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hiding serial numbers


stymye

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I think the risk of posting your serial number is over rated... At the end of the day who owns the guitar!.... I do... who has a shitty fake with a copied serial number...They do...

 

I also have proof of purchase with my guitars..

 

Any number of guitars can have a serial number copied.

 

 

Flight959

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But by posting a serial you could be helping them with their forgery by giving them a legit serial number to use on their fake. The buyer of the fake checks the serial number with Gibson and is assured it is legit. Boom - ripped off.

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I'm with bobv. 11 years ago I went to court (many times!) to defend my ownership of a '65 Jazzmaster. A drunk called me up one day and asked what the serial number of my Jazzmaster was. I knew he had at least two of his own and I foolishly thought he was just comparing numbers to see which was older, etc. He then claimed it was stolen and a half hour later the Sherriff was at my door. He took photos and cautioned me to not sell it or try to hide it. After further investigation on the Sherriff's part and a couple drunken shouting matches between him and the drunk claimant, they decided there was not enough proof to seize it from me. His only claim to ownership was a slip of paper given to him at the Canadian border when he crossed to play a gig. The serial number was L12345 and on the slip was scribbled 1234 (no 'L') and then a '5' added in an obvious different pen. That number was made up for the purpose of illustration of course.

 

I thought it was a done deal until I got a notice I was being taken to small claims court for the return of the guitar. I spoke to two lawyers and they both said it wa an open and shut case and I didn't have a chance. I decided at that point the lawyers I spoke to didn't want to be bothered with a pissant case like this and I was on my own.

 

I subpoenaed the Sherriff and the owner of the store where I bought the Jazzmaster. I also took the guitar to Canada myself (10 miles) and requested one of the forms mentioned earlier. He sent me inside where I was given a pad of them and told to fill it out myself. I took that to court and told the judge I (or anyone) could have written anything at all on that paper and that it meant nothing.

 

It's been a long time and I don't remember all the particulars but I do know nothing was settled that day and I went back twice again. On the second time they asked for a third court date so they could contact Fender to trace the serial number. I told the judge they didn't keep those records and he gave me "that look" that said he was going to give them the chance regardless. I wrote to Fender and sent the letter by express mail and begged them to respond asap, which they did, with days to spare. The letter basically said they did not maintain any kind of database or registration then. At the court date his lawyer said he tried to call Fender several times but kept getting the runaround. I then offered my letter from Fender. Once the judge saw that, he had seen enough and I won the case.

 

I sold the guitar that afternoon and haven't been near a Jazzmaster since.

 

So yeah, if I have a $60 guitar on ebay I won't bother hiding the number, but anything of value gets a couple digits blocked out.

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