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Gibson DQM


Mickthemiller

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Seen a DQM for sale but not sure about buying it as there is little or no info anywhere. Any help out there?

The one I've seen has a pretty nice quilted maple back and sides.

 

I played one once at a San Ash Music. Had a Gibson name on it, but did not feel, look, or sound like a Gibson. Had more similarities to a Taylor competing with a higher end flat top Epiphone.

 

QM aka Jazzman Jeff

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Gibson bought the Garrison company out of bankruptcy. Gibson tried to build the plastic braced guitars but had very little background in producing them. They also had a lot of trouble with the labor pool. Nashville gave the project to the Montana division and the Montana G.M. spent a lot of time flying out to try to get the company off the ground. The first thing he had to do was get rid of the "plastic skeleton" and design a more conventional guitar that they could produce.

 

The guitars are actually quite good. The parts were all made in Montana and they were assembled in Canada. This was done to make up for the shortage of skilled labor available in Canada. That and the fact that they didn't have a big demand and it didn't make sense to re-tool another plant to make a limited production of instruments. The Montana G.M. did a heroic job of running both plants but all the travel started to wear him down. Production was shut down after a couple of years of trying to keep things going.

 

This is just one example of very poor planning on Gibson's part. They went into the project with no knowledge of how things worked in Canada. When they opened the plant and advertised for workers they were very surprised to find no one was willing to work for minimum wage. They truly thought the workforce would be happy to have a job. The unemployment rate was over 15% at the time. It turns out that they could make more money on unemployment than working for Gibson. The sad truth is that the folks in Montana were more than happy to have a job so most of the production was moved here and the few skilled people they could hire in Canada assembled the parts there. It would have been cheaper for Gibson to make the guitars in Bozeman and ship them to Canada for distribution. Go figure.

 

This was one of many companies that Gibson bought that failed to reach it's potential. I would like to see the company resurrected and the plastic skeleton tried again . If the high cost of production could be managed this would be a viable project.

 

Maybe the customer could start out with a basic guitar and just replace the top with a red spruce top later or maybe replace the mahogany back and sides with rosewood. Just buy the parts and snap them into the frame yourself. How fun would that be?

 

I say go get the guitar.

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These were indeed like a Taylor (think GC size 214) but with a Gibson headstock.

 

FWIW, I liked them a lot for the price and considered buying a Maple one when they were released but went off chasing some other guitar shaped rabbit down a money shaped hole.

 

The Garrison plant built Gibsons don't share the plastic bracing of the original Garrisons, and are a much better instrument.

 

I'd buy one in a flash at the right price, they're very cool and likely to become more valuable in years to come due to their relative rarity.

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I doubt they will become collectible or increase in price due to being a rarity. The fact that their label refers to them as being made in Canada rather than made in the USA and their being marketed as intermediate grade guitars (which they were) renders them as not likely to have a high demand in a future collectible vintage guitar market. Today's J-15s and J-35s, USA made handcrafted guitars on the low end price of Gibson's spectrum today are significantly better and higher grade instruments than the Canada produced intermediate grade models. The J-15s and J-35s have a way much better chance of going up in price and becoming collectibles years down the road than the DQM which was a aberration and failed marketing try in Gibson's history. It's in the same category as a Mark guitar in Gibson's history, maybe a lower category reputation-wise.

 

Unless you can buy a DQM super cheap, your monies are best spent saving a bit more and buying a J-15 or J-35 or a even a less expensive high quality Epiphone Masterbilt model. DQMs are Edsels.

 

My two cents.

 

QM aka Jazzman Jeff

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