Vintage Gretsch Guitars

52 Electro 2 project


This might be one of the craziest things I've done yet on this guitar. Rebinding the pickup side of this pickguard. Humourously from pictures I can see online most of them actually seem to have entirely faux white paint binding. This one had 80% real binding with white paint on the pickup side..that wouldn't do. So I had some left overbinding which I cut down etc etc and bount teh edge with mitered corners. I had to fake the neck pickup side as the original binding was cut square with the pickup slot. A guy (especially a crazy one) can only do so much. Here it is all applied but awaiting leveling and cleaning up. I used some binding melted in acetone to fix any miniscule gaps in teh was bugging me.

I'll leave the rest to tomorrow.


I'm not sure if I prefer this guitar with or without the pickguard but here's the pickguard with the binding 95% finished. If I wanted to go at it again and clean up the corners I could, but NOTHING on this guitar is perfect or ever will be. As I said before I think I was finishing someone else's modification of the original pickguard because all the ones I've seen have painted bindings.

Anyone else have an electro 2 with a bound tortoiseshell pickguard? or do they mostly have painted edges?


Thought these were all bound. IIRC there were a few with a tone control in the pickguard that had lettering on them. "High" "Low" or something like that. I'm neutral about pickguards, but that one is just too cool to take off.


I though they were bound too as this one mostly was and then the one side was painted. It was actually a little lopsided, Here's how it look originally. The neck side had a return ,but the area neck to the pickups is almost all painted on. On doing some research online. Most of them looked painted! I couldn't find many close ups


Thought these were all bound. IIRC there were a few with a tone control in the pickguard that had lettering on them. "High" "Low" or something like that. I'm neutral about pickguards, but that one is just too cool to take off.

– lx

The 6197-8 had two flaps that read "Deep" and "Brilliant" over two tone buttons/pickup switches.


The trap doors


Deep and Brilliant -- that was it! Love the typefaces. Are those push button activated or some kind of toggle?


Waaaaam I want trap doors!! That is far too cool! Wacky Gretsch features before Gretsch was truly wacky! Neat to see another bound pickguard. Maybe it was the photos I was looking at. I was contemplating finish sanding and buffing the back of mine so it was more transparent. It's totally rough sanded on teh back which makes it more opaque.


Push button

I love that guard shape!

Toxo, great job on yours too. Can you do me A favor and next time you have it off can you send me a trace of it?

I want to recreate one of these for my natural Streamliner.


I'll get on that now Paul.

I picked up some vintage Grover Sta-tites for slightly more than a new set.... ????

Probably the new ones would be better as they make them in 18-1 now Anyway these at least suit the guitar Hopefully they do the job

Haven't done the stinger yet. I'm going to wait till I get the neck wet sanded and buffed( it has a couple of funny runs! oy vey!) I'm not entirely sure what clear coat os on this guitar and I was just going to mask offthe headstock and paint gloss black over it. I can get glass black nitro (Mohawk) for $7.25 Can I can also get Dupli-colour Gloss Black Acrylic lacquer (though it reads like nitro) for $12.99

I know you can put nitro over acrylic but I don't think the other way around works. Some research is necessary.


Well rocked the Electro tonight in rehearsal with my little power trio.(my 'other' band) Everything from clean pop, latin to full on alt rock/rock stuff

Different feel from the convertible, maybe more aggressive and raw but still capable of being smooth with some restraint. This guitar has been sitting unplayed in a collectors' vault' for at least 10 years (I was told 30 but there's a repair bill inside dated 2008) Now on to the pickup selector switch and some pickup tweaking etc. I'll probably buy some modern 18-1 sta-tites as the vintage ones seem to be about 12-14-1. A little too finicky and a bit loose. They certainly look cool.


Yeah, vintage Waverlys and Grover sta-tites were all 12:1.


A couple more things done:

-Pickups temporarily shimmed up on treble side which seems to work well to balance thing out better

  • Pickup selector switch added and installed in a low impact sort of way. cream plastic knob cut down to minimum

  • &%$&^$&^ crappy vintage grover sta-tites removed and modern Gotoh 510s installed, same footprint, great reviews. My luthier friend had the ivoroid button ones so I went with those, I think it looks good and they work a zillion times better!!! Vintage is great but old , worn and inefficient, not so great.

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