V-shaped gold-plated brass string-thru tailpiece for Original & Historic 1958-1958 Flying V

As regards Flying V's, the 1958-1959 originals, as you will all know, had a V-shaped brass/gold-plated strings-thru-body tailpiece. Do Gibson ever offer this as a replacement part? I've never seen it offered as such on their site. I have e-mailed Rosetti (the UK distributor for decades) and await their reply. WD do one but it is probably about 25%-30% smaller and would not suffice at all to be a suitable replacement on an original or a Historic. Any of you repair men have any info that can help me in my plight??? There are others seeking advice to this age-old problem who reside on the Flying V tribute web-site.

I know getting 0.125" thick brass plate cut and machined from an accurate plan/blue print and then gold plated is possible but likely very expensive. Anyone ever done this or know of it being done???.....Can any of you machinists out there put a price tag on this? Would getting say 10 made make any difference in terms of significant cost-saving per unit? Purchasing an accurate replacement part would be much easier though!!!

Sending best regards........yours, eternally optomistic.............


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Try these guys. Might be lucky?
Hello Tom......

Thanks for that. I've had a look there. It's all Fender stuff at the moment. I guess it's one of those places where the stock is always changing. I've added it to the favourites column thingy-ma-jig and I'll keep looking.

Best regards....

I met those guys at a booth at the Santa Monica Guitar Show yesterday. Yes, they are constant buy-sell-trade. I have been looking for a Rickenbacker 450 pick gaurd. Guitar shows are good source of parts info.

This is long shot idea, but a friend mine has been having hard-to-find car parts made/cut from aluminum on a water-jet. He has some parts nickel plated. Not very expensive considering N.O.S. prices.
Hi Tom....

Yeah, I've considered getting either the parts cut from brass plate and machined or maybe even having a go myself. Brass isn't expensive at all really, though I suppose like all metals there are different grades. It's the gold-plating that might cost the bigger bucks. Of course it could be done really thin with 9-carat gold but I just know it would look really bad really quickly. 24-carat might be a bit OTT but it would look nice and would last for years. Maybe it wouldn't be as pricey as I think. Anyway ( 9 & 24 carat plating are the extremes). Anyway just imagine the price of a tailpiece from an original 1958-1958 Flying V!!!! I reckon that would be $1000 absolute minimum. I've seen ABR-1's for that much and while hardly commom there are many more ABR-1's than original V tailpieces. Yeah, the DIY/workshop manufacturing route looks better the more I think about it. It will probably be a little while yet but I'll post on this thread when anything develops.

Best regards,

Hi Tom.....

I just Googled the Ric 450. Are you after the plastic (white?) or anodised gold finish (pre-1962?)? Pickguard Heaven, which I believe is part of Chandler Guitars, actually have several variations on the Ric 450 listed. I guess you may be holding out for an original. But if you can't find one getting one mage is a practical last resort. I read that the 450 was made between 1957 and 1984 so there should be no shortage of original spares. I'm actually suprised that you DIDN'T find one at one of those big US guitar shows! Keep trying!!!


Gold plating isn't horrendously costly - here's a random result from googling 'gold plating prices' - scroll down at bit
i can make one for you (209)595-9221 serious inquiries only
Thanks for the Google info David! However, I am looking for an original. I dropped a customer's guard and it cracked. It is only right that I replace it properly. I did find some good leads at the Santa Monica show. I should be back in business soon.

Good luck on the V!


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