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1935 L5 value


bhedy
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Hello all, I have what I was told when I bought it is a 1935 arch top L5. With original case. It’s a pretty cool guitar I bought from a guy needing cash. I’m not sure what it’s worth but the case looks every bit of 85 years any help would be appreciated 

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I hope you didn’t pay too much. That’s not an L5. Trim, fretboard, headstock, burst and a few other things are not L5. What’s  the width of the lower bout?  There’s quite a few members here that can nail it down for you. Looks more like an L48 or something along that line. Looks more like late 30’s early 40’s

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While I know nothing about Gibson archtops I do know the tuners (if original) are not what I would expect to see on a 1935 L5.  As best I can tell without a good photo, they  support Dave F's observation and date the guitar to the late-1930s or early-1940s.

Edited by zombywoof
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3 hours ago, slimt said:

That would be a L47, L48.  Large f holes ,dot inlay. 
 

L50s had small f holes , bound fingerboard. 

 

I thought possibly that if there is a label, the OP had misread it.    At any rate, I have never seen an L50 with a bound board.  Does not mean they do not exist only that I have never run across one.  The guitar certainly  could be an L47 but if the tuners are original they are too early a style for an L48.  At any rate the difference in value between an L5 and and any of these others will be substantial.

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3 hours ago, zombywoof said:

 

I thought possibly that if there is a label, the OP had misread it.    At any rate, I have never seen an L50 with a bound board.  Does not mean they do not exist only that I have never run across one.  The guitar certainly  could be an L47 but if the tuners are original they are too early a style for an L48.  At any rate the difference in value between an L5 and and any of these others will be substantial.

I have a 1950 here with a bound board.   As for the 48s 47s most were dot , unbound  large f holes. I have a 46 L48 small f holes , trapazoid inlays .  I think a few were done in 1947 as well.    With gold script.  No label. Just a stamp on the inside back.   But your right.    The L5 is in a league of its own.    I have a few from the 20s era. Beautiful guitars , but limited unless you like lots of swing music.  

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17 hours ago, slimt said:

I have a 1950 here with a bound board.   As for the 48s 47s most were dot , unbound  large f holes. I have a 46 L48 small f holes , trapazoid inlays .  I think a few were done in 1947 as well.    With gold script.  No label. Just a stamp on the inside back.   But your right.    The L5 is in a league of its own.    I have a few from the 20s era. Beautiful guitars , but limited unless you like lots of swing music.  

 

The tuners on the OP's guitar are 3 on a plate bent tab with screwed cog wheels.  Sometime in 1943 Gibson went with the  riveted cog wheels which was obviously what Kluson was supplying.  As such though, they would be too early for a '46 L48 .  My '32 and '35 Gibsons both had Waverly strip tuners.  

I have never been able to make peace with an f-hole archtop.  I actually find I prefer Epiphones to the Gibsons.  I do like round soundhole archtops though and own a mid-1930s Kay Kraft and the 1920 Gibson L3.  The L3  is an engineering marvel.  Because nothing was as yet adjustable Gibson graduated the carve of the top to line the fingerboard up with the bridge.  

Edited by zombywoof
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