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Thread: Fake S-100 keeps getting faker?

  1. #1
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    Fake S-100 keeps getting faker?

    We have a local FB yard sale page and a fellow posted "1959 Guild Electric Guitar". I looked at it and recognized it as an S-100, though I had no experience with one (I have a few SGs and always loved the s-100s I'd see friends playing). So I asked the guy for the serial, researched it and figured the number to match a 64 Polara. However, this things did not match up to the Polara shape. I figured it was from the 1970's and the guy was either trying to rip someone off or had no idea what he was talking about. After talking to Guild they said "buy it, what do you have to lose besides $300?" That was the same response I got from a few guitar collecting friends. So I did.

    I met the guy in parking lot at a bar. He was an older country gentleman. Looked completely untrustworthy but I didn't care, because by then, I was so curious to see just what this thing was that I was willing to pay him the $300. As long as there were no cracks and the neck seemed straight enough I was in. After getting it home and plugging it in, it sounded like garbage. I cleaned it up, restrung it and pulled the pickups while doing so. That's when I noticed the science project I had bought. I literally could not figure out if someone made this thing in a shop class in 1975, having a Guild neck glued on to a shop body. After the clean-up it sounded a lot better. The dual phased switches were really neat, but everything still sounded a bit tinny and the action was really high. After adjusting the neck a bit, I got buzzing and the action was still high. I got a bit frustrated and decided I should pull the Hb1 pickup (the other was some sort of 80's Dimarzio Super D) and pull off the Pat Pend Grover tuners and try and make a few bucks back.

    So I pull the HB1 again and after doing a bit of Google research, I'm not even sure what kind of crazy Frankenstein pickup I have. It says Guild USA, but it sure isn't wired like one.

    I bet the Grovers are fake also. I don't know. Starting to wish curiosity hadn't gotten the cat!







    Last edited by chazmo; 12-31-2016 at 03:51 PM. Reason: Chazmo - inserting pictures from photobucket

  2. #2
    Super Moderator fronobulax's Avatar
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    Welcome. If you need help posting pics see here.

    I think the seller's story is suspect for several reasons but we are pretty good at looking at pictures and asking questions and figuring out what might have come from the Guild factory or parts bin and what didn't. We have seen numerous counterfeit Guild acoustics but i cannot recall ever seeing a counterfeit electric. So I would guess that this is a Frankenstein guitar that has some Guild logo parts or a factory Guild that has been modified to the point of being unrecognizable.

    This is going to be a fun story. Thank you for starting it.
    Quote Originally Posted by mgod View Post
    What he said.

    '67 Starfire I Bass (Cherry)
    '71 JS II Bass (Walnut)
    '82 B-50 Acoustic Bass (Natural)
    '87 Pilot (Black)
    '13 Newark Street Starfire Bass (Cherry)
    '16 Betts Bass "Walnut Bottom"

    LMG I, II, III

    This space available.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Qvart's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brynot View Post
    I'll post some pics. maybe ya'll can help me figure this mess out.
    Some members around here are quite knowledgeable about S-100s and other Guild electrics. Just post some pics and we'll confirm your disappointment. ;)
    Guildless. :(

  4. #4
    Senior Member adorshki's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fronobulax View Post
    ... but i cannot recall ever seeing a counterfeit electric.
    So I would guess that this is a Frankenstein guitar that has some Guild logo parts or a factory Guild that has been modified to the point of being unrecognizable.
    Jives with my memory and was the first thing I thought when he mentioned "high school shop/science project".
    Can recall at least 3 or 4 of those "FrankenGuild electrics" over the years.
    Al
    "Time May Change the Technique of Music But Never Its Mission " - Rachmaninoff
    My 1st Guild: '96 Westerly D25NT "Hally" (10-31-96 stamped on heelblock)
    #2: '01 Westerly F65ce "Blondie"
    #3: '03 Corona D40e Richie Havens "Richie"
    All bought new!

  5. #5
    Senior Member DrumBob's Avatar
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    We can't really help you unless you post pics, so perhaps get some help doing that.
    Former Guild employee and proud owner of an '82 F-30 acoustic, a '16 S-200 and a '15 Starfire IV.

  6. #6
    Super Moderator fronobulax's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chazmo View Post
    I'll try to help Brynot get his pictures posted. He's trying, but failing. :)
    Keep trying. This has a lot of potential to be interesting. Maybe he's in a close part of Virginia and a road trip is in order ;-)
    Quote Originally Posted by mgod View Post
    What he said.

    '67 Starfire I Bass (Cherry)
    '71 JS II Bass (Walnut)
    '82 B-50 Acoustic Bass (Natural)
    '87 Pilot (Black)
    '13 Newark Street Starfire Bass (Cherry)
    '16 Betts Bass "Walnut Bottom"

    LMG I, II, III

    This space available.

