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 Post subject: The Dranow Collection
PostPosted: Mon Oct 05, 2009 10:26 am 
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Post removed, sorry

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Last edited by gjdranow on Wed Dec 01, 2010 2:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 05, 2009 1:18 pm 
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Still can't get over how quick you've gotten this group together man. Dating these is an inexact science, and kinda like the blackface Fender amps, features will get you in the neighborhood (wave headstock: post 1976) but it's generally accepted that anything with a wave headstock is a period where Electra (Matsumoku...) quality was very consistent. (sure that will stir up somebody's blood) I'm not saying that anything made prior is subpar quality, but just not AS consistent. At that time, the only guitars not manufactured by Mat would be the Outlaw and Outlaw basses (X189 do you concur?).

Really goes to show just how many different models they were putting out, and when you start taking into consideration the X100 Phoenix and XV pointy models, well it just boggles the mind how many different offerings Electra had available between 1976 and 1984... like 50 models in a eight year period? Something like that.

Have you considered an Omega yet? From a distance they look like another LP clone, but with the Tone Spectrum five way rotary much more versatile. These predate the MPC line. A lot of guys rip out the Five Way and install the typical 2vol/2tone setup (which is both a shame, and available on so many other guitars already...) so look close before you make your bid!

I haven't been paying close attention for too terribly long myself, but I haven't seen a X510 (Concert Pro {Howard Roberts}) on eBay in the two years I have been watching. Good luck there.

The X155, XV1W, XV2R and Endorsers (X935, X935cs) all have push/pull tone pots for coil split and phase reverse built into them. Eight different pickups sounds on board, pretty sweet!

There are a couple guitars I'm looking for too, but I'm afraid to mention them, as I have a feeling I won't be able to compete with you if we do battle in eBayland! Thanks for sharing. Cheers, Mike.

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 05, 2009 1:36 pm 
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I should keep my cards close to the vest but I think its only fair to let you guys know when I "go all chips in".

These are already up in the Auction Watch and I'm all in

What I believe is a Model# 2245
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?Vi ... :MEBIDX:IT

the Dan Armstrong Lucite
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?Vi ... :MEBIDX:IT

And I've got a bid on this Omega (a price that makes sense to me, not all in)

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?Vi ... 0415764658

That's all I'm active on right now. I really want to find that 2254 Gold Top, Dang it!!

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If you don't know the blues you got a hole in your soul -Freddy King
Gary Dranow and the Manic Emotions, circa 1994


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 05, 2009 1:41 pm 
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proendorser wrote:
There are a couple guitars I'm looking for too, but I'm afraid to mention them, as I have a feeling I won't be able to compete with you if we do battle in eBayland! Thanks for sharing. Cheers, Mike.
Just let me know and I'll stay out, I don't need to have every one that comes along :wink:

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 05, 2009 2:44 pm 
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I wondered if anyone was going to have a crack at the lucite one; there was one on Trademe here in NZ that didn't make reserve... I was tempted!! :D

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 05, 2009 3:29 pm 
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gjdranow wrote:
These are already up in the Auction Watch and I'm all in

What I believe is a Model# 2245
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?Vi ... :MEBIDX:IT


Whoa, thats a pretty 2245, an early one. You can see how it's stock pickups are different from the pickups in your current openbook 2245 with the script logo. And you can see many (not all...) of the bolt-on's in that era have the model number stamped into the neck plate. We veterans chuckle when we see people cite those as a Serial Number. Those 'star' tuners are stock and correct too.

Good luck with the lucite, I think that may have been the first publicized SLM Electra, or certainly very early, not sure who even manufactured it (X189 would know!).

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 06, 2009 6:41 am 
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gjdranow -

Have you sent any of your pictures to the new owner of the Electra brand - Ben Chafin?

I'll bet he would like to see them.

Just wondering.

RCSBlues :oops: :up:

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 06, 2009 4:35 pm 
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RCSBlues wrote:
gjdranow -

Have you sent any of your pictures to the new owner of the Electra brand - Ben Chafin?

