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Gibson Hummingbird vintage vs new


smokiee
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hi guys...

 

Vintage vs. new. Which is better? Or is it the same quality build and construction?

 

I'm talking bout Gibson Hummingbird. It a visually nice guitar but I haven't played it yet (none available in my place). Some in eBay are vintage (60s 70s) and some are new.

 

How would it compare to Taylor, Martin etc? i heard in some forums (ehem) Gibson s are not well recieved by most members of the forums with message like "stay away!" what's that all about?

 

anyway if you guys could give some opinion for this topic much appreciated.

 

thanks so much :wave:

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I like the OLD birds, theres a guy round here called Clippity whos got one. I'm talking late sixties I think? They had more of a mellow sunburst, the Iced Tea burst. I don't like what has been coming out of Bozeman as of late, it seems that all the Gibbies that I've played have been thin sounding. But then again I'm a Martin guy.

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Originally posted by Whalebot

I like the OLD birds, theres a guy round here called Clippity whos got one. I'm talking late sixties I think? They had more of a mellow sunburst, the Iced Tea burst. I don't like what has been coming out of Bozeman as of late, it seems that all the Gibbies that I've played have been thin sounding. But then again I'm a Martin guy.

 

mine isn't a vintage model, its an 04... it just has a nice vintage looking burst to it...

 

as to the original poster, i really dig alot of the newer birds... the old ones have something really special too... stay out of the 70s, and avoid the adjustable bridges if you can... some of the adj. bridge versions have had 'normal' bridges put on them, just make sure you know what you're getting.

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I've played a few great old 'birds, and some really bad ones. The 70's models are to be avoided as these were the bad years when Norlin owned Gibson. The quality of the Montana built Gibsons made these days are much better but I still find too many that are overbuilt. If you buy an old 60's 'bird be prepared to put some money into it (neck reset, frets, crack and brace repairs, etc.) so you will be safer with a new one, or something made in the last 10 years. The bird is a fancy square shouldered Gibson dread so unless you must have the fancy pickguard you can find similar, less fancy models which will sound the same.

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I had a blond Hummingbirdbird that was mid 70's. It was not the red sunburst paintjob that is usually found on them. I had it for about five years. The bridge pulled up. Had it "professionally" repaired and it started cracking loose again. I took a huge loss on it and traded it off for a japanese strat. Geez, I'm depressed all of a sudden.

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Originally posted by 54merk

I've played a few great old 'birds, and some really bad ones. The 70's models are to be avoided as these were the bad years when Norlin owned Gibson. The quality of the Montana built Gibsons made these days are much better but I still find too many that are overbuilt. If you buy an old 60's 'bird be prepared to put some money into it (neck reset, frets, crack and brace repairs, etc.) so you will be safer with a new one, or something made in the last 10 years. The bird is a fancy square shouldered Gibson dread so unless you must have the fancy pickguard you can find similar, less fancy models which will sound the same.

 

it should be specified that the reason the 70s gibsons, and especially hummingbirds, are generally avoided is the dreaded DOUBLE X bracing... tone sucker.

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I own a 1969 Gibson Hummingbird. Bought it new. Although the tone on this instrument has always been superb and the cherry burst was done to perfection, I was never satisfied with it for several reasons. First of all the bass response was a lot weaker than I like. Secondly it was a very quiet guitar that did not project all that well. It also has a narrow nut width combined with a somewhat broad string width at the bridge that makes for a rather extreme string angle as you travel up and down the neck. Many years ago I had a luthier scallop the braces and install a new bridge and saddle. The result was better bass response and projection. The string angle is still not what I prefer, but for strummin' cowboy chords and some occaisional flatpickin' it is a great guitar. Just had a neck reset and a re-bracing done last year.

 

Having played some of the new Bozeman Gibson acoustics recently I can honestly say that I think they're a better instrument than my '69 'bird was when I bought it. I think the quality and updated design features of the new ones beats the "vintage" models hands down. I REALLY like the new Gibson acoustics.:thu:

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Gibsons are an odd animal, that i wouldnt buy sight unseen , some are fantastic some are not -- Be afraid, very afraid - id play them in person before Id buy one ( thats said by a man who just bought a classical over the net - but that purchase came out fantastic - so dont listen to me )

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...there's nothing to be afraid of.

 

i bought mine sight unseen, i figured the return shipping i'd owe if i didn't like it would be cheaper than the gas to get me to atlanta from here, so it just made sense...

 

i dig the standard hummingbirds they're making right now... i love the long scale on mine though...

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thanks guys for your advice. the Hummingbird is a cool guitar but just like other guitars no one is the same right. so i'll just have to keep lookin and playin em all (like finding a wife innit? hahaha) to find the right one.

 

if i found a vintage.. looks like the piggy bank's gone hehehh..

 

cheers n thanks again guys...

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Too late now, but there was an almost mint 70's model that just went for $1,213. If hadn't spent my GAS money for this quarter on the Gallagher a few weeks ago, I'd have jumped on it. It was at $910 until the last few minutes; I though it would go for at least $1,500.

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