Vintage Gretsch Guitars

´55 Roundup Pickguard


Look at the pickguard of the ´55 Roundup. The pickguard has two cuts for the pickup´s. Any thoughts ?


Looks like one of Paul Setzers. Although the cutouts should not be there - maybe they were added by the owner.


Here's my guess. This guitar suffered celluloid rot, killing the original pickguard and the original bridge pickup. Both are replacements. Not sure of the originins of the guard, but as is usually the case, the holes weren't a perfect match so the owner had to cut notches in the guard. He should have just shaved 1/8" off the whole way. You'd probably never even notice that way.


I agree with afire.

I like the cuts in the guard.




That engraving looks really good. I guess it could be one of mine. I'd have to see it closer. I just finished engraving a large Rancher style guard for Rick Brown's Sierra with a Steer head, and it's got to be my best engraving yet! Nice thin even lines, not to deep.

afire I agree, would have been simple enough just to trim the whole edge and polish and nobody would have probably ever questioned it!

I don't like the notches.


celluloid rot can destroy a pick up?


Oh yeah... haven't you seen one of those where the guard is so gassed-out that all the hardware is covered in green residue? That really mucks-up the inner workings of the electronics of a guitar.


I think it's particularly detrimental to DeArmonds, since they're the ones with the tortoise risers and have a lot of exposed parts under the shell. I've had a couple where the whole spring/cam/magnet assemblies were completely encased in green corrosion. Ever seen pictures of the Titanic in it's current state? That's what the undercarriage of these pickups looked like. I can't prove causality, but these were the muddiest sounding DeArmonds I've had.


well yeah I have seen photos of gassed out hardwear including pickups covered in green corrosion but I guess I didnt connect that dots that it could ruin the pup.

does it eat up the wire that winds the pup or screw with the magnet polarity or whaa?


I haven't a clue what exactly that corrosion does. And it's possible that it doesn't really do anything. But based on my experience, there does seem to be a connection between heavily corroded pickups and crappy tone. I'm no electrical engineer, but to me it seems reasonable that being encased in corrosion can't be good for an electronic device. They just sounded really muffled, while the uncorroded neck pickups sounded crisp and articulate, just like you would expect from a DeArmond. YMMV.

Register Sign in to join the conversation