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About beenawhile

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  1. Took another look. Yes, there are black strips that look like cloth, about 1.5-2" wide, on the inside of the sides. They are spaced every 8in or so. As for the headstock, I can't detect any real change in thickness. But it is interesting. I noted earlier that if there was an A before the stamped number on mine, it would indicate an early 1952 (last FON issued in 1951 was A 9420; last FON in 1952 was A 12460). And if the cloth strips and tapered neck were phased out during that year, it suggests that mine might be a '52 caught in a transition. Thanks to everyone for the help! Much appreciated. Steve
  2. And yes, there is a space between the 1st 4 digits and the final two: 9xxx 2x But I think that FON was being using in 1918???. It is true the first digit (9) is hard to make out, but I can imagine any other letter or number that would look like what I see.
  3. Ran home after work to count the frets....19 it is, so I will take it that is in the 50-55 range. That alone is very helpful. I tried to read the pot numbers, but didn't have access to the whole string of digits. I'd like to see some images of the headstock taper changes. Not sure I have a good idea in my head what that should look like?
  4. But wouldn't a late 60s model have a stamp on paper and/or imprinted on the back of the headstock? Mine has neither. Thanks!
  5. Great tips on the frets and headstock - I will check those out this afternoon. If I could narrow it down to pre/post 55 it would help a ton. I have looked hard at the stamped numbers - there a little faded, but I am pretty sure I am reading them correctly. From what I read, a FON of 9718 20 doesn't fit the model. If there was an 'A' before the 9718, it might suggest 1952. Thanks for the help.
  6. Greetings, I have a nice vintage ES125 that I would like to date. It has an ink-stamped serial on bare wood inside the body, visible from one of the fholes. The number is 971820 and does not seem to fit any of the serial conventions that I have read about. Other clues include: P90 w/ adjustable poles, headstock with no imprinted stamp on the back, dot inlays.... Thanks to whoever can unravel the mystery for me.
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