The difference between models

fronobulax

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Does it really come down to what you want and what you can afford at the time?

Yes

What constitutes getting ripped off?

Misrepresentation by the seller with perhaps a willingness to take advantage of the buyer's ignorance.

Just reinforcing the answers you already have.
 

mavuser

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Here is a X30 on Reverb. From the UK also.

I would imagine "X30" was simply written in error, and was an internal factory code, as is somewhat common for the period on acoustic Guilds. I feel like I have maybe seen that before on a Songbird. However, "X30" is so far off from other internal codes, I would leave the door cracked open for the possibility that it somehow does mean something different, and may have something to do w the top bracing? either way it is a glossy white Songbird in the UK.
 

cupric

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I would imagine "X30" was simply written in error, and was an internal factory code, as is somewhat common for the period on acoustic Guilds. I feel like I have maybe seen that before on a Songbird. However, "X30" is so far off from other internal codes, I would leave the door cracked open for the possibility that it somehow does mean something different, and may have something to do w the top bracing? either way it is a glossy white Songbird in the UK.
I never heard of that designation either. When I was browsing the Guild s/n dating I noticed what might have been several models of Songbirds. Whether there were different model designations in export models is also a possibility?
This one is white with black binding. That is something I never noticed before.
 

SFIV1967

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That "X30" on the oval label is not something I've seen before.
Actually even that is wrong...The internal factory number for the Songbird was "X030" and that leading"0" was skipped on that label. Others showed the correct internal number (see below) but both should not have been written on the label in the first place...

The X040 for instance was the internal number when the Nightingale was introduced in 1987...

1607182894509.png


Ralf
 

mavuser

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the X-30 white bird has an early 1990 Songbird serial number, but the headstock is stamped early 1988.

I am pretty sure I have seen one very early Songbird labeled "X-30" with the prototype serial nimber of "FF" or "LL" prefix. I believe X-30 to simply be an internal code or early designation for a regular songbird. just before this time in the 80s, Guild has the X-79, X-80, X-88, and so on...
 

SFIV1967

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the X-30 white bird has an early 1990 Songbird serial number
No, 207 is indeed from February 1988. 1988 serial numbers were 152 to 688, even if that is not visible in the published serial number list. (The X030 label with S/N 203 (where the last 3 is hidden under the string) is also from 1988)
Ralf
 
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mavuser

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No, 207 is indeed from February 1988. 1988 serial numbers were 152 to 688, even if that is not visible in the published serial number list. (The X030 label with S/N 20 is 1987.)
Ralf

that would make a whole lot more sense on several levels, thank you, Ralf. Also had been pretty sure that super early proto X30 i had seen went back to 87, or possibly even 86.

so Grot has #14- that is from 1987? I like Grots.
 

SFIV1967

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so Grot has #14- that is from 1987?
I assume so, that's what my corrected list shows, there is nothing under 1986 for the Songbird yet:

1607186558641.png




Just to add, some of the labels even got the color code (here E08) added after the X030, same as we have seen on other models during that time. That label below is even additional odd. It got a KK100 instead of KK000! Talk about consistent labeling!

1607186785214.png


Ralf
 
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cupric

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I assume so, that's what my corrected list shows, there is nothing under 1986 for the Songbird yet:

1607186558641.png




Just to add, some of the labels even got the color code (here E08) added after the X030, same as we have seen on other models during that time. That label below is even additional odd. It got a KK100 instead of KK000! Talk about consistent labeling!

1607186785214.png


Ralf
Westerly is on the fringes of Swamp Yankee territory. Nonconformity is the usual way of life there. Lol! If you were able to talk with the people involved at the time, a certain logic would most likely exist. Lol!
(For the record, this is coming from original Swamp Yankee stock).
 

Nuuska

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That "X30" is said to have BIRCH TOP !!!

Birch is wonderful tree - have three huge ones on my yard - and it is excellent wood for many purposes - but guitar tops - never heard.

