Modern Gretsch Guitars

Modern Super Chet (7690)

1

Here's a very interesting model that I had forgotten about - the modern version of the Gretsch Super Chet 7690. Looks to be a 2001. Great price too.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Gre...

2

Here's another example from the internet (not the one for sale):

Cool! Sadly, no money for guitars right now...

3

On the plus side, these limited edition imitations of the Super Chet don't have the idiotic wheeled controls on the pickguard!!

On the minus side: - they're more painted than stained with no wood grain showing through as mine does.....and it's a shitty color too! Mine's such a deep wine color that in some lighting it appears to be the walnut stain.
- can't tell the body depth in these pics but I don't believe it's the 2 3/4" (or 2 7/8" on mine) of the original. - doesn't have the unique binding running around the center of the body's side. - inlay is plastic or perhaps mother-of-pearl, though I doubt it. The original has abalone. - the originals have no truss rod cover because it has a Burns Gearbox with adjustment from the back of the heel. - doesn't have the black pickguard that says Super Chet not Gretsch. The early ones like mine had a lovely 1/4" gold border as well. - can't tell from the pic but the original has a 24.5" scale length. - early versions had the correct - stipulated by Chet - 1.75" wide neck at the nut.

You'd have thought they'd have put some care into making a faithful reproduction, minus the pickguard controls though as they're doomed to break down, but obviously not. This run of guitars is really a lame-ass effort IMO.

4

That's not a "Modern Super Chet" but what was called a "Deluxe Chet" when it was first released. The Super Chets had all their knobberey in the pickguard and seldom saw a Bigsby

This is the more practical guitar of the two because the knobberey of the Super has hard to replace parts.

I've never played either model so I can't comment more on them

5

The Deluxe didn't have the fancy motif inlays on the neck or headstock Norm, it had the Neo-Classic's instead, part of the 'cheaper' version of this body style. Same I believe for not having that center body binding, but you don't have to convince me of the pickguard controls being a pain!

The fancy inlays pegs this as an, albeit modified, version of the Super Chet. Along with mine, I've seen a reasonable number of the originals with the Bigsby. They just added a "B" to the model number.

7

i had one of these for a short while... loved the feel of it, but the pickups were a bit brittle, IIRC. had to sell it due to hard times, but its an axe i dearly miss. wish they would re introduce it :(

8

i had one of these for a short while... loved the feel of it, but the pickups were a bit brittle, IIRC. had to sell it due to hard times, but its an axe i dearly miss. wish they would re introduce it :(

– Mustafa Stefan Dill

I too wish they'd make an absolutely dead perfect - except for the pickguard controls - re-issue of the Super Chet's first year's version - proper 1.75" wide neck, 24.5" scale, abalone inlays, burns box truss rod and centerline body inlay.

Even if there are pickguard controls these days that might work, in this guitar, they have the well entrenched reputation of them failing so go with the normal control layout and no GD mud switch either......which this guitar never had anyway.

9

Looks like the eBay guitar is sold...

10

The Super Gretsch has mid body binding. For some reason the seller didn't include any photos showing it clearly. Here's a photo of another specimen.

11

Looks like the eBay guitar is sold...

– Frank_NH

I purchased it. Thanks for starting this thread. I might not have seen it otherwise.

12

On the plus side, these limited edition imitations of the Super Chet don't have the idiotic wheeled controls on the pickguard!!

On the minus side: - they're more painted than stained with no wood grain showing through as mine does.....and it's a shitty color too! Mine's such a deep wine color that in some lighting it appears to be the walnut stain.
- can't tell the body depth in these pics but I don't believe it's the 2 3/4" (or 2 7/8" on mine) of the original. - doesn't have the unique binding running around the center of the body's side. - inlay is plastic or perhaps mother-of-pearl, though I doubt it. The original has abalone. - the originals have no truss rod cover because it has a Burns Gearbox with adjustment from the back of the heel. - doesn't have the black pickguard that says Super Chet not Gretsch. The early ones like mine had a lovely 1/4" gold border as well. - can't tell from the pic but the original has a 24.5" scale length. - early versions had the correct - stipulated by Chet - 1.75" wide neck at the nut.

You'd have thought they'd have put some care into making a faithful reproduction, minus the pickguard controls though as they're doomed to break down, but obviously not. This run of guitars is really a lame-ass effort IMO.

– Windsordave

"But other than that Mrs. Lincoln, how did you enjoy the play?"

13

I purchased it. Thanks for starting this thread. I might not have seen it otherwise.

– Caliban335

Hey, all right! Glad to be of service.

Please post some photos when you get it.

14

Congrats Caliban. I like the shape and assume that it has better upper register access? Plus 1 on the pics please.

15

The Super Gretsch has mid body binding. For some reason the seller didn't include any photos showing it clearly. Here's a photo of another specimen.

– Caliban335

I stand corrected. Thanks for the pic. It doesn't appear to have the black in the centerline binding in this pic so please let us know if it does when you get it. Could you also please measure the width of the neck at the nut - I assume it doesn't have the zero fret mine does - from the outer edge of both bindings. I'd like to know if it's the standard 1 11/16" or 1.75". Scale length measurement would also be appreciated.

This is our opportunity to flush out information about this rare model! Congrats on picking up the one on ebay!

16

"But other than that Mrs. Lincoln, how did you enjoy the play?"

