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New Vintage Casino


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When the 50th anniversary Casinos made their way to shelves last year, I set my mind on getting one. I had a 10 year old Casino that I liked, but the sound didn't scream, the set up was amateur and it fell out of tune after a few minutes of play. I thought I could sell my older Casino on Craigslist and use the money towards the purchase of the new anniversary edition. While attempting to sell the guitar, I was surprised at the number of questions about whether it was a Korean made product or not. I ran the serial number and saw it was from the Peerless factory in 2001. After coming to these boards, I realized that aside from some hardware issues, I was probably going to be downgrading in overall quality of the instrument. Instead of buying a new guitar, maybe I could just get a new setup, upgrade the pickups, change the tuning pegs, and all would be well. Here are some pictures of the condition of the guitar before I took it in. All in all, decent shape. The frets needed a good polish, but the rest of the guitar was in stellar.

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I started researching guitar luthiers in my area, and came across Chicago Fret Works. While going over their site, I saw some of the custom refinish jobs they had done and it struck me that as long as I’m taking it into the shop, maybe they can strip the guitar and refinish it with a vintage nitro paint job to really make this a classy guitar. While I liked the unique look of the Royal Tan finish on the 50th Anniversary Edition Casino, I had never come across a Casino that had a paint job like that. The old “honey burst” style of the 60’s is so elegant and classy, I knew that was the choice for me. I showed them this picture of a 1963 Casino that I had seen at Chicago Music Exchange not long before. One of the owners of Chicago Fret Works, Dan, took a look at the picture and assured me he’d have no problem matching the vintage burst:

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Here they are sanding off the finish:

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Here you can see the new white cap tuning pegs. Dan even went as far as replicating the vintage serial number style on the back of the headstock.

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And here is the finished product. It looks and feels just like the vintage Epiphones I have played at the guitar shops, and it sounds even better! You can see more of the great work over at www.chicagofretworks.com. Thanks to Dan and the guys who did a great job.

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Wow, that looks amazing! I have an older Peerless Casino I need to part with, but now I'm thinking differently (that "honeyburst" is awesome!). . .


What about the truss rod cover? Two-screw or three? Ha, no matter really, but you should definitely look for a new three-hole cover with the vintage "E" that they've currently gone back to (which I assume is due to the inspired-by Lennon success?).


Top-notch Pcal!

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Nice little blog post over at Guitar Fretworks...


Beautiful work - imagine it was not cheap!

Thanks. This project was a bit of a snowball with all of the work. I basically said, "If you guys think of anything cool, let me know". So Dan came up with and added little touches like adding the seriel numbers on the headstock and matching the white tuning pegs to the white fret board. To top it off, I picked up some vintage style straps from Souldier. I can't believe all of the old Ace fabrics were in good enough condition to still be used. Great stuff.

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