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Gold Top Conversion

Bouldergold

Member
Joined
Aug 9, 2016
Messages
67
Contemplating a Goldtop Conversion 52-57.
Most agree these can be great playing and sounding guitars if done right.
The question is are they money traps, are they fairly liquid?
Most people buy these to play but if one has to sell is it hard to do?
Also thinking about a 54 Goldtop.
Any insights here?
 

Steve Craw

Formerly Lefty Elmo
Joined
Sep 9, 2004
Messages
5,166
A buddy has (had) three conversions, two done as 52/59 and one as 52/57. He still has his #1 52/59, but the others eventually got sold, and sold well. It helps if the conversion was done by one of the few who are known for doing these jobs and doing them well.
 

corpse

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 9, 2007
Messages
4,214
I think they tend to hold their value- but "liquid"? No.
 

Bouldergold

Member
Joined
Aug 9, 2016
Messages
67
Weird though if they are not liquid why are they not for sale in the market? You would think a bunch would be sitting out there in the market for sale for a long time. They all seem to be marked as sold. Confusing for sure
 

bern1

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 23, 2004
Messages
1,168
To the OP: an original guitar such as a stock wrap tail Goldtop will always have a preference edge over a modified guitar such as a conversion in my mind.

I think you will find here that conversions are an area where you need to tread carefully. There are different categories of conversions with different price tags.

At the end of the day, a conversion is a modified guitar and thus a “3 legged dog” to most collectors. Especially if it has a high price tag.

The only thing that will make it “liquid” is a low price tag.

I would buy the 54 Goldtop. It’s the real deal, not a pretender.
 

tom wu

Member
Joined
Apr 13, 2003
Messages
957
To the OP: an original guitar such as a stock wrap tail Goldtop will always have a preference edge over a modified guitar such as a conversion in my mind.

I think you will find here that conversions are an area where you need to tread carefully. There are different categories of conversions with different price tags.

At the end of the day, a conversion is a modified guitar and thus a “3 legged dog” to most collectors. Especially if it has a high price tag.

The only thing that will make it “liquid” is a low price tag.

I would buy the 54 Goldtop. It’s the real deal, not a pretender.
So.. you'd buy a 40K guitar as opposed to a 15K guitar? me too, if $ was no object. Big difference in price between a straight 54 GT and a 50s conversion, amigo. Actually, the comparison would be more between a 57 GT and a conversion, since they have the similar bridge, pickup types etc..so between a 100K guitar and a 15-20K guitar.
 

tom wu

Member
Joined
Apr 13, 2003
Messages
957
Contemplating a Goldtop Conversion 52-57.
Most agree these can be great playing and sounding guitars if done right.
The question is are they money traps, are they fairly liquid?
Most people buy these to play but if one has to sell is it hard to do?
Also thinking about a 54 Goldtop.
Any insights here?
different markets, both easy and hard to unload, depending on how much you buy it for. Personally, I see the conversions are easier to sell in a pinch for 2 reasons 1) not everyone is looking to drop 40K on a guitar and 2) Murphy labs, "true" historics and other Gibbys have jacked prices up so much, a person can play a great sounding conversion, for not much more than what the new ones go for
 

bern1

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 23, 2004
Messages
1,168
So.. you'd buy a 40K guitar as opposed to a 15K guitar? me too, if $ was no object. Big difference in price between a straight 54 GT and a 50s conversion, amigo. Actually, the comparison would be more between a 57 GT and a conversion, since they have the similar bridge, pickup types etc..so between a 100K guitar and a 15-20K guitar.
Actually, it is the OP asking about the choice between a 54GT and a conversion in this case. As I’m sure you know, there are highs and lows on either side. He didn’t mention a 57GT.
 

DutchRay

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 15, 2015
Messages
390
Buy it to play it and consider the money spent, if you ever sell it and make some profit, that's nice but it shouldn't be the reason to get into these guitars.
There is a serious price gap between a 52-57 conversion/refin and an original '54. Tone wise, I'd be happy with both, just look at what Sean Costello got out of his. It's all about the connection between you and the guitar and it might take years to find the right one.

 

bern1

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 23, 2004
Messages
1,168
Or just play a Historic and save a ton of doe. Same tone maybe better playability.
Yes, at this point in time, I would say that is a wise choice.

The fact is, we have a lot more viable choices now than we used to. It’s all up to what you are looking for in the purchase.
 

tom wu

Member
Joined
Apr 13, 2003
Messages
957
Actually, it is the OP asking about the choice between a 54GT and a conversion in this case. As I’m sure you know, there are highs and lows on either side. He didn’t mention a 57GT.
You're right right, he didn't mention a 57, but since conversions usually get humbuckers, sometimes PAFs, they are copies of a 57, not a 54. I agree w you that straight guitars hold their value etc, but conversions have also gone up up, and there is no sign of that slowing down. I'd buy a decent conversion, at a good price, over any historic. But that's just me talking from having had a few historics, and a couple of the others; one which has been my #1 for 16 years now.
 

tom wu

Member
Joined
Apr 13, 2003
Messages
957
Or just play a Historic and save a ton of doe. Same tone maybe better playability.
so I haven't played a historic since my 03 brazilians, neither of them "keepers", but I hear the last couple year Historics play and sound great, so I can't comment on their virtues. Having said that, nothing wrong w a conversion, if it speaks to ya, and IMO a better investment.
 

AA00475Bassman

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 26, 2016
Messages
3,361
Or just play a Historic and save a ton of doe. Same tone maybe better playability.
Vintage or age does not define a guitar , Im with bouldergold !

Although back to point, many points of opinion on 50's GT conversions I owned one in the 70's for me the guitar was in limbo it was but it wasn't !

Although a conversion is a economic 50's Les Paul and most likely capable of of sounds beyond my talents .

Over the years Ive seen many beautiful flavors of GT conversions I believe DutchRay owns one & EdA has one Beautiful !

And lets not pass over some of the Bursted GT conversions posted on this Forum very strong Vibe .

As far as conversion = F%^king up a old guitar several of these conversions started as a mess & really go to a NHRA hot rod meet & get out your soap box !

Ivestment Liquid = Honey you better lower the price on the Les Paul the kids are getting really hungry .

You bought a Burst in 1970 & your selling it today for market that's dumb luck , a investment would be buying 25 in 1970 .
 

tom wu

Member
Joined
Apr 13, 2003
Messages
957
Vintage or age does not define a guitar , Im with bouldergold !

Although back to point, many points of opinion on 50's GT conversions I owned one in the 70's for me the guitar was in limbo it was but it wasn't !

Although a conversion is a economic 50's Les Paul and most likely capable of of sounds beyond my talents .

Over the years Ive seen many beautiful flavors of GT conversions I believe DutchRay owns one & EdA has one Beautiful !

And lets not pass over some of the Bursted GT conversions posted on this Forum very strong Vibe .

As far as conversion = F%^king up a old guitar several of these conversions started as a mess & really go to a NHRA hot rod meet & get out your soap box !

Ivestment Liquid = Honey you better lower the price on the Les Paul the kids are getting really hungry .

You bought a Burst in 1970 & your selling it today for market that's dumb luck , a investment would be buying 25 in 1970 .
I don't think vintage defines a guitar either. Look at the many 70s and 80s guitars that were made, many with a lot to be desired in sound and playability. Same time, taking a boogered up 50s LP, and converting it, can make for a much nicer playing and sounding instrument. Terry Mueller did mine a long time back, and I've yet to find one that sounds better.
 
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