And that "X30" in that Reverb ad looks exactly like my white Songbird.
 

adorshki

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Thank you. I kinda got that feeling, but you never know if you got lurkers that are gonna swoop in and be a jerk... but everyone has been really warm from the get go. I only signed up with the intention of getting my question answered, but everyone has been so nice I've kinda stuck around.

So, yeah, it's a "prestige" being sold outta the UK. Seller claims it's a limited run but who knows how true that is...

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Prestige Series was a different guitar altogether from Songbird, but probably much better choice for unplugged use. It was a traditional acoustic back and sides type build.
In case you didn't see it, here's a short ( :D ) thread with good background on the model, and Ralf notes they're only 2.5" deep, although 16" lower bout. In fact, is it the same guitar?

Ever since I first saw 'em I always thought they were a transitional model between the granddaddy F45ce and the later "Fxxce" series, but you should give that size a try for comfort, it may surprise you as I mentioned earlier.

But although pretty low production (a lot fewer than Songbirds), it wasn't a "limited run" in the sense that Guild announced they were only going to make so many, like the GSR models out of New Hartford. It was "regular production", just very low numbers even by Guild's already relatively small output standards.

And in spite of my previous "advice", yeah, to me, that's "too much" for a Prestige no matter how scarce. As well, at that age it should be thoroughly checked for possible need for neck re-set.

My Tech is very adamant that I don't pay over 1k for one of these guitars (he's a professional musician and been a Luthier for over 30 years). I told him about the advice from some here on the board about checking ending/sold prices on reverb and ebay to get an idea of the going rate... He said, "That sounds like good advice on the surface, but we all know there's a sucker born every minute, and all you're doing is looking lists of people who got ripped off if they paid over 1k..." He's a funny guy, but I think he makes sense. I mean the guy's a luthier, he's gotta know what he's talking about. A mechanic can you tell you a car's worth better than a salesmen.

So, yeah, long winded answer. :)
Multi-faceted subject. :)

So your luthier's obviously got your best financial interest in mind, but no snark intended, just because he's a luthier doesn't mean he's "Gotta know what he's talking about" when it comes to current market. Does he know of any recent sales in the price range he believes is appropriate? (And I don't actually disagree with him, he may know something that doesn't show up on sold price lists, for example)

Those sold listings are exactly how Blue Book values are derived when it comes to cars (and guitars), to continue that simile.

And if there's only one of a piece sold in the year prior to the BlueBook, that piece sets the "market price" as suggested by the Blue Book. So your luthier thinks the market's too high and he could well be right.

It could fall in 6 months after Covid's brought under control. Sellers might realize that potential customers have much more freedom to shop again and aren't constricted to internet purchasing. Also think the samples we've seen in this thread so far are definitely priced with a "scarcity" premium which for example in the case of that Prestige, simply isn't justified in my opinion.

Just because they're scarce doesn't mean they're more desirable. In 6 months they may decide it's time to sell that piece which is tying up inventory dollars even if they have to lower their price.

Part 2: I might knowingly pay more than "market value" for a piece in known excellent condition that I can play immediately, as opposed to buying something I know needs work but fits in the budget and possibly spending "more than it was worth" by the time it's properly repaired.

Other guys love finding old pieces in need of work and getting 'em properly refurbished or restored. So there's also that issue that different types of buyer are looking for different condition instruments, bringing us back to what is condition worth?

To me that's where having a trusted luthier as value that may influence what you're willing to pay.

And how long are you willing to wait? I'd be kind of surprised to see a $7-900.00 Songbird in VVG condition come around again, but we get surprised here all the time. :)
 
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adorshki

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That "X30" is said to have BIRCH TOP !!!

Birch is wonderful tree - have three huge ones on my yard - and it is excellent wood for many purposes - but guitar tops - never heard.

And that "X30" in that Reverb ad looks exactly like my white Songbird.
I noted that too.

Tried to zoom in on top but no joy. But it's one of the "White" ones, no? Don't think we'd be able to ID the top wood under the finish anyway. Got a suspicion seller's mistaken.
 

cupric

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The below is Gruhn's own prototype, hanging in his store. Still looks like his earlier Nightbird prototype!

