Max Baranet

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DBDM

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I agree in principal, but on another level I can certainly see why Gibson would tire of people putting Gibson on non-Gibson guitars. Also it is difficult in our society to turn a blind eye to one guy, then tell others (including a whole nation of a billion people) that they cannot do it. That is why I think it might have been wise (in hindsight or even today) for Gibson to simply license him to make the replicas--as, again, for some of the reasons you describe--he has transcended the typical "fake" Gibson level. Just say, "authorized Max replica". Gibson has done it before. They let Wayne Charvel make guitars outside of the Gibson plant and put "Gibson" on there. They let Trace Eliott make Gibson Amps in England and put Gibson on there.

Edit--I find it fascinating that Gibson is making copies of his replicas in some of the Slash guitars. He reverse engineered the 59's and subsequently Gibson reverse engineered his replica. In one sense all Gibson LPs are reverse engineered replicas of 50s-60 Gibsons. It is different owners, in a different City, with different workers, making guitars with no original blueprints. They rarely have any idea of exactly what went on with the originals and are reduced to high quality scans and measurements of the originals to recreate them. This differs from a company like Martin who kept extensive records and can recreate nearly any guitar they have ever made from those records in the same shop by the same people (ish) on the same equipment that made them originally.

Another fascinating fact to me, both Seth Lover (for Seymour Duncan) and Ted Mccartney (for PRS) both answered (separately) the exact same words when asked about going to work "for the competetion" (for SD or PRS) --"He was the only person who ever asked me." Literally hundreds of people all trying to duplicate what those 2 men accomplished and the only ones who asked were PRS and SD! Leo Fender claimed that after CBS bought Fender, he was kept on the payroll as a consultant but that no one from CBS ever asked him a question about how to build a guitar nor amp--which comes back to Picasso's quote posted above. "Great artists steal". How did that work out for PRS and SD? Max? CBS era Fenders?
 

mdubya

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Gibson is not the same company started in 1902.

Nor the same company (several iterations removed from 1902) that made golden era guitars 1950 through 1965 or so.

It is just a name that entities purchase.

My 1908 Gibson mandolin has almost zero to do with the company that uses the name today.

I appreciate the enthusiasm of the current group of clowns in denim jackets owning the name. But they are clowns. Someone like Max has forgotten more about golden era Gibsons than they will ever collectively know. JMHO.
 

mdubya

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james-22jc22-curleigh.jpg

Cesar-Gueikian_Photo_900.jpg

75b2c9ebbc36b9a62db53e0782f9cc94.jpg

for good measure
gibson-ceo.gi.top.jpg
 

DBDM

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Gibson is not the same company started in 1902.

Nor the same company (several iterations removed from 1902) that made golden era guitars 1950 through 1965 or so.

It is just a name that entities purchase.

My 1908 Gibson mandolin has almost zero to do with the company that uses the name today.

I appreciate the enthusiasm of the current group of clowns in denim jackets owning the name. But they are clowns. Someone like Max has forgotten more about golden era Gibsons than they will ever collectively know. JMHO.
I felt the same way about the "Clowns" until very recently I was fortunate enough to meet JC and a few of the other top players. I can assure anyone that cares (very few people care what I say and most argue) that they ARE trying and are fully aware of the "clown" titles. I left believing that they really DO care and really want not only quality but to rehab the brand. These are just words on a screen to most reading this--but I left impressed! I was at Gibson Montanna last week and (very quietly) they are building on in a size that must be 5x what they had. must be a $100 million (plus?) renovation. Gibson in Nashville (where I live) is working hard at public image, hiring, quality, etc. I was in the USA plant and they have monitors everywhere tracking the "rejects". Real time, very visible metrics of how many guitars do not pass final inspection and why and active stats about the failures and bottlenecks. Those details show effort (to me) and I think things will continue to improve. Again, "words on a screen" but I am optimistic.
 

Big John

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...I still have both which are pristine and essentially unplayed if anyone is interested...
OK, first two posts are for a pump and dump thread in the luthier section. Great. Welcome to MLP.
 

nuance97

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He reverse engineered the 59's and subsequently Gibson reverse engineered his replica.
Not that it’s particularly relevant, but Gibson didn’t really “reverse engineer” anything…they just picked some wood that vaguely resembled the Slash/Max guitar, carved the neck to the same (or very similar) profile, and painted it in some similar shades. It was otherwise any other run-of-the-mill Custom Shop LP.
 

DBDM

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Not that it’s particularly relevant, but Gibson didn’t really “reverse engineer” anything…they just picked some wood that vaguely resembled the Slash/Max guitar, carved the neck to the same (or very similar) profile, and painted it in some similar shades. It was otherwise any other run-of-the-mill Custom Shop LP.
Thank you for pointing that out. I was getting the "Max" mixed up with Slash's real 59 that they did reverse engineer called "The First Burst".
 

Shelkonnery

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Ish Guitars just announced a couple of 1990 Max Baranet Bursts.
A Lemon Burst and a Dark Lemon Burst. ($30k each)

Sorry if this is off topic, they just posted this a couple of days ago.
 

pshupe

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Ish Guitars just announced a couple of 1990 Max Baranet Bursts.
A Lemon Burst and a Dark Lemon Burst. ($30k each)

Sorry if this is off topic, they just posted this a couple of days ago.


