Watermelon guitar man..... Stereo ES-345 with stop tail or sideways trem - the choice is yours. Take a look at the pics and decide for yourselves..
A gorgeous, very early (January), watermelon 1961 Gibson ES-345 TDC anyone?
Debuting in 1959 with its stereo circuitry and varitone tonal shaping, the ES-345 and its brother the ES-355 where the top dogs of the Gibson semi acoustic range and each featuring the option of a cherry finish that so defined the look of Gibson guitar to come.
Resplendent in its watermelon coat, this guitar look too good. A great example of that classic Watermelon fade, this guitar has been well cared for. Both front and back are free of any real wear. The back has a few scratches but nothing too severe. The neck too shows some signs of wear through the gloss finish but this again is not too severe. The fretboard is in great shape. The rosewood has an attractive grain and the original frets have lots of life left in them. Some of the lacquer has flaked off the inlays but otherwise the headstock is in great shape.
The hardware is a little tarnished. The guitar had been strung as a stop tail (not an original period correct piece but has been returned to the case) with the ‘Custom Made’ badge stored in the case with the sideways trem. You can decide yourself how you would like to play this (pun intended) and we have pics of the guitar in both configurations, but we returned the guitar to its original spec, notable as this guitar (left the factory in January 1961) would have been one of the first to feature the sideways trem. The ABR-1 bridge is nice as a no wire original which still has two of the original ‘bone’ saddles left.
The plastics are in good shape. The chicken head varitone knob is a feature of these guitars brought out in the early 60’s. Originally it would have bene painted all gold but with use the paint has worn off.
Electronically, the solder joints to the pots are correct and untouched. The covers on the neck PAFs has been removed probably to change to the polarity or simply to remove the cover. As this one had already been taken off at some stage we checked inside to mae sure everything was OK and we can confirm everything is original with no repairs or rewinds. The other PAF has never been disturbed and both PAF’s are the classic, long magnet versions.
The guitar comes with its correct Gibson black Tolex case with orange lining.
Both pickups on this guitar sound great. As its still wired in stereo, playing each pickup requires some some arranging of the jack plug but the effort is worth it. The neck pickup is really accentuates the wood tones without loosing any definition whilst the bridge pickup really delivers that bite that you only really get from a PAF.
If you’re looking for an ES guitar then you can’t go much wrong with this one. Watermelon vintage ES guitars are pretty desirable and it probably won’t hang around very long.
We are located in Cheltenham, the capital of the Cotswolds, UK. All items are in stock and can be viewed and tried out through a variety of vintage amplifiers, by appointment only, at our brand new lounge/showroom. We despatch virtually anywhere in the world and we have enormous experience in hassle-free, safe shipping.
ATB Guitars (By appointment Only) 15 Regent St, Cheltenham, GL50 1HE United Kingdom
Landline: 01242 697607
Mobile: 07842 001007
Overseas: +44 (0)1242 697607