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Thread: Early Gibson at GC Seattle

  1. #1
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Default Early Gibson at GC Seattle

    They have this vintage Gibson A model labeled for some reason as 1918 but I would say at least 10 years earlier. I love the look of those early ones with the inlaid "south Jersey" pickguard, the Handel buttons and the wider paddle head. I also like the fretboard inlays on this one. I just wish the photos were better and more of them.

    I just bought a 1930s guitar at an amazing price from them.The photos for that were even smaller than the ones for this mandolin. I did have them send me some good clear photos so it worked out well. I would consider this mandolin but don't want to push my luck and the price is more like standard retail or maybe even on the high side if it does have a neck heel repair.

    Anyone near there seen and played this mandolin? Marti Stillion, perhaps?
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    Jim

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    Moderator MikeEdgerton's Avatar
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    Default Re: Early Gibson at GC Seattle

    Is that headstock inlay original?
    "Bargain instruments are no bargains if you can't play them". These are the words of J. Garber.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Early Gibson at GC Seattle

    Confusing instrument. Appears to be a Orville label body (1906-08 or so) with an early 30's pearl inlay truss rod neck. Should say "The Gibson" and have a (hopefully) pineapple tailpiece. It does, however, have the Handel tuners from the early body era. Hard to say what the value should be, IMHO.

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    Default Re: Early Gibson at GC Seattle

    It’s a 1904-1908 mandolin that has been re-necked in the 30’s. fingerboard inlays like this wide body A-50. No idea where they came up with 1918.

    Phil

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  5. #5
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Default Re: Early Gibson at GC Seattle

    You are all correct I think. At least a new fretboard but probably a whole new neck. Strange for sure.

    I emailed them to have better photos sent. Gibson was always an entertaining company.
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    Default Re: Early Gibson at GC Seattle

    I think that this instrument has been discussed before. It almost certainly went back to Gibson for repairs in the 1930's. Yes, the fingerboard with the Nick Lucas inlays is a later addition, and the neck was either replaced or the truss rod [and logo?] installed at that time.

    I would also inspect the finish and the neck heel very carefully. To me, the price does not seem correct for a re-worked instrument, even if it is '30's factory work.

    You've got to love that pickguard, though. If you do buy it, make sure of their return policy and make sure that the intonation is ok. I had to replace the board on an early '30's A-4 because the frets were so badly located.

    Norman Blake once jokingly referred to the Lucas inlay pattern as "diamonds and propellers."

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    Full Grown and Cussin' brunello97's Avatar
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    Default Re: Early Gibson at GC Seattle

    "South Jersey Pickguard"?

    You're going to have to explain this one, hermano.....

    Something you and Mike cooked up?

    Mick
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    Default Re: Early Gibson at GC Seattle

    Nah, it's been called that for years. The shape of the pickguard is the same as the shape of the southern part of New Jersey.
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  11. #9
    Martin Stillion mrmando's Avatar
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    Default Re: Early Gibson at GC Seattle

    I'd like to go and look at that one sometime. The location of that particular GC -- downtown near the Amazon campus -- isn't all that convenient for me. This mandolin has been on the GC website for a long time, and I agree that it's priced too high for the amount of Frankeneering it has endured.
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    Registered User Timbofood's Avatar
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    Default Re: Early Gibson at GC Seattle

    “Frankeneering” I like that one Martin!
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    Default Re: Early Gibson at GC Seattle

    If anybody goes, they can also swing by Dusty Strings, 20 minute bus ride, and check out their vintage offerings, they might have one or 2 not listed here https://store.dustystrings.com/m-16-...ByCategoryID=7
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    Default Re: Early Gibson at GC Seattle

    That location has free rooftop parking, according to their website!

