Gibson J-45 Guitar (1942-1984)
When guitar players think of gibson electric guitars automatically gibson les paul guitars come to mind , because it became a gibson trademark , just like fender strats and telecasters . When people think of gibson acoustic guitars its the gibson j-45 that seems to stand out .
When The gibson j-35 jumbo discontinued in late 1942 , it was replaced by the gibson j45 . There was not much difference between the 2 guitars accept for the pickguard , fancier gibson logos in gold and minor changes to the pegheads .
Both guitars sound awesome ( warm & phat tone ) however , the gibson j-45 became a huge success because they were not expensive and they sounded really good ,that explains why they are still in production 'til this day.
In 1942 the gibson j-45 were dreadnought flat top guitars , made with mahogany wood (back and sides) , they had a teardrop firestripe pickguard unlike the j-35 which had a pickguard that followed the body contours, rectangular bridge , w/b/w top and back binding, 19 fret fingerboard , fancy gibson gold logo with a banner " only a gibson is good enough " ( see 3rd pic ) ( some had no truss rods )
In 1943 they replaced the pickguard with a tortoise shell celluloid teardrop pickguard , several j-45 guitars were made also in maple wood back and sides , and some had no truss rods ,
in 1945 truss rods were implemented in all j-45 guitars .
In late 1946 the "only a gibson is good enough" banner is gone , belly bridge was added . In 1947 they made a blonde version ( natural ) and called it the gibson J-50 ( same guitar but with a different finish)
1949-50 an upper belly bridge added with a triple bound top , in 1955 a larger pickguard was added with an extra fret making it a 20 fret fingerboard .
From 1956 to 1968 the j-45 went through some minor changes such as various similar sunburst colors , slightly larger frets in 1959 and on , gibson logos were added to the pickguards in 1966 and rosewood brigdes were used on and off ,
in 1968 some j-45 guitars had white pickguards (screwed-down) .
In 1969 the gibson j-45 guitar were made with square shoulders and black teardrop pickguards with no logo . Very minor changes were made until they were discontinued in 1982 .
In 1983 the gibson j-45 celebrity acoustic guitar was introduced for gibson's 90th anniversary ( only 90 were made )
In 1984 gibson reintroduced the original model of the j45 with round shoulders , tortoise shell teardrop pickguard , triple bound top , single bound back , unbound fingerboard ( rosewood ) with dot inlays , and were made in sunburst , natural and ebony finish .
Throughout the 90s gibson continued production on gibson j-45 guitars with different related names such as the j-45 western , j-45 yamano , j-45 custom , j-45 rosewood and the Gibson J-45 buddy holly limited edition .
Vintage Price Value For 2008 :
1942 - 1949 > $4500 to $7500
1950 - 1960 > $3700 to $4700
1961 - 1969 > $2400 to $3500
1969 - 1974 > $1500 to $2000 ( square shoulders )
1975 - 1999 > $1500 to $2000 ( round shoulders )
1942-1949 > Avg Upward Trend of 13% a Year since 2000
1950-1960> 9% 1961-1969> 8% 1969-1975> 8% 1976-1990> 5%
Note : The gibson j45 is not a highly collectable guitar because they made them in mass quantities and they are fairly easy to find accept for the 1940s and 50s era , however it doesn't diminish the quality and craftsmanship of the guitar as a matter of fact its actually a good thing for us guitar players who want a great acoustic guitar at a reasonable price.
Buying Advice For Used & Vintage Gibson j45 Guitars :
1. You can find used or vintage Gibson j-45 guitars for sale on Ebay, they have good deals on several occasions, and if your lucky you can get them at a steal.
Buying Advice For New J-45 Guitars ( Compare Prices ) :
1. J-45 guitars for sale at musicians friend
2. Gibson j45 guitars for sale at guitar center3. J-45 acoustic guitars at zzounds
4. Gibson j-45 guitars at Music 123
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