My first stab at going vintage, help on getting a 58 les paul junior

jcourtjr

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Looking to get into the vintage market without losing my shirt. I figured I would take a look at some les paul juniors. Seems like a great way to get some old wood.

Anyway I am looking for something a little higher than player grade. Doesn't have to be perfect but I want it to hold/increase value.

I have my eye on this one. Price seems to be a bit high but I don't really know. Story sounds good, not sure about the dealer but seems reputable and has an account here and lespaulforum.


I would like to work with this guy but looking for some input/help.

Thanks1
 

bossaddict

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I got my 1960 Junior from John (TVG). He's a great guy and always has top notch stuff. You shouldn't have any worries from the dealer side of things.
 

Hecubus

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I can't help you, but WOW! That does not look like a 63 year old instrument. Good luck.
 

Liam

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Well got to say, that looks a very straight, and an absolutely stellar example. It is all of the money for what it is, but you'd look for a very long time to find another like it, and when you do, it is also likely to be all the money too. If you are buying to keep for a good long time the buying price will not be all that material, but you'll need to look after it.

I have a few 50's Juniors and a Special, and tend go for examples that are particularly great sounding, original parts, but with a little more wear and tear (they get to work for a living, so close to museum pieces not really an option for me). Probably 30-40% less in cost, and less to worry about if they get a knock or need a re-fret.

If I was looking something to "baby" a little more, that one would fit the bill just about perfect. Not sure I'd bite the bullet and stump up quite that much, but as any good dealer would say, "Try finding another one!" They are thin on the ground in that condition, especially with near mint correct case.

[Broken pickup bobbin is really common. Don't let it worry you, they tend to work just fine.]

Liam
 

delawaregold

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Normally I would say that is a lot of money, but obviously
this is not normal. This has spent it's life as a case queen,
and I would only buy it if my intention was for it to remain
a case queen. A couple of things I would want to know...
Even after spending the past 60 years in it's case, I would
want to see the plastic under Black Light. Age alone will
tend to degrade plastic.
The High E string will cut into the nylon nut, and this will
have to be compensated for during the set-up.
Not that these are deal breakers, but when paying top dollar,
I would want to know everything.
Good luck!
 

Mark_the_Knife

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This is 2021 and even cars (new or old) are more expensive. I would snag this at $13K. Just replace the original nut with a bone nut, and play it long and loud. The sound that was hiding in this case queen will come out, shaped by your way of handling the instrument. These Juniors are very hearty.
 

Brek

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if you can afford it, do it. and play it with respect.
 

Truth011

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That is a real creampuff. If it were me i'd ask the output of the pickup. On a one pickup guitar i'd be looking for a little higher output pickup but it depends on what you are doing with it. As a collectors piece that's a good one for sure.
 

theusualdan

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I think in general True Vintage prices pretty fairly for what he's putting out there. This particular guitar, I've seen him post about a lot on his insta, and it indeed looks amazing. I think the general rule of thumb is you're going to pay a bit more at a "dealer" like this, but you also don't have to worry about authentication as much as they've done the legwork on that end. If you're looking for a "little higher than player grade" I'd say this overshoots that, as this particular example is more or less an uncirculated case queen. As far as price goes, for reference, Willie's guitars in Minneapolis have 2 juniors right now ('57 singlecut and '59 doublecut) priced at $16k and $12.5k respectively and they aren't as clean as this '58. Though the 59 doublecut comes with a Gibson Skylark amp as well. So realistically, in the current market, that's not a bad price on the '58. I personally wouldn't want a '58 that clean, because I'd be worried about dinging it up playing it regularly.
 

devin dude

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Nice clean example for sure , 14K is all the money for sure. If you're going to keep it for 5 years or more and only play it in

your home it will be worth what you pay today , IMO , OMMV.
 

judson

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paying top dollar for a case queen really doesnt make sense to me as i would be too tempted to play the hell out of it which there is nothing wrong with as long as you dont give a rats ass about future value.

I would look for a step down from that one and maybe a small step up of a good condition player as you mentioned so if you want to play it to enjoy and not worry about a ding here and there you may cause....

happy hunting... :yesway:
 

devin dude

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Values go up and down every 5 year for so. The seller is asking 14K , will most likely take a reasonable offer for less from
a serious buyer.

50's single cut juniors are very desirable guitars , beaters are priced in the 7K range give or take . This example is
almost mint , the case is also , which is very rare to see..

That guitar can be enjoyed and played without hurting the value one bit , unless you play like a hacker...

It will always command top $$$$ over run of mill examples , buy clean & org. and you can't go wrong...

One should never buy to invest on any disposable income item ...
 
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sws1

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Also, The last time vintage guitars took a hit, Juniors and Specials REALLY took a hit.
Juniors are those guitars that often come up by people who "want to get in the vintage market", and less so by people who actually want to buy a junior for its merits. Like people who jam into a club....not because of the band playing, but because there are lots of people in line. (Let's hope Great White isn't the house band.)
 

crashbelt

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Incredible guitars and still imho one of the best entry points into owning a vintage guitar.

As others have said, if you intend to baby it, the price isn't excessive in this market. I'd be nervous about dinging playing it out and wouldn't enjoy iy so much for that reason, but that's me.

In 2020 bought a 55 for about 75% of the asking price for yours (and that is in the UK). It has modest play wear but all original parts/finish which does seem to be more the ballpark you described in your original post.

Good luck if you decide its for you!
 

rhys1157

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Definitely at the moment the prices are through the roof BUT silly to compare prices of a couple of years too though. It’s worth obviously whatever you’re willing to pay for it. Great guitars.
 

Perioman

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Might be helpful, my recent experience with a 56 junior in the UK, form the money side of things.

I bought it 7 years ago, good condition and paid £4500 for it. Decided to sell this year as I needed the money. Went to a couple of well established vintage guitar shops who offered me less than I paid for it, or would take it in consignment and let me try to get a bit more. In the end I sold it to a guy who has been in the vintage guitar business for a long time for £5000. He changed the tuners back to the originals and put it on his website for £7000.

ultimately I’m pleased I got more than I paid for it. I preferred sell it to someone legit and know I wasn’t going to get scammed or messed around, but only buy this if you want to keep it long term, as it will be difficult to get back what you paid for a long time. One of the reasons I sold it is that it lived in its case. I didn’t want to risk damaging it and immediately devaluing it. A real risk with this one.

And whilst I’m sharing- lent it to Mike Bradley before I got rid of it
 

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