1607189723095.png
1607190317251.png


Ralf
Several years ago George had a few guitars made up for sale. They were basically Nightbirds. He had them for some time, but I don't know where they went.
 

grmps

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The below is Gruhn's own prototype, hanging in his store. Still looks like his earlier Nightbird prototype!

1607189723095.png
1607190317251.png


Ralf
I wholly love the inlays on these guitars and I think the silver tuners really bring out that electric guitar. I've never been a fan of gold. Gold just screams 80 y/o old lady at me. Even my wife's and my wedding rings are white gold because we both dislike that old lady yellow that gold is.
 

grmps

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Does he know of any recent sales in the price range he believes is appropriate? (And I don't actually disagree with him, he may know something that doesn't show up on sold price lists, for example)
Well, As I said he's a professional musician and while not necessarily "touring" he does usually have 3 bands going at any one time that gig fairly extensively. I haven't asked directly about his adamance on his price reasoning but knowing the guy, I get the feeling it probably has to do with the amount of work that may need to go into one and just the over all condition that he's accustomed to maybe seeing them in while gigging... And it's certainly possible some personal preference/bias could play a part in it. But as a guy who fixes guitars and plays guitars and has quite a bit of geography under his belt... I imagine he's gauging his opinion on not just blue book but the over all condition he's used to seeing them in and what condition they are most likely going to be in given their age.

And how long are you willing to wait? I'd be kind of surprised to see a $7-900.00 Songbird in VVG condition come around again, but we get surprised here all the time. :)
Well, my patience wax's and wains. Some times I'm startled by it, and other time I'm disappointed at my lack of it. Right now, I seem to have a lot of it. Probably because I've waited this long (25 years over all), so what's a few more months or a year? and these guitars are (for me) on the pricier side of an instrument. Especially when I can walk into Sam Ash/Guitar Center/ a mom and pop shop and get a reasonably nice guitar for 299-399 or less. So, if I'm going to pay 500 -1k over that price, I wanna make sure I get exactly what I want.

I don't mind finding a 7-800 songbird that needs some work because ultimately whatever I purchase is gonna end up at his shop to begin with, anyway, so as long as it's not some kind of crazy damage that has changed the integrity of the guitar I'm fine with paying him to fix/setup. He said a normal wear/tear used/abused songbird should cost you no more than 7-800$ MAYBE 850 If I've bonded with it somehow but definitely no more than 850. $850-1k if the thing is in mint condition. So that's kinda what I'm trying to stay close too.
 

adorshki

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Well, As I said he's a professional musician... But as a guy who fixes guitars and plays guitars and has quite a bit of geography under his belt... I imagine he's gauging his opinion on not just blue book but the over all condition he's used to seeing them in and what condition they are most likely going to be in given their age.
Ah, missed that part about being a professional musician, but knowing his larger background lends further credence to what he bases his assessments on. :)
Well, my patience wax's and wains...I don't mind finding a 7-800 songbird that needs some work because ultimately whatever I purchase is gonna end up at his shop to begin with, anyway, so as long as it's not some kind of crazy damage that has changed the integrity of the guitar I'm fine with paying him to fix/setup. He said a normal wear/tear used/abused songbird should cost you no more than 7-800$ MAYBE 850 If I've bonded with it somehow but definitely no more than 850. $850-1k if the thing is in mint condition. So that's kinda what I'm trying to stay close too.
I trust his assessment, now, and also that you have a "game plan" to get what you want at the right price, you're doing your due diligence.

Bravo and go for it!

:)
 

grmps

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Ah, missed that part about being a professional musician, but knowing his larger background lends further credence to what he bases his assessments on. :)
Ha, ha. As I'm scrolling back through, I don't see off hand where I mentioned that.... Soooooo, I might have actually forgotten to mention that before :ROFLMAO:.

you're doing your due diligence.

Bravo and go for it!

:)
Thanks!! :)
 
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