ES 335 Advice

Discussion in 'Other Gibsons' started by Chondropython, Mar 12, 2017.

  1. Chondropython

    Chondropython Senior Member

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    I'm in the market for an ES 335 and have started looking around on ebay.

    I see that some are made in Nashville and others in Memphis.... what's the difference? Is Memphis the custom shop? I see that most of those come with a COA.

    Any specific model I should be looking for? Thinking I want a sunburst finish of some type and block inlays. Budget of around $2k.

    Thanks!
     
  2. hippy07

    hippy07 Senior Member

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    ive got a 63 50th anniversary model ES 335 which was made in Memphis and it's one of, if not my favourite guitar. It has block inlays. The neck profile and thickness is a bit like my R0 down by the nut and more like my R9 as it gets closer to the 12th fret. This model 335 has nylon saddles with I really like also has hot hide glue in the neck joint. Greg Koch that does demos for wildwood guitars liked them so much he brought one for himself.
    If you can give one a try you may like it.
     
  3. rclausen

    rclausen Senior Member

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    Nashville is the Custom Shop, I believe. You might be able to find a Memphis-made 335 with block inlays '63-'64. It will likely have a slimmer neck profile as compared to others
     
  4. Crotch

    Crotch Members Only Premium Member

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    Yup, Nashville is the Custom Shop. Memphis makes a 335 with Block Inlays. Before I bought mine I tried the 2013 50th Anniversary 63, the 2016 Memphis Block, and the Nashville CS Block. In my opinion the Memphis model is the best guitar of the bunch. And it will also be the 2nd or 3rd least expensive. The Nashville ones are more expensive and after researching and playing them all for over a year I could not find one thing I liked more about the Nashville model that was more expensive. However, either way you roll I think 2K might be a little short to grab one. You may have to go up to $2300, or $2500 if you want more options and availability.

    However you may be able to grab the "Satin" in that price
    http://www.gibson.com/Products/Electric-Guitars/2016/Memphis/ES-335-Satin.aspx

    Here's mine

    [​IMG]
     
  5. Tim Plains

    Tim Plains Senior Member

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    Nashville guitars are "better" in the grand scheme of things but that doesn't mean every Nashville is better than every Memphis. Having said that, I love my Nashville and haven't played a Memphis that compares.
     
  6. ClashCityRocker

    ClashCityRocker Senior Member

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    I just bought an '07 ES-355 and I wasn't sure what the specs were so I called Gibson Customer Support. They told me all the details and that it was Memphis made. I told him that I'd heard some people vouch in favor or Nashville and his response was "that's the perception but Memphis specializes in hollow bodies and in Nashville it's just one of thing's they make". He said that personally he'd prefer to buy Memphis which was nice to hear. Before I called I was already smitten.
     
  7. Crotch

    Crotch Members Only Premium Member

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    The Memphis owners are going to say Memphis, the Nashville owners will say Nashville. I wanted a Nashville 335 when I set out to buy one and was lucky enough to play a few of both before I bought. there was nothing that was going to make me spend the extra cash to go Nashville. And I am a historic junkie. But Memphis is going with more "historic spec" every year. If I found a Nashville model at the right price I'd probably still jump cause I like 335's.
     
  8. Cozmik Cowboy

    Cozmik Cowboy Senior Member

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    Memphis? Nashville? Fie, I say! Kalamazoo is what you want.
     
  9. Pappy58

    Pappy58 Senior Member

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    I have owned 3 Memphis 33x guitars and all were excellent builds. Can't go wrong either way Imo. Nashville's are pricier...not sure they're worth the extra $$$..
     
  10. Roshy Boy

    Roshy Boy Senior Member

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    Nice satin. I'm giving a 335 another try and just ordered the Sunset Burst satin yesterday. The specs are real nice on these. The thicker neck and Burst Buckers caught my attention. The neck, while not a 58 or 59 thick, is much thicker than the 60's slim. Plus, I understand all Memphis 3xx's get the thicker long neck tenon now.
     
  11. Crotch

    Crotch Members Only Premium Member

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  12. Chondropython

    Chondropython Senior Member

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    So, I have found a few 335s that I'm considering. Is it always the case that the dot versions have 50s necks? I like a thinner neck, and I've found a '95 Gibson USA model in vintage sunburst... the ad says that it has a 60s neck, but I thought I've always read that the block inlay necks are thinner.

