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New here - picked up a '59 JM

Posted: Sat Jun 13, 2020 7:28 am
by jazzbro
Just picked up a '59 and am having fun drilling down into all things vintage Jazzmaster.
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Bridge p/u pocket says 8/59 -
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Neck markings - just a 3 (or an M or E or W), possibly a fainter 4 and an embossed/stamped II. No date on neck or neck pocket. I assume original. I haven't seen examples of the stamp on this site but just got here.
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Bridge height adjustment holes appear a little different than some I've seen from the period - some seem to have the edge of the holes domed upwards.
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Anyway - enjoying exploring this piece and this site!

Re: New here - picked up a '59 JM

Posted: Sat Jun 13, 2020 8:15 am
by Pacafeliz
Nice!!! But that bridge looks like a recent (japanese?!) one
.. ???

Welcome, enjoy your stay!

Re: New here - picked up a '59 JM

Posted: Sat Jun 13, 2020 8:34 am
by will
Lovely guitar!

It does look original other than the bridge (though the photos are teeny.)

Be sure to try metric allen screws first if you're looking to replace the missing height adjustment screws on the bridge.

Re: New here - picked up a '59 JM

Posted: Sat Jun 13, 2020 9:08 am
by jazzbro
Thanks for the responses - was wondering about the bridge.
Not sure how to get the pics bigger.

Re: New here - picked up a '59 JM

Posted: Sat Aug 22, 2020 8:42 am
by seenoevil II
1958/9 were such fantastic years for guitars.

There's something about the first generation of Jazzmasters, ES-335s, and Explorers. They were all a bit wonky- not yet the iconic prototype of the model.

The color palette of that late 50's moment- lots of gold and earth tones- korina wood grain, blonde finishes, yellow sunburst- It's very satisfying. The wood under the bridge pup with the center sunburst tone is *chef's kiss*

Also, in '58, the bedrock of guitar culture was already establish- strats, teles, LPs etc. But that was year that the designs were aspirational. The companies were reaching, extending themselves. Radical ideas and shapes. Looking at these interior "under the hood" pics, you get the sense that this truly was cutting edge. That's fascinating as, for decades now, the design of these guitars are viewed as "classic" guitar design cannon that we must not change. It's like seeing a picture of your grandpa as a handsome young man.

Anyway, beautiful specimen.

Re: New here - picked up a '59 JM

Posted: Sun Aug 23, 2020 1:39 pm
by krossfader
That thing is fantastic. Looks to be in great shape with just enough wear to show it was played. The trem arm has a nice curve to it. How's the neck profile? I read these earlier ones were alum but I've never had one in my hands.

Re: New here - picked up a '59 JM

Posted: Mon Aug 24, 2020 8:07 am
by zenarcade
Super nice :? Sold a guitar to a rich dude (not a blues laywer but something similar) last week, and he had a 59 Strat! Well, hardtail but still amazing. Also super light. The neck was a dream, not too fat/not to thin. How heavy is yours?

Re: New here - picked up a '59 JM

Posted: Tue Aug 25, 2020 1:50 am
by CorporateDisguise
Gorgeous!

Re: New here - picked up a '59 JM

Posted: Wed Aug 26, 2020 10:43 am
by jazzbro
Finally figured out how to post bigger pics. ::)

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Replaced tuners with more vintage appropriate, got it refretted as the originals were virtually gone, removed the extra string tree that was added later. Tech fixed the bridge - I mean made it fixed so it doesn't rock.
Still thinking about whether to replace the bridge - not original so could go Costello on it (Mastery) or try to find something period-correct but it's probably not worth it - would look virtually the same and I'm not THAT much of a purist.
Don't love the X scratch mark but what're you gonna do...

Re: New here - picked up a '59 JM

Posted: Thu Oct 01, 2020 2:26 pm
by WillPhistre
Congrats! And welcome!

Re: New here - picked up a '59 JM

Posted: Thu Oct 01, 2020 3:37 pm
by MatthewK
oh that's lovely, have fun with it!

Re: New here - picked up a '59 JM

Posted: Sun Oct 04, 2020 6:37 am
by Normdigsit
Nice looking guitar! Still learning here though...what are the telltale signs of non original bridge?

Re: New here - picked up a '59 JM

Posted: Sat Oct 10, 2020 7:11 am
by jazzbro
Normdigsit wrote:
Sun Oct 04, 2020 6:37 am
Nice looking guitar! Still learning here though...what are the telltale signs of non original bridge?
A couple of things I've learned - the bridge height adjustment port holes on an original bridge are slightly pushed out/upwards around the edge of the hole - quite noticeably different if you're looking for it. Also the small allen screws for adjusting the intonation are metric on some non-original bridges.

Re: New here - picked up a '59 JM

Posted: Tue Nov 24, 2020 6:40 am
by Joey Ace
That's a a fantastic piece of history! Enjoy it. I'm planning on shopping for an early JM as soon as this pandemic opens the borders. (preferable white)
I would want to visit/try it before purchasing. The cost of a trip pales compared to the cost of the guitar, plus it would be fun.

Re: New here - picked up a '59 JM

Posted: Tue Nov 24, 2020 1:55 pm
by Veitchy
seenoevil II wrote:
Sat Aug 22, 2020 8:42 am
1958/9 were such fantastic years for guitars.
I agree - I don't think anyone reputable was building bad guitars in the late 50s.

This JM is a prime example of that. I even dig the X. Beautiful instrument.