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Gibson heritage... more info?


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Hi guys

 

I am looking into this gibson heritage that was offered on one of the local craigslist

I am still waiting for a bit more information, but this is the picture that is available

 

1340625867_404748317_1-Gibson-Acoustic-Heritage-Witfield.jpg

 

It does not have the orange logo inside so may i assume it is late sixties?

 

What is their reputation?

 

What is current market value so that I can make the seller a reasonable offer...

 

many thanks!

K

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Interesting. Every Heritage I've seen has had a natural finish. The curlicue headstock started in '68, belly below bridge in '69. These had laminated back & sides (while the earliest versions were solid). Double-X bracing started in '71 and is easy to spot, so if there's any doubt about the serial number, I'd look for that in order to place this instrument either before or after 1971. I owned a Heritage Custom built in '72, which had solid back & sides. The Custom version can be easily spotted due to it's large mustache bridge with curlicue inlays. Note that even with double-X bracing, some of these can sound very nice.

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Let me know what questions you have. I still have a Heritage, and it's now some 42 years old! The top has suffered a bit, but the Brazilian Rosewood is still beautiful, and it's clearly NOT laminated on mine. The action remains excellent, the tone now mellow (I should hope so). What's interesting is how solid the sound is: unlike with my Martin, the Heritage seems to change only marginally with differing string gauges. Got to say that the one in the picture doesn't look like it's been played much, and I don't recall seeing Heritages with a sunburst finish. BTW, mine does NOT have an orange logo inside. Anyway....

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Let me know what questions you have. I still have a Heritage, and it's now some 42 years old! The top has suffered a bit, but the Brazilian Rosewood is still beautiful, and it's clearly NOT laminated on mine. The action remains excellent, the tone now mellow (I should hope so). What's interesting is how solid the sound is: unlike with my Martin, the Heritage seems to change only marginally with differing string gauges. Got to say that the one in the picture doesn't look like it's been played much, and I don't recall seeing Heritages with a sunburst finish. BTW, mine does NOT have an orange logo inside. Anyway....

To my knowledge and from all the literature I've come across, only the earliest versions of the Heritage (first produced in '65) had solid Brazilian rosewood. A 1970 example should typically have laminated back & sides. Anything is possible with Gibson, but could yours in fact be an earlier model? Would love to see some pictures.

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I am looking into this gibson heritage that was offered on one of the local craigslist
I also think only the earliest Heritages were solid RW backed but in any case never heard of a SB one and that SB doesn't look like a Gibson.

 

Gibson has done many 'custom' things over the years so one never knows but that one doesn't look right to me.

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Got to admit that mine does seem curious, a little different from what I take to be the norm. To wit, it came with a tortoise shell pickguard.** As to the rosewood, the guitar (as mentioned) is some 42 years old, and it's been no case queen. It's been played a lot, and I've taken it all over the world, from Brazil to Argentina to Bangladesh to Moscow to Bangkok and now Barbados. Meaning that it's been heavily used and subject to a lot of temperature and humidity changes, even extremes. The finish has checked and cracked sufficiently that the wood certainly has absorbed plenty of moisture over the years. Indeed, the top has cracked a little in places and the bridge pulled away once; but the sides and back have always remained perfectly sound, without the slighest hint of any delamination. Moreover, the wood inside is as nicely grained as the outside and you can see that it mirrors the cut. Finally, when I had it in Brazil, the afcionados were impressed with the "jacaranda"* sides and back and there was no mention of the rosewood being laminated, though I hardly think that their approval comprised any kind of real proof. Anyway...it's always been my favorite, and I'm a little surprised that there are not more of these still around.

 

*technically, I think that the brasileiros were actually wrong to called it jacaranda, but that's the word they used nevertheless.

** something I learned only recently and I'm not particularly happy about.

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That guitar seems to be an odd duck. Not only have I never seen one with a burst but I have never seen a Heritage with the block inlays and belly bridge. That does not mean one does not exist, it just means I have never seen one. Every Heritage with the block inlays I have seen had that pointy looking bridge. It might be that the guitar is a transitional model from I would say 1969-1970. Possibly it is some kind of anniversay model.

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Given how poor this burst looks I doubt its a Gibson, seems more like Martin trying to do a burst, which they are generally utterly useless at ..

 

I agree that the burst just don't say Gibson. Although again, guitars made from the late 1960s on are a different breed than those that came before them.

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Indeed, the top has cracked a little in places and the bridge pulled away once; but the sides and back have always remained perfectly sound, without the slighest hint of any delamination.

That seems more like evidence that it is laminated, rather than evidence that it isn't. Braz cracks extremely easily, but plywood is more stable than solid wood.

 

Moreover, the wood inside is as nicely grained as the outside and you can see that it mirrors the cut.

So it's either solid or slip-matched plywood. (Slip-matched means that consecutive verneers were used on the two sides, in order to get matching grain.) But good-quality laminated side and back sets were slip-matched in those days.

 

Finally, when I had it in Brazil, the afcionados were impressed with the "jacaranda"* sides and back and there was no mention of the rosewood being laminated, ...

Most experts seem to say that you can't tell by looking. That's why I was just wondering whether you'd had a crack or installed a pickup jack or something that definitely confirmed that it was solid.

 

-- Bob R

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My 72 Heritage had curlycue bridge, natural finish, silver machine heads and the block inlay was not yellowish. I checked google images and can't find ANY sunburst/tobacco burst finish on a Heritage . Sumpin ain't right there. Might still be a nice guitar but... How much?

Mike

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