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  1. #151

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    A clear view of the laminate The Venerable Gibson L-5-3181a9f6-283a-452f-a624-294ed274e862-jpgThe Venerable Gibson L-5-e4c7cf3a-d8f1-480a-a679-50218ebc9de2-jpg

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    The Jazz Guitar Chord Dictionary
     
  3. #152

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    Quote Originally Posted by nickyboy
    I played a friend's 2013 L5 CES crimson L5 a few weeks back and under a certain light I noticed faint lacquer cracking around the pointed part of the stinger at the back of the headstock.

    Is this normal?
    Is the stinger a veneer that is painted?

    BTW...the guitar seemed beautifully made and played/sounded wonderful.
    My ‘06 Hutchins L5CES has the same slight checking.

  4. #153

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    Do t most of the higher end Gibson Archtops get the Stinger treatment ? Citation getting maybe different style? Danny W and a couple others should chime in here since theyve owned quite a few!

  5. #154

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    Higher end Gibsons typically have a stinger, but Citation's have a volute similar to early 1930's small body Epiphone Deluxes




  6. #155

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    Naked headstock, showing the veneer, from one of the more sadly modified L-7 guitars, for sale on ebay at a dumb price.
    Attached Images Attached Images The Venerable Gibson L-5-gib-l7-headstock-jpg 

  7. #156

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    With a little too much time at my hand (for obvious reasons) I loosely started looking out for this classic guitars. Only to find out I know nothing about them. Some questions arouse from my searches on Reverb and E-Bay Classifieds:
    What years are good and why – what are the differences?
    What would be a fair price for a guitar made in this years?
    What the hell is a "Hutchins Label"?

    We are playing soul jazz with a good volume (well, if we ever get to play again ;-) so any hint which L5 may be suitable for that context is welcome. I understood that earlier L5s are made for a good acoustic tone, while at some time they changed that in favour of better amplified tone and playability in loud situations – when would that be?

    Maybe you can help me out with online and offline resources – I found only one book by Adrian Ingram on this guitar – quite expensive. Is it worth it?
    Maybe you can also give me some hints about retailers (in the EU)?
    Are there any similar models, copies etc. that are desirable?

    Thanks.

  8. #157

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    Wes played one and it costs waaay more than I want to spend on a guitar...

    They sound and look great though!





    (not very helpful, I know, sorry)

  9. #158

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    Acoustically, it's surprisingly quiet. It shines when amped. Tone for miles, very comfy neck. You can get loud before feedback sets in (thick top!), but it definitely is not suited for metal... A lot depends on your amp's positioning. It's not a guitar to use with massive overdrive, not built for it; if you want that kind of sound, I would stick to solid bodies or semi-hollows.
    Of course, there are loads of great archtops out there, but an L-5 is in a class of its own. Recent crimson custom shop l-5's are really good, with great attention to detail. I sent you a pm regarding the L-5 CES I'm selling; for you to decide whether it's the right guitar for you. "worth it" is of course a very relative concept, I think it is, (it's an iconic guitar, for some the ultimate jazz archtop), but sound, look and feel are personal preferences, so YMMV ...


    Very best regards,


    Bruno.

  10. #159

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    I've never heard anybody get Wes' sound on anything else.

    But, perhaps someone else has and will let us know.

  11. #160

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    Quote Originally Posted by rpjazzguitar
    I've never heard anybody get Wes' sound on anything else.
    I doubt that anybody gets Wes' tone on his guitar either. ;-)

    I'm not chasing Wes' tone – frankly, Melvin Sparks fostered my interest, playing loud funk on a L5 and even a Super 400. That made me curious.

  12. #161

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    Start here:
    Home - Gibson L-5

    The Adrian Ingram book is a derivative cash grab, consolidating a bunch of information from other sources with a bit of new information. Not useless, though, and you'll certainly learn a lot by reading it, given your ground zero current level of knowledge about the L-5. Tom Van Hoose' book on the Super 400 has a significant section (over 1/3 of the book) on the L-5. It could certainly use an update but is still an excellent book, a must for anyone interested in the Super 400 or L-5 models.

    There are several articles about the L-5 in old issues of Vintage Guitar magazine as well as (now defunct) 20th Century Guitar magazine.

    The L-5 has significantly evolved since its introduction.
    You ask some big questions.
    More to come.
    Of course, a thread like this is worthless without pix.
    Here's my L-5. It's an L-5P from 1948, custom-made with the setup of a '48 2-pickup ES-350. It's been a bit modified since then. Nice guitar.

    Last edited by Hammertone; 04-23-2020 at 09:05 AM.

