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Couple of pics of my old J-50


Azazello

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Can't remember if I posted these before, but I was just looking at them and thought it wouldn't hurt to maybe post em again. 1957, new bridge, Grovers, undersaddle transducer. I won't brag about the sound and feel except to say my luthier called it "the last of the great ones." It's a bit worn.

 

I got it in 1987 in a pawn shop. At that time, it had already had the original pickguard crudely torn off, had a Martin style pickguard crudely glued on, and then had the Martin pickguard crudely torn off. Most of the wood erosion has come since I started playing it. I'm a lighter touch now so she'll last another generation at least. Recent tune up and preservation; these photos are before. The stuff that was done, repairing a lower bout jack hole, dressing the back and sides, and some nearly invisible magic coating of some kind on the destroyed bits won't show in a compare and contrast, but it's in much finer fettle now and already coaxing out new songs.

 

 

 

IMG_0005.jpg

 

Detail.

IMG_0003.jpg

 

I'e got several others, and am always looking. But nothing else will do what this does for me.

 

I'm getting verklempt.

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Sorry to tell you this but that's not a 57, maybe 67 but not 57. A 57 would have a single rosette.

Where is the serial number, on the back of the headstock or inside on the neck block ?

If it's on the neckblock then maybe you have a Country Western body with a J45/J50 fingerboard.

My guess is a 62 or 63 because of the damage from the pickguard removal. A 64 would have an over the finish pickguard which wouldn't have caused all of that tear out.

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That ripped off pickguard looks terrible. It may be "mojo" to some but its just ugly to me.

To each his own.

If it were mine I would fix up the damaged area- scrape off the pickguard remains and shellac the bare wood so no more damage would occur. The way it looks now says " I don't care about this guitar".

Like I said- to each his own.

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Thanks for all the feedback. I understand people's attitudes about the pickguard. I just like it the way it is. My luthier coated the exposed wood last month, and it should last a good while. Honestly, I think the pickguards are ugly, and if I got another one, I'd take it off, albeit a bit more carefully. I did repair the 1/4 in. jack hole in the lower bout. As for the impression I don't care about it, it's mistaken. This is the only material possesion I have that I would risk violence to retain. If the Nazis come knocking at the front door, I'll be out the back with The Otter in my hand.

 

As for the vintage, the serial number is on the neck block, and reads U3091_40. My last visit to the online serial number guide placed it in 1957. Of course I can't swear by the model. But I expect with a plain top it's a J-50.

 

And yep, this is the baby that rests in your nice case Larry. Best accomodations it's ever had, I'm sure.

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And also, my luthier is Tony Nobles, who works out of Hill Country Guitars and had his own line of guitars. He's written for various industry publications for some time. He would likely have corrected me as to my belief it's a '57 if I was mistaken. He said Gibson's acoustic had a drop in quality that year, but that this one predated that drop. I appreciate the information though. I'm not interested in orginality or cosmetics. I've played hundreds of gigs with this guitar, and it's stayed in tune perfectly and sounded fantastic every time. It's the only guitar I can write with. I would never replace the pickguard, and will include a provision in my will regarding the continuation of that policy. If I'm not buried with it.

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Azazello, the serial number is on the neck block indicating a 57 but the rosette does not indicate 57, you have a odd one there. I'm wondering if somebody special ordered it with the extra rosette ring or maybe it was added later at some time. You sure there is no number on the back of the headstock ? I stand corrected.

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Hey there. I hadn't realized it was any different than a standard J-50. I can't tell you anything about it before I got it in 1986. Of course I didn't ask many questions at the pawn shop, I just wanted to get out of there with the guitar before they raised the price.

 

There are no other numbers anywhere to be seen. Headstock back has some holes exposed from original tuners, but nothing else notable.

 

Thanks for your feedback. Being a player more than a collector I won't really look into it any further. But it's nice to know it's not your standard J-50. It certainly doesn't play or sound like any other I've been able to play.

 

 

Thanks again. If you're ever in Austin get in touch and have a look first hand. I'm always happy to show it off.

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