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JimR56

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Everything posted by JimR56

  1. Beautiful. I had a 1960 model also (except in sunburst) back in the 1980's. Those are great guitars, and the blond finish adds a nice premium. I'm wondering whether that's some sort of tape residue below the output jack, or a repair...? Also, it looks like the ground wire needs to be re-routed inside the body. Anyway, what an utterly fantastic thing to inherit. You're a lucky person! Enjoy it, and take good care of it. 😎
  2. In order to determine the value, you have to begin by identifying the guitar. Yours appears to be an LG-O model. It happens to be a "low end" model among Gibson's flat-top line, but still a good instrument. The condition looks very nice based on your photos (the finish crackling is called "checking", and is completely normal on vintage guitars). Your serial number was used in both 1966 and 1969. Someone here with more experience with flat-top acoustics may be able to tell you which year is more likely, but I doubt that determining which of those two years it was manufactured will make much if any difference when it comes to its value. Now, for value, you should do the rest of the research yourself. Just go to any auction site (ebay, or for more specific guitar searching, Reverb.com and/or Gbase.com) and search for a 1960's LG-O in nice condition. You can also seek out the websites of vintage guitar dealers (there are dozens of them, just do some searches online) and look for examples of LG-O's like yours, and see how they're priced. Congratulations on inheriting a cool old guitar! Good luck.
  3. Very clean example! Congratulations.
  4. You are correct with your details on the years of manufacture of this family of models. It would appear to me that what you have is a modified (added pickup) 1965 ES-125T. The telltale sign is the odd/unusual placement of the volume and tone knobs for the (presumably added) bridge pickup. Here is the normal placement of knobs on a two-pickup model: Hope this helps. Still a cool old guitar. Does it play well and stay in tune? Hope you are enjoying it!
  5. You're correct regarding the model (Deluxe Zephyr Regent). Deluxe model, "Zephyr" for electric; "Regent" for cutaway. Very nice guitar, and I would say fairly rare. You don't see many with one pickup (I have seen a few others, though). The history is similar with Gibson's ES-350 evolving from a 1-pickup model to a 2-pickup model from the late 1940's to the early 1950's. I'm having a difficult time reading the serial number. If the first two digits are "55", then the guitar dates to 1946. If the first two digits are "56", then it dates to 1947. More info here: http://www.guitarhq.com/epiphone.html#serial I have never owned one of these, and that pickup is unfamiliar to me (but again, I'm seeing them when I do a search). A little more research should clear up any other questions you may have. Hope this helps.
  6. This chart is useful to a point, but it's a bit general and overly simplified. There are more variations, and some of the differences can be subtle. At any rate, the biggest problem with this chart has to do with the logo at middle left ("1933-1947"). Some guitars with this basic logo design featured it in pearl, and some in white silkscreen (painted). Most had it in a horizontal position (no slant), but some did feature a slight slant. This leads me to your L-7, and the fact that your logo is fairly rare and unique. The pearl "slanted script", as it's often referred to only appeared for a short time, with 1947 being the year it was most used. Here's another chart with a bit more detail:
  7. The "C" in "TDC" stands for "Cherry" (red)(finish). The sunburst finish appears original, so...??? I have never encountered that type of stamp on the back of the headstock. Clearly the guitar had a vibrato tailpiece at one time, but these modifications are very (very) common, so no real worries there. I would want to find out whether the pickups are original or replaced, so along with the other question marks surrounding this guitar, a visit to a reputable vintage guitar shop might be a good idea.
  8. I'm far more familiar with archtops than flat-tops, and have never owned a banner logo Gibson. I tried to research this a bit, and the only mention I was able to locate online was that the use of decals began around 1954 (not clear whether they were referring specifically to banner decals as well as "Gibson" logos). Anyway, I wonder whether we ought to request more photos of this guitar from Rah67123, just to be sure what guitar we're discussing. I completely agree with this.
  9. Hi Trey, that's a great looking guitar. From what I can see in your photos, it looks like one of the cleanest examples of this model that I've ever seen. I've never owned one, or even seen one in person, but based on research I think it's what's known as a "Wartime Special". WWII, that is. The black finish and the red pencil suffix on the factory order number both point to this. The white Gibson "script" headstock logo also indicates an earlier date than what you thought. By 1948, Gibson had transitioned to their more modern logo. Anyway, dating these things precisely has proven to be somewhat tricky, as company records for the war years are difficult to sort out. We have analyzed similar guitars on this forum in the past, so I would recommend browsing through these discussions: https://forum.gibson.com/topic/155262-very-old-acoustic-i-think-please-help/ https://forum.gibson.com/topic/155031-need-help-identifying-ww2-gibson-from-my-grandpa/ More general info about dating old Gibsons can be found here: http://www.guitarhq.com/gibson.html#serial Also, here's a link to a google books page where various black Gibson special models are listed by type and date: https://books.google.com/books?id=sgeZ_cISRpAC&pg=PA143&lpg=PA143&dq=gibson+%22wartime+special%22&source=bl&ots=nBtR05Tz61&sig=ACfU3U3wgxKjdVlfyqHWTuhbYkyZzDa7EQ&hl=en&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwiayuHqt9nlAhVUnp4KHXamAYkQ6AEwEHoECAkQAQ#v=onepage&q=gibson%20%22wartime%20special%22&f=false
