Share your interesting stories about scoring a "vintage" piece.

Discussion in '"Vintage" Instruments' started by telelion, Aug 11, 2017.


  1. asintoras

    asintoras Member

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    The guitar in my avatar: 1957 Gibson ES125.

    This was my dad's guitar when he was younger, around the 60's. He bought it along with this Gibson GA9 amp, when both belonged to an American Diplomat in Chile. The amp was in great cosmetic conditions when I got it! But it was not working though... We fixed it a few days later. He later installed a Bigsby and bought a cheap Japanese guitar just to get the pickup out of it and install it in the bridge position of this Gibson... you know: rock'n roll! It was an awful pickup! My dad also added the additional two knobs in this rather unorthodox way for a Gibson guitar, as well as the two switches, as back in the day, you couldn't find a three way switch on stores, in Chile at least. When I got this guitar in 1990, I started the search for a proper P90 pickup, and a good Switchcraft 3 way switch. The additional switch is left there to avoid leaving a hole.

    Also, this one, although it's not a "vintage" guitar, but the story is really cool: 1987 Kramer Baretta. This belonged to the brother of a good friend of mine, who unfortunately passed away. This friend of mine, who is a fantastic bass player, knew that I loved Van Halen, so he offered it to me after his brother passed away, but I didn't have the money back then to buy it. I suggested him to start an auction on ebay.
    A couple days later, he was back visiting me at home, and we discussed cowboy boots, as I had a very nice handmade pair. He asked me about them and I offered him to try them out, and if he liked them, I could bring him a new pair when back from holidays (they were made by an artisan in Santiago, Chile). The boots fit him perfectly, so he looked at me in the eyes and asked: Are you still interested in the Baretta?
    Well, now he has some nice boots, and I have a nice rock guitar!!
    Watching EVH play his solo with the 5150 on that VHS in New Haven was very influential in my guitar playing, and I was finishing my set playing Eruption on each gig at The Republic Steakhouse in College Station, Texas, where I used to play every week... This is the main guitar on "Amurabi Code" and "The Last Immigrant"
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    And finally, the VOX T530 AlNiCo Blue speaker in my GA9 is from the early 60's, with its original RIC cone. I got it for £50 with a vintage Howell&Bell cabinet that was housing this speaker. The old Gibson amp originally came with a 10" speaker, but my dad replaced it with a Jensen 12" P12 AlNiCo speaker in the 60's, which sounded nice, but lacked bottom end. I then replaced the Jensen speaker by the Vox - which sounded a lot better - put the Jensen inside the Howell&Bell cabinet and sold it for a profit.
     
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  2. waylon

    waylon Member

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    early '00s i'm working at a trucking company. One of the drivers knows I play as we have played his local bar a couple times and he has checked us out. Says he has an old Gibson he wants me to check out. Keeps mentioning it every time he comes in for about 6 months. Finally after months and months of him mentioning it and me trying to pry for more info he says 'can you come up to my house tomorrow?'. Sure!

    I drive up and I can tell its a doublecut Jr but its in shambles. No hardware on the guitar, frets and board a mess, no nut. can't make out numbers (serial had been mostly sanded off) for a date. He has 'some parts' in a bag he hands me. Original P90, bridge, tuners, some weird pots and caps. He had carved his name into the neck heel of it. No big deal. Ask him how much. Take it, its yours. Stop by the local knowledgeable guitar store on the way home and my buddy there says either '58 or '59 but he isn't sure. He recommends a place to do the fretwork and I send it off.

    2 weeks later i go to pick it up. $400 out the door. Best sounding guitar i've ever played but the neck was too small for me so i eventually sold it to a friend at a 'bud price'.
     
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  3. bforest4

    bforest4 Member

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    Traded a MIJ tele for a 1967 Gibson ES-330 in the 90's. Picked up a 1930's Gibson L-00 with a crack in it for $100, because it had a painted Gibson logo so the pawnshop owner thought it was fake, also in the 90's. My worse move was buying a Moog 3P modular for $1,500 and selling it for $2,500. It is now probably worth around $50,000...
     
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  4. GuitarsFromMars

    GuitarsFromMars Member

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    playing in traffic...
    1st was the 1959 Martin 0-15 I bought from a customer of a guy I used to play music with, the guy had a new baby at home, and needed money for diapers. I got that for $300 with a soft-shell case. 2nd, I saw an CL ad, about 2 hours from where I lived at the time, for a lap steel guitar for $200. I jumped in the car drove there and picked up a 1942 Supro Diana for $200. I still have both.
     
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  5. captaincanada

    captaincanada Member

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    Knoxville TN
    This 1968 Ludwig kit was given to me in exchange for a guitar lesson (valued $40)!
    Leaving my students house through the garage, I noticed the old drum kit in the corner and asked about it. My students mother said "we got that at a garage sale last year, but the girls haven't even touched it.. do you want it?" I said "sure, but it's worth a lot of money.."
    She said "just take it as payment for this weeks lesson"

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  6. Ghast

    Ghast Member

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    Beautiful!
     
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  7. eddie101

    eddie101 Silver Supporting Member

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    You are a good man! ;)
     
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  8. jhale

    jhale Supporting Member

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    I found a dumbleator buried in the shelves of some weird pawnshop for $25? I sold it for $2800 10 years ago.
     
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  9. eddie101

    eddie101 Silver Supporting Member

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    Do you have any pix?
     
