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Saving a '57 Special

dwagar

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 18, 2005
Messages
4,326
I cut my R&R teeth on an odd duck '55 Special ('67-69), traded it in on the '64 ES330 I still own. For years I've wanted another Special, but couldn't afford what they are worth these days.

I almost went with a Historic, a few discussions with Liam kept me on track to watch for a player I could afford.

Then about a year ago a forum member posted this for sale at a good price, plus gave me a deal on some of the hardware for it (pickups, pickguard, knobs, tuners).

Wagar1.jpg


Ugly refin, broken headstock.

1_-Headstock-before.jpg


Then I had it shipped directly to Greg at BCR. He's busy, but IMO does incredible work.

(I've had a running thread on this guitar over at MLP. I thought it was time to unveil it here now)
 

dwagar

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 18, 2005
Messages
4,326
Then Greg sent it to his finisher (Shane at HEL Guitars). I was holding my breath waiting for the stripping. There were no surprises, or bondo, or anything hidden under that finish :)

Greg had a Special in his shop, he wanted it to be THAT color. Shane had to test a few different mixes, came up with a match.

Wagar_buffed.jpg
 
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dwagar

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 18, 2005
Messages
4,326
Then back to Greg to work his magic on the face of the headstock. I told him I didn't care how clean it turned out, but I did not want to lose the original script.

He's amazing.

Headstock_zpsd8fc2423.jpg
 

dwagar

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 18, 2005
Messages
4,326
Then he gave it a 'first' assembly. He still has a bit of magic to do, it's going to bake in the sun for a bit, and he wants to knock off a bit of the sheen in the right places, I don't want it to look like fake aging, but don't want it to look like a new Historic either.

Firstassembly_zpsa40783b5.jpg
 
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dwagar

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 18, 2005
Messages
4,326
So, for a reasonable cost, I will finally be back to playing a Special.

I'm 60 now, I figure I have maybe a decade left to play in a rock n roll band. I want to spend it playing the guitar I started it with.

Thanks to Greg, and thanks to these forums, I can get there.

(along with the original parts I bought with the guitar, I picked up a TRC and thumbcutters from Vintage Correct Parts, in my stash I had the original studs from my old '55 Special, strap pins from my old '60 MM project, a pair of Bees I'd been saving for something, picked up a repro switch ring and jack plate from GM, one of the new compensated TPs from Mojoaxe, and had most of the other parts sitting around that I needed.)
 

Frutiger

Active member
Joined
Oct 17, 2007
Messages
697
I'd been following this over on the other forum, waiting to see how it ended up and it's turned out great.

Actually it's turned out better than great. I bet you can't wait to get this back in your hands!

Superb work all round, congratulations.
 

dwagar

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 18, 2005
Messages
4,326
You're right, I can't wait. I'm not a very patient guy, it's been a long year.

I was sure Greg would do great work, even so, I'm amazed.
 

nevizzzy

New member
Joined
Oct 29, 2006
Messages
1,196
Very cool! If it were mine I'd go the no aging route then I'd have a guitar that looks like a new 57 special:hippy
 

dwagar

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 18, 2005
Messages
4,326
I shouldn't have used the term 'aging' above, I've changed it. He wants to fade it a bit in the sun, and knock off some of the sheen in all the right places.

Checking will probably happen naturally. I do live in Canada. And dings will happen naturally too.
 

mbowen

New member
Joined
Mar 6, 2009
Messages
5,022
Came out looking amazing congrats to you and Greg on the great work,Mike B.
 

Ulli

Member
Joined
Jun 9, 2011
Messages
432
I love these threads; thanks for posting! :salude
Came out really NICE, great job! :3zone
 

DanD

Active member
Joined
Apr 8, 2007
Messages
2,366
That Special looks awesome! Congrats! :biggrin:
 

BCR/Greg

Les Paul Forum Member and Host of Guitar Shop
Joined
Jul 21, 2001
Messages
2,798
It does a heart good to see them come back alive.

Thanks to Don for the trust.
 

kharrison

Active member
Joined
May 18, 2006
Messages
4,225
Very well done and a nice save. Another 50's Gibson back to life and ready to play. :3zone
 

RAB

Active member
Joined
Mar 17, 2005
Messages
2,110
Awesome save of a vintage LP and wishing you many tone-full hours playing it!
 
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