Miscellaneous Rumbles

There Oughta Be A Law!

1

There ought to be a law that the word "rare" is banned from use when selling a guitar. It has become so trivialized that it means nothing. "Unusual"? Perhaps. "Seldom seen"? Alright, I can live with that. But, "rare"? Nope. Knock it right out of a seller's lexicon.

What say you? What law oughta be that isn't?

2

Well, you know....a small percentage of what's for sale really is rare. I don't think I really even notice that word any more though, it's come to mean as little as "near mint" or "prototype" (that one bugs me) or "all original". "One owner" is a nice one too.

3

What quantity would be the line between rare and not rare ( and no medium-rare allowed).

I would consider my 460 and BZ rare, based on low production numbers ( less than 100) of those models. Am I wrong?

4

Rare ones are hard to find.

5

I like the "belonged to an old guy" stories.

Not.

6

You know what? Everything sold is rare!

Definition says: "not found in large numbers..." Well, using that definition, any guitar rare. It is a one of a kind. There is but one of my guitar, one of your guitar, one of Brad Paisley's guitar. There is only one...so it is rare.

7

I would consider my 460 and BZ rare, based on low production numbers ( less than 100) of those models. Am I wrong? -- NJBob

I would not consider a BZ rare. I would consider it having been built in limited quantities and that is how I would describe it if I were to sell one. In fact, I would say something like "One of 40 built" or whatever the number was. But, when you know multiple guys who own one of those, I would not call it rare.

But, that's just me.

8

Aside from the "rarity" of guitars being sold, what other laws about common everyday life need to be?

9

Aside from the "rarity" of guitars being sold, what other laws about common everyday life need to be?

– Ric12string

Where do I start?

10

A 12 month course and license to have children.

11

How many years to find a very good one is "rare"...

2 years?

12

There ought to be a law that the word "rare" is banned from use when selling a guitar. It has become so trivialized that it means nothing. "Unusual"? Perhaps. "Seldom seen"? Alright, I can live with that. But, "rare"? Nope. Knock it right out of a seller's lexicon.

What say you? What law oughta be that isn't?

– Ric12string

IMO, “rare” is a subjective term based upon one’s belief, life experience or opinion. If I’ve never experienced “x”, witnessed “x” or knew “x” was possible or even existed, is it bad faith that I believe “x” is rare?

Caveat emptor...

13

I think guitar ads would be much better with the word "rare" replaced with "gluten free"

14

Rare means very pink, bordering on red with lots of juice and only a slight char.

Haven't seen many guitars like that.

15

"Rare" is a term I too associate with meat of course but in many cases where a seller infers a commonly enough available thing is infrequently found or available, they're clearly appealing for an idiot to step up; someone who is ignorant of whatever it is he wishes to purchase and is gullible to the point of believing the hype, and overpays.

16

IMO, “rare” is a subjective term based upon one’s belief, life experience or opinion. If I’ve never experienced “x”, witnessed “x” or knew “x” was possible or even existed, is it bad faith that I believe “x” is rare?

Caveat emptor...

– gretschman36

I respectfully disagree. I believe that "rare" is an objective description, rather than "subjective." It is measured by things like how many were manufactured, how many have been seen in the resale market, and such things. If it were purely subjective, then there would be absolutely no meaning to the term because it would be different for every person.

17

I think the word awesome should be used only when something has produced a state of awe. It should be a rather rare thing.

18

Maybe it's like 'diva', where the bar has dropped as the word gets overused. In an ad, I usually understand it as shorthand for 'here's something that you don't see very often'. Maybe it's like my '73 SG Standard. The guitar is common enough, but it's been a case queen for most of its life, original everything (except strings and pick guard), no neck repairs, no cracks, case in great shape, so the condition might be described as 'rare'.

19

"Rare" isn't always a good thing, like a rare outbreak of cholera.

20

We may like for "rare" to be objective in the absolute - though who's the ultimate arbiter of how few of a particular item there must be for it to qualify? - but it's subjectively perceived, and conditioned by individual experience.

What authority, agency, or bureaucracy would we use to establish whether this item or that was "rare"? What threshold of physical count establishes rarity? Is it a consistent number, or is it proportional to some larger class of things? And isn't it a moving target? A manufactured or crafted item may have plentiful when it was produced - and through loss over time, is now rare.

Then we get down to nitpickity terms and definitions: a particular example of a guitar originally factory-built in the thousands may become utterly unique by virtue of owner modifications. Conversely, a bone-stock 1932 Ford coupe, though built in hundreds of thousands, is now "rare" because most have been lost or turned into hot rods.

