judgement completely without some more qualified opinions.

I've attached two pics - I tried to post more, but seem to be limited as I'm a new member (fair enough). For what it's worth, the serial number is 316490 (though I know these are easily replicated).

Thanks so much for your help.
blob:https://imgur.com/83139457-e067-824e-b06c-820e84367281
blob:https://imgur.com/83139457-e067-824e-b06c-820e84367281

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#2 User is offline   ksdaddy 

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Posted 05 March 2019 - 06:05 AM

Here's my '64. I can't say I've ever seen a finish like yours on a mid 60s model. I've seen faded cherry sunbursts on J-45s but not square shoulder models.

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#3 User is offline   OldCowboy 

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Posted 05 March 2019 - 08:14 AM

So you have a replacement TRC and bridge pins. Means virtually nothing. The possibility of an older refin or variation in the original finish is not unlikely. Remember, consistency and Gibson have never been synonymous. Structural details might be telling, one way or another, but without hands-on examination or VERY detailed photos, that's a difficult call. Personally, I'd just continue to play and enjoy.
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#4 User is offline   lake_marie 

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Posted 06 March 2019 - 02:40 AM

That's a beautiful finish there, ksdaddy. I've seen a couple of 65s with the cherry finish online, like this one here on Reverb. Mine is pretty similar - although the light when I took the photos last night wasn't the most flattering.
Good points, OldCowboy. I have a DSLR and will take some more detailed pics.
I think the fake logo claim is what surprises me most. It looks perfectly normal to me - not even any evidence of a retouch. Thoughts?

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#5 User is offline   Dave F 

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Posted 06 March 2019 - 08:36 AM

No red flags for me. This doesn’t seem to be the kind of guitar counterfeiters go after.
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#6 User is offline   j45nick 

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Posted 07 March 2019 - 03:19 PM

View PostDave F, on 06 March 2019 - 08:36 AM, said:

No red flags for me. This doesn’t seem to be the kind of guitar counterfeiters go after.



What he said.

Removable bits, like trussrod covers, pins, and tuners, are often changed over the years. Any sign of the remains of a label inside, or a patch of glue where a label might have been?

There should be a six-digit serial number embossed on the back of the headstock. Give us that, and we can at least confirm the serial number seems correct for the period.
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#7 User is offline   lake_marie 

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Posted 13 March 2019 - 05:21 AM

The serial number is 316940, which seems to be consistent with the year 1965 according to this link (and a couple others).
No sign of a patch, but the letters "SJ" (from what I can make out) are stamped on the inside of the body.
I've taken out the DSLR and put some detailed pictures in this Google Drive folder here. Do these shed any more light on its authenticity?
Thanks again.

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#8 User is offline   ksdaddy 

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Posted 13 March 2019 - 06:33 AM

I don't think I've ever seen a label inside a 60s SJ. The Country Western model, yes, which was nothing more than a natural topped SJ. Mine just has SJ rubber stamped like you might see J45.

There's absolutely nothing in those photos that would hint at it being anything less than 100% real 60s Gibson. The tuners have been changed but big deal. They look great and they used the stock holes.

The light sunburst threw me off but upon googling it, sunbursts were all over the place (imagine that).

Rock on.
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