View Full Version : Unusual 1924 Gibson F4

Cheryl Watson
May-07-2006, 7:59pm
I have just looked at a 1924 F4- Serial number 79272 - and a couple of things are different about this one compared to other photos I've seen of other F4s from this era. The headstock is unbound, the logo says "Gibson" instead of "The Gibson" in abalone, not pearl, the headstock has an abalone fleur de lis-type inlay, the fingerboard extension seems to be abbreviated or shorter than the norm, "1972" is stamped on the right back top corner of the headstock, and the black plastic truss rod cover has engraved initials. All other specs are in line with other F4s that I have viewed. Tuners, pickguard, tailpiece and case are all original. This mandolin has belonged to a friend of mine's mother for many years--at least since the 1950s. Do you have any information on this mandolin?

Thank you

May-07-2006, 10:12pm
if it's an F4 and not an F2(same idea, less trim) then it's most likely had some repair work at some point (ie. new headstock, neck or fingerboard) that serial number places it around 24 but your description of the headstock and fingerboard would suggest later years specs. likely they've been modified at some point. do you have pictures so we can see what you mean?

May-07-2006, 10:52pm
I just read a post today that said they only used the fleur de lis inlay on F5s for three years. Sam Bush's '37 has one, so I would guess it might have gone back to Gibson in the late '30s for repairs, and ended up looking like it does now.

May-08-2006, 12:32am
sorry, "Hoss" has a full flowerpot not the flur-de-lay pattern. Who told you otherwise? The new Bush models also have the full flowerpot like Sam's '37. The '38 and '39 had the full flowerpot and the '40,'41 and '42 had the flur-de-lay. From '25 to '36 they had Fern patterns of some sort. Seems I've seen some 40's F4's with the Flur-de-lay which would make sense.

May-08-2006, 2:51am
I suspect a reneck in the 40s or 50s, but I'd like to see pictures

May-08-2006, 7:14am
sorry, "Hoss" has a full flowerpot not the flur-de-lay pattern. Who told you otherwise?
Faulty memory again, sorry.
I remember seeing it with the fleur de lis! No wonder eye-witness testimony is so unreliable.

May-08-2006, 9:20am
Hoss: 95155 (http://www.mandolinarchive.com/perl/show_mando.pl?1259)


May-08-2006, 10:20am
There is a picture of a 1939 A-50 with the Fleur-de-lis peghead at Vintage-Instruments.com (http://www.vintage-instruments.com/catalogs/mandolin.htm) as seen below. Didn't Gibson also use the Fleur-de-lis on some of the early 1970s mandos... like that "special" lump-scroll A-5?


Tom C
May-08-2006, 10:37am
Gibson used a few different designs. I've seen some with a bad crown type inlay -think from 60's. I just saw a 30's F4 with a diamond shape inlay.

May-08-2006, 11:17am
30s f4 with diamond would be similar to the century of progress model perhaps?

Tom C
May-08-2006, 2:06pm
It may have been an early 40's.

May-23-2006, 4:12pm
This particular 1924 F-4 Gibson mandolin we are talking about,I also saw. We found out from the owner it did have a new neck put on by Gibson, but does not know when. The odd thing is the headstock inlay is not the standard Fleur de lis Gibson is known for. it is unusual, the fretboard extention is also modified. The mandolin plays excellent and has great tone. The overall condition is very good & clean except a hairline crack under the pickguard close to the neck. With a replaced neck, but all original body, how does this effect the value?

Bob A
May-24-2006, 2:25pm
Most F4s I've seen have a crack under the pickguard. IMHO it makes little difference. Replaced neck is perhaps a bigger deal; it would probably remove the instrument from consideration by a collector. Automatic "player's instrument". Again off the top of my head, I'd say it's worth more than an F2, less than a clean F4. So somewhere between 3500-4500, I suppose, depending on the rest of the condition/tone issues.

Ken Waltham
May-24-2006, 4:53pm
I feel it would be worth less than a straight F2 of the same year. Once you have that one, you have a lot of apologies.

May-24-2006, 5:50pm
Do we ever get pics of this beast??? http://www.mandolincafe.net/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/sad.gif