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1963 headstock clearcoat issue


1963JayFifty

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Hey guys i'm new to the gibson forum, i recently acquired my grandfathers 1963 Gibson J50(he bought it in 1964 for $600 canadian), it plays smooth like butter, action is on point everything is great, my only issue is the headstock logo, my grandfather kept putting the capo on there and the clearcoat is looking like ****, do any of you think it'd be safe to sand or wet sand until the whole clear coat is off and leave it natural or should i just leave it alone?

 

thanks in advance for the help,

-Chester

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i checked the serial number,its a 63, regardless he bought it in '64 so it can't be older then that , this guitar has had a lot of work done over the years, some guy sat on it once and it got rebuilt by an old luthier on the east coast, the guitar now has a sunburst top and custom bridge, he probably fixed the headstock during that time,

not here to argue with you just asking for advice,

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I agree with ksdaddy that the headstock looks odd in the photo for a Gibson of this age but if it's a significantly messed with '63 and the current headstock bothers you then the best route would be find a decent repairer who is experienced in refinishes and have it redone. The originality is long gone anyway, so it's down to whatever looks best to you.

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back of head stock,it wont let me post any more photos,the files of the ones i posted were probably too big, back and sides of guitar looks fine, the binding has yellows with age, and the bridge was custom made with 2 fleur de lis mother of pearl inlay ,made of rosewood. when the guitar was broken it was only the top replaced and stained and the bridge replaced, new grover tuners as well because old ones stopped working properly.

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I agree with ksdaddy that the headstock looks odd in the photo for a Gibson of this age but if it's a significantly messed with '63 and the current headstock bothers you then the best route would be find a decent repairer who is experienced in refinishes and have it redone. The originality is long gone anyway, so it's down to whatever looks best to you.

 

Pretty much, my advice also... [thumbup]

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It's pretty clear that at least the back of the headstock has been re-finished, as you can see the location of the original tuner screws, but there is no imprint from the tuner plate, which is always there.

 

By my sources, that serial number is either 1966 or 1969. If it is a round-shoulder guitar, 1966 makes sense,

 

It would be useful to see a picture of the entire guitar.

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Is it the guitar seen in your avatar pic, , , is it a slope-shoulder at all. . . ??

 

 

Interesting point. The resolution of the avatar photo is too low to say definitively, particularly from that angle, but as you suggest, it almost looks more like the later square dread shape, which would probably say 1969.

 

63JayFifty, is the body shape like the one in E minor 7's avatar in the above post, with square shoulders, or is it more like the photo below, which is the round or slope shoulder J-45/J-50 body form?

 

thewholething.jpg

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As already posted, there is no collector or original value as there has already been substantial work done to it. Therefore, make it exactly like you want it. How to do it is up to you or your luthier. I would love to see photos of it. I don't know how anyone has commented on the look as there are no photos posted.

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Original schmoriginal, that looks pretty cool. The bridge: was that your grandfather's design? My vote is to wear it's history and enjoy knowing it's past. Admittedly, there is something that adds to the anticipation and the experience when removing from the case an instrument with beautiful workmanship, inlay, and wood selection, but as we all have to remind ourselves, you don't see 'em when you're playing them.

 

Any chance of your measuring the scale length from saddle to nut?

 

Wait a minute, Chester... Welcome to the forum.

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here are the images, i had deleted them to resize it,

 

 

The guitar looks cool, but the body shape shows that it is definitively post-1968. I like the fancy bridge, but I've been known to pimp guitars pretty heavily in the past, as you can probably tell from the picture of my 1948 J-45 posted above, which I've owned since the mid-1960's.. The pimp-out on my guitar may have occurred about he same time as your father's guitar was worked on. He and I might even be about the same age, and clearly shared some sensibilities.

 

I would say that if the face of the headstock bothers you, get the clearcoat re-done. You should love this guitar in part because it represents your father's own love affair with it over the decades.

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here are the images, i had deleted them to resize it,

 

Looks late 69ish to 70ish to me. Transitional Norlin! Got in before the volute and Made in USA stamp. Features that point to this assumption (if original) are the natural peghead facing, the pickguard shape and the Fancy-Dancy bridge that started appearing on some 70's models.

 

I rather like the bridge!

 

Rod

 

 

 

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