1954/55 Gretsch 6120 First Batch 14th EVER Made Tweed Case
Welcome to JTKM STUDIO.
We have the absolute pleasure of presenting a very historical and significant piece of rock’n roll history with this glorious first batch, 21-fret, 14th ever made Gretsch 6120. The Gretsch 6120 comes complete with its original tweed/straw case. To make this one an even cooler package, this very Gretsch 6120 just so happens to make an appearance on the opening page of the wonderful book “Gretsch 6120 The History of a Legendary Guitar” by our friend Edward Ball. If you too would like to be bad ass like Eddie Cochran, read on!
We would firstly like to thank Ben at Crimson Guitars for giving this historical piece the due care, patience and attention needed in order to expertly re-set and straighten the neck, making the Gretsch essentially as good as new in terms of playability. You can watch these fully documented procedures on the Crimson Guitar YouTube Channel.
Assuming you have now watched those videos, having the 6120 back in our hands we can confirm that the 6120 plays perfectly all over the neck, the action is low and the bridge is perfectly positioned. The neck is straight and there is relief in the truss rod, not that it is needed now or anytime soon. The nut has been re-set with an aluminium shim (near impossible to see) rather than amateur scraps of sandpaper and is positioned exactly where it needs to be for optimal sustain. The bridge posts were previously cut down prior to having its neck re-set to compensate for the lowering of the bridge over time. These are still fully functional but are now shorter than they originally were when leaving the Brooklyn factory in 1955. There is a slight touch up at the neck joint as some nitro fnish falked off when the neck was removed.
We had the original aluminium fixed arm “1-2-3” (if you know what that means you know originality when it comes to first batch Gretsch 6120s) B6 Bigsby anodised as the gold was previously stripped on the front face. This work has come out very well and matches the remaining original gold hardware nicely.
There is evidence that the Gretsch has had a different tailpiece at some point in its life, which is very common for fixed arm Bigsby Gretsch as they weren’t popular once the swing away Bigsby was introduced in 1956. There are three smaller screw holes hidden under the Bigsby, these do not create holes into the body as there is an internal block at the tailpiece end of the body.
As is very common with 1950’s Gretsch, we had one of the screw holes under the truss rod cover repaired so the screw holds in place rather than being loose.
The very dark Brazilian Rosewood fingerboard is in great condition, as are the beautiful Stagg and Cactus inlays. The binding is perfect throughout the neck and body, as is the black binding at the base of the neck joint (all first batch examples have a black binding part here).
The cosmetic condition I would call very good given that its been played for the majority of its 70 years of life. There is finish wear on the back of the neck as expected. There are a few chips to the clear coat on the front of the body and sides, aside from that there is nothing else left to report. This is the ultimate, zero-issue first batch Gretsch 6120 and the only unquestionable original example on the market. Take a moment to check out the photos showing the stunning subtle flames to the maple top, it really pops in the right light and shines beautifully against the gold hardware.
That covers playability and originality, I cannot leave without mentioning how it sounds. This one is a big, burly orange beast. The original dynasonic DeArmond pickups have lovely crisp clarity at low volume but man, turn it up and they sound aggressive and mean! With the pickups both active you have that wonderful rockabilly boogie sound. It is very, very hard to put this one down and that is probably the greatest compliment I can ever give to a guitar.
There you have it, yet another masterpiece here at JTKM STUDIO. This is one of the finest Gretsch 6120s you’ll ever find and no expense has been overlooked getting this one back to its former glory. We want this one to go to the right person and for it to be loved and played.
Contact us directly on email@example.com or give us a call.
We ship worldwide with UPS.
We offer a 24 hour approval period on all guitar sales.
We ship to the USA using the correct harmonized codes, and since this was made in the USA there will be no import taxes, just a couple of documents to complete for US customs.
Note: This guitar contains Brazilian Rosewood and it is a legal requirement to state the CITES Article 10 Licence number when displaying such an instrument to the general public or offer for sale in any format. If you require advice on anything CITES related, kindly read our CITES page. CITES Article 10 Licence number: 24GBA1041B7S7.