Museum: Gibson Guitars

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1937 Gibson J-35

FON 124C-37. A local J-35, originally sold through Beare and Son of Toronto. An exceptional example of Gibson's early 3 tone-bar Jumbo 35s from the second year of production. The guitar is in remarkable condition -- a single repaired back crack is its only structural issue, and a minor one at that. The finish is pretty much unworn, but is crazed quite heavily and looks gorgeous as a result. The first 5 frets have been replaced, and the bridge has been shaved professionally. New bone nut and saddle by us, excellent setup.

An interesting feature of this guitar is its neck joint midway between the 14th and 15th fret. The neck seems to have been carved for a long scale guitar, possibly an Advanced jumbo, but ended up being used on a J-35. We've noticed long-scale features on other very early J-35s over the years and are beginning to question whether Gibson originally intended the model to be a long-scale guitar. This example is a particularly early J-35, one from the 3rd batch built in '37, so it wouldn't surprise us to learn of experimentation and changes at Gibson at that time.

About the loudest J-35 we've ever played, and there have been many. This guitar would easily take on a similarly aged D-18 and come out ahead. It's big across the fretboard, too, and raucously loud in every position. It has a nicely developed bass response, which is an added bonus in a three tone-bar model.

24.75" scale neck, with typical mid 1930's V carve and a 1-3/4" nut.

With newer hardshell case

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