Vintage Gretsch Guitars

It’s ALIVE! The 1954 ELFCTROMATIC - Together again


OR - sudden inspiration - fill it with concrete to stabilize the top! Easy fill through an f-hole.

Stainless steel would be better - more sustain than concrete - but the molten form-filling steel would incinerate the wood and you'd have a blob of steel all over your kitchen counter.

Be careful with expand-a-foam if you go that way...if you don't stop before it's completely filled, it will expand out the f-holes, and might even crack the top.

Water would be interesting, if you could first plasti-coat the interior to keep the wood dry. Some caulking around pickup and controls, clear plexi panels inside the f-holes. Maybe some LEDs for mood lighting. You could keep fish - or at least line it with an underwater mural.

If you wanted to keep it lighter, a helium bladder would work. I don't THINK it would be lighter than air, but maybe.

Stay away from hydrogen. Hindenburg, etc.


The only way to replace the brace is to remove the back (face)(while playing thru a black face). There are other benefits for getting under the hood like making sure everything else is solid.


Thanks Curt. I know it could use a going over.

Tim, the helium bladder is the winning idea so far. Handy if I play in a Alvin and the Chipmunks tribute band.


I was checking out a '57 ES225 that looked and played great but the acoustic sound I checked inside with my mini gooseneck flash and the entire top end -- both upper bouts -- were completely filled with foam sealer. I mentioned to the guys in the shop that their $3K plus asking price wasn't going to work.


A single bar and a post is very violin like.

What I would probably do is fashion a post with a wide foot (like a trestle brace) to disperse the load and glue it in place. You probably won't get a crack that way.

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