Up for sale, a 1961 Epiphone Casino E-230TD in excellent condition and in perfect working order. This stunning vintage instrument has been well cared for, honestly played and features the original Sunburst finish. Rare and undeniably cool, the guitar is very original and has been made complete with a few essential bits to make this Casino look its best! Professionally setup and strung with a fresh set of 11-50 nickel strings, this guitar plays effortlessly and sounds like all your favorite Beatles records.
Crafted in one of the most highly regarded eras of Gibson workmanship, the Casino debuted two years after the Gibson ES-330 and is essentially the same instrument with some notable differences in finish and hardware. The body has the famous "Mickey Mouse Ear" rounded horns, black pickup covers, and shorter headstock only seen on the earliest models. The serial number places the guitar near the end of the 1961 production run, with aesthetic touches such as the the pearl headstock logo consistent with that date and likely making this one of the very first instruments with that particular feature.
Tonally, the guitar has a very warm and balanced voice, with distinct and powerful sounds from all three pickup positions. There's a touch sensitive, dynamic quality to the instrument that's apparent from the second you pick it up, and this translates very well through the pickups, with incredible string to string balance. Of course the expected growl of a P-90 is present, but it's tempered with incredible clarity. The neck pickup is round, sweet and wooly, while the bridge has considerably more twang and sinewy snap. Paired together, the pickups produce a sound that blends the best qualities of the instrument, with a fullness that's hard to match.
The neck profile is a fairly slender C shape and a textbook example of the classic Gibson slim profile. Perhaps most importantly, the nut width is the traditional 1 11/16" width seen on only the earliest Casinos, as Epiphone transitioned to the 1 9/16" nut by early '63 (as opposed to '65 with the corresponding Gibson models from the same Kalamazoo factory). This simple feature makes the feel and playability of the neck more desirable to a wide audience of players who prefer the wider width that allows for easy chording and comfortable fingerpicking. The guitar has been professionally and partially refretted with fretwire that is consistent with the original frets still present further up the neck. Frets 1-13 have been replaced, and the width and height of the wire is very consistent across the entire playing field, with well rounded crowns, and only a hint of wear in the first position. The guitar plays cleanly up the neck with no buzzing or dead spots and the truss rod is responsive. The Brazilian rosewood fretboard with pearl dot inlay is in fantastic shape as well, with only very faint grooves into the wood beneath the plain strings from frets 1-10. On the headstock, a reissue set of Kluson Deluxe single line tuners with white buttons have been installed, and these tuners perfectly match the footprint of the originals, turn smoothly, and hold pitch well. There is a very slight and professionally addressed crack beneath the low E tuning machine housing, making a line between the two mounting screws. This tiny crack has been stabilized, does not go through the headstock face, and the instrument is otherwise free from repairs in this area.
The body features much of the original hardware, including the gold reflector cap knobs, nickel ABR-1 Tune-o-Matic bridge (without retainer wire), and nickel Epiphone Tremotone vibrato tailpiece with Brazilian rosewood insert. The neck P-90 dogear pickup cover is a modern replacement, and the transparent tortoise pickguard was crafted for this guitar by Pickguardian. The silver "E" Epsilon stickers on the pickguard and tailpiece are new as well. The electronics are stock, with two nickel pole piece dogear P-90 pickups, as well as the original wiring harness with Sprague "Black Beauty" tone capacitors. Visible through the bass side F hole, the original blue rectangular "Casino" label is present as well, with a stamped serial number that matches the one imprinted in the back of the headstock.
The Sunburst nitro lacquer finish is 100% untouched with no overspray or touchup of any kind. While similar to the Royal Tan finish offered by Epiphone in this era, this Sunburst has aged beautifully over the decades, and almost all of the central red layer of the burst has faded away, leaving a stately two-tone amber to deep brown burst. There is prominent lacquer checking across the entire face and back of the instrument, and one slender, repaired crack extending from the southernmost curl of the bass side F hole. Other wear is surprisingly minimal, and the back is particularly clean, with only a few faint finish scratches and a targeted bit of buckle rash that doesn't go through the lacquer. There is a bit of wear through the finish on the face of the instrument in the pick path just south of the tortoise pickguard, and also finish wear down to the bare mahogany on the neck profile behind frets 1-5. Lovingly played, well maintained and visually alluring, this first-year Epiphone Casino is one that will delight on stage or in the studio.
A brand new Gibson brown tolex hardshell case with gray plush interior is included and a perfect fit for this Casino.
Don't miss out on this vintage example of Epiphone's most famous and collectable model!