The Ultimate Reproduction Vintage Guitar Collection
Even Better Than the REAL Thing
I have been collecting guitars for 25 years. Although I have had many different guitars over the years, my preference is for Vintage guitars, which makes eBay a good place to trade because of the wide audience. So consequently you are probably reading this because you saw one of my guitars for sale on eBay. Welcome!
So, what’s up with the phrase, Even Better Than the REAL Thing!???? Read on…..
In Search of Mosrite: The Mosrite Ventures Model circa. 1987
For the past few years I had been looking for a really nice Mosrite Ventures Model Vintage guitar. Prices ranged from $1,500 to $4,000 depending on the year and the condition. Last year an angel descended on eBay with 35 NOS Mosrite guitars that were built in 1987. These guitars were all brand new and were never sold. They were stored in a warehouse for 14 years. Unbelievable! They were auctioned off one by one, week after week, until they were all gone. I bought the 13th one that sold. I was not disappointed.
The first day I stared at it, the second day I touched it and on the third day I played it. The fourth day I told the family. The fifth day I told the neighbors. The sixth day, everyone came to look at it. The seventh day I rested. What an incredibly beautiful guitar! In fact, I soon realized that it was TOO beautiful! How could I risk pulling it out of the case every day and playing it? It was like having a bad addiction! I needed a fix! It drove me crazy to know that it sat right over there in the corner, taunting me, yet at the same time I could not risk opening the case for fear of damaging such a wonderful instrument! I needed a solution. Then it hit me… Buy a REALLY nice reproduction Mosrite that I could play everyday! EBAY on: search: MOSRITE.
I started with this UNIVOX pictured above. Nice looking copy but the neck was typical of any reproduction 1970’s guitar and anyone who has played a Mosrite knows, the neck is what it is all about. Next I tried a Teisco model (below).
Much better quality than the Univox, much better neck, and a good deal for a $300-$400 vintage guitar, but I decided to keep looking.
This is an early seventies Silvertone. A two notches below in looks, one notch above in feel, but not quite there yet. I also found another Silvertone, different headstock, body a little smoother, similar neck with a white pickguard. I suspect this one was makde by Kawai in the early seventies. Curious how the body and headstock are different, but all the hardware is identical! Here it is…
So, after a significant amount of research, and a great deal of time justifying the outrageous price, I purchased the Japanese made reproduction Mosrite, the one with the “excellent” tailpiece. Here is a picture….
This guitar retails for $1695 and you can get them for around $1000. Pretty pricey for an reproduction Vintage guitar, I must say. Anyway, I’ll be damned if this Japanese Mosrite isn’t one of the nicest guitars I have ever owned! It looks GREAT, the neck feels GREAT and dare I say, it even sounds BETTER than the 1987 Mosrite! Brighter, crisper, it sounds just GREAT. All of this is fine with me because after all, it is NOT a real Mosrite. No sir, I have one of those over there in the corner. The REAL Mosrite is not for playing, so it doesn’t matter anymore what it feels like and what it sounds like, it only matters what it LOOKS like. And so it should be. Who in their right mind would start bashing away on an instrument that can never be replaced? So, when I looked at the situation in this light, it occured to me that the Japanese guitar is arguably… Even Better Than the REAL Thing!
…and so started my quest.
I don’t think I would ever part with the ’87 Mosrite, but I think I have found a way to live with my addiction, and that is to supplement my real Vintage Guitars…. with guitars that feel, look and sound really good, but at a price point that makes it a no-brainer. It’s almost like buying insurance for the ’87 Mosrite. Now I am not playing it as often as I normally would and consequently I’m maintaining the integrity of the Vintage instrument and allowing it to appreciate.
Since then, I’ve been on a quest to find the ultimate in reproduction Vintage guitars that are qualified to add to the list. In so doing, with my efforts and those of others, I hope that this page can serve as a tool for people that are looking for “everyday player” guitars to supplement their Vintage Collection and also for people who would never buy a Vintage Guitar but want The Ultimate Reproduction Vintage Guitars on the Planet.
Please send along your Even Better Than the REAL Thing! guitar stories, along with pictures if possible, and I will include them. Here are a few examples:
Coral Hornet 1960’s
For me, love at first sight. A while back I found one in San Diego. That is a picture of it above, a beauty. Unfortunately they wanted $2,000 for it. They probably still have it today. I’ve played one and they are a lot better looking than playing, primarily because the tailpiece is lousy. The intonation cannot be adjusted because it is a vibrato tailpiece with a piece of wood for a bridge that slides around. Every time you change the strings, you wrestle with it to keep it in tune. That aside, I could not get it out of my mind, so I found one on EBAY that had been refinished and needed a little TLC. With a little work, about $200 in parts (Bigsby and Tune-o-matic bridge) and a few hours of guitar love, I ended up with a real nice looking (some say wierd!?)AND a really nice playing 60’s Coral Guitar. The Gibson Bridge combined with the Bigsby Vibrato make this a NICE player. Stays perfectly in tune for days. Compared to an original at $2000, this one cost about $350. Here is a picture of it:
Comments from Buyer: “Whooo–it got here! I was jumping up and down, and I was so excited that I dragged it over to a friend’s house last night. Thanks SO much!!!” Ann from CA.