Rarity isn't even a consistent attribute of Valuable or Desirable things - or at least it doesn't always contribute to something's value. Some manufactured items were rare when new, because they failed in the market, were inherently inferior to competitive items, or were less popular versions of a generally more successful model. Their rarity today doesn't increase their value.

Going back to automotive examples, Chevy's 1955 model year was a breakout for the marque; the design is instantly recognized today by anyone with any interest in cars, and considered an icon of 1950s America. 1.7 million cars were built with that famous body style. Of that quantity, the 150 series 4-door sedan sold a little less than 2% of the total; the 210 series 2-door hardtop sold fewer than any other model at .66%. But the Bel Air 2-door hardtop - at close to 11% of the total - is much more highly prized than either of the others. Sometimes popularity when new means more to value later than absolute rarity. (The most valuable full-size '55 today - other than truly rare examples combining a desirable model designation with rare [uh, AND now-deemed desirable] factory options - is the Bel Air convertible, comprising 2.4%.)

Which is just to point out that "rarity" is a quality which might be quantifiable and thus objective (with sufficient research and agreement of experts) for a particular item, but it's only one of many properties contributing to value, not often the most important one, and in any case is always evaluated subjectively.

Someone tells me something is rare, that only means they believe it to be so, from their experience - and probably that they want me to think its rarity is significant in and of itself. I have to know whether that rarity means anything to me, and independently verify it if so.

21

I respectfully disagree. I believe that "rare" is an objective description, rather than "subjective." It is measured by things like how many were manufactured, how many have been seen in the resale market, and such things. If it were purely subjective, then there would be absolutely no meaning to the term because it would be different for every person.

– Ric12string

Well, I see it as "subjective" based upon my argument set forth above. Sure, I can also see it as objective (if based upon accepted, well-established and informed "standards"), but in my experience, rare means many things to many different people, hence my subjective argument.

I guess if there were well-established protocols, methods and practices for a specific item or subject matter, I might agree. But, even that is "rare".

22

We may like for "rare" to be objective in the absolute - though who's the ultimate arbiter of how few of a particular item there must be for it to qualify? - but it's subjectively perceived, and conditioned by individual experience.

What authority, agency, or bureaucracy would we use to establish whether this item or that was "rare"? What threshold of physical count establishes rarity? Is it a consistent number, or is it proportional to some larger class of things? And isn't it a moving target? A manufactured or crafted item may have plentiful when it was produced - and through loss over time, is now rare.

Then we get down to nitpickity terms and definitions: a particular example of a guitar originally factory-built in the thousands may become utterly unique by virtue of owner modifications. Conversely, a bone-stock 1932 Ford coupe, though built in hundreds of thousands, is now "rare" because most have been lost or turned into hot rods.

Rarity isn't even a consistent attribute of Valuable or Desirable things - or at least it doesn't always contribute to something's value. Some manufactured items were rare when new, because they failed in the market, were inherently inferior to competitive items, or were less popular versions of a generally more successful model. Their rarity today doesn't increase their value.

Going back to automotive examples, Chevy's 1955 model year was a breakout for the marque; the design is instantly recognized today by anyone with any interest in cars, and considered an icon of 1950s America. 1.7 million cars were built with that famous body style. Of that quantity, the 150 series 4-door sedan sold a little less than 2% of the total; the 210 series 2-door hardtop sold fewer than any other model at .66%. But the Bel Air 2-door hardtop - at close to 11% of the total - is much more highly prized than either of the others. Sometimes popularity when new means more to value later than absolute rarity. (The most valuable full-size '55 today - other than truly rare examples combining a desirable model designation with rare [uh, AND now-deemed desirable] factory options - is the Bel Air convertible, comprising 2.4%.)

Which is just to point out that "rarity" is a quality which might be quantifiable and thus objective (with sufficient research and agreement of experts) for a particular item, but it's only one of many properties contributing to value, not often the most important one, and in any case is always evaluated subjectively.

Someone tells me something is rare, that only means they believe it to be so, from their experience - and probably that they want me to think its rarity is significant in and of itself. I have to know whether that rarity means anything to me, and independently verify it if so.

– Proteus

What he said....

24

Here's my stipulation for rarity:

Something is rare when there are no spare parts available...aftermarket or otherwise.

What really gets my sack in a mousetrap is when the manufacturer charges a huge markup on something that was rare in the 50's, but no longer is.

Case in point, the Caddy Green Duo Jet. Is a modern day version of a Caddy Green Jet rare? Of course not, then why is that finish so much more than a black one?


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