In the past year I have purchased 3 vintage A Gibsons from Ebay. A 1906 blackface A4,a 1918 Red A4, and an early white A3.
Ok,I understand with ebay purchases you take your chances, and I accept that.I live in Australia and those kinds of instruments don't come up for sale here where you can play them prior to purchase and assess the condition of them.Hence Ebay.
The red A4 has developed top split/sagging issues on the bass side since I purchased it.
The white A3 which I just purchased has arrived, and it has top sagging issues,and looks like a neck reset is necessary.
The blackface A4 so far is a gem and holding up well.
I love old instruments, and appreciate them for the character and history they have,as well as the tone they have. I figure I could have purchased similar instruments from reputable dealers in the US, and had the same issues.
Ok,is it the age or just bad choices I have made with these mandolins.Are instruments of this vintage prone to these problems, and are they fixable with top sagging problems, without a total rebuild?
All advice appreciated.