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1946 Epiphone Emperor
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Serial #: 55697, blue NY label
Body size at lower bout: 18 1/2" Body depth: 3 1/4" Scale length: 25 1/2" Nut: 1 11/16" Neck depth, 1st/10th frets: .91/1.01
Materials: Hand graduated solid Adirondack spruce top; bookmatched birdseye maple back and neck with curly maple sides; solid ebony fingerboard with "split-block" mother of pearl and abalone inlay; 7-ply body binding; triple-bound heel cap, neck binding, f-holes and head stock; ornate pearl tree-of-life peghead inlay.
Hardware: Original gold hardware includes Pat. Pend. Frequensator tailpiece; epsilon-logo 16X1 tuners; compensated adjustable rosewood bridge, hex-key truss rod at fingerboard extension. Vintage Epiphone bound firestripe tortoise shell pickguard.
Notes: The pinnacle of the Epiphone line, the Emperor was the largest and most costly instrument produced in the New York factory. With its massive 18 1/2" lower bout, this top-of-the-line instrument remains the largest archtop to be built in a production factory. Yet due to its slightly smaller upper bout, many players find the Emperor body markedly easier to hold than the somewhat bulkier Super 400.
An exceptionally fine postwar example, this handsome guitar has been preserved in extraordinary original condition, with a hand-graduated soundboard of solid bookmatched Adirondack spruce. The gold hardware is all original, including the 16:1 epsilon logo tuners, Pat. Pend. Frequensator tailpiece, solid at the bend, and the compensated adjustable rosewood bridge, with matching serial number stamped under the base.
Maintained in gleaming condition, the instrument shows no cracks, and is notably free of pick, buckle, thumb, or fingerboard wear. The original binding remains tight to the body, and fine pro frets offer smooth low action over a gentle C profile neck, with a fresh high precision setup. Apart from a some traces of age checking in the lustrous original sunburst finish and a few scattered nicks, the instrument has been preserved in amazingly clean condition: even the label inside appears as bright white as when it was newly installed.
Typical of the model, the guitar has massive acoustic volume, with exceptionally warm lower and middle register and the clear, brilliant highs of dry aged spruce. The brown Lifton epsilon logo plush lined hardshell case remains stylish protection for the instrument as well.
An orchestra guitar of exceptional performance, this super jumbo model is a rare opportunity for the demanding player unwilling to settle for anything less than the biggest tone in the room. One only: call now.
Setup: Trussrod tension and neck relief adjusted; 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; bridge wheels and tuners lubricated; fingerboard and bridge oiled; body and neck cleaned and hand polished. Strung with fresh medium gauge .13 phosphor roundwound strings.