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Thread: Gibson F5 Identification Help

  1. #1

    Default Gibson F5 Identification Help

    I have a Gibson F5 fern with no tags. It has F5 penciled on the inside of one hole and a stamped “5302” inside the other. It looks like it has had some major work done on the scroll and back and has had a pickup added inside as well. Plays beautifully though! I’d love help identifying it if anyone has any ideas!

    Link to pictures:
    http://jebadave.tumblr.com/post/182896041493
    Last edited by Jebadave; Feb-18-2019 at 2:48pm. Reason: Adding link

  2. #2
    Registered User William Smith's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson F5 Identification Help

    Any ideas, yes we need some better photos on here! Some complete front and back-the whole body etc.., close ups of headstock, front and back. Just by the other pix it looks like an old copy?

  3. #3
    Martin Stillion mrmando's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson F5 Identification Help

    I think the headstock photo is all we need to let us know this is a copy, and not a particularly elegant one.
    Click image for larger version. 

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  5. #4

    Default Re: Gibson F5 Identification Help

    Thanks so much guys! Here’s a link with some more pictures. http://jebadave.tumblr.com/post/182896041493

  6. #5
    Moderator MikeEdgerton's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson F5 Identification Help

    Quote Originally Posted by mrmando View Post
    I think the headstock photo is all we need to let us know this is a copy, and not a particularly elegant one.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Looking at the rest cements the fact that it isn't real.
    "Bargain instruments are no bargains if you can't play them". These are the words of J. Garber.

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    Registered User William Smith's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson F5 Identification Help

    It shows some age/looks pretty old so wonder who made it? Heck it may sound just fine, I'd like to hear it. I sure have seen worse copies.

  8. #7
    Registered User f5loar's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson F5 Identification Help

    If there is anything Gibson about this one it would be because it was the trunk of a car that drove through Kalamazoo, MI or it could have Gibson strings on it. I see lots wrong with it, but it's a nice vintage attempt and could be a really good mandolin with professional set up.

  9. #8
    coprolite mandroid's Avatar
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    Question Re: Gibson F5 Identification Help

    Oh well as you say
    Plays beautifully though!
    so I guess you just keep on playing the music..

    add a (/) to your TRC..

    Somebody thought they could only sell what they made ,
    by having that known brand name on it, is my guess..


    writing about music
    is like dancing,
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  10. #9

    Default Re: Gibson F5 Identification Help

    Quote Originally Posted by mandroid View Post
    ....

    Somebody thought they could only sell what they made ,
    by having that known brand name on it, is my guess..


    It wasn't that long ago when labeled "fakes" were the only ones that you could sell and everybody in the business built them, including the well known luthiers.

    Howzit sound? I've seen plenty of ugly copies that still sounded great.

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  12. #10
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    Default Re: Gibson F5 Identification Help

    Is it from Colorado?

  13. #11

    Default Re: Gibson F5 Identification Help

    I can definitely see the poor quality in the details. The sound is really quite excellent though. One of my favorites I’ve played. I bought it in Colorado.

  14. #12
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    Default Re: Gibson F5 Identification Help

    Yeah, a friend of mine owned it in the early 80's.

  15. #13

    Default Re: Gibson F5 Identification Help

    Amazing why did he get rid of it?

  16. #14
    Formerly F5JOURNL Darryl Wolfe's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson F5 Identification Help

    Actually, the body is pretty nice and appears to be a '50's F-12. I'm seeing typical birdseye and a mahogany neck of an F-12 The neck work is not too good with respect to the proper curves and symmetry The 5302 seem to be a Gibson Factory Order Number. It should sound good as you say it does
    Darryl G. Wolfe, The F5 Journal
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  18. #15

    Default Re: Gibson F5 Identification Help

    Thanks for your thoughts Darryl! I’m glad to have it and love playing it so it’s wonderful to get some new perspectives and ideas about it.

  19. #16
    Registered User f5loar's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson F5 Identification Help

    If Darryl is right and that is a Gibson FON it would date it to 1950.

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