Museum: Gibson Guitars

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1948 National 1160/ Gibson LG-3

Serial # V9147. The National 1160 is, essentially, a Gibson LG-3 with a different headstock, pickguard, and bridge. The model was offered between 1947 and 1951, but it is unknown how many of these were built. Gibson shipping totals do not specify how many instruments were supplied to National. What is known is that the LG-2 out-produced the natural-finish LG-3 by a 3-to-1 ratio, and not very many of them were sent westward to Chicago for National branding.

The guitar pictured here is nearly 60 years old, and is in remarkably fine condition minus a cleanly repaired minor endpin-crack (mostly invisible from the outside of the guitar). Its LG-3 body is built from Sitka Spruce and mahogany, with scalloped bracing, a small rectangular Brazilian rosewood bridge, and 3-ply counter-top faux-mahogany grained pickguard (really quite avant-garde for 1948). Its neck is very obviously a Gibson build, with a war-time Banner shape, and no truss-rod. It's a big neck. It has a Brazilian rosewood fingerboard with pearl dots, and a bone nut measuring 1-3/4" wide. The bridge is a replacement built in our shop - the original's saddle was located improperly, and was made from a sub-standard piece of rosewood, but we'll include it with the guitar. The guitar has had a professional neck reset, and plays very comfortably with action of 5 to 7 64ths. Original finish, tuners, nut, and frets.

Loud, warm and punchy, it's an LG-3 after all, and a good one at that.

With period brown alligator case

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