Karma and stumbling across a vintage Les Paul ? What would you do ?

viking20

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An old ( as in OLD ) mate of mine used to play in dance bands in the 60's and early 70's.
He had an early 60's Gibson hollow body , can't remember the model , and a Selmer head/cab. Sold both for what he paid for it all those years ago , to a young guitarist he knew. He said the buyer had promised him he would never sell the guitar or amp....,I didn't have the heart to tell him that I had already seen his old gear for sale in several places , asking price more than 10 times what the new owner paid for it.
I would absolutely tell anyone what they had , and try to buy it at a fair price if interested. That goes for private sellers , any kind of shop , I wouldn't care....
 

lpfan1980

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I dunno. Not being as good a soul as I should be, I suspect I would snap it up at the price asked, and then send additional $$$ later with a note saying that I had confirmed the greater worth and wanted to at least make a gesture. It's a weird situation because our economy is pretty much set up on the principle of maximizing profit, not fairness, and so there's always the "someone else would have snagged it and not paid a penny more" perspective which I fear is probably valid.
I have debated this often in my head/ I would do what you would, I would never sell it you luck out like that !! unless desperate situations unfold, that guitar would be be played! I would send some cash to the lady /person though.:eek2:
 

lpfan1980

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Although with 1950s Gibsons being at such a premium this will happen less and less If you have one get as much as you can!!!.
 

Breezin

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If a seller is to lazy to do the research its on them not me,
I would only pay the asking price.
In today's world where any information is available in seconds, there is no excuse for ignorance.

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JMB1984

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Considering the amount of Craigslist low ballers that have no problem paying well below what something is worth, I suspect the pool of “not a penny more” is way larger than people will admit.
 

MooCheng

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it could be argued its up to the seller to know what they are selling and in most cases I would agree with that ....
but if its an older person with no suspicion that what they have, might actually be worth a great deal, any descent person would enlighten them.

I mean, would you really find happiness knowing how you came by it. some would, some won't
 

RedSkwirrell

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Do you pay the asking price (knowing its worth so much more than that) and run outta there like a bat outta hell?
I woulda done when I was younger (and poorer).
Nowadays I'd buy it, take it away and get it appraised (make sure it's real).
Then I'd return and tell 'em what they had.
I like to think I would offer to split the difference with them.
I benefit, they benefit.
Everyone wins.



PS, I would also fully understand someone wanting to buy it and just walk away grinning.
 

lpfan1980

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Ya know my concience would get the better of me I:cheers2:d play and hug it then return it [ Ya know this is worth 6 figures] I have my own 2006 Gibson Les Paul and while not 1959 sounding is a PRETTY TERRIFIC sounding guitar well built and is not bad looking either. I would ask if I could have a picture with said vintage I just couldnt NOPE. Besides Im a noodler anyway. Besides the days of grampas guitar under the bed being sold for 200 at a garage sale are likely over.
 

judson

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pay the old lady 60% of the real value and consider yourself lucky......if it were a shop fck'em if they are that stupid steal it and run...

dont know why i would hose the shop owner but they should know better , the old lady not so much
 

ThisGuy

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I knew a guy about 15 years ago, guitar tech. He bought a '64 Tele from an old lady who had brought it into his shop to see if it was worth anything. I think he gave her four hundred bucks for it. That never really sat right with me.

I've never encountered that sort of "deal" with guitars myself (although I did luck out a couple of times with a freebie GK 4x12 cabinet and a vintage Maestro PS-1 that I fished out of a dumpster), but I have many times with classic cars. Once I had a guy call me up and tell me that he wanted to give his project car to me. He was moving cross-country for work and the car had to be gone that same day. He had it advertised for sale at a very reasonable price, but said that he was so sick of dealing with lowballers and bottom feeders that he'd rather give it to me instead since I'd always helped him out.

I had never seen the car, but somewhat reluctantly agreed to come by with a trailer and take it away for him. Upon arriving and looking at it I found that his car was complete and much, much nicer than I would have expected. I told him that there was no way that I could take the car for free. I wrote him a check that was still well below market value, but explained that that was all that I could afford to give and we both went away happy.

I would absolutely do the same if I were to run across a vintage guitar at a yard sale or whatever.
 

Coldacre

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anyone who says that they’d offer more out of “moral obligation” is talking absolute sh**.

grab that bargain and high-tail right out of there! throw them an extra $50 and everybody sleeps better that night
 

Roxy13

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To me there is a difference between paying them the asking price they advertised it for, and having someone ask me what I think it's worth. In the first case I don't feel I'm taking advantage. They could have looked it up online, taken it in somewhere to get an appraisal, or something. In the second case I'll give them an honest answer if I know, or direct them on how to find out.
 

ManicPete

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Great question.

There are a lot of variables. But at the end of the day, if it was someone who was clueless I wouldn't take complete advantage and rip them off.

There is a certain serendipity and karma and even romance in finding THAT guitar. Sometimes its important to give something back to the universe.
 
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Roxy13

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One would also imagine that if they advertise it online and get 50 contacts within hours that they seriously underpriced it :) So when that happens and the seller doesn't say to him/herself, hmm, I think I made a boo boo, one does have to wonder.
 

DarrellV

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IIRC something like this happened IRL to @eric ernest . I remember reading a post of his where I believe he came across the real deal that was in the care of a widow.

He was careful enough to honestly assess it at a fair price, and after the deal she let him know that she had 'googled' it and knew what it was worth. So she was testing his honesty and integrity.

Character is who you are when no one is looking.

While that may not be a deciding factor for everyone, I get it, I too have seen many cases IRL where a proper decision made at the time has come back later to me in another place as a good report through someone else.

Personally, I find it nice to be able to answer or talk about my actions honestly with whomever it comes up with.

And for me anyway, it DOES almost always seem to find me! LOL!! :laugh2:

I would certainly do what others have said. Pay the price, get a fair assessment and split the difference.

I've had this happen to me IRL actually. I had sold my American made Jackson PC2 to my local store Parkway Music.

I, in good conscience had to tell them about the truss rod problem. Since the hex nut on the truss rod was stripped and I wasn't able to adjust it I sold it to them for parts at a huge markdown.

I didn't want someone else down the road to buy it, get it home and discover it later after the fact.

About a year later one of the owners calls me and asks if i remember that old Jackson I brought in a while back... yeah, I did. He says he couldn't bring himself to break it up so he tried the truss rod with some different tools and was able to move it.

Since he could now adjust it, he was able to sell it at full price as a working guitar.

I congratulated him on fixing it and on being able to increase his profit margin on the sale. Good business, I said! good for you.

Well, he says, he doesn't think that is fair to me as part of our original agreement.

I told him I didn't know what he was talking about, and that he owed me nothing. That deal was closed a year ago, and if you were able to make more after the fact, then good for you.

He says Parkway doesn't work like that, and they want to split the extra from the sale with me. It's how they like to do business, fairly and honestly.

I'm floored.
So I had them put what ever he thought was fair on store credit for me.

True story!

Personally, I have always done so with garage sales and second hand stores if I can clearly see the asking price is ridiculously low for what it is, and I am comfortable paying a bit more.

One shop even asked me for an appraisal on an old clock they had but couldn't identify, for example.

Sure, I love a bargain on stupid stuff as much as anybody, and I hate to overpay for anything.

I guess it really depends on the situation and persons involved.

As one poster said, dealing with a Guitar Denter that should know better is different than a widow who's garage saleing her husband's belongings to pay the bills.
 

Stevie 202

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I’d never have to think about it ‘cause that shit NEVER happens to me...

like, ever. :dunno:
 


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