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1929 Gibson 4 string banjo

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Good day all. I'm brand new to the forum so please forgive any dumb mistakes I might play in regards to where I'm posting things and I'm also not a musician so if I butcher some of the verbage, I do apologize for that also.

 

My dad has "blessed" me with the task of getting his father's 1929 Gibson banjo appraised. He's been told its quite rare. From what we can gather, its a 1929 Gibson model PT-6 plectrum tenor. Pretty sure its also known as a "PT 24 1/2" All the serial numbers are matching. The neck and resonator are curly maple with gold etched metal hardware, some gold sparkle details, mother of pearl tuner knobs and mother of pearl inlays on the fret board. It also has what I like to call a "whammy bar" damper type thing on the face. I don't know if that is normal for a banjo.

 

The banjo has only belonged to my grandfather, and it was passed down to my father after grandpa's passing. I honestly don't think its been played for over 40 years.

 

I was hoping some of the experts at Gibson might be able to help us out.

 

Much thanks in advance.

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First, as we like to say, "we need photos or it doesn't exist." Not that it is required to answer your question, we just like looking at pretty pictures of Gibson instruments.

 

Now for the real question, for what reason do you want the appraisal? There are two distinct values for most any instrument, "market value", and "insurance value". "Market value" is what you can expect to receive from an actual sale. "Insurance value", or "Blue Book" value, usually listed as considerably higher than market value, is what people WISH their instruments were worth, and are generally used for insurance purposes.

 

So, where are you going with the appraisal, e-bay, State Farm, Probate Court, etc?

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First, as we like to say, "we need photos or it doesn't exist." Not that it is required to answer your question, we just like looking at pretty pictures of Gibson instruments.

 

Now for the real question, for what reason do you want the appraisal? There are two distinct values for most any instrument, "market value", and "insurance value". "Market value" is what you can expect to receive from an actual sale. "Insurance value", or "Blue Book" value, usually listed as considerably higher than market value, is what people WISH their instruments were worth, and are generally used for insurance purposes.

 

So, where are you going with the appraisal, e-bay, State Farm, Probate Court, etc?

 

Thanks for the reply.

 

Dad says he wants to put the $$ towards my sons education and future musical endeavors. About 15 years ago he was told the value might be in the 15k range. I'm assuming he wants a fair price at today's market value.

 

I have some cell phone photos, but they pretty much suck and I need to do some better staging than just laying on the bed to give the old banjo some justice.

 

I will have to swing by their house and take my good camera soon.

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About 15 years ago he was told the value might be in the 15k range.

 

My 1932 Gibson TB-1 tenor 4-string banjo currently has a market value of around $1200, and the market seems to be "up" at the moment. A couple of years ago the market on that instrument was about $700.

 

I'm not sure what would make a '29 plectrum worth 10x that much, although a plectrum will command higher prices than a tenor due to popularity and market demand, but....... I'm afraid you and your father might be in for a major reality check.

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I don't think these sites have your model,but they have old Gibson banjos,....and prices.

 

As I'm always quick to point out... don't confuse "asking prices" with selling prices, value or worth. An advertised asking price is nothing but a number somebody dreamed up.... until someone pays it.

 

You need actual "sold" numbers to use "comps" to determine "value".

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Thanks again for the replies. I just got off the phone with my dad and he still has the offer from a dude in TN, for 25K with the guy looking for too much of a commission if he sells it, just off the photos. He has apparently been emailing out my ipad photos, and got a reply from a guy in GA, who initially offered him 10K from the pics, then when my father told him of the offer currently on the table from the man in TN, he said he would have no problem giving him at least 25K for it, without the commission taken out.

 

He then emailed a professional banjo player/instructor who based off the photos told my dad that this banjo is rather rare and he'd base the value well above the 25k, in the 40's+.

 

I'm at work, so I don't want to linger on a forum too long, but we will take some better photos tomorrow and get em posted up for you all to enjoy.

 

Thanks again for your input.

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The folks aren't picking up, so they must be out to lunch or something.

 

Here are my pics from the iPad just to satisfy the masses. Hopefully I can get over there and get some better quality pics done.

 

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Have a great weekend all!

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