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Thread: 'model A' pick guard authenticity

  1. #1

    Default 'model A' pick guard authenticity

    I have a query about the authenticity of this pick guard which was hanging off my late 20s model A0 when I bought it. The guard only ever had one pin in the fretboard at the 15th fret (there is only 1 pin hole in the fretboard). Also, there was no pin hole for mounting to the bridge. This guard was only mounted at that one pin and the screwed-in bracket in the treble-side edge of the mandolin.

    My question: Are these the original parts?; I haven’t heard of a single pin mounting before and the piece of timber on the back of the guard looks like an icecream stick. I may think about refitting them if they are original (to protect the top of the instrument).

    Click image for larger version. 

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  2. #2
    Registered User G7MOF's Avatar
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    Default Re: 'model A' pick guard authenticity

    My Gibson Alrite only has one pin in the fretboard but it does have on which goes into the bridge as well.
    I never fail at anything, I just succeed at doing things that never work....


    Fylde Touchstone Walnut Mandolin.
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  3. #3
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    Default Re: 'model A' pick guard authenticity

    I think the pin-into-bridge version was discontinued when adjustable bridges came in. My suspicion is that this is a somewhat modified pickguard from the 20s or 30s (someone has replaced a celuloid strip with wood and removed the attachment bracket) but there are other people around who know far more than I do.

    I'm sure I've seen this particular guard before???

  4. #4

    Default Re: 'model A' pick guard authenticity

    This is the bridge which came with it. You can see how the treble side screw has been wound too far and broken through the foot of the bridge.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    The result was a split in the top plate of the mando which ranged from below the bridge up to the binding near the neck joint. Now I'd like to protect the repair by reinstalling this or another appropriate guard.
    Last edited by Phil O'Dendron; Nov-29-2017 at 6:14am. Reason: easier to read

  5. #5
    Registered User bluegrasser78's Avatar
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    Default Re: 'model A' pick guard authenticity

    Quote Originally Posted by Phil O'Dendron View Post
    This is the bridge which came with it. You can see how the treble side screw has been wound too far and broken through the foot of the bridge.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    The result was a split in the top plate of the mando which ranged from below the bridge up to the binding near the neck joint. Now I'd like to protect the repair by reinstalling this or another appropriate guard.
    This is quite common on old Gibson's, I've seen this way too many times to count, I even have some Gibbys that have the indentation in the top on the treble side!
    Your guard looks original "the material and wire rod running through it?" but modified, there would be no pin in those years that goes into the bridge, no adjustable bridge has that.

  6. #6

    Default Re: 'model A' pick guard authenticity

    Quote Originally Posted by Phil O'Dendron View Post
    This is the bridge which came with it. You can see how the treble side screw has been wound too far and broken through the foot of the bridge.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    I have never seen the patented date stamp on the bass side of the bridge base/foot. Mine is on the treble side. The pick guard looks genuine to my eyes but you might need to add a couple of parts, another pin into the side of the fret board and a support into the treble rim either screw in or clamp on side support.

    Len B.
    Clearwater, FL

  7. #7
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    Default Re: 'model A' pick guard authenticity

    Would whoever fitted the bridge have bothered to look for the patent stamp? There isn't a bass and treble side until it's fitted and the top is reversible at that stage.

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  9. #8

    Default Re: 'model A' pick guard authenticity

    Quote Originally Posted by lenf12 View Post
    I have never seen the patented date stamp on the bass side of the bridge base/foot. Mine is on the treble side. The pick guard looks genuine to my eyes but you might need to add a couple of parts, another pin into the side of the fret board and a support into the treble rim either screw in or clamp on side support.

    Len B.
    Clearwater, FL
    I have the parts which the guard was (partially) attached with.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    I tried to attach a picture of the top prior to repair to show the single pin and the severity of the crack. This is what happened; 2 thumbnails which had e been flipped (but you get the idea).
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

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  10. #9

    Default Re: 'model A' pick guard authenticity

    Quote Originally Posted by Ray(T) View Post
    Would whoever fitted the bridge have bothered to look for the patent stamp? There isn't a bass and treble side until it's fitted and the top is reversible at that stage.
    True enough Ray, except that the patent stamp would be facing toward the rear, tail piece of the mandolin, not forward towards the fingerboard as is the case here. Mine faces forward but the stamp is on the treble foot. I have just not seen it before so perhaps they varied which foot the stamp is on?

    Len B.

  11. #10

    Default Re: 'model A' pick guard authenticity

    Quote Originally Posted by Ray(T) View Post
    Would whoever fitted the bridge have bothered to look for the patent stamp? There isn't a bass and treble side until it's fitted and the top is reversible at that stage.
    Maybe the bridge itself was installed as per normal (stamp to the rear) and it was simply the saddle which was flipped around.
    Do the rest of the parts look original?

  12. #11
    Registered User mtucker's Avatar
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    Default Re: 'model A' pick guard authenticity

    Quote Originally Posted by Phil O'Dendron View Post
    I have the parts which the guard was (partially) attached with.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Here's the bespoke cam clamp, think this is correct in late 20's but maybe not.
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    Last edited by mtucker; Dec-30-2017 at 11:35am.

  13. #12
    Registered User dustyamps's Avatar
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    Default Re: 'model A' pick guard authenticity

    My A0 has this type of mounting bracket.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

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  14. #13
    coprolite mandroid's Avatar
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    Default Re: 'model A' pick guard authenticity

    was a spine witha steel wire , someone bodged in a wooden replacement..

    Id get the functionality working and play the music, rather than sweat the originality provenance..

    FWIW, MY 22 A had those edge clamp thingies..

    end of the decade they might have like above..

    If you get a replica from Cumberland Acoustics, that will be what it includes..

    ....
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