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1966 Hummingbird on Reverb


hojo199

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Looks 100 % alright to me.

This is a saddle compensated narrow nut natural Gibson Hummingbird anno 1966.

As the seller, not sure about the case. A CW case would have red interior and many squares were warm yellow. Blue too, , , perhaps.

 

Do you think the price is high?

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The sellers description says the guitar shows no sign of needing a neck reset..........I beg to differ. The side shot of the bridge shows the strings nearly flat from the pins across the saddle, and the shot from above looking down from the headstock shows what appears to be quite high action at the 14th. I can't say whether this price is high or not but from these photos it will require a neck reset to be much of a player. Does look cool though.

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The sellers description says the guitar shows no sign of needing a neck reset..........I beg to differ. The side shot of the bridge shows the strings nearly flat from the pins across the saddle, and the shot from above looking down from the headstock shows what appears to be quite high action at the 14th. I can't say whether this price is high or not but from these photos it will require a neck reset to be much of a player. Does look cool though.

I'm with Buc on this one. I sent the guy a message to clarify a couple issues.

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I agree with Buc. Part of the break angle issue is the radically different saddle intonation angle compared to the original adjustable saddle. Looking at the parts from removing the adjustable saddle, the bridge was removed in order to do the change. There's no other way to remove the barrel bolts that are part of the mechanism. You could slot the pin holes and improve the break angle a bit, but the action still looks high to me, and the saddle is low.

 

It would be nice to have a shot from inside the guitar of the underside of the bridgeplate.

 

The guitar basically looks pretty good, but a neck re-set may well be called for. If the neck angle were better, and if you are comfortable with the narrow nut width, this looks like a decent guitar. Plan on $600 for a neck re-set.

 

Like Em7 says, a lot of Gibson hard cases in this period had a yellow/gold interior. A perfect period case wouldn't really make that much difference in price for guitars from this period.

 

A natural 'bird is less valuable than a period 'burst, IMHO. At the same time, most cherryburst 'birds I have seen from this period also have cherry stain on the B&S, which doesn't appeal to me that much.

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I've seen that case with a lot of 68,69,and 70's Martin dreads !

I think the reason the break angle at the bridge looks funky is because there is a lot of space between the saddle peak and the string / pin holes.

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Aha, , , not sure what you mean here.

Cherry stain on the back and sides with the cherryburst top, as opposed to the dark walnut stain used on most mahogany Gibsons with a traditional sunburst top. Some Gibson "natural" guitars (like the J-50)use only a grain filler, with no stain in it at all, on the back and sides.

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I've seen that case with a lot of 68,69,and 70's Martin dreads !

I think the reason the break angle at the bridge looks funky is because there is a lot of space between the saddle peak and the string / pin holes.

 

You're right on the distance between the saddle and the pins, but the saddle is low, and the action looks high.

 

I've got one of the those cases that I bought in about 1970. It was a generic dread case better suited to a square dread than a J-45, although either would fit. No particular brand on it.

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Cherry stain on the back and sides with the cherryburst top, as opposed to the dark walnut stain used on most mahogany Gibsons with a traditional sunburst top. Some Gibson "natural" guitars (like the J-50)use only a grain filler, with no stain in it at all, on the back and sides.

 

Yes yes, see what you mean. Back'n'sides have an even redish tint opposed the plain brown seen on the one above.

Both my 63 and 64'er has that where the 65'er is serious brown darker than the talked about Bird.

 

I like all of them (but the cherry least) - and the fact there are variations there too.

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For a 1966 Hummingbird this seems like an attractive price, but it's really not given the condition and the fact that it's a natural top finish. 'Birds, due to their square shoulders, aren't particularly desired by collectors either, especially not from 1965 onwards. Unrelated to this, the sides of these guitars were often laminated. Regardless, one would have to verify the advertised manufacturing date (serial number, sticker?).

 

The top has a noticable crack line (either just in the finish or even the soundboard) running in the middle from beneath the bridge towards the end pin, and there are lots of dings, scratches, and heavy scuffs—this is a very battered player. At least one of the tuners seems broken and would have to be replaced. No fretboard wear to speak of which is rather surprising. The nut was an amateur's job (uneven string spacing, etc.) and I'd have it completely redone. The bridge pins aren't original. The case seems to be neither original nor from the same era.

 

As can be seen from the photos, the bridge's saddle slot was filled with rosewood and then rerouted. The new saddle slot was repositioned hopefully for the proper intonation. The neck seems rather straight going by the photo that shows the neck and body vertically, but then again there isn't good reference material to work with here that was shot from the right angle.

 

The biggest question is whether you can even play a guitar with such a narrow, 1.54"-wide neck. Only few players can these days. Got such a baby at home...

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My '65 Bird has the case w/the yellow entrails, and so far as I know it's original to the guitar. The '65 neck is wider than I'd expect to find on a '66, so if the narrow nut bothers you, that might be a consideration. My top is au naturale - which doesn't matter to me, but might to someone else. Neck sets aren't cheap, but can vary in price depending where you happen to live. If you want to go back to an adj bridge, you'll have to do some serious looking to find one that's not plastic - I'd be inclined to play it as-is. Guess my biggest question would concern the neck set - I've seen a lot of Birds from that era, and none of them were especially inclined to require one. The seller's "...skip the specs, it's a Hummingbird..." attitude puts me off a bit. If I were you, I'd be politely asking for more details before making an offer.

