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Why is the market up on Hummingbirds?

access

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Recently a guitar nerd friend of mine was going on about the search for a mid 60s Hummingbird of all things! I was surprised to hear that he would even being interested in such a tone turd, but apparently they are all the rage these days.

Huh?

I've tried to like these guitars, but they are heavy, bulky tone turds that only look good if you are a chick wearing a denim skirt with cowboy boots on, or perhaps a skinny dude with a nudie suit and a pompadour hairdo.

I have not owned a 1960 model, but NONE of the mid 60s models I've owned have done anything for me. It looks like Gary Dick is trying to corner the market on these things if Gbase is any indicator.

Can someone here tell me what I'm missing here? The new reissues Gibson is doing sound good, but the original models (complete with screw on pickguard. WTF?) just plain suck.

Okay my rant is over, please educate me.
 

Cody

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I hope someone chimes in (Kerry, maybe?), because I've kinda wondered the same thing.

Ever since I first saw them in rock magazines, I thought they were the most beautiful acoustic I'd ever seen - cherry sunburst, natch. I seem to recall Keef saying that everybody needs to own one... so finally I had the chance to try a '66 or '67 Hummingbird and a '67 Southern Jumbo at the same time.

The SJ played itself, and sounded heavenly, while the Hummingbird sounded like there was something VERY wrong with it - like it was made of stiff cardboard. No sustain to speak of, no top end chime, no bottom end.

Now, my financial situation hasn't given me any reason to visit a guitar store in the past five years or more, and when I do go, they don't have any '60s Hummingbirds, so that's the extent of my experience with them.

I assumed I happened upon a dud, but now access has me thinking maybe there's a pattern.

:hmm
 
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lonesomesheik

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Keef sure looked great with a Hummingbird in the booklet of " Hightide & Greengrass":hee
 

g6120

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My local music store ordered the 50th anniversary version and I waited a few weeks impatiently for that guitar to arrive .

When it finally was delivered to the music store I was the first to give it a get go but was unimpressed with the tone of that guitar disappointment to say the least .

Side by side next to a new custom J 45 with a rosewood back it was obvious it was no match . Not much projection and the sound just seemed to lay there and since Ive tried the TV version which to my ears sounded the same so Ive found its not for me .

Since then also purchased a Gibson custom J 200 and also took home that custom J 45 and oh yes a Martin HD 28 now thats what Im talking about .


I may be opening a can of worms but let me say each of these three guitars have the mojo and sound wonderful but after a 144 hour treatment of ToneRite all these new instruments have benefited from this process with a more balance , better projection with a mature tone .
 
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garywright

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I may be opening a can of worms but let me say each of these three guitars have the mojo and sound wonderful but after a 144 hour treatment of ToneRite all these new instruments have benefited from this process with a more balance , better projection with a mature tone .



ToneRite ?
 

lonesomesheik

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Ever since I got my Martin 00028 E.C. , I'm sorry to say I've never been impressed by modern accoustic Gibson, L5 or J200; however if I had the dough I would have bought a 65 lg1 with a lot of Mojo although the bass lackd a bit of depth:rolleyes:
 
B

Banker

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I have a minty featherweight '63, tone turd it's not by a long way.....
 

TomGuitar

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I work with a woman who wanted to bring in her 60's Hummingbird to show me since she knew about my involvement in vintage guitars. I'm thinking, "Oh great, I get to play another piece of shit and have to try to avoid telling her what a dog it is and somehow not lie, all at the same time."

I about fell off my chair when I picked the thing up. Light as a feather. Sounded awesome. Played awesome.

So great Hummingbirds do exist. I think they're rare, but they are out there.
 

Tom Wittrock

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I have had several 60s Hummingbirds that sounded great.
They don't sound like Martins [just as Strats don't sound like Les Pauls :ganz], but I have experienced several over the decades that were definitely winners. :dude:
 

Gold Tone

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My local music store ordered the 50th anniversary version and I waited a few weeks impatiently for that guitar to arrive .

When it finally was delivered to the music store I was the first to give it a get go but was unimpressed with the tone of that guitar disappointment to say the least ..


I've played several of the Montana Hummingbirds and like all the Montana guitars they were exceptional.

The Montana Hummingbird is NOT built the same a sa 60's vintage.
 

access

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Well as I said, the new reissues are different guitars, and to 'banker' my experience is in the mid 60s models.

I'm sure there are exceptions/anomalies with anything, but the market is treating these guitars (price wise) like they are all 'the exception' Hummingbird that doesn't sound like crap.

Well, my personal viewpoint is that dealers are trying to recoup losses sustained in the vintage electric speculation bubble of the mid 2000 by shifting it to the (future) acoustic speculation bubble of the '10s.

It's not just evidenced with these hummingbirds but look at the prices of some other vintage acoustics (not blue chip models) they are getting stupid as well as was evidenced with Kerrys little ebay quiz he posted a couple weeks ago.
 

DHBucker

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My '93 Hummingbird is faaaarrrrr from being a tone turd. I will admit when I got her new in '93 she was a little stiff and I finally took her in for a set up/going over by my luthier after playing her for years and it became a different instrument. As time has passed she has opened up and rings and sings, (wll as much as my shitty playing will allow). I have palyed some 60's birds and I like mine much more. I've compared it to Martins and Taylors and she can hang with some of the best of them.
 

The Boz 56

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I too have played great mid 60s Hummingbirds, SJs, J-45s etc. Generally speaking if they're not broken and the adj bridge screw seats are not loose they have that good Gibson thump and great midrange albeit not as good as Gibsons from the 30s 40s and 50s. I think they are priced pretty fairly and they are out there to be had.
 

Robin B

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I have a 1967 dove .this guitar should sound like crap.but it doesn't, sounds great Ive had it for 20yrs.Its got the screwed on pickguard thick top .
 

TM1

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I have a 2005 Historic `60's Hummingbird (now called the "True Vintage"). My friend Ren Ferguson says there's no difference between the two models other than the name. It's pretty amazing. 1 of only 20 made that year. When I first got it, it was a bit stiff, but I knew it just needed to be played some. Now, It's amazing and has been on stage soaking up vibrations from a 5 piece band for the last 3 years. It sounds better than my 1963 J-50 that was converted from Adjustable to solid bridge.
I've played some early `60's Hummingbirds that were duds and I played one that my late friend Doug Fieger bought about 4-5 years back that's a real stellar instrument.
 

Gold Tone

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I have a 2005 Historic `60's Hummingbird (now called the "True Vintage"). My friend Ren Ferguson says there's no difference between the two models other than the name. It's pretty amazing. 1 of only 20 made that year. .


I have #15 from that year!!
 
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