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1961 Gibson J-45 ADJ Vintage Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar Cherry Sunburst w/ Case


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Up for sale, a 1961 Gibson J-45 in excellent condition, with a bold and unfaded Cherry Sunburst nitro lacquer finish. A visually stunning and early example of Gibson's J-45 ADJ, this guitar features the original Brazilian rosewood bridge which predated the much maligned plastic bridges sometimes seen on this model, fitted with the original height-adjustable ceramic saddle which offers a particularly clear and chiming top end. Warm and smooth sounding, the guitar has a sweet, sparkling treble character with a clear percussive cut. The bass register is present and taut, with a smooth push that’s never boomy, delivering plenty of rich growl when you dig in with a flatpick. The solid mahogany back and sides provide a certain fullness and wooly tonal character, while the solid spruce top gives the instrument top end definition for exceptional string to string balance, and a certain bell-like, sweet upper midrange that cuts through a mix and records very well. The guitar weighs 4lbs 4oz. Professionally setup here at Mike & Mike's Guitar Bar, this J-45 is strung with fresh 12-53 phosphor bronze strings, offering comfortable action and effortless playability.

The one-piece mahogany neck has a notably slender C-shaped profile carve with modest shoulder and a very fast, easy-playing feel, measuring .800" deep at the 1st fret and .865" at the 9th. The Brazilian rosewood fretboard retains the original medium jumbo fretwire with good meat and full factory height, playing cleanly in every register with an ideally adjusted truss rod. The original nylon nut measures a full 1 11/16" in width. On the headstock, the original Kluson Deluxe single line strip tuners are intact with original white buttons and a light speckling of patina across the nickel plating. These tuners turn smoothly and hold pitch as they should, and the A and D tuner arms have a bend to them which doesn't affect functionality. There is a small repaired split just along the treble-side headstock wing, with a small amount of targeted black touchup along the tuner line on the headstock face and equally restrained clear lacquer along the split on the back.

All of the original braces are intact and stable, and the original Brazilian rosewood bridge sits flush with the top, complete with the original adjustable ceramic saddle. The bridge is also a particularly dynamic cut of Brazilian, mirroring the dark black stripes extending down the fretboard. The original very dark large tortoise pickguard sits flat on the top too, notably thinner than later "syrupy" Gibson guards, allowing the top to have a more dynamic, responsive sound.

The original Cherry Sunburst nitro lacquer finish is extremely vibrant and unfaded on the top, with bold Cherry-finished back, sides and neck. There is a professionally repaired “B string crack” extending between the bridge and soundhole, and one smaller split just to the bass side of the center seam behind the bridge. There are also two very tight (and equally difficult to see) cracks on the treble side lower bout on the back, and one on the upper bout treble side as well, all cleanly repaired and structurally sound. Cosmetic wear is consistent with light, consistent use, and the guitar shows some scattered minor marks across the body, buckle rash central to the upper bout on the back, and some very faint texturing in the nitro in a couple isolated spots on the lower bout on the back from contact with a strap in the case.

A modern black tolex hardshell case is included.