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  10. jhale

    jhale Supporting Member

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  11. Shreve

    Shreve Katzenjammer Kid Gold Supporting Member

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    In the early 70s (yes, Im an old fart) I regularly checked the local Sunday paper classified for guitars and amps. Guy advertised old Strat for sale, and I went to his house to check it out. He wanted $300 for it. It was a 1956 with a bad refin, and a non-working pickup. Serial # in the 9 thousands. And no, it was not hot! I didn't have the cash, but I begged him to wait for Monday when I could get to a bank to pay. He agreed, and the deal was done. Have tried to get her back to factory spec over the many years. Like a family member at this point.

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  12. Johnny Rockit

    Johnny Rockit Silver Supporting Member

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    Back in the 60s there was a "musical pawn" type shop in Newport RI called Traders Cove. They had a Les Paul with p90s on the wall that I wanted so I brought my dad to check it out. When we got there he looked it over and gave his approval. While I was playing it my dad was checking out a Gretsch. Well dad always bought for us kids but never would buy for himself. I put a deposit on the lester and left. I returned the next day and changed the deposit to buy the Gretsch for my dad and worked all summer mowing lawns to pay off the $600 for it and gave it to him for xmas. I went back for the lester but it was gone. The old fellow "Irving" said he had another one he would give me for the same price and brought a lester out. It wasn't shiny and new looking like the previous one but I once again put a deposit on it, started shoveling snow, cleaning yards and such to get it. Dad went and paid it off for me when it was down to $220 and I brought it home. Took a while to get used to the humbuckers and I really did want a goldtop but the old burst was magic and the best $600 guitar I ever bought. Still own the old 59 after all these years and will always be grateful to Irving for working with me to get it. He may now be long gone but will be remembered!
     
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  13. RickC

    RickC Gold Supporting Member

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    I used to frequent Trader's Cove in the 90's. Didn't know they went that far back. Cool shop, and a very cool story
    :beer
     
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  14. eddie101

    eddie101 Silver Supporting Member

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    post some PIX PLEASE!!! ;)
     
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  15. Fishin'Musician

    Fishin'Musician Silver Supporting Member

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    A friend of mine contacted me on Facebook and told me there was a Les Paul at our local auction house. (Here in Boise they do an auction every Saturday all year round.) I went down there to check it out on Friday-it was a cherry sunburst Deluxe with a chainsaw case. It had leather glued on top of all the knobs, the pickgaurd, the truss rod cover and both control cavity covers on the back. Weird for sure but it looked to be in damn fine condition otherwise. I checked the serial number and it was a '76. The fellow who runs the place asked me if I knew anything about it so I told him exactly what it was and he wrote it down on a card and set it in front of the guitar for the following day. I came down to the auction the next day and to my surprise there was another two guitars there, an old Telecaster that turned out to be a 71, and it was obviously owned by the same guy because there was leather glued all over it, and an old 335 that was beat to death. There were a bunch of guys oogling the guitars and I recogniozed at least a couple of them as local collectors. So I knew I was going to get in a bidding war. I bid on the tele until the bidding got over 2200 and I was out. The 335 went for about $1800 if I remember correctly. Turns out it was a '66. Next up was the Les Paul. The auctioneer announced that the information on the card was incorrect, that someone had informed him that it was a reissue. I looked around at everyone standing there with frowns on their faces and said "He's wrong, it's a '76, look at the pancake body!" Nobody believed me and just kind of walked away with heads down mumbling bummed out mumbles. There was one other guy who was still willing to bid on it but he dropped out early. I ended up winning the guitar for $1200. I paid my tab and went and collected the guitar and duder came up to me and said "congratulations on winning the guitar, it's a shame it's a reissue." I opened the case and showed him the guitar, pointed out the serial number and the pancake construction on the body and told him whoever told the auctioneer it was a reissue was a dumbass, but it allowed me to get the guitar for way less than I would have paid. Duder responds "that was me, and I know what I'm talking about, I do this for a living! He goes on to say "that guy bid way too much on that stratocaster." I just shook my head and thanked him and walked off. I got home and peeled the leather pieces off and ended up with a pristine '76. The leather protected all the plastic from scratches and dings. Frets have barely any wear, no buckle rash, just a sweet Deluxe.
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  16. wahfreak

    wahfreak Silver Supporting Member

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    I got nothing....I never get anything.....:cry:
     
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  17. Johnny Rockit

    Johnny Rockit Silver Supporting Member

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    Yes it was quite the cool place Irving used to let me play anything (under a watchful eye) and would always have the best guitars and amps. Moved out from Newport and always missed the place. The younger guys these days just can't fathom what those old privately owned shops were. Play a few guitars and head to the Black Pearl on Bowen's Warf or the Electric Elephant for a few brews then a late night breakfast at Poor Richard's (best eggs benedict in Newport). Ahh the memories!
     
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  18. Nasty troll

    Nasty troll Member

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    How I got the bug, About 1974 me and a buddy were riding our bicycles around the neighborhood, Yea kids use to do that for fun, and came across a big dumpster in front of a burned house, So what's a kid to do for fun? Of course check out what's in that dumpster right? My buddy got some slightly charred golf clubs, a POS stereo system and some other useless crap, and I crawled out with a charred guitar case containing a Univox Highflyer in perfect condition and a charred Vox AC-15 which turned out still worked but stunk to high heaven. No longer have either but that's how it started.
     
  19. Doug Tulloch

    Doug Tulloch Supporting Member

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  20. Johnny Rockit

    Johnny Rockit Silver Supporting Member

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