Kalamazoo factory auction

Adinol

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It is also my understanding that there were also unfinished bodies and necks that went out the door in other ways too, like employees. And there were shops in the area that routinely sold "new" guitars that we made from these bodies and necks. True?
If true there is no difference between a guitar built from unfinished parts, stolen from the Gibson factory, or a counterfeit guitar built from raw materials.

There is in fact nothing special about an unfinished body or neck made at the Gibson factory, compared to an identical object made in someone's shop, provided that the same materials are used.

A Gibson is only authentic after it's assigned a serial number and after it passes the famous Gibson QC.

Another problem with guitars that are supposedly built from unfinished parts stolen from the Gibson factory is that there's no reliable authentication process. The buyer has to believe the story. And the story comes out of the mouth of a person who admits to be a willing participant in criminal activity. Not much credibility to support a story.

Oddly enough, I think it would be less of an offense, in the eyes of the law, to lie that a guitar was made from stolen parts and sell such guitar, than to sell any guitar that is actually made from stolen parts, without even mentioning anything about it. The mere possession of stolen property is a crime. Knowingly selling and buying stolen property is a felony.
 

Liam

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Oddly enough, I think it would be less of an offense, in the eyes of the law, to lie that a guitar was made from stolen parts and sell such guitar, than to sell any guitar that is actually made from stolen parts, without even mentioning anything about it. The mere possession of stolen property is a crime. Knowingly selling and buying stolen property is a felony.
But lying about the guitar parts' origin is fraud. The size of the offence would probably be judged against the amount of money stood to be gained by the deception. In the UK you could go to prison for either, I am guessing the USA takes a similar view on obtaining money by deception.

Liam
 

Adinol

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But lying about the guitar parts' origin is fraud. The size of the offence would probably be judged against the amount of money stood to be gained by the deception. In the UK you could go to prison for either, I am guessing the USA takes a similar view on obtaining money by deception.

Liam
I think you're right. My hypothetical scenario most likely falls in the category of con games. Confidence games typically lure the dupe into thinking that he/she is doing something illegal. Then after the con artist takes the money the dupe can't really go to the police and complain that he/she was duped while participating in a crime.
 

Liam

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I think you're right. My hypothetical scenario most likely falls in the category of con games. Confidence games typically lure the dupe into thinking that he/she is doing something illegal. Then after the con artist takes the money the dupe can't really go to the police and complain that he/she was duped while participating in a crime.
Good point! I guess a few stolen guitars end up in "closed circulation" through this, similarly great works of art, and Nazi appropriations from WWII. Let's hope it doesn't turn out the first Les Paul or Telecaster wasn't really made in 1944 and exported to Germany. :D
 

wmachine

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If true there is no difference between a guitar built from unfinished parts, stolen from the Gibson factory, or a counterfeit guitar built from raw materials.

There is in fact nothing special about an unfinished body or neck made at the Gibson factory, compared to an identical object made in someone's shop, provided that the same materials are used.

A Gibson is only authentic after it's assigned a serial number and after it passes the famous Gibson QC.

Another problem with guitars that are supposedly built from unfinished parts stolen from the Gibson factory is that there's no reliable authentication process. The buyer has to believe the story. And the story comes out of the mouth of a person who admits to be a willing participant in criminal activity. Not much credibility to support a story.

Oddly enough, I think it would be less of an offense, in the eyes of the law, to lie that a guitar was made from stolen parts and sell such guitar, than to sell any guitar that is actually made from stolen parts, without even mentioning anything about it. The mere possession of stolen property is a crime. Knowingly selling and buying stolen property is a felony.
There is a lot for me to disagree with here. First of all you are presuming what I refer to are stolen parts. From what I could gather, they were not stolen. No more that the auctioned parts, And there can be plenty different about unfinished parts. The guitar I refereed to that I have us an Explorer E2. If you were familiar with them, and how the bodies and necks are made, you would not make a comment like. And wrongly assume again that they were passed off as being Gibson factory. And modified guitars have the same authentication process problems, and there is certainly not anything wrong with modifying any guitar to your heart content, No matter how radical.
When you don't know, it is bad enough to speculate. Worse yet to assume.
 

Adinol

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It was this sentence...

It is also my understanding that there were also unfinished bodies and necks that went out the door in other ways too, like employees...
...that I understood as being at least strongly suggestive that the parts were stolen by employees. When people say that parts "went out the door in other ways" and then mention employees, I think that most people would understand that we are talking about employee theft.

If you were not referring to employee theft then it would be good to explain what you meant, to clear up the misunderstanding.

There really was no reason for your harsh comments back to me, if I had in fact misunderstood what you said. You could have just said that I misunderstood what you said and offered a clarification.

But at this time I really can't figure out what else that sentence could mean. I know of no manufactiring plants where employees are just free to take home any unfinished parts they want. I also very much doubt that Gibson ever said to any of their employees that it's OK to take home and unfinished neck or body.
 

eric ernest

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There is a lot for me to disagree with here. First of all you are presuming what I refer to are stolen parts.
I chuckled at this too. Just because it went "out the back door," does NOT imply it was stolen. Gibson sold all kinds of stuff (raw parts) to people they had working relationships with.

It's a well known fact that dealers would drive to the factory and buy truck loads of guitars in all states. Completed, damaged, unfinished....parts etc.

