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  #1  
Old 02-09-2023, 11:36 AM
beatcomber beatcomber is offline
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Default NOGD: c.1937 Slingerland Songster

I'd been on the hunt for a reasonably-priced vintage archtop acoustic to mess around with, and this c.1937 Slingerland Songster became available about an hour from me.

The guitar appears to be 100% original except for the nut, bridge and possibly the tuners (which look pretty old, but function just fine). For an approximately 85-year-old instrument, it is in suprisingly excellent playing condition despite the visible wear 'n' tear. The metal-reinforced neck is straight with a good angle and the original brass frets still have plenty of life. The neck is pretty massive with a soft V profile, and plays well up and down the neck all the way to where the neck meets the body.

It's a very cool instrument!

Is there anyway to determine the actual date of manufacture on these guitars? There is no s/n or stamps inside the body.











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1937(?) Silvertone Songster
1955 Gibson ES-125
1956 Fender Champ lap steel
1964 Guild Starfire III
1984 Rickenbacker 330
1990s Mosrite (Kurokumo) Ventures
2002/2005 Fender Japan '60s Tele [TL-62-66US]
2018 Martin Custom Shop 00-18 slot-head
2021 Fender Vintera '60s Jazzmaster

1963 Fender Bandmaster (blonde blackface)
1965 Ampeg Gemini I
2020 Mojotone tweed Champ kit build
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  #2  
Old 02-10-2023, 10:42 AM
Glennwillow Glennwillow is online now
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What a cool guitar! Congratulations!

- Glenn
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  #3  
Old 02-10-2023, 01:15 PM
beatcomber beatcomber is offline
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Originally Posted by Glennwillow View Post
What a cool guitar! Congratulations!

- Glenn
Thank you! (from another Glenn with two n's)
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1937(?) Silvertone Songster
1955 Gibson ES-125
1956 Fender Champ lap steel
1964 Guild Starfire III
1984 Rickenbacker 330
1990s Mosrite (Kurokumo) Ventures
2002/2005 Fender Japan '60s Tele [TL-62-66US]
2018 Martin Custom Shop 00-18 slot-head
2021 Fender Vintera '60s Jazzmaster

1963 Fender Bandmaster (blonde blackface)
1965 Ampeg Gemini I
2020 Mojotone tweed Champ kit build
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  #4  
Old 02-11-2023, 10:28 AM
SpruceTop SpruceTop is offline
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That's A Nice Slingerland Archtop--Enjoy!
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  #5  
Old 02-12-2023, 10:30 PM
Sage Runner Sage Runner is offline
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There are some great affordable Vintage Arch tops that have been under the Radar for years. Some of the slinger’s for sure have intrigued me as being well crafted and likely are probably Carved top instruments. Those songsters have a Early Gibson L-5 look and if they are 16” wide that would be a plus. I believe those were crafted in the 30s into the 40s. Just not near as many A-top players so the field is wide open. Enjoy!!! Arch tops are awesome to play.
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  #6  
Old 02-13-2023, 05:27 AM
Robin, Wales Robin, Wales is offline
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Oh that's lovely!

I could see myself on stage with that beauty hammering out a few old songs!!!
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  #7  
Old 02-25-2023, 12:44 PM
beatcomber beatcomber is offline
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The replacement tuners arrived yesterday, and I've just gotten them installed.

The difference was immediately apparent. Of course, the tuning is now extremely stable, but what I didn't expect was a dramatic improvement in the guitar's sustain, volume and tone, and any rattling and buzzing have pretty much disappeared. It would appear that the cheap old tuners were vibrating and interfering with the guitar's natural resonances, because it now sounds amazing!

The bushings that came with the new tuners were too large for the existing holes so, preferring to do as few modifications as possible, I elected to use the mismatched old bushings instead of reaming the holes.









__________________
1937(?) Silvertone Songster
1955 Gibson ES-125
1956 Fender Champ lap steel
1964 Guild Starfire III
1984 Rickenbacker 330
1990s Mosrite (Kurokumo) Ventures
2002/2005 Fender Japan '60s Tele [TL-62-66US]
2018 Martin Custom Shop 00-18 slot-head
2021 Fender Vintera '60s Jazzmaster

1963 Fender Bandmaster (blonde blackface)
1965 Ampeg Gemini I
2020 Mojotone tweed Champ kit build
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  #8  
Old 02-25-2023, 07:11 PM
Sage Runner Sage Runner is offline
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Congrats Beachcomber. Beautiful shape on that AT. Itís amazing the littlest adjustments on a guitar can make a huge improvement. Best! Sage
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  #9  
Old 02-26-2023, 04:05 PM
beatcomber beatcomber is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sage Runner View Post
Congrats Beachcomber. Beautiful shape on that AT. Itís amazing the littlest adjustments on a guitar can make a huge improvement. Best! Sage
Thanks, Sage! I've been playing it like crazy since fixing it up, it sounds so nice.

