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Thread: 1923 A4 Gibson Value

  1. #1
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    Default 1923 A4 Gibson Value

    Generally speaking I'm not that interested in vintage mandolins, preferring contemporary builders. So I ran across a 1923 A4 Gibson in the local music shop today. Looks in good shape but with plain generic tuners (not original) and missing the pickguard and clamp. Tailpiece looks original, case looks original and in decent condition. There's one crack on the treble side just below where the neck joins the body. One piece maple back. Has truss rod. Sounds good for an oval hole and setup is good and easy. The shop is asking $3500 for it. Does that sound reasonable. Unfortunately I have no photos.
    Thanks

  2. #2
    Registered User William Smith's Avatar
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    Default Re: 1923 A4 Gibson Value

    Yes that sounds reasonable to me anyway from 3000-3500? Pix would really help! Original tuners are about 100-150 bucks for the arrowhead style, a repro guard 100 maybe, a bit more with repro clamp? Original clamp 125-150 depending "I picked one up for 120 about a year or so ago but have seen them up to 200!, Is the crack repaired? If so I wouldn't shy away if you really wanted it, make an offer with cash in hand as I believe the vintage mando market is a bit down.

  3. #3
    Registered User Timbofood's Avatar
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    Default Re: 1923 A4 Gibson Value

    Sounds on the high side to me but, I’m not buying or selling these days.
    Timothy F. Lewis
    "If brains was lard, that boy couldn't grease a very big skillet" J.D. Clampett

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    Default Re: 1923 A4 Gibson Value

    Quote Originally Posted by William Smith View Post
    Is the crack repaired? .
    The store owner said the crack was very shallow and not all the way through. From my cursory observation I would say he's right. Not positive though.

    Timbofood it's on consignment so the music shop is probably taking 25% off the top.

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  6. #5
    Formerly F5JOURNL Darryl Wolfe's Avatar
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    Default Re: 1923 A4 Gibson Value

    The crack sounds like a "heat bending crack" in the side. These are common and usually left the factory that way. They are like a layer of wood sticking up slightly. They were glued down and finished over, but reappear over time. They never go all the way through. Non issue

    They are almost always at the place where the neck block ends against the side
    Darryl G. Wolfe, The F5 Journal
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  7. #6
    Purveyor of Sunshine sgarrity's Avatar
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    Default Re: 1923 A4 Gibson Value

    I'd buy it!

  8. #7
    Registered User f5loar's Avatar
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    Default Re: 1923 A4 Gibson Value

    Sounds half price to me. There are 2 snake A4s on the cafe now for $6500 each. I sure would have bought it if I knew about it.

  9. #8
    Registered User William Smith's Avatar
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    Default Re: 1923 A4 Gibson Value

    I traded mine, a late 24 with Virzi snake A-4, I couldn't get 4500 for it?

  10. #9
    Registered User Bob Clark's Avatar
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    Default Re: 1923 A4 Gibson Value

    Quote Originally Posted by William Smith View Post
    I traded mine, a late 24 with Virzi snake A-4, I couldn't get 4500 for it?
    Hi William,

    How recent was that? Prices really do,seem to fluctuate over time. Also, do you think the Virzi was an issue? I, personally, like the Virzi sound and if I was in the market would view its presence as a real plus. I don't know how common that opinion is.

    It's tough to know what instruments are going for based on 'asking' prices. Sometimes they don't sell and the ad just times-out. That said, this price seems low to me and I'd probably have sprung for it.
    Purr more, hiss less.

  11. #10
    two t's and one hyphen fatt-dad's Avatar
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    Default Re: 1923 A4 Gibson Value

    snake or paddle? For a paddle-head, it seems high. For a snake, it may be a good deal?

    Not that I'm looking. I'm happy with my A3!

    f-d
    ˇpapá gordo ain’t no madre flaca!

    '20 A3, '30 L-1, '97 914, 2012 Cohen A5, 2012 Muth A5, '14 OM28A

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  13. #11

    Default Re: 1923 A4 Gibson Value

    Here is an earlier paddle headstock from 1921- no truss rod. $1540 BIN original case, repaired crack and no guard but looks original. Ideally, the seller could have posted more photos. https://www.ebay.com/itm/1921-Vintag...UAAOSw-eldufdu

  14. #12

    Default Re: 1923 A4 Gibson Value

    Quote Originally Posted by fatt-dad View Post
    snake or paddle?...
    That's the question. Hard to believe anyone offered opinions on value without that bit of information.
    "I play BG so that's what I can talk intelligently about." A line I loved and pirated from Mandoplumb

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  16. #13
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    Default Re: 1923 A4 Gibson Value

    I recently sold a snakehead 1923 A-4 and got $4000. Listed it a few times in a few different places. I feel that’s pretty much where top of market is for one.

    Phil

  17. #14
    Formerly F5JOURNL Darryl Wolfe's Avatar
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    Default Re: 1923 A4 Gibson Value

    The prices are all over the place. I know for a fact that several snake A4's have recently sold for $6000 or a bit more. It requires the right person at the right time. The $4000-$4500 range does seem to be the price that sells easily for one with minor issues/noticeable wear. Buyers seem to be very selective these days
    Darryl G. Wolfe, The F5 Journal
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