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1948 Epiphone Emperor
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Serial #: 58057, 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: .92/1.03
Materials: Highly figured solid carved flame maple back and sides; solid graduated Adirondack spruce soundboard; 7-piece maple-walnut neck; 7-ply body binding; triple-bound heel cap, neck binding, f-holes and head stock; solid rosewood fingerboard with "split-block" mother of pearl and abalone inlay; ornate abalone 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 correct bound 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.
A truly gorgeous postwar example, this handsome guitar has back, sides and neck of highly figured curly maple, and a hand-graduated soundboard from solid bookmatched spruce, with Adirondack type grain structure. (Quartersawn tonewood of this dimension has never been easy to find, and this guitar was factory built with a small spruce insert to fill out the edge of the upper treble bout.)
Maintained in superb condition, the instrument shows no apparent cracks, and is notably free of pick, buckle, thumb or fingerboard wear. The gold hardware is all original, including the Pat. Pend. Frequensator tailpiece, rock solid at the bend. The original binding remains tight to the body, and the natural blonde lacquer finish is deeply ambered: still free of checking, it may have been replaced years ago. Neck angle and bridge height are excellent, and fine recent fretwork offers smooth low action over a gentle C profile neck, with a fresh high precision setup.
Typical of the model, the guitar has massive acoustic volume with exceptionally warm lower and middle register and the clear, brilliant highs of finely aged spruce. An instrument 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.
Case: Deluxe lightweight period plush lined hardshell case.
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.