    Is anyone familiar with this particular year / model?
     
  13. Dazza

    Dazza Senior Member

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    If you like thin necks it's definitely worth hunting around for a Warren Haynes '61 335. Memphis made a limited run of 500. Lightweight, cathedral pattern woodgrain in vintage red with proper Mickey Mouse ears. And with a new pricetag in a similar range as a regular run 335.
    For some strange reason it's not listed on Gibson site even though it came out just before the Chris Robinson '63 335.

    Daz
     
  14. mdubya

    mdubya Senior Member

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    The USA models all have thinner necks, dots or blocks. Only the 50's reissues have big necks. The one exception is the "fat neck" models which are few and far between.

    The newest USA models have a bigger neck than the previous USA models.

    Reissues have necks which correspond to the reissues year.

    My 2014 USA model has "Mickey Mouse" ears, dot markers and a thin neck (.80-.88). I would prefer a fatter neck, but the one I have is comfortable and I love the guitar, so I am not bothered.
     
  15. Chondropython

    Chondropython Senior Member

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    So, a 1995 Gibson USA model should have a thinner, "60s style" neck?

    Also, what do you guys mean by Mickey Mouse ears? Is there a different body shape? Would a Gibson USA 1995 model have them?
     
  16. mdubya

    mdubya Senior Member

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    Should be a slimmer neck, but I am not too familiar with the 90's models. They even confused things by calling those "reissues" even though they were not Custom Shop Historic "reissues".

    There is a difference between the original ears (i.e. upper fret cutaways) and the cutaways of the early 60's.

    For a long time, all 335's had the 60's style "ears".

    Supposedly, the 50's style Mickey Mouse ears were not done correctly until Mike Volts took over the Memphis operation in 2011/2012 or so.

    Here is a good starting point and may answer many of your questions.

    http://www.es-335.org/2010/06/07/m-i-c-k-e-y-what-the-what/
     
  17. LPPILOT

    LPPILOT Senior Member

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    I ve had several the past 38 years , all ordered new.

    The best new one hands down Ive owned is my current 50 th Anniversary 63 block model . The neck is very nice taper, like the guitars I grew up buying from Gibson. Mine is super lightweight 7 lbs 2 oz .....no fatigue in my back after hours of wearing it . I bought it new . Amazing for the price . My pickups were aged a lot , there was green and blue funk , rust screws ..LOL . The builder obviously had fun destressing my hardware . It's just a bad azz guitar with a plain top and pretty cherry finish . A lot of vintage features if I remember .

    I don't know what they sell for now , but the quality was high for the money. No complaints , I set it up for me , that's been 4 years with no issues.

    Give one a whirl .
     
  18. Chondropython

    Chondropython Senior Member

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    Wow... very interesting. I had never really noticed before. What do you think this one is?

    Also, what is a reasonable price to pay for this '95, which appears to be in very good condition?


     

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  19. mdubya

    mdubya Senior Member

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    Those look like they tried to do MM ears, but people would point out that they weren't quite right.

    That would not matter to me, personally.

    Gibson built some great guitars in the 90's. Really good. That one has a couple of things going for it that I like a lot; early 57 Classic pickups (if the originals are still in it) were absolutely great pickups, especially in a 335. And that case. Those cases are just awesome.

    I have seen guitars like that go for, from $1800 to $3000.

    Reverb says?

    Gibson ES-335 Dot Reissue Electric Guitar
    12 reviews
    Price Guide Estimated Value
    $1,610 — $2,165

    This one is listed at $1999

    https://reverb.com/item/4851737-1995-gibson-es-335-dot-reissue-flame-cherry-with-ohsc

    This one is $3499

    https://reverb.com/item/4814956-gibson-335-dot-neck-reissue-1995-blonde

    Go figure? :hmm:

    I shopped and shopped for ages before I bought a new left over model at a greatly reduced price.
     
  20. pompadour

    pompadour Junior Member

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    Just got this 2016 Memphis 335 for 1999 gbp which is about 2500 usd at the moment.
    Very hapy with it. Gorgeous neck and wonderful semi acoustic tones.
     

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