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Played a 1955 J-160E Last Night & My Wife Said...


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I am lucky in that a I tend to get called when some old this or that Gibson pops up for sale. I got message the other day from a guy who owns a store telling me I needed to stop by to look at some "cool" guitars he got in. So yesterday after work I wandered in. And what does he hand me - a Taylor 800 series something or the other. I ran through Bo Carter's "Cigarette Blues" and as usual with Taylors the low end just left me cold. But I figured he would not have called me to look at this. So then he takes back the Taylor and says how about trying this one on for size. He brings out what I at thought from a distance was a reissue J-160E. I mean this thing was clean. Got it my hands and it was then I could see the yellowed binding. But look as I could I could not find a scratch or a ding - just some very mild checking.

 

Turns out it is a very early '55 and still has the solid top. So play it I did and me likey very much. The store owner has been after my '46 LG-2 for years and made me an aboslute killer offer with the trade in. But it would still break my vow to never lay out more than $1K on a guitar again. So I figured it was something that was just not meant to be. Anyway my wife was with me. As we get up to go she turns to me and in front of witnesses says "Honey, who don't you buy it?"

 

Sometimes it is easier when they just give you that look of mild disgust. Anyway, I plan to head back over when I have some more time. Then who knows.

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Buy it, ZW. It's only money. It sounds like a really cool guitar.

 

Life is too short not to indulge yourself every now and then.

 

 

That would be my favorite rationalization - along with, hey I could be putting that money up my nose.

 

I am planning to go look at it some more after work today.

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Well the store owner let me take the guitar home for the night to putz around with it. Interesting in that it has only 19 frets which seems to be common to the early 1955 solid top versions. I will say this thing sounds fantastic plugged in. He also offered to throw in a set of mid-1990s Hallmark Beatles figurines (value around $160) and a cut down 1950s National electric with two Lafayette pickups (value - anybody's guess).

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Well the store owner let me take the guitar home for the night to putz around with it. Interesting in that it has only 19 frets which seems to be common to the early 1955 solid top versions. I will say this thing sounds fantastic plugged in. He also offered to throw in a set of mid-1990s Hallmark Beatles figurines (value around $160) and a cut down 1950s National electric with two Lafayette pickups (value - anybody's guess).

 

 

I sense your resistance weakening. Give in! Give in!

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What I keep thinking though is that this may be one of those guitars you like the idea of better than the guitar itself.

 

 

In my experience, that's usually the case. Which is why I own so many guitars. There's nothing wrong with that, however. If you get enough of a deal, you can own it until you're tired of it, then swap it for the next guitar.

 

It goes on and on, but you get to own a lot of interesting guitars along the way.......

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What I keep thinking though is that this may be one of those guitars you like the idea of better than the guitar itself.

Interesting angle – reminds me of some of the records one encountered as a young man.

 

Better dive into this band - People say they are good.

The idea of having them on the gramophone was somehow soothing and either the acts began growing on you - some for REAL - or else you found out it just was not your tea.

 

A lot talk for you trying this 160 -

the 4 figurines also ;-)

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Your wife is up to something.

 

My wife recently suggested I pull the trigger on a guitar.

 

Now we're buying a new house.

 

Most expensive guitar ever...

 

 

Haha! My wife "let" me pick up the new J35 without much complaint. A few days later she went and dropped the same amount in Lulu Lemon. Funny how things work out.

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If it's in that great a shape & you like the sound/playing of the 160 then get it. [thumbup] W/O being too nosy what's the cost of the guitar with trade as that may make a difference.

 

New house, trip to Lulu Lemon, man I hope my wife doesn't see the standard Hummingbird I have coming is a new guitar!!! I can't afford that. Treated myself when our 2 car garage door went out. I decided I could either pay out min. $2500 for someone to replace it or spend $600 on the same door (with discount) and install myself. That's how I've decided to treat myself for painful labor these days!! [biggrin]

 

Aster

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Strange thing about my wife - she flippin' loves Gibsons. When I met her she was playing a J-100. She then discarded that and appropriated my 1960 J-200.

 

After going with heavier gauge strings and letting the strings get some playing time the sound is definitely picking up - getting more meat on its bones. I also have to keep reminding myself that this is not a 1955 J-45 and ain't going to sound like one. Not only is the

J-160E ladder braced but there is alot of wood in there including two are big wood blocks anchored to the top beneath the pickup and the bridge. Kays and Harmonys got nothing on this guitar when it comes to being overbuilt.

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If it's in that great a shape & you like the sound/playing of the 160 then get it. [thumbup] W/O being too nosy what's the cost of the guitar with trade as that may make a difference.

 

 

Dealing with this store is always an adventure. The deal that is on the table is he was asking $5K based on the condition and the fact that it is a 19 fret, solid top version. We haggled a bit and came out at $4,600. I figure it is a good but not a what I would call a killer deal which to me would have been $4,250.

 

Again, I have not made up my mind on this one but will have to reach a conclusion one way or the other some time today.

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Dealing with this store is always an adventure. The deal that is on the table is he was asking $5K based on the condition and the fact that it is a 19 fret, solid top version. We haggled a bit and came out at $4,600. I figure it is a good but not a what I would call a killer deal which to me would have been $4,250.

 

Again, I have not made up my mind on this one but will have to reach a conclusion one way or the other some time today.

 

You said he clearly wants your guitar, so I'd hold out for the 4,250 saying that's the deal that would convince you to give up your guitar.

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Haaa, but he is also willing to throw in a set of mid-1990s Hallmark Beatles figurines.

 

Ask him for 4250 and only the 'ringo' figure seeing as the other 3 are dead... and you've never been a fan of Ian/Billy. That ought to get you out of the 'beatle fanatic' zone and into a trader zone.... he's got something you want but with limited appeal and at a cost not too many will readily drop, you've got something he wants dearly, I think the ball is in your court to get the deal you want. I'd be tempted ot go back, perhaps hint that you may be going cold on it... quick "hmmm I'm not sure, I think I want to like it more than I actually do", or take the one he wants with you A/B them and say you think you might stick with your own... nothing like wafting the prize under the nose, every dealer knows this game, it's how they operate.

 

or cut to the chase, say 4250 you can do, 4750 you can't and stay firm.....

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Ahhh Man, but Ringo is a lesser Beatle.

 

Phase II is now in effect. I dropped the guitar off at the shop at lunch and told him we would talk later. Now I just need to let it sit there hanging on the wall for a bit. What I really need is for somebody to walk in and buy the thing but in this neck of the woods chances are that ain't gonna happen.

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Now you need to walk in that shoppe and approach the two neutral as if you were a shopper and play them.

That should be your answer.

 

By the way,which do you play better on ?

 

Gotta say $4500 on that guitar is more like in the realm of I got spare cash Ill take one of those (dessert)

 

Still..a solid topped version & original,of this Epiphone..which has a nice sound.Tempting.

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