  7. #7
    Super Moderator chazmo's Avatar
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    photobucket pix inserted in first post
    Quote Originally Posted by Neal
    I am going to hang onto this little F-20 and play it as a reminder that life is sometimes rough, but it doesn't necessarily mean that the damage you accrue along the way defines who you are.
    Quote Originally Posted by marcellis
    Growing old is a bitch.
    Guild 12-strings:
    1978 G-312NT (Westerly) - "Franzz",
    1994 JF-30-12Bld (Westerly),
    2006 F-512 (Tacoma),
    2010 F-212XL STD (New Hartford) - "Connie"
    2014 Orpheum 12 OOO SHRW (New Hartford)

    Non-Guild 12s:
    1970 Martin D-12-20
    1980 Ibanez AW-75 (Series I)
    1984 Taylor 655

  8. #8
    Super Moderator chazmo's Avatar
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    Well, I'm way ignorant on vintage S-100s but here's what I see:

    Filled holes above each tuner indicate that at some point either different tuners were mounted on there, or the Grovers on there now were "upside down." Can't imagine why anyone would've done the latter. That said, the pat. pend. Grovers are almost certainly "real," Brynot. Not that these old tuners are great hardware or anything, but they're certainly vintage and Guild used them a lot in their acoustic line, at least. I suspect they are the original tuners for this axe, but again I'm wicked ignorant.

    The other thing is the 3-piece body. I find this surprising, but I don't know if it's correct or not. It's certainly possible they built 'em like this, but it feels wrong. I would've thought they'd be one piece of solid mahogany (like my NS S-100). Maybe this was someone's project.

    Don't take any of my word on this though. I'm speaking from mucho ignorance.

    Oh, one thing, you might want to get rear shots of the pickups to get folks' opinion on them.
    Quote Originally Posted by Neal
    I am going to hang onto this little F-20 and play it as a reminder that life is sometimes rough, but it doesn't necessarily mean that the damage you accrue along the way defines who you are.
    Quote Originally Posted by marcellis
    Growing old is a bitch.
    Guild 12-strings:
    1978 G-312NT (Westerly) - "Franzz",
    1994 JF-30-12Bld (Westerly),
    2006 F-512 (Tacoma),
    2010 F-212XL STD (New Hartford) - "Connie"
    2014 Orpheum 12 OOO SHRW (New Hartford)

    Non-Guild 12s:
    1970 Martin D-12-20
    1980 Ibanez AW-75 (Series I)
    1984 Taylor 655

  9. #9
    Super Moderator fronobulax's Avatar
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    After 30 seconds and using no reference material...

    The headstock looks like a legitimate Guild.
    The serial number looks legit and probably dates to the mid-1970's.
    The PUs in the covers look legit.
    The body shape could be an S-100 or inspired by one, but the edges (side to top, side to bottom) seem a bit sharp.
    I do not recall a three piece S-100 body using different finishes/woods from the factory but it could have happened.
    The three piece body is giving me a sense of deja vu. Maybe we have seen this instrument before or there is another one like it?

    I would be interested in a picture of the back and perhaps inside the control cavity. The bevel for the player's waist might be absent if this is not factory. The control cavity shielding looks the same on just about every S-100 or JS I have seen from that period. A real Guild might have a factory label on the back of the control plate (although the absence of the label doesn't mean it is a fake. My JS II never had a label and Hans said that was expected for some earlier models).

    P.S. The asymmetric cutaways look right but the control knobs are not in the right positions. Two toggles is one too many and it should be closer to the PU toggle.
    Last edited by fronobulax; 12-31-2016 at 04:22 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by mgod View Post
    What he said.

    '67 Starfire I Bass (Cherry)
    '71 JS II Bass (Walnut)
    '82 B-50 Acoustic Bass (Natural)
    '87 Pilot (Black)
    '13 Newark Street Starfire Bass (Cherry)
    '16 Betts Bass "Walnut Bottom"

    LMG I, II, III

    This space available.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Qvart's Avatar
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    Yikes. That's a Frankenguild.

    The neck could be from an S-100 ('71 I think). The body looks like someone had a project - these were in regular production in the '70's and as far as I know always a single slab of mahogany. The body looks slightly too thick too: Note where the fret board rests on the body - the binding shouldn't be flush. There should be a bit of neck wood between binding and body. The end of the fret board looks a little mangled too. Guild used Grover tuners in that era, but something's definitely been modified. As for the HB-1 pickup: looks like it was probably a neck pickup to begin with (the side with two screws should be towards the bass side of the guitar - "up" not "down"). You might find a date etched into the back.

    Besides the neck, a pickup, and the pickup switch nothing looks right.


    Last edited by Qvart; 12-31-2016 at 04:33 PM.
    Guildless. :(

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