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journeybear
Mar-27-2009, 9:17am
I'm the first to admit I don't know everything about anything, surely nowhere enough about some things ... and so I ask ... Is there something wrong with this mandolin (http://cgi.ebay.com/1965-Gibson-F-12-Mandolin-F5-F-5-Scroll-7-DAYS-ONLY_W0QQitemZ260383084537QQcmdZViewItemQQptZLH_De faultDomain_0?hash=item260383084537&_trksid=p3286.c0.m14&_trkparms=72%3A1546%7C66%3A2%7C65%3A12%7C39%3A1%7C 240%3A1318%7C301%3A0%7C293%3A1%7C294%3A50), and why does it keep coming up for auction with no one bidding on it? :confused: Apart from personal preferences and tastes issues, of course.

This is the one that inspired my renewed efforts to recover my late lamented F-12 :crying: though this is different - mine's a 1966, with yellow-to-dark-brown sunburst. Is the seller asking too much? The price seems in the ballpark to me. Perhaps he should have a lower starting price but maintain his reserve price? As I inferred, this is one of the things I don't know enough about.

While searching ebay I also saw this. (http://cgi.ebay.com/trinity-river-mandolin-gibson-strings_W0QQitemZ220382103485QQcmdZViewItemQQptZLH _DefaultDomain_0?hash=item220382103485&_trksid=p3286.c0.m14&_trkparms=72%3A1546%7C66%3A2%7C65%3A12%7C39%3A1%7C 240%3A1318%7C301%3A1%7C293%3A1%7C294%3A50) My parameters are simply Gibson mandolin; I may have to change that, though then I might miss out on some chuckles. :)) I appreciate the seller's belief that the inclusion of Gibson strings would increase the value of his instrument, though eventually one has to change them ... :whistling:

jim_n_virginia
Mar-27-2009, 9:34am
seems like a fair price BUT one I thing I know... if you are thinking about aquiring this mandolin the LAST place I would mention it would be here! LOL! With the thousands of eyes on the Cafe you just would be adding more competition.

Looks like a nice F-12 to me. And pretty decent price hmmmm... :grin:

journeybear
Mar-27-2009, 10:25am
seems like a fair price BUT one I thing I know... if you are thinking about aquiring this mandolin the LAST place I would mention it would be here! LOL! With the thousands of eyes on the Cafe you just would be adding more competition.

Looks like a nice F-12 to me. And pretty decent price hmmmm... :grin:

Ha ha ha! You ain't kidding! But no, I'm not interested in buying this, I'm wondering why it keeps coming up for bid and nobody bids on it. I believe this is the third time I've seen it offered in two months.

Jim Broyles
Mar-27-2009, 12:07pm
To tell you the truth, for $45.00 for local pickup, I'd tell him to keep it. $110.00 shipping is excessive in my opinion, as well. Hope he sells it.

journeybear
Mar-27-2009, 12:09pm
... I'm surprised the owner hasn't tried to sell it on the Classifieds... where high prices seem to be the order of the day...

Uh-oh - don't go giving him ideas! ;)

jim_n_virginia
Mar-28-2009, 7:53am
To tell you the truth, for $45.00 for local pickup, I'd tell him to keep it. $110.00 shipping is excessive in my opinion, as well. Hope he sells it.

WHOA! Nelly! LOL! I didn't see that. $45.00 for local pickup? That's crazy! LOL!

Also $110.00 is about double what it costs to send a mandolin via UPS. I realized that packing foam, good boxes and tape cost money and SHOULD be including in handling charges but not an extra $50.00!

Yeah I think I would pass on the one just for the excessive shipping charges.

It's still not a bad looking mandolin, wonder what it sounds like?
:mandosmiley:

barney 59
Mar-29-2009, 3:39am
Those little weaselly things really kill an auction. He's offering the mandolin at a good price but turning people off with excessive shipping charges. I watch these alot and over pricing shipping is a deal breaker almost everytime. Handling charges as well. How ya going to get it to me if ya don't handle it! He's taking the fun out of it by having his opening bid and buy it now almost the same price. ebay is a form of gambling and people like the illusion that they "won" something. With that said if I hadn't just recently tapped myself out purchasing a mandolin I might be really interested in a clean f12 with the raised fingerboard for 3 grand. I would try to negotiate the fine points with him in closing the deal.

journeybear
Mar-29-2009, 11:24am
... if I hadn't just recently tapped myself out purchasing a mandolin I might be really interested in a clean f12 with the raised fingerboard for 3 grand. I would try to negotiate the fine points with him in closing the deal.

