Re: Decca Guitar
Man, there certainly are a lot of idiots out there -- like the guy who was using this electric guitar forum to dis Obama?!
Anyway, Decca guitars were made by the Teisco Corporation in Japan, beginning in about 1965. It had NOTHING to do with Decca Records, Decca Studios or anything other Decca trademarks used in Britain or the US. The Japanese just took the name because it sounded Anglo-American, and thus "cool" to the kids besotted with Beatlemania at the time.
Nor were Decca guitars made for or marketed to children. They were made at the same factory that made Teisco, Teisco del Rey, Kingston, Heit, Kawai and other brands of guitars. Some of these are quite decent beginner's instruments, and some are just flat out interesting/weird. No, they're not the same quality of a Gibson, Fender or Burns guitar from the same period, but they also cost a fraction of one of those guitars. And coincidentally, Fender guitars nowadays are largely made in Indonesia, China and Korea, places that *wish* they could make things as well as they can in Japan, so chew on that before you slag on Japanese-made guitars.
Of the brands that Teisco made and sold, Deccas seem to be somewhat more conservatively styled, and not as heavily loaded with electronics as, for example, Teisco branded models. They typically have 1 or 2 pickups, a vaguely Fender-shaped body, and a sunburst finish. AFAIK, Teisco stopped using the Decca brand name in about 1970.
Values? Well, with the prices of 1960s American and British guitars through the roof, collectors and musicians turn to the next-best-thing, and that would be European and Japanese guitars. In general, any made-in-Japan solid-body electric guitar in good cosmetic shape, that's complete and playable, is worth at least $100, and any acoustic-electric, at least twice that. The more pickups it has, the more elaborate the controls, and the more flashy the pickguard, the more it's worth. Same goes for the body and headstock shape. The standard shapes that copy Fender and other manufacturers aren't as desirable as some of the weirder shapes. A Decca solidbody with an unusual body shape, with 3 pickups and an unusual original finish would probably be in the $250-350 range to the right person. An acoustic-electric with the same specs would probably be worth $100 more than that. I've seen some of the exceptional Teisco solidbodies go for $500-600, but that's uncommon. In about 2006, I saw a Teisco (one of their Mosrite copies) from about 1967 that was in flawless condition for sale in an instrument shop in Tokyo for 200,000 Yen (about $1,900). I wouldn't be surprised if it sold for that.
Decca's flat-top acoustic guitars seem to usually sell for $50-75. They're not highly regarded because (a) acoustic guitars don't have the collecto-mania of electric guitars, except for certain brands (Martin, Gibson, etc.), and (b) the tonewoods Decca used were inferior to solid spruce as used by the aforementioned makers. Indeed, Decca often used plywood, which doesn't yield very good tone in an acoustic.
But in general, there's nothing wrong with Decca electric guitars, especially for indie musicians today who are looking for a vintage guitar with some character to it. Since most vintage guitar fans have seen every model that Gibson, Fender, et al, have ever made, many of the Japanese guitars of the '60s have a fresh look that stands out from the crowds. In 20 years, the M-i-J electric guitars of the '60s are going to be worth 4 or 5 times what they sell for now, and smart collectors who either can't afford Fenders, Gibsons and their ilk from that period, or who are interested in something more unusual, are already snapping them up.