  13. #162

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    The Hutchkins label refers to luthier-supervisor James Hutchins, who worked for Gibson for 45 years (he passed away in 2010 at 72). The L4s and L5s he built, finished or at least signed off are considered super good. If your Cologne is Köln, you might want to get in touch with Ernst Weinbach, owner of Liberty-Music in Neustadt (Pfalz). A jazz guitar specialist, he has been liquidating valuable archtops from private collections and might know what's coming up for sale. Last year, he had both a L4 and L5 signed by Hutchins. At the other end of the scale, there was a decent L5 up for sale at the flea market outside Mannheim's Guitar Summit last September. The asking price was 5,500 IIRC. Can't remember the seller's name, just that he is a photographer by profession. He did put the guitar under shelter when it started raining...

  14. #163

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    Quote Originally Posted by Little Jay
    Wes played one and it costs waaay more than I want to spend on a guitar...

    They sound and look great though!





    (not very helpful, I know, sorry)
    Pfff ... those prices. You can have a LOT of vintage guitar for that ...

    DB

  15. #164

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    Quote Originally Posted by guavajelly
    Melvin Sparks fostered my interest, playing loud funk on a L5 and even a Super 400. That made me curious.
    Wah Wah Watson and Eric Gale were also L5 funksters.

  16. #165

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    1999 Gibson L-5 Wes Montgomery

    Asking: USD5895. Joe ships anywhere...

    NB Some normal playwear includes a few pick marks near the guard and some scattered nicks here and there, with a short, non-structural hairline crack in the side near the tailpiece, now soundly resealed.

  17. #166

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    Quote Originally Posted by DB's Jazz Guitar Blog
    Pfff ... those prices. You can have a LOT of vintage guitar for that ...

    DB
    Yup, for the the price of the blond I could buy 10 times my ES-125 some five years ago..... no-brainer to me!

  18. #167

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    Oddly enough the prices of the used Wes version is higher than the used CES version. Lately, since gibson doesnt make them anymore prices have been raising (10-20%?).
    I remember that 5000 $ was a normal price a few years ago. Nowadays you can only find not good condition for this price.
    Nothing compares to an L-5, maybe there are better quality or worst in people opinion, but the L-5 sound is almost impossible to copy at that price (6000$).
    For similar try Campellone, Triggs, Heritage...
    Keys to the sound is the carved wood, the set full humbucker pickup, the 25,5 scale, the thick top, and the deep of body.
    I tried making a luthier made chinese copy, the result was very good, but since the top was lighter the amplified sound was less fat.
    I dont know if Gibson dedigns can be bettered, maybe you can copy them, but if they do something it has a reason. Even the position of the knobs might be there to mute the top.
    I would desire nevertheless a 1 3/4 nut width version.


    Enviado desde mi LG-H870 mediante Tapatalk

  19. #168

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    Quote: "Nothing compares to an L-5, maybe there are better quality or worst in people opinion, but the L-5 sound is almost impossible to copy at that price (6000$)."

    Which is why when I pick one up and play one in a
    store, I can't put one down!
    Which is why when I found a cool L5 CES for $5 K that wasn't ridiculously priced, I grabbed it and paid it off slowly. I still have it, and the pain of the credit card debt is long forgotten.

    Which is why many modern players have used them: Larry Carlton, George Benson, Lee Ritenour, Jeff Golub, plus.
    Even jazz rockers have used them through the years, guys from Moby Grape, Sons Of Champlain, plus.

    By the way, where would I look on mine to see if "Hutch" has signed it? I haven't noticed anything like that, but maybe I haven't looked in the right place.

  20. #169

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jimmy Mack
    Quote: "Nothing compares to an L-5, maybe there are better quality or worst in people opinion, but the L-5 sound is almost impossible to copy at that price (6000$)."

    Which is why when I pick one up and play one in a
    store, I can't put one down!
    Which is why when I found a cool L5 CES for $5 K that wasn't ridiculously priced, I grabbed it and paid it off slowly. I still have it, and the pain of the credit card debt is long forgotten.

    Which is why many modern players have used them: Larry Carlton, George Benson, Lee Ritenour, Jeff Golub, plus.
    Even jazz rockers have used them through the years, guys from Moby Grape, Sons Of Champlain, plus.

    By the way, where would I look on mine to see if "Hutch" has signed it? I haven't noticed anything like that, but maybe I haven't looked in the right place.
    My Hutch label is inside the lower F hole

  21. #170

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    I didnt thought there was nothing special about any eras... Hutchins sound the same to me than Crimson. Some says Jim Triggs era to be more resonant than Hutchins ones.

    Enviado desde mi LG-H870 mediante Tapatalk

  22. #171

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    They're all different.
    Sorry if this ruffles some feathers but I think a signature on a label is highly overrated.

