Daring pawn shop rescue attempt

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Daring pawn shop rescue attempt

Postby forkbeard on Sat Sep 12, 2009 9:06 pm

Was driving through a sleepy little river town in Iowa last week and noticed a pawn shop downtown so I went back over there (1 hour 45 minute drive)
the next day to investigate. After talking awhile with the wife of the owner behind the counter I learned that there was a stash of older guitars in the place and one of them was "real old" and "nice".

ONce the owner came back I talked to him about his stash and he was extremely crotchety and didn't really even want to break out any of the guitars for
me to see. the curiosity was killing me and I kept my cool. After convincing him that I could produce some cash if I liked one of the guitars I finally got him to pull out just the one that the old lady said was "real old'. It turned out to be a 1968 ES-335TDC. A beautiful cherry 335 that was completely covered in mildew and grime. Mold was growing on the rusty strings and all over the case and body. It was a freaking mess but...I got him to reason with me. He claimed the guitar was a 1964 but I quickly proved him wrong. Pretty soon I made a deal with him and bought the instument for a fair and reasonable price considering the condition.
It has orginal patent sticker pickups and all the electronics are original and work great. The trapeze was factory replace with a stop tail and it has a nice
set of Grover tuners on it instead of the Kluson double liners that would have been original. The neck is staight and the frets are good. It doesn't have any structural issues or large dents but it does have a lot of really cool finish checking. It also has a pretty fair degree of "figure" in the top wood and looks really good!

The long and short of it is that it cleaned up perfectly and is now one of the sweetest guitars that I own. It spent eight years in this damp dark pawn shop closet and now it will be proudly played on stage at my next gig. I love it when I can rescue an otherwise forgotten instrument.

Tell us about your recent pawn shop resuces...
"Where guitars and 100 watt amplifiers are not welcome...there it is wise to bring guitars and 100 watt amplifiers!"
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Re: Daring pawn shop rescue attempt

Postby Gooch on Sat Sep 12, 2009 11:18 pm

Nice story, good score! Is it a pencil-neck? About how much did it cost you?
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Re: Daring pawn shop rescue attempt

Postby forkbeard on Sun Sep 13, 2009 11:12 pm

Its a 1 9/16th nech which I know is thin for a lot of guys but I really like the neck. My hands aren't huge and it feels good to me although I'm not one of those guys that hates a guitar because the neck feel isn't quite right.

I paid $2500 which might not be a steal but it is a really good price considering many of them are selling for 3K or above.
"Where guitars and 100 watt amplifiers are not welcome...there it is wise to bring guitars and 100 watt amplifiers!"
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Re: Daring pawn shop rescue attempt

Postby Gooch on Mon Sep 14, 2009 1:29 am

Sounds cool. I had a cherry '67 335 that was my main guitar for a while. The neck was very small and although I wasn't crazy about it, I got used to it. It just felt kinda strange if I didn't play it for awhile, going back to it from my regular size neck guitars. Does yours have T-top or non T-top pickups? I think mine had one of each.
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Re: Daring pawn shop rescue attempt

Postby CP 103 on Sun Sep 20, 2009 7:32 am

Got any pics? $2500 is a good deal.
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Re: Daring pawn shop rescue attempt

Postby worldoftone on Wed Nov 25, 2009 6:31 am

No good pawnshop scores in al most 10-years. Good for you!!!! :jam:

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Re: Daring pawn shop rescue attempt

Postby pckpat on Thu Jan 28, 2010 12:00 am

my brother picked up a 63 jazzmaster,in a creamy,off-white-perhaps a yellowed olympia white.all-orig.(not 100% sure about the finish)otherwise,exc.it had a bad refret.it sat in the pawnshop for 7 years,due to a death and an incarceration,before becoming available.$1400,my luthier buddy is going to fix the frets for him,probably for a good price.it's got a thicker neck than my 61,which is thin/wide.i prefer the 63 neck.
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Re: Daring pawn shop rescue attempt

Postby fredrum on Tue May 25, 2010 4:52 am

i once got a '65 trini lopez standard from the store i work in.......some kids came in with two guitars, one was a random japanese electric, which they proudly displayed like it was smething special, and they were carrying the other guitar like it was worthless, almost dragging it behind them. at first all i could see was that it was a red semihollow and that it was in bad bad shape. "we wanna sell this guitar (sets down the junker)......oh, and we dont even care what we get for this....." and they proceed to plunk down on the counter what can only be described as simultaneously the ugliest and most beautiful thing i had ever seen......'65 trini lopez (335 w/diamond soundholes, split diamond inlays and a non reverse firebird headstock). covered in grime, missing all electronics except the pickups and the input jack. large portions of the finish were gone or just flaking off. no nut, fretboard coming off the neck, top separating from the sides, some missing binding on the neck. sadly missing the trini lopez badge, but the wood shield on the trapeze tailpiece was still there. we ended up paying them around 300 for it. apparently they had inherited it from their grandfather who chose to store it in the garage.....without a case.....just propped up against the wall.....for 30 years.

it had to be mine. i have this sad affinity for rescuing mistreated guitars, especially gibsons.

so nine hundred bucks and a few months worth of work later, i got it up and running. by some miracle the original pickups still worked (non t-top patent #s by the way). after alot of glue, new tuners, polishing the hell out of it, making a nut and one of the most stressful wiring jobs ever i finally got to play it........and it sings like no other guitar ive ever heard. it looks awesome, just all haggard and beat up, and it plays great, the neck wasnt warped at all. i dont think ill ever have it refinished, its perfect just the way it is..........
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Re: Daring pawn shop rescue attempt

Postby JustAGuy on Mon Jul 19, 2010 10:24 am

Why did that pawn shop dealer let the guitar sit and grow mold like that? Strange. At least now it's in good hands!

In case you haven't seen it, here's an amazing pawn shop rescue story:

http://www.mylespaul.com/forums/vintage-les-pauls/94247-look-what-i-found-today-real-deal.html
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Re: Daring pawn shop rescue attempt

Postby Pearly Grapes on Sun Sep 19, 2010 8:32 pm

Good pawn shop score! Was the interior moldy? If so, how did you clean it?
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