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Thread: Odd Finish on 20's F-4

  1. #1
    NY Naturalist BradKlein's Avatar
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    Default Odd Finish on 20's F-4

    At first I thought THIS listing might be one of the 'Cremona' finish experiments in the early 1920s at Gibson. But a second glance, and it seems to be an eccentric overspray! I've never seen anything quite like it.

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    Moderator MikeEdgerton's Avatar
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    Default Re: Odd Finish on 20's F-4

    It might have been a Gibson "repair" from the factory.
    "Bargain instruments are no bargains if you can't play them". These are the words of J. Garber.

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    Registered User Steve Roberts's Avatar
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    Default Re: Odd Finish on 20's F-4

    This sentence did not end the way that I thought it would-

    "I am selling my late grandfather's 1917 Gibson F4 mandolin which he purchased in May of 2018."

  4. #4
    NY Naturalist BradKlein's Avatar
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    Default Re: Odd Finish on 20's F-4

    Quote Originally Posted by stever1422 View Post
    "I am selling my late grandfather's 1917 Gibson F4 mandolin which he purchased in May of 2018."
    Ha! I didn't notice that.
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  5. #5

    Default Re: Odd Finish on 20's F-4

    several years ago i had one that looked almost identical. but more wear. of course mine might have been refinished as well. however people thought the finish was original. mine had the back seam opening and a few other issues, butthat one is asking absolute top dollar. those look great but they have a smaller resonating chamber in the body than the As, which i think sound better, especially from 1919 through the twernties

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    Registered User Timbofood's Avatar
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    Default Re: Odd Finish on 20's F-4

    I’ve never bought anything older than myself!
    Seems a bit dear but,the return to Kalamazoo for a “spray tan” might be a reasonable assumption as well.
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    NY Naturalist BradKlein's Avatar
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    Default Re: Odd Finish on 20's F-4

    'Spray tan' characterizes it pretty well!
    This instrument's value depends entirely on whether what looks like brown industrial paint can be removed from the poor thing.
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    Registered User Eric Platt's Avatar
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    Default Re: Odd Finish on 20's F-4

    Should the brown be that visible on the rear binding? Am definitely not an expert on these things, but looks to my untrained eye like a '60's overspray.
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    Default Re: Odd Finish on 20's F-4

    Impossible to tell anything for certain from those pictures. An in-hand inspection would be in order here. Another down side of buying from ebay.

    Don't be too quick to judge a finish yes or no from pictures on a computer screen, especially if they are not crystal clear, have a lot of reflections, or the light is not right.

    All that said, the shading on the ivoroid rosette ring is bothersome to me. But I won't say it is right or wrong without seeing it personally.

  10. #10
    Registered User slimt's Avatar
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    Default Re: Odd Finish on 20's F-4

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Looks nothing like mine... I bet its a refin..

  11. #11

    Default Re: Odd Finish on 20's F-4

    Quote Originally Posted by BradKlein View Post
    'Spray tan' characterizes it pretty well!
    This instrument's value depends entirely on whether what looks like brown industrial paint can be removed from the poor thing.
    Exactly, the color is wrong -- too brown, IMHO. Plus, he is asking almost $6900 for it.

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Odd Finish on 20's F-4

    Quote Originally Posted by slimt View Post
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Looks nothing like mine... I bet its a refin..
    Some F-4's are kind of red, some are very red, some are kind of brown but not Cremona Brown, and some are reddish brown. And both light and dark true Cremona Brown have occasionally been seen on F-4's, but on instruments a little later than the seller's.

    I would estimate from the tuner, bridge, and pickguard details that the seller's mandolin was made around 1917. And I have seen brownish sunbursts on instruments made during that period.

    But again, you can't tell anything for sure either way from those pictures. Too many shadows, reflections, and not sharp enough focus or resolution.

    And that's one reason I don't buy from ebay. "No return" policies are another reason.

    If the seller is reading this, it would be to his benefit to get a current appraisal and condition statement from one of the established vintage instrument dealers. That way he will know what he has, and he will be able to pass that information on to potential buyers.
    Last edited by rcc56; Nov-08-2018 at 2:59am.

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