This is a vintage 1937 Gibson J-35 Jumbo acoustic flat top guitar. This particular uncirculated single-family owned instrument, no factory order number nor serial number, has spent the large majority of it’s life 78-year existence in the original soft chipboard case. With absolutely no evidence of playing wear anywhere on this J-35, this is a truly spectacular specimen. As pictured, this remarkable ’37 Gibson J-35 includes the very rare original soft shell case, as well as, an assortment of original era-appropriate Gibson Jumbo string packets.
With an original $35 retail list price (hence the Jumbo 35, J-35 model designation), this acoustic features; a 16″ wide lower bout, round shoulder dreadnought shape, dark red finished mahogany back and sides, three-on-a-plate plastic button Kluson tuning machines, single bound top, back binding, no neck binding, 4″ soundhole, 3 tone bar top construction, tapered body (as looking from the sides), rectangle bridge with two tiny bridge screws (and hence two pearl dots), top braces not scalloped, “X” bracing with three tone bars, “V” shaped mahogany neck, rare variety round neck heel, 24.75″ scale length, dot fingerboard inlays, Brazilian rosewood fingerboard, white silkscreened/stenciled peghead script “Gibson” logo, “medium” sized sunburst top, deep red mahogany back and side finish, original Jumbo soft case with purple interior and original Gibson strings. It still retains all (6) original bridge pins and the original end pin.
This example is in incredibly crisp all original condition. The tuning machine plates are virtually mirror-like, with the chrome in brand new condition. Similarly, the “V”-shaped neck is untouched, pristine, displaying no wear, with an original sheen that is like that of a new guitar. The rich lacquer finish on both the back and sides resembles that of the near perfect condition finish found on the neck. With incredible luster and integrity, the finish on this guitar is beautifully intact.
While this instrument hasn’t been used nor abused in any way, it has remained in a very dry Arizona climate. Typically, this is great for the acoustic properties of the wood, though not great for the glue used to connect them. This has resulted in an open top seam, as well as, a pickguard drying crack. It appears an attempt was made many years ago to simply put glue inside both, however, a professional luthier may be able to actually repair these properly.
With superior tone, the J-35 is one of the best balanced and transparent acoustics ever made. Consistently incredible, this J-35 is a veritable cannon of rich acoustic sound. The action is a little high, however, the original bridge saddle is still at factory height.