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Fender Duo-Sonic Vintage (1956) Restoration
This guitar was once owned by John Speros's father--who played it in a band in the late 50's and early 60's. John inherited the guitar and original case. In his youth, John had stripped the original tan finish, and refinished it with clear (much to his regret today--but such is the folly of youth). The guitar and case were in disrepair, and John wanted it to be restored to a playable condition, but retain as much of the vintage hardware and vintage appeal as possible. That is always my goal as well, when working on any vintage instrument. I took this guitar in on June 6, but didn't get to it right away. But once I got started on it, it was hard to put it down, because I was so intrigued to have such a great instrument in my shop, and I so looked forward to the day I could deliver it back to John. On July 31, I took the final photos, and am pleased to say this was a great success.

As Received 6/2/2015:


 Though difficult to see in the photos, the top was partially a dirty silver and a cleaner tarnished silver.


 Attempt to capture the dirty silver coloration near the knobs. Knobs had begun to disintegrate from corrosion of the aluminum beneath the chrome plating.


 Difficult to see, but the tailpiece was rusted beneath the cover. Springs and screws also had rust.


 Frets were dull and fretboard had uneven wear and was generally a kind of grimy brown/grey.


 Another view of the wearing of the original finish on the fretboard.


 Headstock was dirty and uneven. String tree was missing the standoff. Tuner bushings were corroded.


 Tuner buttons were disintegrating (some almost completely gone) from dry rot.


 Another attempt to capture the uneven color of the pickguard.


Another view of the tuner buttons. Also tuners had rust on the tuning winder, and on the machine covers. 



I spoke with John on 7/8/2015, and discussed the repairing of the case and levelling of the finish on the guitar. Although not readily visible in the first photo, the body had several large runs where finish had been applied, and various dings and dents. Although it is always the goal to maintain a vintage instrument in good working order, some degree of dings only gives the instrument character. So in restoring it, consideration was always given to keeping as much original as possible while improving the overall condition of the instrument. John agreed that the case needed some going through. He also agreed that the guitar runs needed to be improved.  THAT GOAL WAS ACHIEVED.

Note: Some (not all) of the photos below can be clicked to view a larger image.

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