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Thread: Gibson A24 (?) On Baltimore CL

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    Registered User Greg Stec's Avatar
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    Professional Dreamer journeybear's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson A24 (?) On Baltimore CL

    I think this is the first time I've seen a description in a craigslist ad that was not over the top and full of whack-a-doo errors. That's largely because there is hardly any description so not much possibility for errors. Well, except for one - the model number. I don't think such a model exists, as the thread title implies. It's an A-2 or an A-4, but not both. The seller could have shared a better shot of the label to dispel any doubt, but ... well, craigslist. It's pretty nice, though. "Condition - good" is selling it short, methinks.
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    Default Re: Gibson A24 (?) On Baltimore CL

    It's an A-4 made between 1923 and 1926 or so. The presence of a cam style pickguard clamp leans it closer to '23 than to '26.

    Observe that the neck has been broken and repaired, also that something has been done to the neck finish.
    Either the tailpiece cover or the whole tailpiece appears to be a replacement.
    The pictures are not clear enough to evaluate the finish on the rest of the instrument. The top color looks correct.

    The price seems ok for a snakehead A-4 with repaired neck break.

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    Martin Stillion mrmando's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson A24 (?) On Baltimore CL

    I've asked this seller for better photos of the neck repair but I haven't received them yet.
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    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson A24 (?) On Baltimore CL

    A scammy possibly… all but the neck picks are in focus. Locals should contact in person.

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    Jim

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    Default Re: Gibson A24 (?) On Baltimore CL

    The top finish looks wrong to my eyes. Too much of a 3 color sunburst to be from the 20's. I'd bet it went back to Gibson (or a competent luthier) back in the 40's-50's for a makeover...my dos centavos. Also, A-24?? What's up with that?? An A-4 given a 2nd life with the makeover?? Idle speculation mode is now off

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    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson A24 (?) On Baltimore CL

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    A few more pics before it disappears. I just noticed something on the back view of the neck that might indicate more damage.
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    Registered User j. condino's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson A24 (?) On Baltimore CL

    $2k for a $500 refinished basket case with a broken neck!!!!

    You'll need a can of this to keep it running:
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    Professional Dreamer journeybear's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson A24 (?) On Baltimore CL

    Yeah, looking at these substandard photos again with less tired eyes, I'm revising my "'Condition - good'" is selling it short" to "'Condition - good'" is overselling it a bit."
    But that's just my opinion. I could be wrong. - Dennis Miller

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    Default Re: Gibson A24 (?) On Baltimore CL

    Whether or not to fool with such an instrument depends on one's point of view.

    Conventional wisdom in the vintage instrument market is that an instrument with a well repaired neck break will bring perhaps 50% of what the instrument would bring if the neck hadn't been broken. But--

    That neck needs further attention, even if the repair is solid as a rock. The neck finish is a turn-off in its current state.

    And, experience has taught me that instruments with repaired neck breaks are quite difficult to sell.

    In the old days, I might have considered buying it if I could have gotten it at half the asking price, then re-necking it, re-using the original peghead overlay if possible. But--

    Re-necked instruments are also very difficult to sell. These days, I don't have much interest in instruments in this condition.

    For someone who really wants a snakehead A-4 but doesn't have $5k+ to spend, this one might be worth consideration. It would be their decision whether or not to do something about the neck finish. But they would risk taking a loss if they decided to sell it later.

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    Registered User j. condino's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson A24 (?) On Baltimore CL

    Quote Originally Posted by rcc56 View Post
    ....Conventional wisdom in the vintage instrument market is that an instrument with a well repaired neck break will bring perhaps 50% of what the instrument would bring if the neck hadn't been broken.....
    If we look it from an insurance replacement standpoint with a reasonable market selling price (not the advertised price), of $5k:

    -Half off for a broken, poorly repaired neck is $2500

    -30-50% off for a refinish if done VERY well = $1250.

    -Take another $250 for a non original tailpiece and you are down to $1k.

    So for $1k, you get a broken refinished wall hangar. To bring it back to life, approx. $1800-2500 for a professional quality new neck, $250 for a period correct tailpiece, and if I sent it to Matt Eady (who is the only person I trust to outsource any of my overstock finish work) it would run about $700.

    In the end, you wind up with about $4500 into a re-finished re-neck worth half or less without even taking about the hassles and mental anguish. 'Doesn't seem like such a bargain now.

    If it was your great grand daddy's mandolin, no question it would be worth it at any cost, but it is not. It is just some overpriced broken up old junk from some stranger on the web....
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    Default Re: Gibson A24 (?) On Baltimore CL

    We run into this situation often with vintage instruments. If they are perfect they command the big bucks. If they are repaired you have reduced your potential customer base. For resale, a repaired instrument will always be a repaired instrument.

    What this has going for it is that snakeheads are hard to find, especially an A-4. So, maybe a player on a budget would like it as is to play. Also, the asking price is just a starting point, IMHO. YMMV.

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    Professional Dreamer journeybear's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson A24 (?) On Baltimore CL

    Yes, this could be a player, not an investment. Too much needs to be done to turn it around, but if it plays nice, it could be just the thing.

    I think the price is the price, though. It's been up for two weeks and no one's snapped it up. If someone makes an offer, that could be that.
    But that's just my opinion. I could be wrong. - Dennis Miller

    Furthering Mandolin Consciousness

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    Finders Keepers, my duo with the astoundingly talented and versatile Patti Rothberg. Our EP is finally done, and available! PM me, while they last!

  17. #14

    Default Re: Gibson A24 (?) On Baltimore CL

    This instrument is one where you would need to see it before buying- just too many questions that need answers. If you are spending pennies you can take a chance but in this price range you need definite answers to important questions and that means handling it and not relying on inadequate photos. As already mentioned, it has the snakehead which might make someone a little rash in their decision making as they are rare but it needs a cool head, all right- unless you can afford expensive mistakes.

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    Default Re: Gibson A24 (?) On Baltimore CL

    Garber’s (accidental?) photomontage just looks so painterly! Made a copy and keeping it handy. Thanks, Jim!

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    Fatally Flawed Bill Kammerzell's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson A24 (?) On Baltimore CL

    I am right around the corner from the given location, but uninterested.
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    Fatally Flawed Bill Kammerzell's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gibson A24 (?) On Baltimore CL

    Well you are just about as close to this geographically as I am. I'm in Towson right now.
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