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Historic Makeovers: R7 -> R9

uOpt

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Joined
Nov 20, 2007
Messages
163
Easy really. Back in the early-2000s era, completely unfigured plain maple with no flaws was the spec for 58s. Heavily figured maple with no "dead" patches or flaws was the spec for 59s and 60s. "Everything else" was used on the gold tops. Most gold tops from this era have tops with some figure (still do). They've since revised the spec for the 58s from completely plain to semi-figured to use more of this grade of wood.

Makes me want to strip my R6...
 

brandall10

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Jun 26, 2022
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38
Easy really. Back in the early-2000s era, completely unfigured plain maple with no flaws was the spec for 58s. Heavily figured maple with no "dead" patches or flaws was the spec for 59s and 60s. "Everything else" was used on the gold tops.

I do want to bring up again how it appears this guitar was originally bursted due to the red on the binding - pulling up some grabs from a video I sent to Kim. It's hard to photograph as it's a very fine line of dark red just above the gold with a few spots of mist, likely leeched in from loose masking tape. Any idea how this could happen if it wasn't? Important distinction because if it was, then it was graded an R9 to start - the flaws brought up in this thread are evident when naked.

Screen Shot 2022-07-10 at 2.00.30 PM.png
Screen Shot 2022-07-10 at 2.16.03 PM.jpg
 
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C-4

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Jan 5, 2005
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1,774
Nice. I was fortunate to live half a mile away in downtown San Diego. Pure coincidence, I knew who they were from online chatter and was lucky to find they were right down the street. Tiny shop in a sketch area w/ a pawnshop next door... filled to the brim w/ Historics and high-end PRSs.

Saul was awesome, he put me in a soundproof room w/ a hand-wired bluesbreaker and hand fed me Les Pauls for 4 hours. Every single one that came off the wall went on a scale on the counter.

I almost left as none of the R7s/R8s in the main area quite put me over the edge. This particular R7 was pulled from the backroom and he unboxed it in front of me; I was the first non-Gibson employee to play it. There was one other R7 boxed up as well but as soon as I plugged it in I knew it was the one.
Beautiful guitar, flame and color!
I've read stories where at the company someone ordered an R7, and due to none being available at the time, they took either an R8 or R9, whatever was available and just sprayed it gold.

It seems that you acquired a gold sprayed R9! Oh yeah! :)
 

corpse

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Joined
Jun 9, 2007
Messages
4,497
Brandall
FYI- that red on the binding might have nothing to do with any finish- HM always rolls the edges. More likely it was just bleed from the original red back- then HM scraped them.
 

J.D.

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Joined
May 24, 2006
Messages
9,908
I do want to bring up again how it appears this guitar was originally bursted due to the red on the binding - pulling up some grabs from a video I sent to Kim. It's hard to photograph as it's a very fine line of dark red just above the gold with a few spots of mist, likely leeched in from loose masking tape. Any idea how this could happen if it wasn't? Important distinction because if it was, then it was graded an R9 to start - the flaws brought up in this thread are evident when naked.

View attachment 18722
View attachment 18724
This is the buffing rouge residue from final polishing.
 

brandall10

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Joined
Jun 26, 2022
Messages
38
Brandall
FYI- that red on the binding might have nothing to do with any finish- HM always rolls the edges. More likely it was just bleed from the original red back- then HM scraped them.

The back was scotch colored - look at the gallery. No red anywhere on that guitar. That provided photo w/ the mist was what I took *prior* to sending it to HM. And that was after owning it for 17 years and surely had muted.

Unless somehow it got contaminated from another guitar being sprayed, it originally had cherry on the top from the factory.
 

brandall10

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Joined
Jun 26, 2022
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38
Beautiful guitar, flame and color!
I've read stories where at the company someone ordered an R7, and due to none being available at the time, they took either an R8 or R9, whatever was available and just sprayed it gold.

It seems that you acquired a gold sprayed R9! Oh yeah! :)

Maybe, but it was one of 5 R7s Center City had in stock (3 on the wall, 2 boxed in the back).
 

brandall10

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Joined
Jun 26, 2022
Messages
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This is the buffing rouge residue from final polishing.

Can you clarify what that means? Are you saying the buffing wheel had red on it already?

The very fine line on the bottom, and how it's misted above... if any red got onto it would have to be a fair amount and it would have to come from below the tape. How come it's only on the binding and none on the gold itself where there's a hard line?

Why is it so hard to believe that they simply did in fact repaint an R9? Not only this - low weight, unusually small neck. My god, lol..
 
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J.D.

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May 24, 2006
Messages
9,908
The buffing wheel doesn't run dry, it has a buffing compound (i.e. rouge). What you see is simply a bit that was missed when it was wiped off after buffing. It's very common see.
 

brandall10

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Jun 26, 2022
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38
The buffing wheel doesn't run dry, it has a buffing compound (i.e. rouge). What you see is simply a bit that was missed when it was wiped off after buffing. It's very common see.

But why a hard red line of red right where the gold meets the binding with the mist above? They do this with masking tape on the binding?
 

J.D.

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May 24, 2006
Messages
9,908
It's a very common location to see a little bit of buffing rouge residue.
 

djcmusician

Active member
Joined
Apr 29, 2015
Messages
197
Can you clarify what that means? Are you saying the buffing wheel had red on it already?

The very fine line on the bottom, and how it's misted above... if any red got onto it would have to be a fair amount and it would have to come from below the tape. How come it's only on the binding and none on the gold itself where there's a hard line?

Why is it so hard to believe that they simply did in fact repaint an R9? Not only this - low weight, unusually small neck. My god, lol..
The knot in that top would have never made it on an R9 or R8. When does Gibson stamp the “R7” inside the control cavity?
 

brandall10

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Joined
Jun 26, 2022
Messages
38
Reunited with the guitar today.

Very pretty, strong flame. It dances nicely when the guitar is tilted along the vertical but no peek-a-boo quality whatsoever. The knot, as tiny as it is, I could see as being a reason to waffle on Gibson's part about what to do with it, up close it is very much a knot (had a braz SCGC guitar that had some knots like that on the sides). I still would love to see some evidence of Gibson's buffing rouge possibly being residue though, that it is in fact a dark cherry color.

The neck seems to have about the same depth, but the shoulder reduction is noticeable. Very similar to the 60th anniversary R9 I had in my possession earlier this year.

Something unexpected is a good amount of checking on the headstock. There's one sharp check beneath the back of the neck that had my heart stop for a moment as it looks like a crack, but it's checked all above upon closer inspection. Just the headstock (back and front) and the top part of the neck. I got the closest classic aging so the rest of the guitar looks mostly new with the sheen taken off it. Mentioned to Kim and he said that sometimes happens and the guitar will likely begin checking elsewhere over time... which I don't mind and would prefer to having it just in one place.

As far as the feeling of the finish... honestly I don't know if I would be able to tell the difference between and my '13 R8. Absolutely the finish is more brittle based on how easily it already checked. I just don't know if I'd be able to tell the difference. This surprises as it seems like a super obvious thing to most folks, that difference in feel... certainly can smell it though.

Guitar sounds great unplugged, although unsure if it's any different than before. Very loud and resonant. Unfortunately I don't have any amps handy, it will be my traveling companion for the next several months so I'll be relying on modeling plugged into my laptop, just beginning to work that out.
 
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