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Chet Atkins Tennessean


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Does anyone have, or can point me to any information on these guitars? So far I’ve found they are 25.5” scale, some have ebony fretboards and some do not. I’m debating selling an SST to get one since I currently do not have a humbucker-equipped guitar and don’t really want to add another one. I’d like to replace it with something close to the SST. Thanks.

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Does anyone have, or can point me to any information on these guitars? So far I've found they are 25.5" scale, some have ebony fretboards and some do not. I'm debating selling an SST to get one since I currently do not have a humbucker-equipped guitar and don't really want to add another one. I'd like to replace it with something close to the SST. Thanks.

 

Some have said, it's a single cut 335, but that's not even remotely close to correct. I'd say it's far closer in construction to a Howard Roberts fusion (which is a bit thicker than the Tennessean) than anything else Gibson has made.

Like the Howard Roberts Fusion, the Tennessean is a single cut, has a 3 piece maple neck (I "think" all had ebony FB's but some ads I've seen claimed to have rosewood) and has 16 frets clear of the maple laminated body and I've read that they have had balsa blocks and the 490 pup set and the neck joins the body at the 16th fret. Pretty darn close I'd say.

 

Where they differ is the tailpiece, controls... the Tenn. has a master volume (I wish Gibson would use this more often) 2 volume one tone, some have an arm guard and body thickness with the HRF being a bit thicker.

The 335 has a one piece mahogany neck with rosewood FB, is a DC, I don't think many (if any) had the 490 pup set a maple block, the neck joins the body at the 19th fret and has 2V2T controls.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Here is what a recent overseas seller had to say:

 

The late, great Chet Atkins was closely associated with Gretsch guitars, but after Gretsch closed Gibson sought his endorsement and a number of Gibson Chet Atkins models appeared, including the Chet Tennessean, built from 1990 to 2005 in Nashville.

The Gibson Chet Atkins Tennessean is a single cutaway, thinline archtop electric, with a solid center block to deter feedback. This was a feature that Chet had long sought from Gretsch, and the closest they would come to that was the late 1950’s Trestle bracing.

This example is in good condition, and its serial number dates it to February 6, 1997. It is largely original, though the pickguard is likely a replacement. The originals were not layered, but were solid with ‘TENNESSEAN’ screen printed on the top. The original arm rest is in place. It plays well, and is quite solid. The woods used are maple laminates for the body with a maple center block, and a maple neck with ebony fingerboard. The position markers are offset dots, suggesting the classic Gretsch ‘Neo-Classic’ or ‘thumbnail’ markers. Wiring is straightforward, and though it uses Gibson humbuckers, the control layout is like a Gretsch with one master volume, individual volumes, a master tone switch and pickup selector. A standard stop tailpiece and tune-o-matic bridge are used – no Bigsby! The tuners are the original Gibson Deluxe models with plastic keystone buttons. And of course, there’s a Chet Atkins logo on the headstock, screened in gold paint below the mother of pearl Gibson logo.

A black hard-shell case is included.

 

Price: $1450 CAD

Model: Chet Atkins Tennessean

Year: 1997

Finish Burgundy

Class: Used

Serial Number: 94027636

Country of Origin: USA

Condition: Good

Date Posted: 30/05/2018

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I have a red Tennessean from the first year, 1990. In the first year only, the pickguard and TRC were silver (actually clear & painted silver on the back). The silver pickguard has Tennessean written on it in black, and is a slightly different shape from the later black pickguard. Also, the 1990 model did not come with an armrest.

 

Original pickups were a 492R, and a 490T. Mine has had the 492R replaced with a split-coil '57 humbucker. The neck is speced at being 1-3/4", but mine does not feel that wide. The scale length is 25.5". The fretboard is ebony, and the neck is 3-piece maple. Gibson called the centerblock "Chromyte", which was their name for balsa wood.

 

When these come up for sale, they often seem to go for around $1500 to $1700. Imho, they represent a very good value at that price point.

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