Further hacking up an abused vintage piece?

Discussion of vintage Jazzmasters, Jaguars, Bass VIs, Electric XIIs and any other offset-waist instruments.
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Ceylon
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Further hacking up an abused vintage piece?

Post by Ceylon » Mon Jun 29, 2020 3:21 am

A bit of a moral dilemma. Is it all right to further "ruin" a vintage guitar that has already been heavily modified and is missing a lot of the original parts?

I bought a hacked-up Galanti Grand Prix from Pat a while ago mostly because I've always been kind of taken in by how they look. The pickups, the pickguard and most of the electronics are long gone, someone has replaced the nut and the tuners and underneath the picguard some chunks of wood has been taken away to make room for humbuckers and active electronics. That's not a very big deal, as it would be hidden away.
Perhaps the biggest "damage" to the guitar is that someone has routed it for a Les Paul-style back access plate, presumably to get to a battery compartment that used to be there. What does make it a bit special is that it still has its vibrato arm and that the serial number on the neckplate is pretty low, just 93.

I never figured I'd make a full restoration of it, that seems out of my league and parts like the original pickups are pretty scarce, but I did get some pickguard material and two low output, ferrite magnet Firebird style pickups that I think could sit in nicely for the stock biggish single coils, so restoring it to something that's in the spirit of the original thing is an option.
These are, after all, rarer if not as sought after as, say, Jazzmasters from the same period, and to someone who's into 60's psych/garage/surf and so on, this could be a nice guitar with vintage bones and the right vibe for that kind of stuff. But at that point I think I'd sell it on and try to get my money back. I have that sound/vibe pretty much covered.

My other option is that I want to build a sort of experimental guitar with an unusual pickup configuration, a sustainer, maybe a Roland synth pickup and perhaps even down the line adding three more tuners to double the treble strings. This is in a way a great mod platform to do that with, since it already has the battery compartment access plate and a big empty space beneath the pickguard.

On a more shallow level I also think the guitars retro-futuristic design would clash perfectly with the addition of sustainer drivers and synth pickups. But this will require cutting out more wood, and making more holes in the body, and in the case of adding tuners obviously also to the headstock.

What do you think, is it a sin to further ruin what value this might have to a Galanti afficionado?
Science Friction burns my fingers
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adamrobertt
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Re: Further hacking up an abused vintage piece?

Post by adamrobertt » Mon Jun 29, 2020 9:04 am

I mean, it sounds like any resale value it may have had is already gone. I'd say just do it. If it were in pristine condition it'd be one thing, but once the seal is broken, so to speak, you may as well just do what you want with it.

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Re: Further hacking up an abused vintage piece?

Post by SignoftheDragon » Mon Jun 29, 2020 11:48 am

Agreed- Just make it a cool guitar in its current state. It's probably too far gone (and not worth the $$$) to restore to a collector piece.

RAWK that thing!

I just recently had this dilemma with a Univox 12-string (thread in same forum ifya want more details) but came to the opposite conclusion- but that one was a lot closer to the mark for restoration.

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Re: Further hacking up an abused vintage piece?

Post by jvin248 » Mon Jun 29, 2020 12:37 pm

.

Fix it back so it's in the spirit of the original, correctly sized pickguard with your firebird pickups, similar knobs, etc and sell it on. Someone will buy it for the instant cool factor, and a potential buyer may also take it the rest of the way back to original by searching out the remaining original parts. If they are as collectible as early JMs then clean it up and make it mostly pretty with low additional cost and sell it on to someone who will do the rest.

Then buy an abused Squier and do the crazy mods to. Or look for derelict First Act guitar to do that kind of mod to -- often $25-$50 to get those.
You can buy a new Glarry Strat for $65 complete.
Thoman Harley Benton guitars for under $100 or $200, including some offset models.

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Re: Further hacking up an abused vintage piece?

Post by Ceylon » Thu Jul 02, 2020 3:54 am

Thanks for your replies. I'll give selling it as a project a go, and if that doesn't work I'll decide whether to put it together as a traditional-style guitar or mod away. I would feel a whole lot better about cutting up a CV Jaguar, but if what I have doesn't turn out to be that attractive anyway, I guess no further harm can be done.

This is the one, by the way. You can see chunks of wood missing, and the metal backplate shining through behind where the controls would be.

Image
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Re: Further hacking up an abused vintage piece?

Post by Pacafeliz » Thu Jul 02, 2020 7:32 am

Good thing is you have the original wiring/buttons thingy if someone wants to do a full restore... πŸ˜…
i love delay SO much ...that i procrastinate all the time.

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Re: Further hacking up an abused vintage piece?

Post by Ceylon » Thu Jul 02, 2020 7:44 am

Pacafeliz wrote: ↑
Thu Jul 02, 2020 7:32 am
Good thing is you have the original wiring/buttons thingy if someone wants to do a full restore... πŸ˜…
Yeah, that thing is incredible. Beautifully engineered with all the buttons operating sliding levers, but incredibly overcomplicated for what it does. Probably can't find those around anymore :D
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Re: Further hacking up an abused vintage piece?

Post by Pacafeliz » Thu Jul 02, 2020 7:58 am

Ceylon wrote: ↑
Thu Jul 02, 2020 7:44 am
Pacafeliz wrote: ↑
Thu Jul 02, 2020 7:32 am
Good thing is you have the original wiring/buttons thingy if someone wants to do a full restore... πŸ˜…
Yeah, that thing is incredible. Beautifully engineered with all the buttons operating sliding levers, but incredibly overcomplicated for what it does. Probably can't find those around anymore :D
...I wasn't even able to find a schematic on how to wire that thing! :blush:
i love delay SO much ...that i procrastinate all the time.

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Re: Further hacking up an abused vintage piece?

Post by Ceylon » Thu Jul 02, 2020 8:35 am

Pacafeliz wrote: ↑
Thu Jul 02, 2020 7:58 am
Ceylon wrote: ↑
Thu Jul 02, 2020 7:44 am
Pacafeliz wrote: ↑
Thu Jul 02, 2020 7:32 am
Good thing is you have the original wiring/buttons thingy if someone wants to do a full restore... πŸ˜…
Yeah, that thing is incredible. Beautifully engineered with all the buttons operating sliding levers, but incredibly overcomplicated for what it does. Probably can't find those around anymore :D
...I wasn't even able to find a schematic on how to wire that thing! :blush:
As best I can figure, it should be the same as a regular 3-way toggle switch. Leads go to the lugs and the buttons either engage one or both or none. I think just the looks of the thing makes it seem more complex than it is.
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Electricity still lingers

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Re: Further hacking up an abused vintage piece?

Post by Highnumbers » Mon Jul 06, 2020 11:40 am

Agree with the others here, it's only original once. After that point, have at it..

If the guitar can't be put back to at least looking original, then there's no shame in doing whatever you want to it.

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Re: Further hacking up an abused vintage piece?

Post by Sweetfinger » Wed Jul 08, 2020 9:04 am

There's plenty of space to do whatever you want, just have a pickguard cut for whatever controls and pickups you like. Try and clean up whatever was done to the back. You can save whatever is left of the original parts if you think you might someday do a full restoration, or sell them to someone who needs them.

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