This is not your father’s J-55. And it’s not a $20K guitar. It is a wonderful player. This is an original 1939 Gibson Jumbo 55, also called the “J-55”, serial # EA5652. It is the rare, stair step headstock model, only made for a brief window in the late 30’s. It delivers the trademark, large body, prewar, long scale Gibson tone, like no other. It plays beautifully, with original bridge, frets, braces. This guitar has of course the original, Mustache bridge, and more rare– the stair step headstock. Original bridge plate. Original binding including on fretboard. Original pearl logo on the headstock (with original finish). The pickguard is a nitro cellulose reproduction meticulously crafted in our shop.
It has the long scale, 25 ½ inches, that makes this model so great. And a little-known original feature of this rare model is that it has a 1 11/16 nut width, that combined with the low action makes it effortless to play, and with tone that cannot be equaled in any postwar Gibson. The intonation is spot-on, and the intonation and fretting/action are great even at the high fret positions.
It was refinished in a deep Gibsonesque red, decades ago– and that makes this guitar the most affordable true 1939, stairstep headstock J-55 you will ever find. (Top thickness is fine, there was no thinning in the past).
The tone is superb. And the action is superb– low and fast without sacrificing tone or volume at all. The guitar is set up beautifully, ready to play.
And amazingly, the guitar comes in its original hard shell case (very valuable in itself).
This instrument, with a few issues and alterations in addition to the refin (a few cracks– but note the top is completely crack-free; shims from a neck set; some glue residue inside, plugged holes from a couple of volume/tone controls in past), is priced to play, not as a collector’s guitar.
$6450, in its original case.