Well, be patient. This keeps coming up for auction with no one bidding on it. Eventually he may drop the price, or otherwise adjust the overall package to make it more attractive.

jim simpson
Mar-29-2009, 5:22pm
FREE SHIPPING WITH BUY IT NOW!!!! (Continental US only).
(This must have been added)

Perry
Mar-29-2009, 5:31pm
Also $110.00 is about double what it costs to send a mandolin via UPS.

The last mandolin I sent via UPS from NY to VA cost me about $85. That included about 3.5k in insurance.

Who does the insurance protect? The buyer; the seller, both or neither?

journeybear
Mar-29-2009, 6:21pm
FREE SHIPPING WITH BUY IT NOW!!!! (Continental US only).
(This must have been added)

That's been there. Yeah, for $300 more we'll throw in that shipping! ;) Still no bids ...

f5loar
Mar-29-2009, 8:55pm
Usually when the BIN is close to the opening bid is for those that really want it bad enough to not let it go into auction after that first bid. It could go over the BIN if it does or it could go for the starting price. The problem I see with this year F12 is you are right on that border between being okay and not okay. '65 was that year Gibson was going through some real major changes in management and quality suffered. Anything before '65 you have a better gamble of it being better but after that '65 date buyer beware. This appears all original with the exception of maybe the pickguard. Looks replacement to me but hard to tell in photos that are not all that great.
Certainly looks to be very clean and original so price is in line with that year. Lots of pros used these post war F12s.

Zigeuner
Mar-30-2009, 10:47pm
Usually when the BIN is close to the opening bid is for those that really want it bad enough to not let it go into auction after that first bid. It could go over the BIN if it does or it could go for the starting price. The problem I see with this year F12 is you are right on that border between being okay and not okay. '65 was that year Gibson was going through some real major changes in management and quality suffered. Anything before '65 you have a better gamble of it being better but after that '65 date buyer beware. This appears all original with the exception of maybe the pickguard. Looks replacement to me but hard to tell in photos that are not all that great.
Certainly looks to be very clean and original so price is in line with that year. Lots of pros used these post war F12s.

I think you are correct about the year. It's a bit new to be really appealing. The pickguard appears to be original, in any case, it looks very similar to the one on my 1949 F-12.

The finish seems to be almost a satin and the sunburt is quite different from mine. It also has the Kluson style tuners and the fittings are nickel or chrome instead of gold plating as on the early models.

Other differences are the little inlay in the peghead and the elevated fingerboard. I wish Gibson could make up their mind about fingerboards. LOL.

It's probably not a bad price but as mentioned, it's been listed at least three times IIRC.

journeybear
Mar-30-2009, 11:15pm
I wish Gibson could make up their mind about fingerboards. LOL.

And serial numbers, and the logo, and inlays, and ... well, you know ;)

Love 'em just the same!

f5loar
Mar-30-2009, 11:50pm
If your '49 has a pickguard just like that one it's not original. A '49 would have a much wider bevel on the edges. This one has a very thin bevel like found in the very late 60's. Also has a screw into the top not pinned on the fingerboard. A '49 would be pinned not screwed to the top. In fact I went back and looked at this again trusting the seller knew it was a '65. Upon closer look at the serial no. it's not a '65 at all. It's one of the double numbers Gibson has listed as being a '66 or '69. The finish is more reddish then a '66 but very typical of a '69. The pickguard looks to be late 60's. He also mentions that he thinks the case is original but does not show it which to me indicates it's one of the different style cases only found on '68,'69 or '70. Also no "Custom" truss rod cover as found on the '66 so I'm going with this being a '69 and certainly not a '65. Now that does make a big difference and the price is a bit high.

