Guitar Prices

I read an article in 'Guitarist' magazine this month, if you would have bought a 59' Les Paul Standard in sunburst all original in 1985, you would have paid £6,000 for it.
This month, one was sold by a guitar shop in Denmark St. London to an 'Overseas' buyer for £200,000.
How long is going to be before they invent that bloody time machine?

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I would guess that a Samick or Cort guitar today is at least the match of quality of any Strat built in the 60's.

After all, you can buy all the parts today to build a Model T today, but if you did, you would have a better car than Ford built in 1927. Better steel, tigher tolerances, better rubber, etc.

These factories that build a million guitars per year are probably doing a better job than Fender did in the 60's.

After all...a Chevy Impala coming off the line today is probably a better all-around car than any Rolls Royce ever built, when it comes to dependability, etc. But you would pay for it what you paid for a Rolls, even though the Rolls leaked all its fluids from the day it was made (and I have some experience with that, having driven one back in the 80's for one of the owners of the company I worked for then).

Certainly, the CNC routers used by any guitar maker of respectable size means that a guitar can be churned out practically anywhere to the same standards all else being equal, and to tighter tolerances than could be the case forty years ago. It's the all else being equal bit that can be a problem. A fair amount of "things were better in the day" nostalgia gives me the :shock: . '60s resistors found in old amps are, by any modern standards, complete cack. Massively wide tolerances.

You then get into that circular "mojo" argument. It goes like "even though this part is inferior by spec to its modern equivalent, those very shortcomings are what gave Hendrix/Townshend/insert name of guitar legend here his glorious tone." There's no way to win that one (it may even be true in some cases, although people pay silly money for some cruddy carbon comps and then stick them in a part of the chain where it makes not the slightest difference).

There are some places where it is true that old-stuff-was-better. Sticking with my amp fetish, old valves/tubes sound better (OK, that's an opinion) but they were made better, and that's pretty much a fact. With guitars, I don't subscribe to the idea that some pickup made in 1964 is worth tons of money (I don't remember Rock Gods insisting that some forty-year-old bits of wire and magnets were inserted in their guitar before they'd use it) but quality of woods used by the majors has diminished. Some of the maple necks, Indian rosewood fingerboards and alderlike bodies around, even on semi-serious instruments, look like rubbish. I can buy into the idea that wood improves with age, too - but not to the tune of $250k for a particular year of LP, no.

Now it's all about the money. Has been for a long time wich is too bad since there really are legitimate caring people still left in the music biz. Not many left from the day, it's all much like McDonalds now. Formula driven and sterile. No Funk no Soul, just the money and the size and, of course, the power.

Sultana, sorry Santana once said, 'Old pickups just sound bad, they just die' .
Actualy i think i got his name right first time around.

Without going into overbore, magnets do deteriorate with time. There's plenty of sciencey guff detailing all of this. Santana probably got the quick lowdown from the aliens when they picked him up :)

I saw a Telecaster black scratchplate for sale on ebay, original 1952, how much? £3,500
http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/1952-FENDER-TELECASTER-PICKGUARD_W0QQitemZ180078817825QQihZ008QQcategoryZ42455QQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

you can buy the whole guitar for £7,000
http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/1952-Fender-Telecaster-Original_W0QQitemZ160078387014QQihZ006QQcategoryZ33039QQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

Does it pay to break up Vintage instruments?

I remember someone on another forum saying they'd just spunked $15,000 on a nitro, single ply scratchplate. I replied that, even if the 'guard were lying on Gillian Anderson's navel with a line of extremely pure Charlie heading upwards, circling her nips a couple of times, and a $10,000 bill ready-rolled up and mine to keep afterwards, I'd still pass on the deal.

Must've been a long time ago for me to mention Dana Scully, but I still think some people are potty for parts. I don't think an old Tele or Strat is best broken up, but some of the lesser models like DuoSonics, Musicmasters etc regularly get the treatment. The pups, pots, neckplate - anything with a serial number that can be transferred over to the more popular models - can make it worthwhile.

http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Original-Marshall-Plexi-valve-amp-fuses-NO-RESERVE-99p_W0QQitemZ180079589737QQihZ008QQcategoryZ3278QQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

Not strictly guitar prices, but, original plexi fuses? obviously the fuses have a profound effect on the sound, the mid frequencies and give a tighter more direct bass response... but im not convinced.

You know me and valve-sniffing, but it is ridiculous what crops up with absurd prices and tenuous claims for amp-nirvana. I go along with Weber; it's about the iron, the glass and the paper (IOW, the transformers, the valves and the speaker drivers). I ditched some awful Marshall components out of my CMI and don't give a damn about the effect on its "originality value". The impedance selector (often available on Fleeb) is a catastrophic POS.

Another thing that makes me laugh is the money people pay for ancient resistors with lousy tolerances, especially when they stick them in places that cannot possibly contribute to any "mojo". EDIT: and I nearly forgot weirdos seeking out electrolytic filter capacitors that have sat on a shelf for thirty odd years. Complete useless puffballs that'll soon decorate the insides of your JTM with vile powder. I even read someone saying they'd buy new-old-stock but never risk used ones. Huh? Surely regular charge/discharge is the only chance of the poor things going some four times their envisaged lifespan?

1bassleft wrote:
You know me and valve-sniffing, but it is ridiculous what crops up with absurd prices and tenuous claims for amp-nirvana. I go along with Weber; it's about the iron, the glass and the paper (IOW, the transformers, the valves and the speaker drivers). I ditched some awful Marshall components out of my CMI and don't give a damn about the effect on its "originality value". The impedance selector (often available on Fleeb) is a catastrophic POS.

Another thing that makes me laugh is the money people pay for ancient resistors with lousy tolerances, especially when they stick them in places that cannot possibly contribute to any "mojo". EDIT: and I nearly forgot weirdos seeking out electrolytic filter capacitors that have sat on a shelf for thirty odd years. Complete useless puffballs that'll soon decorate the insides of your JTM with vile powder. I even read someone saying they'd buy new-old-stock but never risk used ones. Huh? Surely regular charge/discharge is the only chance of the poor things going some four times their envisaged lifespan?

electrolytic capacitors.....Dont get me started, i remember back in 1985, i was 20 years old, had some 'light' training in electronics and worked in a Bingo Hall in East London, my job was to maintain 40 AWP's (fruit machines), a power cut had knocked over a PSU in a very old but very profitable fruit machine, every hour it was out of action was a loss in profit, so i took the PSU to pieces and saw a blown fuse, and a not too large capacitor had popped, didn't have the correct fuse but shoved in an over rated one for a make do, and managed to match the filter cap.
So i go out into the main hall, all eyes (full house of 1200 punters in) were firmly down for the last house of the night, it was the National game, a link up of loads of clubs up and down the country for a £50,000 jackpot.
I plug in the PSU, and i can hear... four and two forty two...... one and three thirteen..... i switch on the PSU and BANG!! the replaced capacitor goes off like a 44 magnum, my head is still in the back of the machine, ears ringing, loads of fluff starts settling around me from the jetisoned capaictor, the game grinds to a halt, and i can feel 1200 pairs of eyes burning into me, so i stand up, keep my head down, lock the back door up, and skulk off.
electrolytic filter capacitors....umm, happy days. :lol:

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