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    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Default Re: Early Gibson at GC Seattle

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeEdgerton View Post
    Nah, it's been called that for years. The shape of the pickguard is the same as the shape of the southern part of New Jersey.
    I would like to take credit for coining that term from the early days of the Cafe. I also coined boatback mandolin. I believe that Eugene Braig coined clownshoe case. I don't know who coined clown vomit pick, but it is brilliant.
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    Default Re: Early Gibson at GC Seattle

    I was actually at that Guitar Center a few months ago and saw this mando. When I was there, it was not strung up so I didn't get to play it. It definately not just has the newer Nick Lucas fretboard but a whole 30's Gibson reneck as well. It looked as if old neck had been broken off as there were cracks on the top that ran parrelell to the fretboard on either side and ran all the way to the sound hole. As others have said, I think it's priced a bit high.
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    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Default Re: Early Gibson at GC Seattle

    I know it is difficult to see what is going on with those two photos but I would say it is possible that it might not be renecked but that it was sent back to Gibson for repairs in the 1930s-40s. The customer might have requested new inlays. That era has silkcreened logos on the peghead so possible that they had to work on that area of the neck and so may have inlaid the current logo.

    I hope they send me more detailed photos or that Martin or other Seattlites can go visit. Luthiery by Frank N. Gibson.

    -------

    Whoops! Cross posting. I did not see Eric Davis' post about the replaced neck.
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    Registered User Eric Davis's Avatar
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    Default Re: Early Gibson at GC Seattle

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    I took a few pictures.... this one kind of shows the cracks.
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    Moderator MikeEdgerton's Avatar
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    Default Re: Early Gibson at GC Seattle

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Garber View Post
    I would like to take credit for coining that term from the early days of the Cafe. I also coined boatback mandolin. I believe that Eugene Braig coined clownshoe case. I don't know who coined clown vomit pick, but it is brilliant.
    I'll give you credit. I got it immediately. To my knowledge Paul Hostetter can claim the clown vomit crown. I saw that the first time here in a very old post. I do believe he called it clown puke though. There are also references to clown barf picks as well.
    "Bargain instruments are no bargains if you can't play them". These are the words of J. Garber.

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    Orrig Onion HonketyHank's Avatar
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    Default Re: Early Gibson at GC Seattle

    Blatant hijaak here -- I have a black and white version of a clown vomit pick that I refer to as zebra barf.
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    Fatally Flawed willkamm's Avatar
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    Default Re: Early Gibson at GC Seattle

    "Clown Vomit" just by itself is pretty versatile.
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  26. #20
    Moderator MikeEdgerton's Avatar
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    Default Re: Early Gibson at GC Seattle

    Not a problem, this thread was already off the rails.
    "Bargain instruments are no bargains if you can't play them". These are the words of J. Garber.

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    Registered User Timbofood's Avatar
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    Default Re: Early Gibson at GC Seattle

    I really like the “clown shoe case” moniker! As for “clown barf” mixed color material, it never ceases to amaze me what “comes up” in these threads!

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    Registered User Eric Platt's Avatar
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    Default Re: Early Gibson at GC Seattle

    That's the same mandolin that was at the Maple Grove, MN GC earlier this year. There is another thread out there where I took picks. It wasn't really playable when I tried it. Neck angle/bridge were way off. Hopefully there is someone at the present GC who can repair it.

    As to clown barf, I first read that in Guitar Player ca. 1981 in a David Lindley interview. He's always been a bit out there in his description of things. Like mother of toilet seat for pearloid plastic.
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  29. #23
    Registered User Timbofood's Avatar
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    Default Re: Early Gibson at GC Seattle

    I heard “Mother of Toilet” seat way back in 1973 or so. None of it is new, just re remembered so to speak.
    Timothy F. Lewis
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  31. #24

    Default Re: Early Gibson at GC Seattle

    this is supposed to a serious mandolin discussion web page. i am going to have join banjo cafe if this keeps up, they at least aren't smart enough to coin new words or crack jokes.

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  33. #25
    Moderator MikeEdgerton's Avatar
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    Default Re: Early Gibson at GC Seattle

    Hey, if it's funny once it's funny three times.
    "Bargain instruments are no bargains if you can't play them". These are the words of J. Garber.

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