If Kalamazoo reality at all mirrored Nashville reality, there was a fair amount of "dumpster diving" going on too. (I bought Nashville stuff a year ago that came up for sale after Gibson closed some offices. All stuff thrown away.)


When people say that parts "went out the door in other ways" and then mention employees, I think that most people would understand that we are talking about employee theft.
No, it does not....it's representative of stuff that is "not accounted for" in any find of official way.
 
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MiniB

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If true there is no difference between a guitar built from unfinished parts, stolen from the Gibson factory, or a counterfeit guitar built from raw materials.

There is in fact nothing special about an unfinished body or neck made at the Gibson factory, compared to an identical object made in someone's shop, provided that the same materials are used.

A Gibson is only authentic after it's assigned a serial number and after it passes the famous Gibson QC.

Another problem with guitars that are supposedly built from unfinished parts stolen from the Gibson factory is that there's no reliable authentication process. The buyer has to believe the story. And the story comes out of the mouth of a person who admits to be a willing participant in criminal activity. Not much credibility to support a story.

Oddly enough, I think it would be less of an offense, in the eyes of the law, to lie that a guitar was made from stolen parts and sell such guitar, than to sell any guitar that is actually made from stolen parts, without even mentioning anything about it. The mere possession of stolen property is a crime. Knowingly selling and buying stolen property is a felony.
But what if the parts weren't stolen...they were bought at an auction by the company whose warehouse they were clearing out?
 

MiniB

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Hey Eric,

has anyone ever gotten say, an ES-335 neck from you with a 1-11/16" nut width to replace their 1-9/16" one, or something similar...and offered the original neck back to you as a form of trade?
 

MiniB

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Ha...cool. It's really impressive to see it all. Makes it feel like looking into an old-world luthier's shop or guitar plant.
 

wmachine

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...........
But at this time I really can't figure out what else that sentence could mean. I know of no manufactiring plants where employees are just free to take home any unfinished parts they want. I also very much doubt that Gibson ever said to any of their employees that it's OK to take home and unfinished neck or body.
I'm sorry I don't mean to be harsh, but I will be bluntly honest. Because you can't "figure out what else that means" is still no reason to presume theft. As you can see from subsequent posts, it means other ways than theft. Despite what you think. Presumptions get you in trouble, you know how the saying goes.
Far too often, in forums in particular, options and speculation are stated as facts. And that is Truth Decay.
My point was to bring up that there were ways other than the thread subject auctions that incomplete guitars went out from Kalamazoo. Not to fully explain how.
 

Adinol

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I'm sorry I don't mean to be harsh, but I will be bluntly honest. Because you can't "figure out what else that means" is still no reason to presume theft. As you can see from subsequent posts, it means other ways than theft. Despite what you think.
I really don't want to get into a a lengthy discussion about a misunderstanding, but here it is. I had my wife and three friend read this sentence in context...

It is also my understanding that there were also unfinished bodies and necks that went out the door in other ways too, like employees.
...All of them concluded that it was highly implied that this was about employee theft. My wife happens to be a writer and translator, and works as a full time press officer at the UN. The last statement (after the comma) "..., like employees." is not a sentence because it does not contain a verb. So, the meaning is implied, in context.

Without a verb in the part after the comma "..., like employees." the entire sentence actually means that the guitar parts went out the door like employees, meaning that they walked out the door. Since those are inanimate objects, without legs, we know they could not have walked like employees. And since that part is missing a verb, the meaning is open to interpretations. Usually, when someone tells me that an object "walked out the door" I interpret it as "the object was stolen" and metaphorically speaking "it walked out the door," or "it fell off a truck," or "it grew legs" etc.

Since this seems to have become an issue, please explain what the end part of the sentence (that's missing a verb) actually means, so it is clear.

Until someone makes clear statements I will have to make my own interpretations of what they meant.
 

Luke Duke

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Last year at a GC in Memphis I was told that an oddball 335 studio was such because of an "employee". According to them/him it was customary for Gibson Memphis to allow a "custom birthday or anniversary" guitar once a year. I can see that could have been a practice for a long time.

In that scenario employees could just grab a neck and body and take it home to work on "at a later date".; There's nothing nefarious necessarily at work, just that maybe they were doing a run of ES-275s in 2mos and employee XYZ wanted to work on it then...but forgot or got offered good money for the body or neck by a local shop. Possibly that person didn't play and knew they could sell parts for good money.

Having worked at a manufacturing facility before I can emphatically tell you that it's different all together for employees vs general public.

Luke
 

eric ernest

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Here's a PERFECT example of a guitar to be very worried about...


1988 Gibson Artisan one-of-a-kind white.

The guy just bought it off of Facebook Marketplace (Savannah) yesterday for $2,000. (He only wants $25,000.) :laugh2:

Finish is highly suspect....check out the tuners.

He says, "It's the only one!"

I guess he doesn't know how to do a simple Google search.


1982_Gibson_Les_Paul_Artisan_2-Pickup_Model_White.jpg
 
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wmachine

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Since this seems to have become an issue, please explain what the end part of the sentence (that's missing a verb) actually means, so it is clear.

Until someone makes clear statements I will have to make my own interpretations of what they meant.
Since you are so hellbent on being right, I'll give that to you. You are right. I meant what you thought. Go ahead and ignore the other posts here, you will believe what you want to believe. You win! I'm done, even if you're not.
Have a nice day, and get a good nite's sleep.
 


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