I'll bet he would like to see them.

Just wondering.

RCSBlues :oops: :up:


No, I haven't. I'm not privy to who Ben is, is there a thread on this?

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If you don't know the blues you got a hole in your soul -Freddy King
Gary Dranow and the Manic Emotions, circa 1994


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 06, 2009 4:37 pm 
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Hey guys, is this the most current information on Serial Numbers and dating Electras?

viewtopic.php?p=19107#p19107

I could have sworn I saw a listing of guitars and serial numbers helping to date these things. I'm a little worried i won't be able to get any read on when some of these were made. I can't find it now, even through the search function :(

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Gary Dranow and the Manic Emotions, circa 1994


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 06, 2009 6:04 pm 
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There are a ton of threads about serial numbers that go into more detail than the one you referred to. Not sure I can do this justice, but the bottom line is that there are so many entities involved that dating by serial numbers only works with certain instruments. Remember that: SLM = American Distributor starts out ordering guitars to spec from multiple suppliers... that in turn have multiple manufacturers. Eventually by mid 70’s SLM starts designing their own ‘original’ guitars and electronics thanks to Tom Presley, there is more consistency with supplier/manufacturers, but still serial number conventions vary from builders and model to model.

It is generally believed that in about 1975 the remaining already made ‘openbook’ headstocks are modified with a quarter-sized ‘cutout’ and appear briefly, soon to be replaced by the ‘Wave’ or ‘Fan’ (or gumby…) headstock shape. So really anything before 1975 is a wasteland for accurate dating, unless you can go by potentiometer markings, which I’ve never heard of anyone trying to do on Japanese guitars. Most people are satisfied with just saying ‘early 70s’ on those examples.

Even after 1975 the serial numbers aren’t always helpful. Anything with a five digit is pretty useless, and with only 99,000 possible combinations, probably some got reused if you ask me!

The six and seven digit ones seem to follow a ymmxxx pattern, example 011049 would ‘seem’ to indicate 1980, November forty ninth guitar made that month. 103049 would be 1981, march forty ninth in month production. Definitely some weirdness possible though as both your Zephyrs don’t fit this scheme now do they with 041018 and 037782. Between 1980 and the 1984 the seven digit is very reliable for month/year dating.

Your Semi Hollows follow another pattern, B77xxxx would be a February 1977 build and K77xxxx would be a November 1977, is this Horishino..? (X189 would know!) Similar to early Ibanez numbering scheme.

The foil tags are useless for dating, used on MPC’s, Outlaws and probably others.

There are a number of changes in hardware/knobs/finishes/pickups that could possibly help to date (or differentiate early to late) production, but that’s another thread man. I wouldn’t be ‘Worried’ as you say about exact dating, the guitars usually stand on their own merit. I’ve never heard anyone proclaim that they’d rather have a ’72 than a ’74 for example, generally accepted that anything with a openbook headstock is early 70’s. Enjoy them.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 06, 2009 7:43 pm 
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proendorser wrote:
There are a number of changes in hardware/knobs/finishes/pickups that could possibly help to date (or differentiate early to late) production, but that’s another thread man. I wouldn’t be ‘Worried’ as you say about exact dating, the guitars usually stand on their own merit. I’ve never heard anyone proclaim that they’d rather have a ’72 than a ’74 for example, generally accepted that anything with a openbook headstock is early 70’s. Enjoy them.


Extreme thanks! So I'm taking it that the headstocks are the key to narrowing in to what period the guitar comes from earlier than the '80s?

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If you don't know the blues you got a hole in your soul -Freddy King
Gary Dranow and the Manic Emotions, circa 1994


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 07, 2009 5:30 am 
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Gary -

Ben Chafin now has the Electra brand trademark and is going to have new Electra guitar prototypes ready for an upcoming NAMM show;

I would bet he would like to see your collection;

Here's the link to his Prototypes at this Forum:

http://www.rivercityamps.com/electraforum/viewtopic.php?f=15&t=4348

RCSBlues :oops: :up:

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