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 1933 Epiphone Olympic

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Serial #: 7019, silver Epiphone "Art Musical Instruments" label

Body size at lower bout: 13 1/2" Scale length: 25 1/2" Nut width: 1 11/16"

Finish: Original sunburst finish, nitrocellulose lacquer type

Materials: Hand carved solid spruce top; arched mahogany back and sides; one-piece mahogany neck; Brazilian rosewood fingerboard; single-bound body, solid bone nut.

Hardware: Original hardware includes contoured bakelite pickguard; adjustable Brazilian rosewood bridge; nickel open back three-on-a-plate tuners with ivoroid buttons. Newer Waverly nickel trapeze tailpiece.

Notes: One of the first flight of Epi archtop models, the Olympic first appeared in 1932, and remained in the catalog until 1949. This outstanding example from 1933 shows the earliest design for the model, with a 13 1/2" mahogany body. Unlike the Gibson archtops of comparable size, the Olympic and its other Epi cousins all had long scale necks and suspended fingerboards, thereby enhancing their formidable projection and bark.

We'd assumed for years that these models would be fairly plentiful, but once alt-country guitar hero David Rawlings adopted the Olympic as his all-purpose touring and recording guitar, we began getting requests for them that we just couldn't fill at any price. And when collectors began searching them out in earnest, it quickly became apparent just how seldom these rarities come to market, much less in such outstanding condition.

A gleaming guitar from the dawn of Epiphone archtops, this wonderful example is from the last year for the smaller 13 1/2" body. The guitar shows no cracks, and has all its original gleaming sunburst finish. Original hardware includes the contoured pickguard of brilliant black bakelite, open back tuners, and adjustable Brazilian rosewood bridge, with matching serial number stamped under the base. The neck has smooth low action over all-original fretwork, a gentle C profile contour, and the voice is bright, forward and punchy as they come. In addition to the segmented soundholes of the earliest Masterbilt Epis, this rare example has a unique Masterbilt logo over a particularly handsome dark tortoise shell peghead facing, the only one we've ever seen. A vintage DeArmond single coil pickup with control box has been reomoved and is included in the case, and some tiny screw holes for mounting have been filled and spot finished.

Finally, this shiny little guitar comes complete with an original deluxe Epiphone fitted plush lined arched hardshell case. As these models were almost always supplied with flimsy fiber cases, this was a wonderful surprise, and once again, the only one we've ever seen. Just a jewel, in astounding condition, and a mighty rare bird indeed. One only: call now.

Setup: The frets have been precision leveled, recrowned and polished as required; trussrod tension and neck relief adjusted as required; bridge height adjusted; bridge compensation set; string slots at nut and bridge inspected and recut as necessary; bridge foot contour inspected and fit to top as necessary; bridge radius inspected and recurved as necessary; bridgewheels and tuners lubricated; fingerboard and bridge oiled; body and neck cleaned and hand polished.

This instrument is strung with medium gauge bronze strings (.013-.057). The guitar will accommodate lighter or heavier gauge strings, according to preference. String action is set at 5/64" to 6/64" at the 12th fret, with moderate relief for acoustic playing with medium strings. The action may be lowered or raised to your requirements with the adjustable bridge.

Case: Original deluxe Epiphone fitted plush lined arched hardshell case.
































































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