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For a 1966 Hummingbird this is no doubt an attractive price. One would have to verify the serial number to verify the manufacturing date. The top has a slight crack line (just in the finish or even the wood?) in the middle beneath the bridge, and there are lots of dings, scratches, and scuffs—this is definitely a very battered player. At least one of the tuners seems broken and would have to be replaced—on second glance all the tuners seem rather dysfunctional. The case seems to be neither original nor from the same era.

 

The bridge wasn't removed for the upgrade. As can be seen from the photos, the saddle slot was filled with rosewood and then rerouted to accommodate for the newly intonated bone bridge, similar to how you would modify a guitar for a left-handed player. Looking at the photo showing the neck and body in vertical position, the neck seems quite straight—but then again there isn't much reference material to work with here to really say for sure.

 

As a heads-up, only few players are capable of playing guitars with a 1.54"-narrow neck such as this one comfortably.

 

actualy the bridge has to be removed to remove the threaded nut ferrels. hey are much larger than the slot for the adjustable.

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actualy the bridge has to be removed to remove the threaded nut ferrels. hey are much larger than the slot for the adjustable.

Some folks leave 'em alone for that very reason. Also, it makes it much easier to return the guitar to original if desired.

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actualy the bridge has to be removed to remove the threaded nut ferrels. hey are much larger than the slot for the adjustable.

 

Exactly what I was trying to say. Bridge removed, large holes from the barrel bolts in the top underneath it plugged, and bridge re-installed with the saddle slot filled. Not an insignificant undertaking, which is why you often see this change done while leaving the barrel bolts in place under the bridge, which compromises the job, at least in my experience.

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Only a slim minority would rewind saddle philosophy and reinstall the original ceramic. In fact I never heard of anyone doin' that.

You have to be extraordinary interested in the ceramic flavor to do it and, , ,

regarding resale value it wouldn't be a huge topic as there is a chance the next buyer would change it once more to where it is now. msp_bored.gif

I know you don't mention this at all, hehe, , but if you'ld be tempted to rewind, do try to recreate the bigger groove first, then drop in and check the porcelain saddle.

After all it works best when it has full contact with the top. Maybe the bolts isn't needed anyway, , , and you can always shim.

If the situation should get this far - which I presume won't happen - then try without the metal-thing. Too low - shim !

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I guess I should be embarrassed 😨 to admit that I've gone back to the adj a time or two over the years. There have been guitars that just sounded better to me with the ceramic saddle - doesn't happen all that often. Wood saddles are yet another matter; can't ever seem to tolerate those at all.

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I guess I should be embarrassed to admit that I've gone back to the adj a time or two over the years. There have been guitars that just sounded better to me with the ceramic saddle - doesn't happen all that often.

Wood saddles are yet another matter; can't ever seem to tolerate those at all.

Glad you did - as you probably know I'm a fan of the ceramics as well.

Ain't saying they're better than the replacements, fx wooden insert w. ordinary sized bone saddle.

They just sound different and bring forward an exciting bass-force and extra cling in the guitars. That counts for 45's also.

 

The rose-wood version is hyper mellow and remains a special choice.

Don't however count it out in connection with certain recordings. Exactly the softness might be ideal for, let's say, discrete rhythm, well placed strums, ghost-f-picking etc.

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For a 1966 Hummingbird this seems like an attractive price, but it's really not given the condition and the fact that it's a natural top finish. 'Birds, due to their square shoulders, aren't particularly desired by collectors either, especially not from 1965 onwards. Unrelated to this, the sides of these guitars were often laminated. Regardless, one would have to verify the advertised manufacturing date (serial number, sticker?).

 

The top has a noticable crack line (either just in the finish or even the soundboard) running in the middle from beneath the bridge towards the end pin, and there are lots of dings, scratches, and heavy scuffs—this is a very battered player. At least one of the tuners seems broken and would have to be replaced. No fretboard wear to speak of which is rather surprising. The nut was an amateur's job (uneven string spacing, etc.) and I'd have it completely redone. The bridge pins aren't original. The case seems to be neither original nor from the same era.

 

As can be seen from the photos, the bridge's saddle slot was filled with rosewood and then rerouted. The new saddle slot was repositioned hopefully for the proper intonation. The neck seems rather straight going by the photo that shows the neck and body vertically, but then again there isn't good reference material to work with here that was shot from the right angle.

 

The biggest question is whether you can even play a guitar with such a narrow, 1.54"-wide neck. Only few players can these days. Got such a baby at home...

 

To be honest.. even if the sides are laminated.. stability is a good thing.. more rigid against banging against a Table or chair , and Ive seen it happen more often than not.. .. its not the sides that make the sound anyways.. a well braced top and and back and a good space between the two and proper neck angle.. Ive always thought that the screws for adjusting were as good as a solid saddle. its just the dense saddle product they use that muffles the tone.. plastic adj thick saddle may be bright but takes the tone away.. a wood saddle sounds like a you might as well have a mute pad..

 

its like the pick you use.. thick bone pick.. dark tone.. thin pick bright tone..

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On second glance the seller went to great pains to suppress a snapshot of the serial number of that "1966 Hummingbird" (e.g., see cut-off headstock shot—who takes photos like that?).

 

What little photo evidence there is (grand shot of back) reveals a six digit number stamped into the back of the headstock:

6406x4 (x = illegible).

Another undatable 'Bird?

post-74657-095811900 1482873296_thumb.png

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