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This appears to be a  prototype of this Recording King model that I kept for my personal collection for a time, simply because these are killer 16" Gibson made archtops from the 1930s, and this is the best other branded Gibson I have ever played.  Honestly it outperforms most that are branded Gibson, and with an adjustable truss rod, graduated carved top, and cosmetic upgrades its more on par with the higher end 16" Gibson archtops of the time. The structural build is essentially the same as the concurrently made L-50, except that this guitar has body depth which is greater, giving these a greater bass response than the usual Gibson 16-inch parallel braced guitar. This Recording King model was also made with the more exclusive Adiorondack spruce top, rather than the Sitka spruce that was typically used on lower end Gibsons. Cosmetically, this guitar is a significant step up from the L-50, having checkerboard, multi-ply binding and fan fingerboard inlays. It also has beautifully flamed maple sides and back woods.


The guitar is in all original condition, except for a replaced bridge, and plays beautifully with great action. It has the typical bold, punchy mid-range of a 16-inch Gibson, but with a bit of added bass reponse due to the increased body depth. The guitar is free of cracks and shows fairly light wear for a guitar of this age with the worst being a scrape with some finish lost on the side of the lower bout. At some point the remaining finish on the back of the neck was removed.


The guitar comes with a Guild hardshell case which is in very good condition, probably from the 1960s or 1970s.


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1936 Recording King Model 1285 Acoustic Archtop Made by Gibson Factory Truss Rod

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