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1953 Epiphone Zephyr
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Serial #: 66833, blue New York label
Body size at lower bout: 17 3/8" Scale length: 25 1/2". Nut width: 1 11/16" Neck depth: .91/1.16, 1st/10th frets
Materials: Arched maple laminate body; solid cherry neck with walnut centerstripe; Brazilian rosewood fingerboard with split-block fingerboard inlays; bound body and fingerboard; stained holly headstock veneer with enamel shield peghead logo.
Hardware: Original nickel hardware includes adjustable single coil 'Tone Spectrum' pickup, 16:1 epsilon logo tuners, trapeze tailpiece, hex-key adjustable truss rod. Vintage correct tortoise pickguard with epsilon logo, adjustable rosewood bridge, vintage style 'chicken head' control knobs.
Notes: It's widely acknowledged that for the ultimate in archtop resonance and projection, nothing can surpass the traditional full depth, non-cutaway body. Which is why it's puzzling to consider how scarce these classic models have become over the last half century. And why we are so pleased to be able to offer this veteran model, for those seeking true vintage bop era tone.
Produced from 1939 to 1956, the Epiphone Zephyr was the firm's longest lasting and most popular electric guitar. Epi's workhorse professional model, the Zephyr was positioned against its main competitor, the Gibson ES-150. Featuring a slightly wider body than its Gibson rival, the Zephyr was equipped with a variety of electronics, the last and most popular being the 'Tone Spectrum' adjustable single coil, more commonly known as the 'New York' pickup today. This handsome blonde example from 1953 would be one of the earliest with the truss rod mounted in the peghead as well.
The guitar is in fine original condition, with no cracks or repairs, and all its original natural finish intact. The electronics work flawlessly, and the neck profile is quite contemporary, and distinctly less clubby than Gibsons of the era. The slab cut maple laminate body provides fat tone, improved feedback resistance, and superior durability over carved guitars as well. The original lacquer finish is in excellent condition, free of pick or buckle wear, and showing only the smooth thumbwear of an instrument well played and well loved.
At barely 6lb. in total, the guitar is happily lightweight and well balanced, particularly for a full depth 17" auditorium size instrument. The action is low and smooth, with a fresh high-precision setup, and the original single-coil pickup is clear and detailed. Original nickel hardware is augmented by a vintage correct tortoise pickguard made from an original template, an adjustable rosewood bridge, and 40's style 'chicken head' pointer knobs.
A classic jazzer from the bop era, the Zephyr is the outstanding value in a true New York Epi. A true best buy: one only, call now.
Setup: The frets have been precision leveled, recrowned and polished; 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 nickel roundwound strings. The guitar will accommodate lighter or heavier gauge strings, according to preference. String action is set at 4/64" to 5/64" at the 12th fret, with moderate relief. The action may be lowered or raised to your requirements with the adjustable bridge.
Case: Deluxe plush lined hardshell case.