Up for sale, a 2007 Gibson Master Museum series SJ-200 Ren Ferguson-crafted jumbo acoustic guitar in exceptional condition and in perfect working order, complete with the original hardshell case. Ren Ferguson has become a legendary figure in acoustic guitar circles and deservedly so, as the longtime Master Luthier overseeing Gibson's acoustic production. The Master Museum models were hand-crafted by Ren and sparingly few were produced, commanding $40,000 when sold new and even more on the secondary market when they rarely become available.
In some arenas considered the pinnacle of Gibson acoustic craftsmanship, the basis for this Gibson "art guitar" is the SJ-200, a model described by Gibson as the "King of the Flat-tops." Truly an impressive instrument both visually and sonically, with some of Gibson’s finest and most ostentatious tonewoods and aesthetic accents, this SJ-200 features a spruce top and bookmatched ziricote back and sides (tonally similar to rosewood), with a flame maple neck capped with an ebony fingerboard. This guitar boasts the classic SJ-200 tonal profile, broad and expansive with excellent clarity and power. The bass register is deep and layered, with a distinctive pillowy warmth when you dig in with a flatpick. Trebles are sparkling and punchy with plenty of body and the glassy snap associated with ebony, and midrange frequencies are present, balanced, and complex. Weighing 5lbs 10oz, this Master Museum SJ-200 has been professionally setup here at Mike & Mike's Guitar Bar with phosphor bronze 12-53 strings and easy-playing action all the way up the fretboard.
The neck comprises two pieces of heavily figured flame maple married by a center strip of maple flanked on both sides by multi-ply binding. The neck has a medium C-shaped profile carve with just enough roundness in the shoulders, measuring .830" deep at the 1st fret and .890" at the 9th. The neck heel is also hand-carved, one of Ren Ferguson's signature touches. The abalone bound ebony fingerboard is liberally inlaid with mother of pearl, and the slender fretwire is flawless. The scale length is 25 1/2“, and the translucent bone nut measures 1 3/4" in width, ideal for comfortable chording and fingerstyle playing if desired. The headstock face features a Gibson script logo, continuing the intense overlapping mother of pearl inlay work seen across the top, with gold Grover Imperial tuning machines and stair-stepped pearl buttons.
On the top, the ebony moustache bridge defines the look of a true Gibson jumbo, and the saddle has plenty of height. Every conceivable edge is framed by abalone and multi-ply binding, and even the elevated, mutli-ply bound red tortoise pickguard has its own inlay to mirror the instrument’s other surfaces. Visible through the soundhole, the heel block is embossed with the serial number and Ren Ferguson's signature.
The ziricote back and sides have extremely dynamic grain, and there is one notable repaired crack at the treble side waist on the back flanked by two smaller and far more slight secondary cracks, purportedly repaired at Gibson. Wear on the high gloss nitro lacquer finish is otherwise limited to only a few additional very faint finish scratches and minor marks in the clear coat on the body as a whole. The gloss finish on the neck profile is flawless.
The original hardshell case is included.