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Wildkat Bigsby


mvspur

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Hi Guys.....

 

New here and this is my first post. I am really interested in the Wildkat and I have questions that I can't seem to get answered so I figured I'd come here and give it a shot. I've done my homework on this guitar, but I can't get answers to some things after sending notes to both Epiphone and Bigsby.

 

To my knowledge, the Wildkat was released with 3 different tailpieces:

1) 335 style tailpiece (no tremolo). I saw a guy with one and he said it came new that way although I have never seen them advertised or sold in this fashion

 

2) stamped "Bigsby" tailpiece.

 

3) stamped "E" Bigsby style tailpiece.

 

My question is centered around #3 above. Is this a REAL Bigsby tailpiece that they just decided to put an "E" on rather than "Bigsby"?

 

Also......it seems to me that the flame in these guitars got better as the line aged. Is there any truth to this?

 

Any REAL insight into this is appreciated more than you know.

 

Looking forward to your posts........

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My question is centered around #3 above. Is this a REAL Bigsby tailpiece that they just decided to put an "E" on rather than "Bigsby"?

I'm fairly sure that Bigsby has multiple worldwide patents on the Bigsby-style trems and that if they don't actually say Bigsby on them, the manufacturer must pay a licencing fee. I have both a USA-made Bigsby B7 and a Korean-made B70, and other than the fact that the USA made is forged and the MIK is cast, they operate identically. As for Epi Wildkats, I'd guess that they had them manufactured to their specs under licence to Bigsby. They might have sent some out with Bigsby logos until their factory order came in, or they might have decided to switch for other reasons. Bottom line, I don't think it makes much of difference in playability or resale value.

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Great observations.......and thanks

 

To be clear:

 

The Wildkat (P90s) does ship with the Bigsby. The Alleykat (HBs) comes as a hard tail, as does the Flamekat.

 

Here is a listing of a Wildkat with a 335 tailpiece (recently sold on ebay).

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=110376725933

 

Anyway....

 

I tend to agree on there not being a difference in the two Bigsby tailpieces in terms of performance. I don't own one yet, but it only makes sense.

 

I just wish I knew (maybe by serial number range?) what the rationale was and whether or not the E is a Bigsby. I guess it's really a matter of preference since all the guitars were in fact MIK. Brian, I think you're right.....I doubt the tailpieces were made in USA regardless of what is stamped on them. Just one of those things that's buggin' me.

 

Thanks guys....

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There's some info on the bottom of the auction that seems to explain this:

 

Second Addition of Information Thanks To Knowledgable eBayers.

 

A complete "Cut and Paste" from an eBayer named "Us-n-them"

 

I have come across the USED stamp on the headstock of guitars and have been told that it commonly means that due to some imperfection, it cannot be sold as NEW and in flawless condition. They are stamped this way, if I understood correctly, at the factory so that when they arrive on the market for sale, the buyer knows upfront that they are getting an imperfect instrument. A second of sorts. That said, it appears to be a beautiful guitar, although for some reason the factory had to stamp it in this fashion. Best of luck.

 

From me (gmffal) - OK so my thoughts have been somewhat confirmed . . . hidden under the Dot tailpiece are two tiny body colored screws deftly fitted in the place where the Bigsby was meant to be screwed to the body - I own a Wilkat and have just compared the two. The screws that the Bigsby is fitted with (in my Wildkat) are monsters in comparison, so it appears the tiny screws are screwed into "pilot" holes and the Bigsby was never fitted. The tailpiece was probably factory fitted. Is this good enough for Ripley's Believe It Or Not? Crazy stuff.

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Some of the Peerless Epiphone Archtops/Semis came with "E" Bigsbys and I have no qualms about buying one when the price is right and I have the cash. I had been eyeing up a Casino with on and a Sorrento with one for a long time but just never got round to it... This is back on ebay. I'm trying to resist the temptation.

 

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There's some info on the bottom of the auction that seems to explain this:

 

Second Addition of Information Thanks To Knowledgable eBayers.

 

A complete "Cut and Paste" from an eBayer named "Us-n-them"

 

I have come across the USED stamp on the headstock of guitars and have been told that it commonly means that due to some imperfection' date=' it cannot be sold as NEW and in flawless condition. They are stamped this way, if I understood correctly, at the factory so that when they arrive on the market for sale, the buyer knows upfront that they are getting an imperfect instrument. A second of sorts. That said, it appears to be a beautiful guitar, although for some reason the factory had to stamp it in this fashion. Best of luck.

 

From me (gmffal) - OK so my thoughts have been somewhat confirmed . . . hidden under the Dot tailpiece are two tiny body colored screws deftly fitted in the place where the Bigsby was meant to be screwed to the body - I own a Wilkat and have just compared the two. The screws that the Bigsby is fitted with (in my Wildkat) are monsters in comparison, so it appears the tiny screws are screwed into "pilot" holes and the Bigsby was never fitted. The tailpiece was probably factory fitted. Is this good enough for Ripley's Believe It Or Not? Crazy stuff.[/quote']

 

The term USED is different than a factory 2nd. As I understand it, the manufacturer will sell these USED guitars as damaged beyond repair, guitars that could never be sold as new. For example, a guitar that was damaged in shipping and returned. The serial numbers are removed and the guitars are stamped USED so that an unscrupulous dealer can't try to pass them off as new. No warranty, and a new serial # is assigned (usually on a sticker) to indicate that it is USED.

 

They are often sold to jobbers without parts, the jobber will repair the problem and put their own parts on it. So even though it might be an Epiphone, all the parts could be aftermarket. I would bet that some jobber refurbished this guitar, but didn't want to invest the bucks for a Bigsby so they used a cheap trapeze tp instead.

 

OTH, a 2nd is a new guitar with a minor flaw, like an imperfection in the finish.

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Thanks Jerry for pointing that out. I didn't write any of that. My only intention with the C&P was to highlight the point that because the guitar is stamped used this explains why it didn't come out the factory with a Bigsby. I would be surprised to see a genuine unmodded serial numbered Kat with that tailpiece.

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