Tuesday, March 18, 2014

1959 Danelectro Companion

I'll be honest, I'm not an expert on Danelectro.  I've owned a Silvertone U-2 in the past but didn't really do much digging on the history, etc.  I happened across this Dano Companion and bought it with no strings.  The bridge was just rattling around in the case and I even though it was missing a piece.  I decided to string it up as is after seeing some pictures online.  It played great and the bridge held very well.  It was just as intended.  The neck was straight and the action was perfect.  I fell in love!

The Companion was apparently a fairly rare model.  It's very similar to Jimmy Page's Danelectro 3021 with the exception of the natural finish and the bridge.  The electronics are the exact same setup with two single coil pickups with stacked/concentric volume and tone knobs for each.  The middle position on Danelectro guitars is the tone that everyone is looking for.  They wired it so the pickups would run in series instead of parallel.  These guitars come alive with lots of output when you're playing in the middle position.

Do you have one of these for sale?  Contact me.  I'm always on the lookout for this kind of stuff.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

1967 Epiphone FT-110 Frontier

1967 Epiphone FT-110 Frontier

The Epiphone Frontier was manufactured by the Gibson company in Kalamazoo, MI from 1958 until 1969.  This model was a continuation of the Epiphone made FT-110 which also featured flame Maple back and sides.  The Gibson made version introduced the square shoulder design for Gibson in 1958.  In 1962, Gibson introduced the Dove which was based off of this guitar but with the bird motif.  In 1963, Gibson added the cacti and lariat relief graphic onto the pickguard of the Frontier.  Isn't that a sexy guitar?!

The time that I had with my first Frontier was all too short so I was ecstatic when I got this one in.  I purchased it with a broken and loose bridge as well as a damaged nut.  Gibson had the bad habit of gluing bridges right on top of the finish during this time period.  Glue has an easier time of staying put if the joint holds wood to wood instead of wood to finish.

I dropped it off at my luthier's place (Burn's Repair) because I know I can trust him for a professional repair.  The bridge had split into two pieces because of the weak spot in line with the bridge pins.  Jason glued the bridge back together so that the repair was almost invisible.  If you're not looking for the repair then you won't find it.  There was one spot next to the saddle that showed signs of a previous attempt at repair.  Jason removed the old glue and glued it tight.  The nut slots had been cut down too low so Jason decided it was time for a new bone nut.  The new nut is gorgeous and perfectly cut and installed.

The resulting guitar is a dream to behold.  I don't usually like to refer to guitars in such flowery language but I believe this one deserves it.  The Maple back and sides and long scale length perfectly balance out the 60s build.  The tone is low and rumbly when it wants to be.  The highs are crisp and well pronounced.  It has good volume but likely won't overpower a singer/songwriter.

I'm always on the lookout for these guitars.  Do you have one for sale?  Please contact me.