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1951 Epiphone Deluxe Regent

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Serial #: 62764, blue NY label

Body size at lower bout: 17 3/8" Scale length: 25 1/2" Fingerboard width at nut: 1 11/16"

Finish: Original sunburst finish, nitrocellulose lacquer type.

Materials: Handcarved, bookmatched solid bearclaw spruce top; fiddleback maple back and sides; tiger maple neck with 3 piece center stripe; Brazilian rosewood fingerboard with mother of pearl cloud inlay; Brazilian rosewood bridge, pearl 'vine' peghead inlay, 9-ply body binding, 3-ply headstock binding; bound f-holes, solid bone nut.

Hardware: All original gold hardware includes 16x1 Epsilon logo tuners, Pat.Pend. Frequensator tailpiece and pickguard bracket; triple bound tortoise pickguard, adjustable truss rod, compensated adjustable Brazilian rosewood bridge. Kent Armstrong Handwound Johnny Smith floating pickup with volume control and 1/4" endpin jack.

Notes: Never rains but it pours. Who knew another one of these rare birds would fly in, right on the tailfeathers of another?

Nineteen. Total. So describes the entire number of the Epiphone Deluxe Cutaways (or Regent models) to be documented to date, on the most comprehensive New York Epiphone database. We all knew that Deluxes in general were much rarer than than their closest competitor, the Gibson L-5. But those seeking Deluxe styling in a cutaway guitar have discovered that these models are scarce to the vanishing point. Years could pass before we saw even a single example hit the market. And why?

For reasons unclear, Epiphone dawdled on regular production of cutaway guitars until the late 40's, leaving the field to Gibson for almost a decade. This inexplicable delay meant that Epiphone acoustic cutaways, especially the top-of-the line models, remain some of the rarest production archtops in the world. Indeed the entire production run of these magnificent instruments spanned a mere six years, from 1949 to 1955. And in some of those years not a single example left the factory at all.

This rare blonde guitar is one of of a batch of nine Deluxe Regents from 1951 that have been identified as of this writing, the largest single run in the model's brief history. The solid carved back is crafted of vivid birdseye maple, quite rare in postwar guitars, with sides and neck of deep tiger flame, and a finely carved X-braced soundboard of solid quartersawn, bookmatched spruce.

Smooth thumbwear the length the neck suggests a professionally played instrument, a clue to its outstanding clear, open voice. The instrument shows no apparent cracks or structural repairs, with playwear confined mostly to the soundboard, which shows moderate scattered pick marks and finish nicks, consistent with its long career. The natural blonde finish is all original, ambered to a deep golden hue, and is remarkbly free of checking, another signature of Epi finishes of this era. The gold hardware is all original as well, including the trademark epsilon logo tuners, and Pat. Pend Frequensator tailpiece, still solid after some six decades. Even the original transparent tortoise pickguard remains intact, a minor miracle with this notoriously volatile material.

A final plus is the Kent Armstrong Handwound Johnny Smith floating pickup, with 12 poles for maximum adjustability over a wide range of string types. The deep Epiphone cutaway (2 frets more than L-5C) allows unrestricted access to the uppermost reaches of the fingerboard, which is inset with the classic cloud inlays, a signature of the model since the mid-30's. The neck has a fine solid C profile, gently rounded and notably comfortable in the hand, with recent medium gauge fretwork recently installed, and smooth low action over a fresh high-precision setup. And as if to highlight the truly hand-crafted quality of these singular guitars, the traditional vine peghead inlay all but intersects with the script logo, a feature we've seen on no other Epi from any era.

The voice proves the adage: the more they're played, the better they sound. Played-in over many decades, the soundboard has the deep resonance of a bandstand veteran, with clear, open bass and a truly brilliant upper register, sparkling with natural reverb. With power and projection to burn, this guitar is particularly suited to acoustic lead playing and chord melody work: amplifier not required.

Handsome and vibrant, and one of the rarest models of the 20th century: a great player ready for another lifetime of memorable tunes. Call now.

Setup: The frets have been precision leveled, recrowned and polished; 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.

This instrument is strung with medium gauge phosphor bronze strings (.013-.056). 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 brown Epiphone arched plush lined hardshell case.




















































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