Zigeuner
Mar-31-2009, 12:19am
If your '49 has a pickguard just like that one it's not original. A '49 would have a much wider bevel on the edges. This one has a very thin bevel like found in the very late 60's. Also has a screw into the top not pinned on the fingerboard. A '49 would be pinned not screwed to the top. In fact I went back and looked at this again trusting the seller knew it was a '65. Upon closer look at the serial no. it's not a '65 at all. It's one of the double numbers Gibson has listed as being a '66 or '69. The finish is more reddish then a '66 but very typical of a '69. The pickguard looks to be late 60's. He also mentions that he thinks the case is original but does not show it which to me indicates it's one of the different style cases only found on '68,'69 or '70. Also no "Custom" truss rod cover as found on the '66 so I'm going with this being a '69 and certainly not a '65. Now that does make a big difference and the price is a bit high.


You are quite right about the pickguard. I got the F-12 out after I responded and mine is quite a bit different. The bevel is much more pronounced on my 1949 pickguard. I came back tonight to correct my earlier post and then I saw your response. I can't count on my memory anymore, I guess, LOL. I assure you that mine is quite original since the mandolin was virtually unplayed when I got it from my uncle's estate around 1980. He was the original owner and no work has ever been done on it. As you say, my '49 has the pickguard pinned to the top where it joins the fingerboard. My truss cover is plain with no MOP inlay on the peghead other than "Gibson".

I also have the original hang tag and small paper inspection slip dated May 23, 1949 initialed "EC".

Thanks for pointing the details out. Here's a picture.

http://i144.photobucket.com/albums/r188/gnm109/F-12Pictures001.jpg

journeybear
Mar-31-2009, 9:08am
Thank you for your detailed analysis! I have just a little input.

As I recall, my late lamented 1966 :crying: had a pickguard with a pin to the fingerboard, as you mentioned. Also the inlay was different, a fleur-de-lis, and the logo read "The Gibson." The logo changes willy-nilly, so that's not a reliable indicator. Finally, its serial number clinched the date as 1966. If indeed it was built during this transitional period that would explain why its sound took a lot of playing to develop.

I'm sorry I don't have a good picture - this is the best I've got. I'd taken the pickguard off long before, but I remember that clearly. It made for easy removal for polishing - just the one screw into the side (and two for the TRC) - so I always left a small phillips head screwdriver in the case.

f5loar
Mar-31-2009, 1:30pm
Your fuzzy photo and the description you give clearly puts yours in the mid 70's years. Many times you need more than just a number as the number could fit several years which is the case with the 60's and 70's having the same number used. There is a huge difference in looks between a '66 F12 and a '76 F12. Send me your serial no. and I can probably get a closer year for you. The "The Gibson" script logos started being used again in late 1970. Before that it was just "Gibson" in the postwar block logo. But from your photo I see the 70's Shading in the finish plus the headstock is smaller than a 60's. Everything you have said about pickguard and inlays points to a 70's F12.

journeybear
Mar-31-2009, 1:43pm
Here you go: SN: 557 858

I looked it up in the Blue Book (http://www.gibson.com/Files/downloads/bluebook/GibsonSERIALNUMBERS.pdf) when it was stolen and despite the haphazard numbering at Gibson around that time I assumed it fell in this range: 1966 550000-556910.

I don't know enough about the other, physical characteristics of mandolins and their changes as the instrument has evolved to be able to determine one's date. Fortunately my luthier did have the SN on file so I was able to put that in the police report, and in the classifieds here.

journeybear
Mar-31-2009, 9:35pm
With all this talk about zigeuner's F-12 and my F-12 I almost forgot about this (http://cgi.ebay.com/1965-Gibson-F-12-Mandolin-F5-F-5-Scroll-7-DAYS-ONLY_W0QQitemZ260383084537QQcmdZViewItemQQptZLH_De faultDomain_0?hash=item260383084537&_trksid=p3286.c0.m14&_trkparms=72%3A1546%7C66%3A2%7C65%3A12%7C39%3A1%7C 240%3A1318%7C301%3A0%7C293%3A1%7C294%3A50)F-12! The auction is ending in five hours ... and still nobody's bid on it. :disbelief: You can still get it at the opening bid price! Unless, of course, you just want to wait till it comes up for bid again in 2-3 weeks ... :whistling:

OK, I'm stepping aside so I don't get trampled by the stampede this news will cause ... :grin:

And no April Fool's ... ;)

journeybear
Apr-01-2009, 3:59am
Well, if you decided to hold off and see how the bidding went, and then forgot about it, and are now kicking yourself for having missed out, you're on luck.