How is this off topic? Thanks for sharing. I do not know much about the history of the replica guitars. It's very interesting that they have letters of "fake" authenticity. LOL. Does anyone know if this is common with guitars built by Max? Is the serial number inside or outside of the range of guitars made by Gibson? It would be difficult for someone to sell this as an actual burst if they didn't make that serial number. So now we are in the vicinity of Picasso painting an exact copy of the Mona Lisa but signing his own name. ;)

Cheers Peter.
 

nuance97

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How is this off topic? Thanks for sharing. I do not know much about the history of the replica guitars. It's very interesting that they have letters of "fake" authenticity. LOL. Does anyone know if this is common with guitars built by Max? Is the serial number inside or outside of the range of guitars made by Gibson? It would be difficult for someone to sell this as an actual burst if they didn't make that serial number. So now we are in the vicinity of Picasso painting an exact copy of the Mona Lisa but signing his own name. ;)

Cheers Peter.
I believe that the certificate of fake authenticity were a thing he did commonly…I don’t know at what point in his career he started the practice. Probably not in the beginning id guess. The guitars in those links are quite beautiful. The “Gibson” logo font was the only tell I could spot from those photos. Definitely a more modern version
 
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DBDM

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Max has said he pretty much made up the serial numbers by buyer request, birthday, ss #, or random. Recall, Gibson does not have records on late 58-59 so the serial number range and exact numbers are not known. I am in awe of the workmanship but be very clear, these HAVE and continue to be sold as "real" and even the top experts in the world have been fooled. George Gruhn says he bought one and was fooled, and it is rumored that one of the guitars in the book "Beauty of the Burst" is actually a Max. Likely, some of us would be far less than amused if we dropped $500k on one and later found out it was a $30k replica (albeit a great one). George Gruhn (fairly mild mannered) became so angry telling me the story that he had to stop for a second. Again, not amused.
 

PeteNJ75

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I used to be a replica hater, but I’ve been completely converted. They’re just better than what Gibson is putting out, period. It just comes down to quality of materials. But I understand why Gibson just can’t compete. These guys are making their bursts in such small quantities they can use small quantities of old wood. It all comes down to the quality of materials, and the old wood is what really makes these play and sound more like a real burst than any current production Gibson. I recently bought a BaB/Hague burst, and all you need to do is look at the fretboard to see what I mean - it truly looks and feels like it’s been played on for 60 years. But Gibson (even the Custom Shop) needs to build in large quantities on a steady basis. There’s just no way they could source big quantities of old, 60+ year-old wood on a dependable basis. But small independent replica builders who make a handful of these a year can. That’s why I think they’re worth the premium. I still love Gibsons and will continue to buy them, but I want to have a small stable (I only own 2 now) of old-wood replicas. All that said, $30K is way too steep for me. Is Max’s wood that much older than Yaron’s, Bartlett’s, or Hague’s? It’s in the same ballpark so I just can’t see myself paying TRIPLE what any build by those other guys would cost. Just my two cents - all IMO of course.
 

Dilver

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Must be nice to have that kind of disposable cash. I agree, $40,000 is a lot to put into a guitar and I wouldn’t do it unless I had crazy fun money. But how many of us would have no problem buying a luxury car for more than that. And the car will depreciate the day after you buy it!
 

smk506

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I’m not up on the various replicas and all that, but wasn’t a big part of the Max model to use vintage parts and pickups pulled from less desirable/broken 50’s gibsons? If it’s still the case that you get a pair of genuine PAFs with the build, that would add a bit of scratch.
 

paulmarr

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I think you guys are missing the point … IT contractor …$100+ per hour … over here whether it’s a mechanic, sparky, plumber, you name it … $100-250 an hour … skilled tradesmen and white collar contractors charge this much and more … what you are valuing his time at versus what he values it at is the crux of the issue …
 

Southwest

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The only "issue" I have with these guitars is that if I've bought a guitar that Gruhn et al thinks is as good as a '59 burst, I damn well want the real maker's name on the headstock. Just MHO of course.
 

ARandall

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I think you guys are missing the point … IT contractor …$100+ per hour … over here whether it’s a mechanic, sparky, plumber, you name it … $100-250 an hour … skilled tradesmen and white collar contractors charge this much and more … what you are valuing his time at versus what he values it at is the crux of the issue …
We're not missing the point......but maybe you are.

Most people in a $60/hr industry simply cannot choose to arbitrarily change the same as an IT person, a high-end trade, or a Lawyer, or any other irrelevant rate you might choose to quote as your 'evidence'.
Unless you have a name that puts you outside the realms of reality from a 'business case' sense, then you simply won't get any business......and that is the point here.
 

pshupe

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We're not missing the point......but maybe you are.

Most people in a $60/hr industry simply cannot choose to arbitrarily change the same as an IT person, a high-end trade, or a Lawyer, or any other irrelevant rate you might choose to quote as your 'evidence'.
Unless you have a name that puts you outside the realms of reality from a 'business case' sense, then you simply won't get any business......and that is the point here.


He may be close. There are those that will pay $100 /hr for an I.T. professional. There are those that will pay $200 /hr for a specific I.T. professional. There are also those that want to pay $40 for an I.T. professional. Supply and demand? Do you get what you pay for? Replica guitars are definitely a niche market and comparison between a Max at $40K and another at $10K is a reasonable question. Is it because he was one of the first replicating?

I've built some replica guitars that have turned out quite nice and I would not want to calculate what I made per hour. I do this as a hobby and I really enjoy it. I do not do it as a source of income, other than to buy more tools etc. The more I build the better I get. My builds are probably in the $5k range including replica components, which are almost 1/3rd that value. I'm probably in the <$10 hr range.

There is also a consideration to the fact that I build for a price that could not sustain a decent living. Am I devaluing the profession? I may be part of the problem just as much as I quote being able to buy a Gibson guitar at Best Buy for $150. Am I taking away a commission from a luthier that "IS" trying to make a decent living? I hope that is not the case.

Cheers Peter.
 

valvetoneman

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I know a 50s original goldtop is alot cheaper than that and where my money would go on second thoughts I'd be having a lovely holiday

The price is nuts :rofl:
 
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