  23. #172

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    I've seen so many advertised as "Hutchin's built", but iirc that is not what the orange label says. It says something like built, tuned, etc. under Hutch supervision.

  24. #173

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    I have played many L-5's from a Loar signed 1925 up to my 2003 L-5CESN.

    Not all are great, most are very good and some are great.

    I have a 1996 WESMO and a 2003 CESN. Both are superb electric guitars.

    My bandmate's 1928 L-5 is probably the best acoustic guitar that I have ever played and I own three vintage D'Angelicos.

    If you like archtop guitars, a great L-5 is pretty hard to beat.

  25. #174

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    heck i liked the l5-s too!!

    ala pat martino...& keith!



    cheers
    Last edited by neatomic; 04-18-2020 at 06:43 PM.

  26. #175

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    What makes 50’s era L5s so pricey, beside the fine woods they used ?? Even the one I just bought, a Refinished ‘56 CESN with staple P90s was high for what it is. One pic as a teaser until my tech puts it all right. Seriously does the year matter that much. Check out listings on Reverb fellas.

    The Venerable Gibson L-5-96e7f16e-cd04-4def-b772-4626e82033ba-jpg




    Quote Originally Posted by wintermoon
    They're all different.
    Sorry if this ruffles some feathers but I think a signature on a label is highly overrated.

  27. #176

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    Beautiful guitar, BigMike!

  28. #177

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    Quote Originally Posted by BigMikeinNJ
    What makes 50’s era L5s so pricey, beside the fine woods they used ?? Even the one I just bought, a Refinished ‘56 CESN with staple P90s was high for what it is. Seriously does the year matter that much. Check out listings on Reverb fellas.
    It matters bigtime. Most post-war L-5CES guitars (Venetian cutaways, single-coil pickups, then PAF humbucking pickups) are built quite differently from most typical '60s L-5CES guitars (smaller necks, Florentine cutaways, laminated backs, later pickups), which are built quite differently from most '70s L-5CES guitars, which began an evolution to heavier guitars with less acoustic resonance, higher feedback resistance, less recarve, etceteras. The visual continuity of most L-5 features since WWII masks significant differences in the way that they were built and how they perform. As well, the market for '50's P-90s and PAF pickups can lift the prices of the instruments that have them by thousands of dollars.
    Last edited by Hammertone; 04-18-2020 at 10:31 PM.

  29. #178

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    BAH! Who needs a cutaway and pickups on an L5? Not on Eddie's "music box!"




  30. #179

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    The Venerable Gibson L-5-ac32ae55-f5bd-4046-9a0e-429425c1f289-jpegThe Venerable Gibson L-5-47577a2b-0e52-44a0-92ad-caf1625a42df-jpegBefore the much needed restoration work

  31. #180

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    That aged lacquer gets me every time!

  32. #181

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    I hear ya Mark M


    being a ‘56 it’s in that transition period before humbuckers took over and they went from acoustic archtops to more electrified heavier builds. In hand it’s really very light and has a beefier neck, but very ok and the wood is quite nice. All I need is the harness installed and do an endpoint jack. Waiting on a WesMo tailpiece (thanks FWS6) and ‘60s NOS Grover Imperials.
    Last edited by BigMikeinNJ; 04-18-2020 at 11:44 PM.

  33. #182

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    middle position sounds pretty good

    Keb' Mo' - Mo' At Home - Dangerous Mood | Facebook

  34. #183

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    Quote Originally Posted by gggomez
    middle position sounds pretty good

    Keb' Mo' - Mo' At Home - Dangerous Mood | Facebook

    Very nice! Love this song and it sounds great. Must be the first time I've seen someone use a capo on an L5.

  35. #184

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    Quote Originally Posted by BigMikeinNJ
    Thanks Hammertone...
    I admit that i didnt play many 50's L-5 CES models, only a 59 that was 20000$ listed, and wasnt really impressed, also somo middle sixtties laminated back that i didnt like specially.
    I was blown away by a L5c 1967 converted into Wesmo: the acoustic sound was not impressively loud at all.. But the amplified tone was really amazing sweet and opened... Time?
    Maybe i still dont know enough yet, but amplified tone wise, the L-5 Ces or Wes sound very well in all eras.


    Enviado desde mi LG-H870 mediante Tapatalk

  36. #185

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    Big, why not put the correct parts on it?


  37. #186

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    I think the high e tuners got issues, the tuners coming are NOS just like what’s on there now. I prefer function over failing original parts
    i love playing it.

    You staying safe ??? I almost called you to shoot the breeze on this one. I never forget how helpful you were in 2016 when I scored my ‘39P...



