Modern Gretsch Guitars

G6128T-53 Vintage Select ’53 Duo Jet query

1

Folks, does anyone know if this guitar is a nitro or poly finish? It's not too clear on the website, just lists it as "gloss" on the body..

2

Vintage select models that have a nitro finish are designated as "gloss lacquer finish". Those that do show this designation -- including the Duo Jet models -- are most likely poly.

3

I have one, it’s poly. It’s not a thick plasticky coating though, it’s really nice.

4

I'm happy to hear that the newest poly finishes are thin. I've noticed for me at least that the thickness of the finish is more important to feel and resonance than whether the finish is nitro or poly.

5

Thanks guys. There’s one for sale locally and I’m thinking hard about it. I’ve always fancied one and I’m shifting a load of other guitars to make room for one really nice one.

6

Go for it! I’ll never let go of mine, nicest guitar I’ve ever had personally. The tone through a fender amp is killer!

7

I'm happy to hear that the newest poly finishes are thin. I've noticed for me at least that the thickness of the finish is more important to feel and resonance than whether the finish is nitro or poly.

– BuddyHollywood

I agree, and I personally like a poly finish because it really doesn’t age. I’m not into that relic thing, I want my guitar to be mostly nice and shiny. The only thing I did to my 53 was take a fine floor buffing pad and aggressively rub the back of the neck with it to make it really smooth. You can’t really see a difference but you can really feel it!

8

I have one. It’s the best playing, best sounding, most versatile guitar I’ve ever had.

9

That’s two ringing endorsements! We’re in lockdown at the minute which will make things tricky in terms of giving it a whirl but I’ll try my best.

10

Thanks guys. There’s one for sale locally and I’m thinking hard about it. I’ve always fancied one and I’m shifting a load of other guitars to make room for one really nice one.

– Tsar Nicholas

I support your decision. My best guitar is a 2011 DSV Duo Jet which if it came out today would be a 55 VS.

11

Go for it!!! I’m playing mine right now! So sweet except for those strap buttons that need replacing. Like Bob said, most versatile guitar ever, that’s why it’s the only guitar I have had for a few years now

12

And @buddyhollywood is right, his axe would be a 55 version, the other one I’m seeking out when I get the funds for another jet, or a 57 TSV. I believe those were both nitro? At any rate, I’m told that fenders and Gretsch are all poly anyway with a nitro “overspray” on certain models for the aging effect, I could be wrong

13

Thanks for all the feedback guys. I should have known better than to consult a bunch of addicts!

14

I have one too! It's an absolutely superb guitar in every way. The deeper body, script logo, and TV Jones pickups were the convincers when I was debating the virtues of the '53 vs. the Cliff Gallup model. The guitar sounds bigger than it is; the greater body depth allows it to impersonate a big hollow-body pretty convincingly, yet it can get some very Tele-ish tones on the bridge pickup. The neck feels slightly larger and more hemispherical than the average Gretsch neck, but isn't fat like a Nocaster. I took out the bridge pins because I use .013 T-I flats and the intonation was off with those strings, but it was fine for .011s and presumably would work with .010s as well.

The poly finish is nice, but I do hate the way that dings turn white on poly finishes. My guitar has a few, but nothing major.

I made a new pickguard for it based on photos of vintage ones. It's WBW instead of one-ply white.

15

How did you make the pickguard? Turned out really nice!

I’ll most likely be putting 12s on mine, do you think the intonation will be outta whack with them?

16

I attached binding strips to the underside of a piece of white, chamfered the edges, and shot some tinted nitro over it to mellow it down.

With .012s, you might be able to adjust the intonation by filing the bridge. The lower you file it, the wider it gets, so there's more latitude for intonation.

17

I also put a three ply parchment pickguard on mine, seems little but makes a huge difference to the appearance

18

I have the 57 Green VS. The TV Jones T-Armonds are the part I like as they are akin to the deArmonds on my brother's 56 Jet Firebird.

The rest of the guitar is of little interest to me. Someone will be happy someday when I get around to selling it as it's had about 10 minutes playing time in 2 years.

Keep in mind there is a lot of YMMV in what I say. I am playing Telecasters mostly now after 35 years of largely Gretsch only, so it could be just as much that.

19

I play mostly Teles when I'm just sitting around at home as well, which is all I've been doing lately. The '53 has seen plenty of stage, rehearsal, and recording time, though.

20

Well I went and did it... sold a Strat, a Tele, a Jazzmaster over the last few weeks, a Danelectro in the car park of the guitar shop and took home this beauty.

21

Well there ya go! Congrats.

22

That Great Gretsch Smile.

24

You won’t regret it! Congrats!

25

MAN you got big hands! You’ll be able to boss that neck around with authority.

It does look like the guitar of your dreams. In all of guitardom, there’s no better ride than a Dyna Jet. I have two!

If your set of 12s has a wound third (and most do), intonation will be off using the stock Bigsby Comp bridge, which is profiled for a plain G. There are wound-3rd versions of the bridge (if you want to keep the Bigsby Comp) — or you could go with a more stable, somewhat massier aluminum bridge for generally better performance and tone. Just saying!


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