No one bid on it, and it's been relisted (http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=160325452470&ssPageName=MERCOSI_VI_ROSI_PR4_PCN_BIX&refitem=260383084537&itemcount=4&refwidgetloc=closed_view_item&refwidgettype=osi_widget&_trksid=p284.m263&_trkparms=algo%3DSIC%26its%3DI%252BC%252BP%252BIA% 252BI%252BIA%26itu%3DIA%252BUCI%252BUA%26otn%3D4%2 6ps%3D41), at $2500.

No April Fool's! ;)

f5loar
Apr-01-2009, 9:54am
I don't know what list you were using to get a '66 date on that F12 but my up to date list shows the '66 ending with the 556909 and then it picks up again in a '69 number at
558012 so there are no 557XXX numbers found in the 1960's. Strange but true. Gibson really had a screwy system in the mid 1960's and most non-knowledgable dealers/owners/experts tend to read them wrong.
Your number does fit nicely with the 500000 numbers in the 1974-75 range. Since your F12 has none of the specs of a 60's and has all the specs of the 70's I believe I would call it what it is, a 1974 F12. We don't need to continue this with a discussion of the 70's dark age Gibson mandolins. You can find several days readings with a search.

journeybear
Apr-01-2009, 10:43am
I don't know what list you were using to get a '66 date on that F12 but my up to date list shows the '66 ending with the 556909 and then it picks up again in a '69 number at 558012 so there are no 557XXX numbers found in the 1960's. Strange but true. Gibson really had a screwy system in the mid 1960's ...

Well, OK, that's why I included the link (http://www.gibson.com/Files/downloads/bluebook/GibsonSERIALNUMBERS.pdf) which I found on the interweb about four years ago - Sixth edition, 1999. If it's no longer current I'd like to know. We may be beating a dead horse here, or at any rate a stolen mandolin, :crying: but it would be nice to know. It's entirely possible that the SN is actually 551 858, as I recall it looked like one of those funny 1's some people make that look like 7's because they have a little flag on top. It didn't seem to make any difference when I looked it up, as both ways led to the same year, as I read it. If that makes any difference in your book I'd like to know - just so I can stop thinking about this! Oh yeah, and amend the police report.

I really appreciate your taking the time for all this. And I agree with you, no need to discuss the Dark Age. That way leads to madness! :disbelief:

f5loar
Apr-01-2009, 1:34pm
Stop looking at 60's numbers and look at the 70's numbers which is where you should have started with in the first place. It ain't a 60's F12. No way , no how.
Ain't got that look. Did it look like the '65/66/69 F12 on ebay? Actually all you needed to do was look at the headstock, grab a 70's catalog and see the match. We are talking apples and oranges here not apples to apples.
If someone mislead you it was a 60's when in fact it was a 70's and maybe you paid too much, that's pretty much water over the dam now. Fact is who you bought it from proabably believed it to be a 60's too. At some point it needs to be corrected. I also noted you had a separatoin in the serial number XXX XXX instead of continous XXXXXX. The 60's did not separate, the 70's did. You got a '74 is it starts with a 5XXXXX. If it starts with another number you got another year 70's.

journeybear
Apr-01-2009, 2:15pm
Sorry to have caused any consternation. I got it from a pawnshop in 1978, so I never had any information on it. It sure took a lot of playing - years - for it to get to sounding good. So I'm prepared to believe it was pretty new at the time. I can't say for sure whether that separation was there, but that's how it was written on the file card at my luthier's, the only source of information on it. And I can't say for sure which of us came up with the serial number analysis. He did have the book there, but I'd looked it up online a couple of years before this.

Anyway, it really doesn't matter - '66, '74, I liked it, it played well, I'd had it for thirty years, and I'd love to have it back. If I did, could I get $2500 for it? Dunno - I wouldn't be selling it anyway. And I don't think the guy with the '65 is going to either. And no, I didn't pay too much for it, just a bit of my heart and soul ... ;)