Gretsch Garage Sale

1972 Super Chet on Reverb

1

Super Chet

Not mine, but for $1,500 someone might want this, as I don't ever see these go this low.

2

Super Chet

Not mine, but for $1,500 someone might want this, as I don't ever see these go this low.

– crowbone

the link is wrong

4

Try it now, I fixed it.

– crowbone

It's ok. Horrible knobs.

5

Yeah, but a piece of Gretsch history, no?

Did Chet actually like these things?

6

Isn't that the wrong pickguard for a '72? I saw this one yesterday. It is a great deal either way.

8

Good catch RIK! The pickguard is a replacement as the shape isn't correct and for it's S/N, should have the 1/4" gold border around it. The bridge - probably base too - isn't original either, it's a roller from when Gretsch began production again under its own name.

They do have the right model number, 7691 which designates it as the walnut finish.

This would be a terrific guitar to go after and perfect candidate to fix up as I did mine: With wiring needing attention anyway, just gut the pickguard and replace with the current Gretsch [or TVJ] complete wiring harness. Replace the existing pup selection switch too and install the 'normal' array of controls: master volume, volume for each pup and [only] one tone for both. These guitars don't need a pickguard as they look quite elegant without one. Good opportunity to install a Serpentune as well but Tim's standard one won't be wide enough so you'd have to pay a bit extra for a custom one. I doubt the roller on there now will be wide enough if you do what I did and describe below, that being to add width to the neck and space out the strings a bit more.

Regarding the neck: being a July '72 build, this guitar will come with the wider, 1.75 -1.80" neck at the zero fret. It will also have a deep D-shaped profile that's dead flat on the bottom all the way up. The frets [for me and a lot of others] are the real issue though. As I've described in many previous threads, they don't extend out and fully over/across the binding, which the width BTW is [on mine] .146" wide. They used a less costly but stupid! technique of installing the frets before the binding. They cut them off just past the edge of the ebony fingerboard leaving the tang intact, instead of cutting the extended part off. They then installed the binding and had to hammer the soft binding into the end of the protruding fret's tang. This immediately starts a crack which works its way to the side's surface as the binding ages and becomes less pliable. The binding will be cracked at every fret end on these guitars. When you rub your thumb along the side of the binding you'll feel a 'speed bump' effect from the careless manufacturing process.

This wasn't an issue for me as I had Nicole gut all the frets - they were worn anyway - and replaced properly with frets installed where the tang is cut off and the frets extend all the way to the outer edge of the binding as they're suppose to do!! She didn't chamfer the binding's ends either, also a bad factory habit back in the day, just rounded them off. These new frets are vintage style - wide and for my choice, low at .035". YMMV

With the new frets, I now had the full width of the fingerboard plus binding available for re-spacing the strings out further, which I did with a new bone nut. I'd always wanted one of these guitars over any modern offering because it has the wider neck....it just needed the multiple factory faux pas' corrected.

I realize all these upgrade suggestions are going to cost you a bit, but the important thing to remember here is that the purchase price is way below market value - and you still might get it cheaper by making an offer - especially for an earlier guitar with the wider neck thereby allowing for getting the upgrades done. With your purchase price plus upgrades you'll still be under market value and have a terrific guitar! Wish I could've gotten mine for this price!

There's a few around here that like this model and expressed interest in buying one. I say you'll never get a better opportunity or see a better price. Hope someone steps up and buys this one.

9

Better the new bridge, The originals that came with these guitars were a design oops. I had to fix the 'fix' on Dave's to make it so it didn't flex like crazy and the feet made good contact. Bridge base was way too thin between feet and would flex causing the feet to lift at the ends, probably went out of tune if you rested your hand too hard on the bridge. also the holes for lifter bolts went right thrugh the feet so the bolts would dig into the top.

Lot's of things ill-thought out on these guitars..I guess they're Gretsch's! These are guitars for those who want a guitar that has Chet's name on it and is also VERY attractive. They aren't a result of superior manufacturing as a look inside a few has confirmed.

Funny things right out of the factory:

  • fragile ill thought out controls

  • early models had a neck that was HUGE (both wide and fat!)

  • bad bridge design

  • poor wiring

  • bad fret/bindng oops

  • blocks under the bridge too short to meet the braces on the back

  • HEAVY! I think almost 9 lbs

In general fret end binding isn't a time or cost saving measure(though it might've been in this instance) It probably is about the same amount of work and is generally considered to be a high end feature. I'd read that Gretsch would cut the fret slots through the inner bindings, fret the guitar, and then put the outer binding on after. In this instance perhaps they cut the frets too long. there seemed to be a lot funny going on at Gretsch that year. if I was to buy a super chet I would probably buy a later one as they'd sorted out all the oopsys by then. I do enjoy my Deluxe Chet alot, but it's not my favourite gretsch. Definitely one of theprettiest.

I concur that this is a good price for a super chet, even with the funky knobs. The original bridge was nothing special. this pickguard could be the original cut down some

10

oh it has mother of pearl tuners too. Nice!

11

At that price I could overlook the knobs. At least they probably work.

12

True enough that this model came with it's design idiosyncrasies and manufacturing quality issues but they are all correctable as I did with mine. I know it's difficult to necessarily justify the added costs to rectify things if you've paid the going market rate for an SC, but in this case, I figure with the low purchase price, the added upgrades won't take you beyond what it's worth when done and you'll have things working properly and as regards the neck, you can customize it and get it dialed in to your tastes.

I didn't refinish the back of the neck. It looks cool and has a better feel than any guitar I own.

13

How about a picture of the back of your Super Chet neck Dave?

14

Here 'tis. Maple neck, double stinger.


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