I wonder if the previous owner sold it to me because he wasn't aware of the tuning stability and tone it was capable of.

Incidentally, I see the tell-tale screwholes in the side of the neck that indicate that it once had a DeArmond monkey-on-a-stick pickup attached to it, probably back in the '50s.
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1937(?) Silvertone Songster
1955 Gibson ES-125
1956 Fender Champ lap steel
1964 Guild Starfire III
1984 Rickenbacker 330
1990s Mosrite (Kurokumo) Ventures
2002/2005 Fender Japan '60s Tele [TL-62-66US]
2018 Martin Custom Shop 00-18 slot-head
2021 Fender Vintera '60s Jazzmaster

1963 Fender Bandmaster (blonde blackface)
1965 Ampeg Gemini I
2020 Mojotone tweed Champ kit build
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  #10  
Old 02-27-2023, 09:42 AM
Sage Runner Sage Runner is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beatcomber View Post
Thanks, Sage! I've been playing it like crazy since fixing it up, it sounds so nice.

I wonder if the previous owner sold it to me because he wasn't aware of the tuning stability and tone it was capable of.

Incidentally, I see the tell-tale screwholes in the side of the neck that indicate that it once had a DeArmond monkey-on-a-stick pickup attached to it, probably back in the '50s.
Arch tops are a kick for sure. I have 4Ėall Vintage. Love playing them. Playing A Tops expands my approach to playing and creativity. Hard to say why the previous owner sold it, but in my 43 years of buying old Vintage guitars. 99% of the time I was able to fine tune them and make huge improvements in tone and playability. Even most New Guitars are most often set up crappy. Learning to Do your own Work has its rewards. Best! Sage
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  #11  
Old 02-27-2023, 10:59 AM
beatcomber beatcomber is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sage Runner View Post
Arch tops are a kick for sure. I have 4Ėall Vintage. Love playing them. Playing A Tops expands my approach to playing and creativity. Hard to say why the previous owner sold it, but in my 43 years of buying old Vintage guitars. 99% of the time I was able to fine tune them and make huge improvements in tone and playability. Even most New Guitars are most often set up crappy. Learning to Do your own Work has its rewards. Best! Sage
Amen to that!

The guitar is playing pretty darn well now, and the neck is nice and straight.

Eventually I plan to bring it to a pro for some fine-tuning. I'd like to get a new nut cut for it with tighter string spacing - the replacement nut has the bottom E slot cut too far to the edge, and the string sometime flops off the edge of the fretboard at the first couple of frets if I'm not mindful. I'd also like to have the original frets dressed, because there is some buzzing in the higher registers. But these are all minor issues!
__________________
1937(?) Silvertone Songster
1955 Gibson ES-125
1956 Fender Champ lap steel
1964 Guild Starfire III
1984 Rickenbacker 330
1990s Mosrite (Kurokumo) Ventures
2002/2005 Fender Japan '60s Tele [TL-62-66US]
2018 Martin Custom Shop 00-18 slot-head
2021 Fender Vintera '60s Jazzmaster

1963 Fender Bandmaster (blonde blackface)
1965 Ampeg Gemini I
2020 Mojotone tweed Champ kit build
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 03-10-2023, 02:48 PM
beatcomber beatcomber is offline
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I found the perfect case for the Slingerland, the Musician's Gear Deluxe Archtop Hardshell Squareneck Guitar Case, which retails for $120 at Musician's Friend and Guitar Center.

I figured correctly that a Dobro case would be a good fit, since Regal made both resonators as well as guitars for Slingerland back in the '30s, and the measurements all matched. It fits 100%!

__________________
1937(?) Silvertone Songster
1955 Gibson ES-125
1956 Fender Champ lap steel
1964 Guild Starfire III
1984 Rickenbacker 330
1990s Mosrite (Kurokumo) Ventures
2002/2005 Fender Japan '60s Tele [TL-62-66US]
2018 Martin Custom Shop 00-18 slot-head
2021 Fender Vintera '60s Jazzmaster

1963 Fender Bandmaster (blonde blackface)
1965 Ampeg Gemini I
2020 Mojotone tweed Champ kit build
Reply With Quote
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