  10. I agree with you, the photos can be deceiving. Most of all, they just shouldn't be using the word "Dark" in their description of the finish color.
  11. Congratulations on your first Gibson. 330's have been under-appreciated for so long, and it's nice to see them getting more attention in recent years. I've been a Gibson player for over 40 years, and I've seen a lot of cherry red Gibsons (and have owned several), and I would never ever call this finish "dark cherry". That doesn't mean it's not attractive, it just means it's not "dark cherry". But I'm no longer that surprised by anything I see from Gibson these days.
  12. I have no opinion on AA vs AAA, and wouldn't even bother to think about that if I were buying one. The bottom line is, everyone has their preferences, but to my eye that's lovely flame. Not cookie cutter. It has character, and it looks like it could be a vintage LP (even though it's not). Congrats!
  13. Hi Zack, Wow, what a great guitar to have inherited. Your Byrdland dates to the spring of 1960, during the golden era of Gibson. Both your serial number (the "A" series number) and your factory order number (FON, beginning with "R") confirm this. More info about serial numbers and dating Gibson guitars can be found here: http://www.guitarhq.com/gibson.html#serial Your Byrdland is rare compared to some models, but not really the rarest of the rare. Gibson produced about 50 sunburst finished Byrdlands per year between 1955 and 1965. So they are out there. Not the hardest model to find, but they were a high end model, and are quite valuable. On the down side, some players never cared for the shorter scale length and narrower neck width at the nut, both of which were distinguishing features of the model. So the demand for them was always somewhat affected by that. It's also notable that your photo shows the guitar with a Bigsby vibrato tailpiece. This is a custom feature which may or may not be original to the instrument, and also something that not all players would prefer (opinions will vary). If you are able to, please post some current photos of the guitar. I'm sure we'd all love to see it, and it would help to advise you in more detail about its condition, etc.
  14. Hard to tell from photos, but I don't blame you for being concerned. Even if a wood crack, it might remain very stable, but why spend that much money on a relatively new guitar with a cosmetic issue like that? It could make it difficult to get your money back out of it should you decide to sell it. Here's another I just came across via a web search. $100 more, but maybe it's worth it? https://reverb.com/item/32850923-gibson-es-339-2011-red
  15. I understand your frustration. There just doesn't seem to be much agreement/understanding/scholarship on this topic. Gruhn completely bypasses the subject in his guide, and Duchossoir suggests that wartime Gibsons generally had no numbers. I don't know where guitarhq got their information about the red pencil sequence numbers (and I generally rely heavily on that site for online data). I agree with ksdaddy, but it sure would have been nice if your guitar had a wood crosspiece on the trapeze. For the sake of comparison, here is a similar example I found online: https://www.gbase.com/gear/gibson-l-50-1943-sunburst
  16. Does it have a volute? Not sure why it has an orange label, but otherwise it would seem to be 1970-1972 based on the serial number (or 1970-71 based on your information about the purchase date). With the orange label, '70 may be more likely than '71, but I would have expected a slightly lower serial number in the 900000 range, rather than seeing a 5 as the second digit. But who knows, considering how messed up their numbering system was in those years. Also, I'm not entirely sure exactly when the "Made In USA" stamp was begun. Anyway, that serial number was also used in 1968, but that would contradict the "Made In USA" stamp, and as far as I know, you're correct that the walnut finish was introduced in 1969. Yet another Gibson mystery. You seem to know your facts pretty well already, but in case you would like to look at my preferred online reference: http://www.guitarhq.com/gibson.html#serial
  17. Well done, sir. I used to use a little mirror (with a hole in one corner) tied to a string. Very high-tech. 😀 I agree, if your bridge is operating well in a normal elevation, then no worries. If you have any full frontal photos, I'm sure I'm not the only one here who would enjoy a view!
  18. That's a fairly "advanced" question, particularly on a forum where discussion of vintage archtops has been in a long and slow decline. Although you present the question well, and your photo is very good, I'm not sure there's an obvious answer here. It might help to know which Gibson model you're looking at, but even then, one would need to have some expertise on such a specific topic. Just out of curiosity, what type of internal bracing does the guitar in question have?
  19. JimR56

