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need help identifying a vintage I once owned


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first post and looking for help already.. anywho when I was 14 I was living in Everett Washington for the summer with my aunt and 2 cousins, Ed the one playing the 6 string is my age and his brother on the bass in like 4 years younger than us, anyways Ed and I were working the docks that summer for money, cruisin' colby was IN and Boston just released a great album, along with many other bands, music was on fire and it was all we were into then so I needed to learn how to play..


anyway the 6 string hollow body in the pic I purchased from a friends older adult brother that summer, when I went home for school after summer break my aunt moved to Seattle and Ed asked to take the guitar along with for a while I reluctantly said yes but felt sorry for him moving somewhere strange not knowing anybody least i could do I thought..long story short he managed to lose the guitar without even a sorry, I playeed it a few times a few years later but it was always at a gig or someones practice so he said so I just bought another solid body nothing wrong with having 2 rightp, Ed passed on since but this is one of the few pics I have of him and the guitar, only of the guitar..


I need help identifying the guitar its been so long I forgot who the manufacturer was? I could of swore it was an Epiphone but it very well may have been a Gibson, our friend the brother of the guy I bought it from said it was worth around $5k these days, I dunno cuz obviously I cant even remember what it was exactly? I never really cared to talk about it as it was my first guitar and it left a bad taste in my mouth that it just mysteriously "disappeared" not to be the first relative that would "lose" a guitar for me..


anyways any help identifying this guitar I would be grateful, might try to replace it even though its apparently somewhat obscure as I cant find a pic of it anywhere on the Internet?


whats odd looking at it now is the pot placement, 7 of 10 the knobs are on both sides of the F hole, these appear to be above and one real close to the bridge? been 35 years maybe more since I saw it last but it was 100% and stayed in tune, learned some of my first chords and what not on that guitar and if I remember right it was an OK rigg?






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For starters, cool looking guitar, in it's own way. The double florentine (sharp) cutaways were fairly popular back in the day on budget guitars, but you didn't see them much on Gibsons (the Barney Kessel and Trini Lopez artist models from the 60's were the exceptions, and those might have been the models that influenced the designs on a lot of budget double-cutaway guitars like yours.


Anyway, yours was definitely not a Gibson. Even if it was an Epiphone, it would have been an asian-made Epiphone (the brand name was sold to the Matsumoku company in Japan circa 1970), but I'm doubting that too. No way in the world that guitar would be worth anywhere near $5K. $500 would probably be closer to what it would be worth now (and that might be generous).


I tried some Google image searches, and found lots of similar looking guitars, but so far I haven't found any exact matches. There are dozens of varieties with subtle variations on the cutaway shape and depth. There were a ton of inexpensive guitars like that back in the day, with all kinds of brand names. Some of the ones I saw that looked similar to yours were models by kawai, eko, greco, kay, univox, conrad, lyle, teisco, silvertone, and there are many more. It could take awhile to find the exact one that you had.


You might want to browse this website, and see if you find anything: http://drowninginguitars.com/guitars/

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hey thanks yea I dunno what its worth the brother if the guy just mentioned it out of the blue one day, I look all the time on google but no luck finding it


what I find odd is the what looks like a tremelo but cant really tell I don't remember it having one maybe it just didn't have the bar? and the neck binding puts it in the not as cheap as they get category IMO..


I might call the brother and see if he remembers or maybe his brother does, wondering if they were knocking off back then like they are now through that ali whatever place?


well thanks

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No problem, Dean. I had fun trying to figure out what it was.


I was going to mention that it looked like a vibrato tailpiece that was missing the bar. Tailpiece designs varied a lot, and they could be pretty distinctive, so that might help you to eventually nail down what it was.


Yeah, the binding on some of those guitars was nice, and your sunburst finish was nothing to sneeze at either. Like I said, cool guitar in its own way. Just not a Gibson, and not worth the big bucks, unfortunately. But I can see why you would want to replace it.

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  • 4 months later...

welp, the only guitars I found even remotely close were these;




the Berney Kessel




then theres this, maybe this is what he was looking at? I while back I saw one where a guy was saying he had one of two ever made es137dc, can't seem to find his page again?




wondering if it was a knock off of this guitar or the Kessel?


then theres the Kay..





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I sure looks like a single pick up version of the Idol PA23. Thanks for the website, I never heard of a lot of those guitars.

thanks john



dood man I think you're right?


here is a double 90, SO SIMILAR







man thanks that thing saure was hiding in the corner too.. they say its rare $75 still dont care about the value sure would like to have one again..


Thanks man

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Dean, the "double 90" image you posted is close, but not quite right. Compare the body shape (waist curves and cutaways), the pickguard, the knobs (4 vs 2), etc.


Looks like you definitely had a version of a Marlin-Idol PA10T:








I still think those looked very cool... ever since I saw these records back in the 1970's... (this guitar was a Silvertone, but I loved those cutaways)



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  • 4 years later...

Yes, it's an 1968 Idol PA-10T. Made in Japan by Idol. Idol was started by Mr Matsuda, a former president of Teisco Co Ltd.  He started Idol Instruments after leaving Teisco Shoji in 1967. It’s believed that he and some of his employees were unhappy with the new Kawai management. These employees followed their leader to start a new guitar company. The Marlin brand was used on Idol made guitars that were shipped to the US by WMI Corporation. Idol also made some Del Rey models. I currently have a PA-10T that I've owned since the 1980's. Missing a few of the parts over the years. Trying to put it back together so I can play it again. Missing the pick guard, the plastic pickup infills, bridge, tremolo arm and spring. I have one slightly bent tuning key, but I might be able to fix that without replacing.

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