1964 Epiphone (Gibson-made) FT-79 Texan Slope Dreadnought Guitar

It was fun to have two '64 Texans in the shop at the same time. While the other one needed more work, this guy just needed a fret level/dress, new compensated saddle, and setup. Its original ceramic saddle was, as usual, not very useful for good intonation up the neck and its iffy tone is also a bit of an issue for Gibsons of this era. They peak in the highs and remove some mids, usually, to my ears.

The later, rosewood adjustable saddles are a better option as they can at least be modified to play in tune. I split the difference and made-up a compensated ebony one for this guitar. It sounds good, of course -- but then even with the ceramic ones, these old Texans sound great.

They were made right alongside J-45s in the Gibson factory and the only differences between a "proper" Gibson J-45 and a Texan like this are cosmetic changes in the neck inlay and pickguard and a different scale length. These Texans are long scale while most Gibson J-45/J-50 models run about 24 5/8" scale at the time.

This changes the tone a bit. It's still very much J-45 territory but the woodiness and chunkiness is brightened-up a bit with a little extra power and snap to the tone.

This guitar is in fantastic shape, too, by the way -- crack-free and all-original (save the saddle). Post-work it's playing perfectly and sounds just like in the video -- excellent!