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Heritage Owners Club

Picked up a couple of Heritage built Gretsches


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Some will be familiar with the background.  Gretsch moved its factory to Japan around 1990.  The Gretsch reputation had been deteriorating over the previous decade.  By most reports the quality of Gretsch builds went up and stayed up at the Terada plant.  There were some custom builds by Steve Stern and Gene Haugh made in America but at a high price.

In the early 1990s Fred Gretsch III wanted to continue the Gretsch Synchromatic archtops with a very high quality level.  He made an agreement with Heritage to build a limited number, 10 I'm told.  This was around the time Heritage was also ghost building D'Angelicos.  Heritage made the Synchromatic with an 18" body, basically the same as the Super Eagle but with a 3 piece (not 5 piece) neck and Gretsch appointments.  The bracing and carving were the same as the "acoustic" Super Eagles.  They even had the famous Floating #3 pickup.

At least one HOC member has a blonde one.  I know of a burst in Chicago.  There were 6 in this auction that ended today.  That leaves 2 unaccounted for.

Another HOC member picked up a nice one at the auction that was signed by the Heritage owners and Fred Gretsch.  That looks like the first one Heritage built.  It's a natural.  I got three of them, two naturals and a burst.  The four owners signed the labels in all of them.

One of the three I got appears to have been stored in the case.  Two probably were left in the boxes.  The guitars auctioned were from Fred Gretsch's collection, meaning likely a warehouse.  It doesn't look like they were ever sold.

The guitars appear to need a bath and maybe a buffing.  The electronics they say all work.  There are no dings or scratches.  The gold has a patina on it.  The finishes are dull.

So these are Heritages with a different headstock.  I have a few acoustic Heritages already (a GE and two Johnny Smiths) and know what to expect.  I can compare them to the Gib-son L-5 Acoustic with a floating pickup from 2000 and the Le Grand with a floater from about the same time.  The Heritages equal or exceed the build quality.

Here are some pics.  Perhaps the other purchaser will post his pics too.

 

 

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Wow. Nice get!

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wow is right.

 

now, where are the Fender Kal builds?

 

ha ha

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Funny you mention the D'Angelicos.  I've been wanting one of the Heritage builds ever since you posted one.  I also noticed in the videos @skydog52 posted today, one of the necks they showed getting rolled was a D'Angelico.

Nice snatch MartyGrass!

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Love these ghost builds... and the D'Angelico's.      Someone had posted the Synchromatic with serial ... M-7 before.

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Well, there must be some mistake.  That one's obviously a bass; it has only four strings.

 

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