– Elliot Easton

Oh I enjoy my original very much......the re-issue I haven't played. I just wish they'd have made the same choice for exact and faithful duplication of this model that they did with the 6122-59 and other CG's.

These guitars are probably very good players. I should clarify my 'lame-ass' comment further by saying it was in reference to Gretsch's choices for the re-issues, not the guitar itself. Sorry for the confusion.

17

I’ve collected information on this model over the years, as I’ve wanted one for some time. Here’s what I’ve been able to find:

Body Back: Laminated Maple

Body Sides: Laminated Maple

Body Top: Laminated Maple

Body Finish: Gloss Urethane

Bracing: Unknown

Body Depth: 2.5"

Body Width: 17"

Neck: 2 piece rock maple

Number of Frets: 22

Fingerboard Radius: Unknown – expected to be 12”

Fretboard: Ebony

Nut Width: Unknown, but expected to be 1.6875"

Scale Length: 25.5"

Pickups: High Sensitive Filter'Tron – expected to be ceramic

Pickup Switching: Three way switch

Controls: Individual volume, master volume, master tone

Bridge: Ebony-Based TOM style roller

Vibrato: Bigsby B6G

Tuning Machines: Unknown Gretsch branded

Place of manufacture: Japan – expected to be Terada

I’ll post photos and any additional information after I receive the guitar. I’m curious about bracing. Perhaps Mustafa knows.

One thing I know for certain is that the roller bridge is going to be replaced by a Tru-Arc. I have a copper and a stainless available.

18

Body Depth: 2.5" Body Width: 17"

Hmmm. The body dimensions plus the better upper fret axis make this a fine Gretsch indeed. Looking forward to the detailed review! BTW - it probably has the ceramic filtertrons, but that wouldn't be a negative for me.

19

I’ve collected information on this model over the years, as I’ve wanted one for some time. Here’s what I’ve been able to find:

Body Back: Laminated Maple

Body Sides: Laminated Maple

Body Top: Laminated Maple

Body Finish: Gloss Urethane

Bracing: Unknown

Body Depth: 2.5"

Body Width: 17"

Neck: 2 piece rock maple

Number of Frets: 22

Fingerboard Radius: Unknown – expected to be 12”

Fretboard: Ebony

Nut Width: Unknown, but expected to be 1.6875"

Scale Length: 25.5"

Pickups: High Sensitive Filter'Tron – expected to be ceramic

Pickup Switching: Three way switch

Controls: Individual volume, master volume, master tone

Bridge: Ebony-Based TOM style roller

Vibrato: Bigsby B6G

Tuning Machines: Unknown Gretsch branded

Place of manufacture: Japan – expected to be Terada

I’ll post photos and any additional information after I receive the guitar. I’m curious about bracing. Perhaps Mustafa knows.

One thing I know for certain is that the roller bridge is going to be replaced by a Tru-Arc. I have a copper and a stainless available.

– Caliban335

I may have a pair of the original blackface, Alnico F'trons from my '72 SC to get rid of in awhile as I'm replacing them with a matched set of gold Ray Butts handmade pickups. The Blackfaces are very nice.

20

The Super Gretsch arrived mid week, but I'm just now having the time to post. The guitar is in good shape although it has clearly been ridden hard and put to bed wet often. The Bigsby arm is not only pitted and grimy, but it's been so severely bent that it can't be folded all the way back. The pickups and controls all work as they should, although there is some scratch in the master volume pot. It's nice to have a Filter'Tron Gretsch with a tone control in place of the "mud" switch.

21

Here's a close up of the body. You can see the tarnish and oxidation on all the gold parts, including the neck pickup ring.

22

The fret markers appear to be MOP, but the headstock inlay looks like abalone to me.

23

Finally, here's a close up of the mid body binding.

24

Congratulations! Glad your happy to finally have it arrive. A real shame about the pitting on the gold. You took some great pics! I can see a bit of that pitting on the volume knob in the shot of the side binding - sure happy to see they put that on the reissue! - and what looks like a bit as well on the tuner surround sleeves in the headstock pic. I've seen this condition on other Gretsches and they were recent ones like yours, too. I would also like to find out what condition must exist for this to occur, and whether keeping it out of the case now with you, will at least stop it from progressing.

It's unique to this model in all Gretsch's history and a real nice touch. It's nice to see that the finish is a stain and not painted that allows the wood's grain to be seen (side binding pic).

You can fix the arm issue real easy.....install a Chet arm with bracket!! It'll look a lot better (IMHO), like mine does and besides, Chet had a hand in designing this guitar so putting on one of his style arms would be very fitting.

Another fan of no mud switch!!

Okay......couple of questions to clear up the mystery [for me] of some features on this rare model

  • is there a zero fret?....can't tell in your photos.
  • what is the width of the neck at the nut (or zero fret) from the outside edge of both bindings?.....mm's are better than imperial for this.
  • what is the distance from the front edge of the nut (or center of zero fret) to the center of the 12th fret?
  • does the nut appear to be made of bone or the usual plastic junk being used these days?

So, how's the action?, how's it sound?, what size and type of strings are you using?, what style music are you going to be using it for?

You've got a beautiful guitar there and unique in features and body shape among all Gretsches from every era. Enjoy it!!

25

Couple other things I forgot to ask, sorry. What is the body depth?....2.5" or 2 3/4"?

It may be just the photo, but the headstock inlay would appear to be MOP as well as mine, and other original examples I've seen have a lot of deep iridescent green in the abalone.


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