  38. #187

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    Quote Originally Posted by wintermoon
    They're all different.
    Sorry if this ruffles some feathers but I think a signature on a label is highly overrated.
    Hutchins labels, Crimson labels, etc. are pure marketing BS. They are simply some very nice Gibson guitar models built by the Gibson Custom Shop.

  39. #188

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jabberwocky
    1999 Gibson L-5 Wes Montgomery

    Asking: USD5895. Joe ships anywhere...

    NB Some normal playwear includes a few pick marks near the guard and some scattered nicks here and there, with a short, non-structural hairline crack in the side near the tailpiece, now soundly resealed.
    His price is spot on for this L-5 WesMo from the golden Hutchins years. Even if they aren't signed by Hutchins, he oversaw their construction. I know from past experience that Joe Vinikow at archtop.com: Fine Vintage Instruments Online is great to work with. I doubt he will have this guitar for very long as it is a popular model that holds it's value.

    Good luck with your search!

  40. #189

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  41. #190

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    I don't post much around here lately but i got this dot you might dig. like, the actual holy grail. i also figured since we're about to enter a great depression, I'd write some 30s style chord melody. here's an arrangement of a tune by a great artist from NY named Vilray. Check out his page here.

    Last edited by omphalopsychos; 04-23-2020 at 02:45 PM.

  42. #191

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    The Venerable Gibson L-5-img_4014-jpgThe Venerable Gibson L-5-60713597087__7d53df06-21f7-4809-9ca4-c6b92578558d-2-jpg

  43. #192

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    Gorgeous, and sounds superb. You can hear every note in every chord. Beautiful tune and arrangement too!

  44. #193

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    Gorgeous guitar. INDEED !!!

  45. #194

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    That's the holy grail indeed! The dot neck fingerboard is so elegant looking.
    It sounds wonderful, beautiful playing too!

  46. #195

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    BTW.... I think you owe us a little back-story on this one. Year, what strings, where dj'ya get it and so on. Please?!

  47. #196

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    About 2 years ago a german colleague (from Berlin I think) snapped up a refinished Dot-Neck L-5 just like this one that sat on Reverb for at least 6 months ... paid something like 12 grand for it IIRC . That guitar was MINT and except for the new finish 100% original and just so sweet and lovely to look at ..... Oh well, he's a pro player and the guitar is working so all is good !
    I had the chance to play one of these many years ago at the Mandolin Bros. Store on Staten Island/NY and that particular instrument was mediocre if not just plain boring and un-inspiring. The bad set-up (VERY high action, bad intonation, etc) didn't help. Showed me once again that lemons have no particular season

  48. #197

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    Quote Originally Posted by ccroft
    BTW.... I think you owe us a little back-story on this one. Year, what strings, where dj'ya get it and so on. Please?!

    Gibson L-5 Acoustic Archtop Guitar, Vintage 1928 | om28.com

    Belonged to Tony Oliver and has a book of duets written by him. I'm gonna record some once i can actually play with buds again post quarantine.

    Strings: TI Benson flatwounds. .... Just kidding. Probably gave someone a heart attack w that one. I've been using the same strings on acoustics for years since Rob M turned me on to them: Philippe Bosset 80/20. I use a light gauge set and replace the trebles with 13/17. Sometimes I feel like phosphor bronze, Philippe Bosset is my go-to for those also.

  49. #198

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    Sounds great!

    The pictures look marvelous. I have never seen a guitar that age in that good a condition, and that includes at some of the finer guitar museums across the country.

    A great find for sure!
    Last edited by Doctor Jeff; 04-25-2020 at 03:03 PM.

  50. #199

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    I keep returning to this thread, Juan. Seriously great guitar, and you play it so beautifully. I've subscribed to your YT channel, so I can hear more of it - just in case you don't share stuff here in the future. Keep at it!

  51. #200

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    A 1956, owned by the cousin of the seller since 1960. IN those years the kid played the hell out of it, the pickguard outgassed, he had a lousy refret and input jack Repsir done and laid down a coat of shellac. Aaaaaaahhhhhhhhh
    nightmare on Elm Street

    Enter the seller Frank he bought it, took it a cat named Paulie in north Jersey who cleaned it up, refretted it, refinished it in a couple thin coats of nitro and made a new pickguard. The guy is an artist.

    Being a 1956 it’s a old style more acoustic Archtop. I’ve got everything for it: staple P90s, original harness, everything. It just needs the harnessreinstalled. With this shelter in place stuff I’ve been playing it a lot, it’s loud and sweet.

    so here a shot of her before the restore - next post is photos of the guitar here and ad shots.


    The Venerable Gibson L-5-1956-gibson-l-5-jpeg

    The Venerable Gibson L-5-1956-gibson-l-5b-jpeg