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1977 Ibanez 'Howard Roberts' Model

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SN: I-775043

Body size at lower bout: 16". Scale length: 24 3/4" Nut Width: 1 11/16"

Materials: Solid maple neck; highly flamed arched maple body; solid rosewood fingerboard with split-block pearl inlays; vase peghead inlay; five-ply top binding, bound back and neck, original bone nut.

Hardware: Original hardware includes compensated ebony adjustable bridge; gold sealed tuners; gold full size floating humbucking pickup; volume and tone controls with amber speed knobs; original gold L-5 style trapeze tailpiece. Bound tortoise pickguard.

Notes: The Gibson Mandolin-Guitar Company was only six years old when the parent company of Ibanez was founded in 1908. Now a world leaders in precision guitar manufacturing, Ibanez' modern history dates to the early 70's, when they set out to make high-precision copies of Gibson's top-end instruments. So successful were they that Gibson sued to stop production, which was subsequently halted under court order in 1976. Now known as 'lawsuit' guitars, these instruments have become legendary for their rarity, and scrupulous faithfulness to the originals.

While Ibanez L-5 and Johnny Smith models surface occasionally on the vintage market, the lbanez Howard Roberts is one of the rarest birds in the flock. This sunburst version features an extraordinary flamed maple body with figure unseen even on the Gibson originals. And unlike the US made HR's, which were often fitted with the extremely narrow 60's Gibson fingerboards, this guitar has a standard, easy playing 1 11/16" nut width. The guitar is in outstanding 100% original condition, showing no pick, buckle or thumbwear. Apart from a single lacquer dent on the lower bass side, the instrument appears virtually unplayed.

Noteworthy is a rare full size floating humbucking pickup, a version unique to this model alone, with a freshly plated replacement gold cover. And the guitar is equipped with the unique Howard Roberts twin tone control system, which allows players to adjust both treble and bass independently. Finally, this unique model is graced with a vintage L-5 flowerpot peghead inlay and ornate art-deco tailpiece.

In the decades since the last original was made, the Howard Roberts has been revived numerous times, and becoming one of the most popular Artist Models ever. Here's a rare opportunity to own one of the scarcest and most eyecatching versions ever.

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 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 (.013-.057). 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: Deluxe molded hardshell case.




















































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