View Full Version : 1947 gibson F-12

Vernon Hughes
Dec-18-2010, 11:36am
Any value ideas on a 47 gibson f-12,no damage,all original with original case?

Dec-18-2010, 12:38pm
Couple '60's vintage F-12's listed on-line now for around $3K. RetroFret has a '52 listed for $5.8K here. (http://www.gbase.com/stores/retrofret-vintage-guitars/inventory?search=gs=y&pageindex=1&pagesize=25&sf0=5&sd0=0&sf1=12&sd1=1&sf2=7&sd2=0&make=gibson&model=f12&grp=5) That's probably your range, $3-6K or so. Wide range.

Vernon Hughes
Dec-18-2010, 12:58pm
Thanks,was just curious..I saw that '52 but hadn't found any earlier ones around to compare..

Dec-18-2010, 3:33pm
Here's (http://www.gbase.com/stores/retrofret-vintage-guitars/inventory?search=gs=y&pageindex=1&pagesize=25&sf0=5&sd0=0&sf1=12&sd1=1&sf2=7&sd2=0&make=gibson&model=f12&grp=5) a 1949 model that Mandolin Bros. sold for $3.5K; here's (http://jerseyshore.craigslist.org/msg/2043451814.html) a 2005 CraigsList ad for a '52 for $4.8K. There are a significant number of F-12 sales to research. The RetroFrets price seems to be pretty high in comparison.

Don't know if you're buying, selling or just interested, but I'd try to get under $4K were I buying.

Vernon Hughes
Dec-18-2010, 6:36pm
Just interested,I know where one is..

Dec-18-2010, 11:35pm
How are you dating this to 1947? The Gibson history books show the first year for the post war F12 at 1948 and they only made 6 that year. If it is in the first batchs of postwar F12 it should have a short neck with the fingerboard glued to the top and not raised.
Those models don't bring as much as the raised fingerboard long neck models of the early 50's.

Vernon Hughes
Dec-19-2010, 7:51am
An old friend of mine owns it,bought it in '56..He says it's a '47 but I haven't seen the serial # yet..I'm going to check it out next time I see him..

Dec-19-2010, 9:08am
I had a '49 F-12, just like Tom described. Sound was a bit weak and thuddy.

Bernie Daniel
Dec-19-2010, 9:36am
I always thought the post-war start up for F-12's was 1949 -- but f5loar says 1948 so I'm sure that is correct. As noted the fingerboard is lying on the top board just like an F-2 or F-5. In 1951, they started raising them up a bit off the top -- but not as high off as the pre-war F-5's -- or the modern Gibsons. If you are looking for a player I think there is more fruitful ground

Bernie Daniel
Dec-19-2010, 9:45am
I had a '49 F-12, just like Tom described. Sound was a bit weak and thuddy.

There is a 1950 F-12 for sale in Cincinnati and it is in good condition and sounds decent when play by itself -- but it is pale sounding indeed if it is compared with a new (and much less expensive) F-9 for example.
The tone of the older mandolin is OK but there is no "punch" to it you have to beat it to death to get any sound out of it.

I had a 1952 F-12 (with raised fingerboard) that was not much to brag about until Randy Wood worked it over.

OTOH Bobby Osborne's first mandolin was a 1949 F-12 wasn't it?

Dec-19-2010, 12:28pm
OTOH Bobby Osborne's first mandolin was a 1949 F-12 wasn't it?

And let's not forget John Duffey, who made decades of amazing music on a re-necked F-12...

Here's Akira Otsuka, from his excellent Duffey's Mandolins series of YouTube videos, showing, talking about, and playing Duffey's F-12:

jim simpson
Dec-19-2010, 1:57pm
Was the F-12 the F5G or F9 of it's day?

Dec-19-2010, 3:32pm
Duff's was a prewar F12. Different animal altogether and they were short necked also.
The prewwar F12 was a bit fancier then the postwar F12 too. I'd compare the prewar F7 and postwar F12 to the F5G or F9.

Dec-19-2010, 4:55pm
And I think there is an ad in BU for a vintage F-12 that is owned by Blue Grass Boy #37. It has been hot-rodded quite a bit, I beleive.

Willie Poole
Dec-19-2010, 11:12pm
I owned a `52 F-12 and it was as loud as any mandolin that I have played, I did have it converted to an F-5 but it still sounded the same...I should have kept it but I needed money in those days, just like now....Duffey and Buzz Busby played it many times and they both loved it, Duffeys had a different sound than any other F-12 I have ever heard or played, I don`t know if he ever done anything to the insides or not but it seemed to sound different every time I heard it....Willie

Dec-30-2010, 1:00am
I am bumping this up in hopes the serial no. to verifly that an F12 was made in 1947 does exsist. Any luck on finding more information on this one?

Darryl Wolfe
Dec-30-2010, 10:29am
I'm with you Tom. Maybe a 47 or 48 exist, but I've never seen one earlier than 49

Dec-30-2010, 11:33am
I found a 1952 F12 at an estate sales about 3 years ago. They wanted $3000 for it and I offered $2500 I believe. They wouldn't part with the case that had their father's name on it. Sound was good but not great. I never got a chance to rebid as everything was through the estate people. My feedback from a number of sources was it was worth $3000, no more. Anyways, I regret not buying that beautiful instrument to this day.