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'62 SG Special - OK to buy / any red flags?

Guitar Magic

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Apr 16, 2015
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I'm thinking about pulling the trigger on this player grade 62 Special but I'm unsure about the originality of the finish and the serial also seems a bit funky (like it was re-stamped?). Obviously many of the original parts had been replaced and the tremolo removed but these are non-issues for me. I find the appearance of the finish a bit odd though, they are usually more transparent and some weather-checking would be expected. What do you guys think about it? The Braz board is certainly nice though. I can't see and try it in person, so any feedback would be much appreciated.
 

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Old dude 70

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From the pictures it’s seem ok structurally, finish does seem surprisingly good for a 62.

what are they asking?
 

Guitar Magic

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So you think the finish is original, no signs of refinish? The price is good for EU standards but I'm still waiting for a neck photo backside. I have a suspicion there might be something there because I received many detailed pics but nothing from that critical area. On pic 04 you can kinda see that there is some kind of blemish on the back of the neck where it usually snaps, I hope it's just wood grain and not a repair.
 

Old dude 70

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I would say it seems very perfect for a 60 yr old, I’d guess a refin but an old one

definitely check out the back of the headstock area
 

charliechitlins

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I have had guitars of that vintage with no checking.
My current '58 ES-175 has none.
It happens.
If the guitar is never exposed to big temperature changes, it may not check.
 

garywright

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Aug 17, 2002
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I’d hate to guess without having it in hand …unless chemically stripped there’s usually some hint of the contour edges having been sanded and not as crisp as factory ….fwiw, it’s obviously had different tuners at some point and I’m sure a blacklight would reflect that ..priced cheap enough and with an approval period may be worth a shot…the lack of weather checking means nothing as I’ve seen and owned vintage that have had zero ..like mentioned it’s all about it’s climate history
 

dango123

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Sep 13, 2001
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The finish does look a little suspect, although that may be a lighting issue. The back of the headstock pic looks more like the Red/brown I'd expect to see on a 62.

Also looks like there was a re-fret (which is not a bad thing) - I re-fretted a 62 junior and it was the best decision I ever made. Early 60's SG's are just the best.
 

jb_abides

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With the caveat that everything is lighting dependent, the images are a bit low-res and diffuse... and we all know the reds age differently... FWIW: my feedback is the cherry is not as deep and lustrous and transparent as my 65 Junior, or other ones I've seen. This one seems on the more cloudy brown side. Refin possible, or maybe aging played a trick.
 

Guitar Magic

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Yeah, these are my observations too. The lack of transparency in the finish is what looks unusual to me, but that could be just the lighting. What definitely makes or breaks the deal for me is if it had a headstock repair or not. The seller has gone silent after I asked for a more detailed photo of the neck area...
 

Old dude 70

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The value is totally dependent on a clean headstock, a crack or repair changes the value immensely
 

Guitar Magic

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I received the headstock pics.Seems all right? There is a weather checking there from what I can see and some darker areas in the wood grain but no cracks or any issues, what do you all think?

Does the finish seem original?
 

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latestarter

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Pots, pickup undersides and cavity photo's are missing, and critical.
A shot with the guard off would be useful too.

What I can see;
-You should assume the front of the head stock has been refinished. That's what it looks like to me up close, around the logo.
-The finish could be original...some just do not crack. However, every SG I've had from he 61-65 era has, and none have had the dimpled filler bleed like yours presents. So, just too hard to assess by photos. You'll need to take a punt.
-Headstock (where the spots are) looks OK to me. As in not repaired.
-The split binding, treble side, is interesting. Maybe it just cracked and was repaired, or maybe something else. I note my early '65 Special has the same thing, and it's just a crack front he fret area (very fine mind you).
- Obviously bridge, tuners are new.

Good luck. If the main things are on point, it's highly likely this thing will rip!
 

corpse

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Jun 9, 2007
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The odd this about SG's from this era is they actually weigh nothing- no weight at all. You pick them up and have to be careful of chucking them thru the ceiling.
Just like the original Shelby's they were largely crashed within a mile of the dealerships.
 

jb_abides

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Just like the original Shelby's they were largely crashed within a mile of the dealerships.

Which in turn was winnowing the field for further destructive testing by this guy:

restricted

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guitarsmash-1200x600.jpg


It's art, don'tcha know! -
"How To Launch Your Guitar in 17 Steps," by Peter Townshend
 

Guitar Magic

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Apr 16, 2015
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Any update? Did you buy it?

Unfortunately there was a routing under the pickguard that had been filled in. Not a small area. The replaced parts didn't bother me as those can be restored but a cavity in the body is a bigger deal.
 

corpse

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Removed wood is a big deal.
My buddy restored an SG/LP someone had filled with Bondo. It was a labor of love on a 61 and def not economical- but he did if for a good friend and professional musician. The outcome was sweet.
 

latestarter

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Unfortunately there was a routing under the pickguard that had been filled in. Not a small area. The replaced parts didn't bother me as those can be restored but a cavity in the body is a bigger deal.
Good work. That’s why insisting to see a photo without the guard is important!

Modern RI’s of these look pretty good…just sayin.
 

Guitar Magic

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Good work. That’s why insisting to see a photo without the guard is important!

Modern RI’s of these look pretty good…just sayin.

I strictly wanted this guitar because of the old mojo. Braz board, old Honduras body and neck... the things you can't get anymore. I prefer Les Pauls by a long shot, but even an 50s Special or a conversion are out of my budget currently.

I once had a late '69 SG Special and that guitar was magical. It was the most woody sounding and resonant electric guitar I've ever had or even heard. I felt the resonance all over my body when I played it in my lap. It had the narrow but very fat neck which didn't bother me at all. The reason I sold it was the totally unstable neck joint. If I didn't play the guitar in a controlled position it would instantly go out of tune. Even just sitting with the guitar then standing up made a vibrato effect on the neck and I had to constantly adjust the tuning. Seriously, it was unplayable in a band setting despite having a wraparound bridge setup with the tremolo removed. Nonetheless it was in top 5 ever in terms of tone.

I should have kept it for a player and reglue the neck by a professional to make a more stable connection. I actually preferred the tone of that guitar to my 1960 Special DC (very thin, flat neck) that I had at the same time and it was a fabulous guitar too. Interestingly, the Special DC with its pencil neck didn't have the same neck dive issue.
 
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