    1976 ES-345 knobs

    Well, the earlier types from the 1940's and '50's are pretty well-documented. I wish I had details in terms of the 1970's era, but I don't. I would suggest that some extensive searching online might gradually reveal patterns that you can trace. Try google searches using different terms, and be persistent. There will be many exceptions and odd cases where you'll encounter instruments with knobs that were likely replaced, but if you look at enough examples, you should be able to get some idea of what types were in use on different models through a sequence of years. In addition to searching on google for images and info (and don't forget about guitar discussion forums, where this may have been discussed in detail before), you can also through sites like ebay, reverb.com, and gbase.com. You can search the inventory lists of dozens of online guitar dealers.
  20. JimR56

    1976 ES-345 knobs

    Here's a 1978 catalog (showing an ES 345), for reference: https://acousticmusic.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/Gibson-1978-Electrics.pdf
  21. JimR56

    1976 ES-345 knobs

    I never paid a lot of attention to 70's specs over the years, as I wasn't very interested in Norlin era guitars. I've seen plenty, though. First of all, it would help to know more about your motivation. The reason I ask is that historically, witch hat knobs were never too popular aesthetically. Probably because they came along at time (late 60's) when Gibson was beginning to go downhill in some respects. In other words, most desirable vintage guitars had earlier style knobs of some type. So, I've seen a lot of 70's guitars with replaced knobs, as is the case with your 345. Now, if you're seeking witch hats primarily to keep the guitar more "original", I'd say that might not be worth the trouble. On the other hand, if you prefer the look of witch hats, then by all means go for those. I did some research online, looking at photos, old catalogs, and forum discussions. Some people say that by the mid-70's, Gibson was no longer consistently using witch hats. This kind of jibes with my own memories of seeing various 70's models over the years, and yet most photos and catalogs seem to show many 70's models with witch hats. So it's all a little uncertain. Anyway, if you like them, they're not going to look "wrong" on a 1976 345. As you probably already know, the volume knob should just say "Vol." on the top, not "Volume". One other fine point I would suggest is that witch hats should be tapered. In other words, when viewed from the side, they should be wider at the bottom and narrower at the top. This taper should be more obvious than what you would typically see on a early-to-mid 60's reflector cap knob. When viewed from the top, the round reflective surface on a witch hat should therefore look smaller than the round surface of a reflector cap knob. I could be wrong in terms of how they evolved from 1967 to 1976 and beyond, but this is how I remember them. Finally, most original witch hat knobs appear less shiny than a repro will look. Not only the black plastic, but the top surface will generally look a bit aged on originals. The fact that the sides were grooved rather than smooth also made them more prone to wear (cuts, dents, scratches), so you could look for things like that in terms of shopping for original-looking examples. In the Reverb item you linked, I'm not seeing the tapering I would expect, and they almost look too clean. But they're not bad looking knobs. I have no idea what sort of prices you should expect, so you're on your own to research that. Hope this helps, and I'm open to anybody correcting me on any points I may have wrong.
  22. Red finishes are known to fade over time, proportional to exposure to sun/light. So I'd say it's likely that the lighter area has faded, while the central area that was under the pad for all those years has remained closer to the original finish color. However, the unevenness of the discoloration within the darker area makes me wonder if there isn't also something else going on there. I guess it might have been helpful if you were told more about the pad and how it was applied (and possibly how it was removed).
  23. More discussions... https://forum.gibson.com/topic/116320-model-number-decoder/ https://www.mylespaul.com/threads/model-numbers-explained.28540/ a "3" can apparently indicate a "special run", or limited run, I guess.
  24. More info here: https://forum.gibson.com/topic/91925-interpreting-les-paul-model-numbers/ The "3" at the end apparently indicates the "third run" of that particular model. As an old school Gibson guy for over 40 years, I have to say that (especially after reading through the thread I just linked here) I find all these model codes kind of ridiculous. If letters weren't being duplicated with different meanings, I might feel less so, but it's still pretty confusing.
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