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1974-5 Gibson Howard Roberts Custom

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Serial #: 550638

Body size at lower bout: 16". Scale length: 25 1/2" Nut Width: 1 11/16" Neck depth, 1st/10th frets: .79/.93

Materials: Seven-ply bound arched maple laminate body; three piece flame maple neck; solid rosewood fingerboard; abalone vine peghead inlay and logo, pearl split-block pearl fingerboard inlays.

Hardware: Original chrome hardware includes custom engraved tailpiece; ebony bridge with mother of pearl foot inlay; Gibson Deluxe sealed tuners; master volume with separate treble and bass tone controls; black barrel knobs. Kent Armstrong handwound Floating PAF humbucking pickup, vintage correct 5-ply bound tortoise pickguard.

Notes: Featured on untold thousands of major studio recordings, movie and TV soundtracks as both a sideman and soloist, the late Howard Roberts was almost surely the most prolifically recorded jazz guitarist of all time. Like his contemporary Johnny Smith, Roberts also consulted in the creation of a number of technically innovative instruments.

The Howard Roberts Model was introduced by Gibson under its Epiphone label in 1965. Made in Kalamazoo, this original guitar combined an arched 16" Florentine cutaway body with a unique oval soundhole, a design with roots in Orville Gibson's very earliest guitars. With its long-scale neck, the Howard Roberts also echoed the celebrated vine peghead inlay of the classic Epiphone Deluxe and Emperor.

The Epiphone Howard Roberts was discontinued by 1968, but revived under the Gibson logo in 1970. A full-sized floating humbucking pickup was produced for this model alone, and unique separate treble and bass tone controls. Three years later, Gibson premiered this most popular version of the model, the Howard Roberts Custom, with its deep Cremona sunburst finish. Produced in limited numbers, the Howard Roberts Custom was offered for less than a decade until it was pulled from production in 1981.

This guitar is in superb condition, with colorful Paua abalone in the tree-of-life peghead. The finish is all original, and the guitar is without cracks, pick, buckle, thumb or fingerboard wear. Even the typical checking one normally expects from an instrument of this vintage is notably absent. The tone is rich and unusually versatile through the upgrade Armstrong floating humbucking pickup, thanks to the unique tone control system, and the distinctive oval hole body has a very respectable unplugged voice of its own. The arched maple laminate body offers superior feedback resistance and bulletproof reliability against seasonal changes in temperature and humidity. Action is smooth and low over a gentle D profile neck, with fine original fretwork and a fresh high-precision setup.

A rare opportunity to own one of Gibson's most distinctive and versatile Artist Models. One only: call now.

Setup: The frets have been precision leveled, recrowned and polished as required; 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 wheels and tuners lubricated; fingerboard and bridge oiled; body and neck cleaned and hand polished.

This instrument is strung with medium gauge nickel wound 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 for acoustic playing with medium strings. The action may be lowered or raised to your requirements with the adjustable bridge.

Case: Original deluxe black Gibson logo arched plush lined hardshell case.

































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