Description: Electric Guitar - LEFT_HANDED 1974 GIBSON ES 335 ....STUNNING!
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I bought this gorgeous Gibson ES 335 way back in 1980. The guy I bought it from was the second owner. He didnít know its exact age because at some point the neck got damaged in some way and a new Gibson replacement neck was fitted by the company in London that originally sold it. Hence it has no serial number stamped on it. However, I have been able to determine its year from the serial numbers stamped on the original tone and volume pots.
The body is finished in cherry sunburst with walnut rims, which is quite rare on 335ís. This guitar when I bought it was identical to the one used in the 70ís by the great funk/blues artist Johnny Guitar Watson. The sunburst has now faded considerably and the lacquer has yellowed to give a fabulous Ďwashed-outí aged look thatís really unusual and distinctive. This effect is enhanced by me having replaced (many years ago) the original black fittings with cream pick-up surrounds and gold knobs and ditching the scratchplate. In spite of having done loads of gigs with it, there are very few blemishes. There is some crazing of the lacquer in odd places and one small chip on the front, which could easily be tidied up if desired. The back, which is made from lovely birds-eye maple has slight marking, probably from my belt buckle, but the lacquer is intact. The nut and machine heads (Kluson tulip type) are original and have a similar old aged look in keeping with the rest of the guitar. For years Iíve been known locally as the guy with THAT 335!
Various modifications have been done since I bought it, all of which improved this guitarís tone, sustain and usability. Most notably, the original trapeze tailpiece was changed for a stop tailpiece and new bridge. The original tone and volume pots which, in typical Gibson fashion worked the wrong way for left-handed operation, were changed for later anti-log types. This alteration alone resulted in a dramatic improvement in the guitarís functionality and control in live situations. I more recently changed the original humbuckers for a Seymour Duncan Custom Custom in the bridge position (more power and tone) and a Schaller humbucker in the neck position, which I also feel is an improvement. I still have all the original hardware.
The neck is dead straight and hasnít needed adjustment in over thirty years. It measures 40mm at the nut and has a very slim and Ďfastí profile. The frets are original and have recently been levelled and reprofiled.
Maybe not a collectorís piece with all the mods and so on, but a great playerís guitar with that unmistakable 335 sound and a striking vintage look. Guitars of this period donít often come up for sale, so it represents a rare opportunity for any left-handers out there.
More details and photos available on request.
Pictures: Electric Guitar - LEFT_HANDED 1974 GIBSON ES 335 ....STUNNING!