1950 Epiphone Zenith Carved-Top Archtop Guitar

Yep, I'm a fan of old New York-made Epi carved-tops. This one is in darn-good shape overall and sounds the business. I usually think of Epis as lead/fill/chop-chord guitars -- great if you're mixing-it-up over another guitar or wanting to cut through a horn section. I think of Gibsons as more of the velvety-lows/chunky chordal archtop. I'm happy to say this particular Epi is a bit of both of those worlds (punch, cut, and a velvety mwah on the bottom) and that makes it very satisfying to play.

Usually I pick up an Epi and all I want to do is lash-out single-note or 3-note melody stuff up and down the neck. With this one I want to play a bit more backing work and could see myself singing along to it quite easily. That's usually something I only feel like doing with old Gibsons and their relaxed, mellower tone.

Anyhow, this guitar didn't need much in the way of work and is all-original save a missing pickguard. It has no cracks and aside from some finish blem along the lower-bout top and side it's nice and clean. For anyone looking for a swing-sounding guitar that's just as good as the '40s Epis, this one will do it.

Serial number 60038 places it right at 1950 per the NY Epiphone Registry.

Repairs included: a fret level/dress, compensation/adjustment of the saddle, scraping-off/buffing-up discoloration of the binding (the celluloid's finish and first layer had been burned/"purpled" by the fuzzy lining of the original case), cleaning-up a little finish blem on the side-lower-bout, and setup.

Setup notes: it plays with perfect, fast action -- 3/32" bass and 1/16" treble at the 12th fret. The neck is straight, the frets have good height (they were almost-new when it came in with just minor wear), and the truss rod works. Strings are 54w-12 gauges.

Scale length: 25 1/2"
Nut width: 1 5/8"
String spacing at nut: 1 7/16"
String spacing at bridge: 2 1/16"
Body length: 20"
Lower bout width: 16 1/4"
Waist width: 8 3/4"
Upper bout width: 11"
Side depth at endpin: 3 1/4" + top/back arch
Top wood: solid spruce
Back/sides wood: maple
Bracing type: tonebar
Fretboard: rosewood
Bridge: rosewood, adjustable, room to move up/down
Neck feel: medium C, ~8" board radius (tight)

Condition notes: there's a bit of finish blem (pictured) at the lower-bout-side and two 8" streaks of finish run-off(?) on the top-lower-bout, though it's not obvious except under glare. Portions of the (yellowed) celluloid binding are showing white after I had to scrape fuzzy debris/stain off of them, but that's also not-obvious at a glance. The pickguard is missing. Otherwise, it's in good order and fairly clean.

It comes with: its original chip case in good shape -- though not pictured (it's nothing fancy, purple-lined, and way at the bottom of my case pile at the moment).