Vintage Gretsch Guitars

White Falcon conversion

1

Interesting listing Link

So what do you think? Country Club conversion...with new neck? F-holes look a bit strange to me. Looks like a 17" body but weird inlays and 21 fret neck.

2

Looks cool! I wouldn't kick it off the stage.

3

I would agree probably Country Club. The neck could be original with added wood to permit the Falcon headstock conversion. It has the center lamination you'd expect on a Gretsch neck. And the f-holes do look goofy, like they were enlarged. Originals just piled up the binding on normal f-holes, so they tend to look a little smaller, unlike this one. No idea of what to make of the board. Doesn't look very Gretschy to me.

4

Did the conversion on the price- today, the asking is $4830 (Cdn). Not sure about the English market, but that feels high for what it appears to be.

The finish is crazed in a lot of places and there seem to be almost brush-stroke like marks on the upper area just above the strings... ?

And it may be a chicken-egg thing, but it almost looks as though someone painted pinstriping around the F-holes which, being dark does tend to make the holes themselves look larger.

Still- there are issues with it. Not my taste, certainly.

5

All the imperfections classifies it as a "Relic".

6

The f-holes do look nasty and the body hardware is corroded. Pickguard missing a piece. Doesn't appeal to me, reliced on purpose or just aged. The corrosion makes you wonder what condition the pots and wiring are in. Optimistic price, England notwithstanding IMO.

7

Art Wiggs used to make guitars like that. But he did a better job. He was transforming something into a WF in his garage when I visited him many years ago.

8

The skinny skunk stripe center laminate on the neck suggests it’s 60’s manufacture, 50’s were wider.

9

The skinny skunk stripe center laminate on the neck suggests it’s 60’s manufacture, 50’s were wider.

– JazzBoxJunky

But what was still 17” full depth single cutaway in the 60s?

10

Well I’m not assuming the body and neck originated together, but I think there were a few full depth 60’s cutaways. Perhaps acoustic boxes like Constellation or Sal Salvador for instance.

11

But what was still 17” full depth single cutaway in the 60s?

– tabletop

Country Clubs got shallow in the early 60s but then reverted back to the deeper body depth (and no mutes) later in the decade.

12

Looks like it’s been properly honky tonked for many years. If the parts as in the tailpiece and knobs are original from the 50s it’s not a bad price. The tailpiece and knobs are worth some $$.

I bet it plays well and has some mojo.

Doesn’t matter what it was. I don’t think it’s been relic at all. It’s been played a lot. Real wear.

At 2k or so USD it’s a great guitar.

13

Well I’m not assuming the body and neck originated together, but I think there were a few full depth 60’s cutaways. Perhaps acoustic boxes like Constellation or Sal Salvador for instance.

– JazzBoxJunky

Ah yes

14

Country Clubs got shallow in the early 60s but then reverted back to the deeper body depth (and no mutes) later in the decade.

– kc_eddie_b

Good to know...I didn’t realise they went full bodied again before the 70s

15

Art Wiggs used to make guitars like that. But he did a better job. He was transforming something into a WF in his garage when I visited him many years ago.

– Powertronman

That is crazy. I had the exact same experience. I had only been playing for a while and was on the hunt for my first vintage Gretsch. We were visiting family in the area, and already being a VG subscriber, I was aware of Art. My parents took me over to visit him and when we pulled up, I noticed a big white husk being worked on in the garage. I had no idea what it was at the time, but in retrospect, have no doubt he was working on a Falcon conversion.

16

The tuners and bridge look like new arrivals to the game.

The three knobs are positioned funkily, like they would be with a breakaway bigsby (to accommodate that particular Bigsby's footprint).

I don't know what the price would need to be for me to consider picking up something like this but there is a price as it looks like fun. The only aspect that really would grate on me is that fretboard.

17

Those F-holes look pretty raunchy. I think that goes beyond 'mojo' or relicing and is simply poor workmanship in my opinion and I don't mind wear and tear on an instrument. I'm with Dave on this one. I don't mind the tarnished hardware but the finish has a sort of old gas station toilet seat look to it.

18

Looks like it’s been properly honky tonked for many years. If the parts as in the tailpiece and knobs are original from the 50s it’s not a bad price. The tailpiece and knobs are worth some $$.

I bet it plays well and has some mojo.

Doesn’t matter what it was. I don’t think it’s been relic at all. It’s been played a lot. Real wear.

At 2k or so USD it’s a great guitar.

– Gasmoney

With you on that .. g caddy tailpiece is real .. the knobs .. possibly the pickguard and the pick ups what’s a set of 1950s de armonds worth these days . .. ok Iam pulling the trigger let’s see what this baby is

19

With you on that .. g caddy tailpiece is real .. the knobs .. possibly the pickguard and the pick ups what’s a set of 1950s de armonds worth these days . .. ok Iam pulling the trigger let’s see what this baby is

– voodoovendor

Cool! Look forward to the report.

20

you're a brave man. IMO it desperately needs a refinish (which given its state and uncertain DNA might actually raise its value), and that crack in the top is rather unnerving. one man's fish is another man's chowder, or something like that.

21

you're a brave man. IMO it desperately needs a refinish (which given its state and uncertain DNA might actually raise its value), and that crack in the top is rather unnerving. one man's fish is another man's chowder, or something like that.

– macphisto

I liked the rough finish .. if there too clean there a worry to actual use and put on a plane .. it is what it is and if it’s a player it’s a result .. the parts only are worth the money rare to find white falcon tailpiece and pick guard and jewelled knobs as they only made them for the white falcon and there 1950s for sure .... and if them pick ups will sound sweet if are original . Then parts alone Would be so hard to source 50s white Falcons they are so rare let alone getting someone to part with all its hardware to build a fake let’s see.. would Anyone in their right mind ..even in the 50s they were expensive guitars abd through the decades no one would strip all the original parts of a white falcon to build a fake.. I think there’s more to this ..Iam a player And I think this is preferable then taking a 25K vintage gretsch to a gig if it plays well and has the same sound with the pick ups if it’s a vintage gretsch and you don’t want to buy a new one great option XX And it will get used ! And there’s a label I want to find out by removing the paint if I can .. what this actually is ..This is gonna be fun

23

That is crazy. I had the exact same experience. I had only been playing for a while and was on the hunt for my first vintage Gretsch. We were visiting family in the area, and already being a VG subscriber, I was aware of Art. My parents took me over to visit him and when we pulled up, I noticed a big white husk being worked on in the garage. I had no idea what it was at the time, but in retrospect, have no doubt he was working on a Falcon conversion.

– Afire

Ha! Afire, Art gleefully showed me guitars he had done MAJOR surgery on and told me no one would ever be able to tell.

24

Ha! Afire, Art gleefully showed me guitars he had done MAJOR surgery on and told me no one would ever be able to tell.

– Powertronman

Some of us have been "able to tell".

25

It’s here .. The guitar arrived just a few hours ago .. the minute I got it out the case I knew it was real I feel like I found the monet in a boot fair


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