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Flame AA versus AAA

golfnut

Active member
Joined
Apr 18, 2016
Messages
196
As I will be on a search for an R9 I see most if not all have a AAA flame top. So I ask is this a desirable trait on R9's Personally I prefer something a little more subtle like on my Standard 50's pictured below. I'm not that crazy about the real heavy flame that I see on R9's. How hard is it to find one with something a bit more subtle? Heavy flame wouldn't be a deal breaker. I wouldn't want to have too many requirements, making it harder to find what I want as other specs are more important so if its more rare to find an AA flame R9 I'm not going to worry about it.
My standard 50, below, is almost perfect. The only thing I would have wished for is that the section on the left where the flame drops out to almost nothing, I wish it was more consistent like the rest of the top. But its such a minor issue it doesn't bother me that much. The matching of the 2 halves isn't great either but again that doesn't bother me at all.

 

jb_abides

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 6, 2005
Messages
5,377
Actual grading doesn't enter into my selection at all!

Subtle flame or quilting, Birdseye also good, I want to see it from most angles versus Peek-A-Boo that only reveals itself.

Burst pattern that fits with the wood matters a lot, as does color, overall.

Slightly mismatched halves don't bother me much, as I aim for what I perceive to be 'vintage-y' with flame, not book matched, or monster top.

I like mineral streaks, too. Not so much BBQ or grain patterns.

That said, I don't have the sample set most have, in the world of righty-privilege. :cool:

I find that I vibe with an overall top or not, all other factors e.g. weight considered.

This one has a nice ribbon top bout, but mismatch shows, especially in between pickups.

1661873538529.png

but can also show dead spots at certain angles and lighting situations
1661873691819.png
 
Last edited:

renderit

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 19, 2009
Messages
10,966
Or you can go for the 'comic book top'

Skidmark (r8)

35635060474_53aa00fc32_3k.jpg


Or BBQ tops (r9) (depending on angle, lots of wave or lots of BBQ)

35662706253_332bc9c2c3_3k.jpg

35662704103_b9c4ce78d8_3k.jpg
 

dju

Member
Joined
May 7, 2004
Messages
149
you might look t R8's also. some have flame, some are plane tops, some have subtle flame, some have R9 flame.
some R9 have subtle flame also. so you just have to look around.

good luck with your search.
 

Jimi's LP

New member
Joined
Nov 28, 2023
Messages
10
Here's my 1998 Gibson R9 with killer monster flame top. I'm not sure what A flame grade it would fall into.
 

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