The Guitar Gallery Forums - The Guitar Legacy of Matsumoku

Q&A, discussion, and information for the labels covered by The Guitar Gallery (Specifically and exclusively guitars made by Matsumoku up to 1987)
It is currently Mon 22 Jul 2024 05:55 PM

All times are UTC - 5 hours




Post new topic Reply to topic
 [ 214 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 ... 22  Next
Author Message
PostPosted: Mon 25 Jan 2010 08:37 AM 
Offline
Virtuoso
User avatar

Joined: Tue 27 Oct 2009 02:53 AM
Posts: 480
Location: Strailya
Hi Folks,
I have been doing quite a lot of research lately on the continual struggle to properly date all of my Vantages.
This has been spurred on by what I consider to be flaws in some of the currently accepted methods of dating.
I have been focusing mainly on the VA, VP, & VS series.
All of the info I have gathered points mainly to being able to classify them firstly into 2 main categories, either pre or post 1980.
I firmly believe that 1980 was a big transition period for the Vantage Brand.
Bolt on neck models received there own Vantage branded neck plates, which now carried the first number denoting year of manufacture in the serial 0-7, definitely no argument there.
The Headstock Logo was changed from the small horizontal Vantage Logo to the Large V with Vantage written Vertically.
Changes were made & hardware upgraded with tuners receiving the V Logo
The edge routing of the bodies also changed from a very slight edge round to a very rounded edge.
Neck profiles also became slimmer on some models.
So to sum up, a pre 1980 model will have, starting from the top.
Pre 1980 (not that many around)
Vantage written Horizontally, small print on the headstock.
Tuners will be either the black hex bodied gotoh’s or the plain backed non logo type with the screw fixing directly centre below the tuner body, not off to the side like the post 1980 tuners do.
Neck plates will have “ Steel Adjustable neck Made in Japan” & the serial will probably start with 05
The body will be the same shape but the edge routing will be quite square with only a slight round.
I am yet to finish compiling pickup data, but it seems that at least the VS range pickups were marked either F/S or blank with both having a small T in the centre of the bobbin tops, MMK’s were also around but it seems only in the VA & VP series, but as I said I do not have enough data to be sure of the accuracy of this.
Pots were different also, being shinier in appearance with a rounder top edge.
Truss rod cover generally will be marked with the model number, numbers first, eg: 600VS, 700VP etc, VA models will have the word “Artist” in front of the number
Post 1980 (the majority of Vantages out there)
Vantage written Vertically in larger print with the large V on the top.
Tuners will have the V logo on the back.
Neck plates will have the large V logo & datable serial
Body edge routing will be quite a decent roundness
Pickups will be MMK’s
Pots are duller in appearance with a square top edge & have an M printed on them.
Truss rod cover generally will be marked with the model number, letters first, eg: VS600.
VA models now follow the same system.

Serial Numbers (set & through neck models only)
Ok you say, but I have a VP700 that fits the post 1980 description & I know it’s a 1977 model by the serial number.
Firstly let me say all VP700’s serial numbers begin with 7, it is merely a model number not a year of manufacture.
Secondly it is a 5 digit number, all 5 digit serials start with the model number.
Check your guitars, it’s a fact.
6 digit numbers are different & follow the post 1980 neck plate system with the first number being the year of manufacture.
I have not seen a pre 1980 guitar with a 6 digit number, but post 1980 have both.
Dating
Pre 1980 bolt on neck models are not accurately dateable at this time other than Pre 1980.
Pre 1980 fixed & through neck models with a 5 digit serials are not accurately dateable at this time as the first number is the model number.
Post 1980 bolt on neck models, first number is the year of 1980 they were made.
Post 1980 fixed & through neck models with a 5 digit serial are not accurately dateable at this time.
Post 1980 fixed & through neck models with a 6 digit serial are the same to date as bolt neck models.

Using these criteria to identify your Vantage guitar also seems to clear up a lot of the anomalies previously put down to the change without notice blurb.

I have come to these conclusions through carefully studying firstly my own collection of Vantage guitars & all others I have seen either on the net or in the flesh.
I have also been compiling all of my data on a spread sheet for some time, which notes all of the differences I have mentioned & I feel I now have a reasonably good sample size to draw these conclusions from.
I would think that a few pre-post, transition models also exist but I am yet to see any.
If anyone has any additions or corrections to this system please supply a full description of the guitar in question so as I can see where it possibly fits in to this.
If anyone would like model comparison photos just ask, I have lots.
I also believe as I think some other member do, that the Early 80’s catalogue on the catalogue pages is in fact a 1979 catalogue, as the guitars shown match exactly the description of a pre 1980 model.
So there you have it, the "Trevor method", that’s the method that I use, what do you guys reckon, :(
Let the flames come.
Cheers,
Trev.

_________________
My Guitars- http://matsumokuguitars.com/


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: Mon 25 Jan 2010 09:03 AM 
Offline
Virtuoso
User avatar

Joined: Wed 02 Apr 2008 02:55 PM
Posts: 1600
Location: A Pineapple below sea level, Holland (Europe)
Sounds plausible Trevor. Don't know if you included all of mine in your sampling allready, but I'll be sure to double-check :)

_________________
http://www.GuitarDir.com has been hacked by some mindless fool, destroying years
of gathering info on guitars by non-commercial guitar lovers. Why?


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: Mon 25 Jan 2010 09:49 AM 
Offline
Virtuoso
User avatar

Joined: Mon 14 Dec 2009 11:23 AM
Posts: 1171
Location: Vienna, Austria
Impressive work Trevor! :up:
I'll have a look :look: at my 7 Vs to check your theory...

_________________
All vantage-branded guitars were lower-priced instruments aimed at the beginner-to-intermediate market. It has no interest to collectors and very little demand among players! (www.allexperts.com)


Last edited by mozart on Mon 25 Jan 2010 12:11 PM, edited 1 time in total.

Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: Mon 25 Jan 2010 11:02 AM 
Offline
Virtuoso
User avatar

Joined: Sat 25 Mar 2006 09:25 PM
Posts: 3203
Location: Grand Absurdity, TX
As long as I've been here, the Vantage line has been considered the least consistent of all Mat guitars. I'm certainly open to any discussion that helps to shed light in this area. I don't have any Vantage guitars but would be very interested in seeing where this goes. :cheers:


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: Mon 25 Jan 2010 01:51 PM 
Offline
Virtuoso
User avatar

Joined: Wed 29 Apr 2009 12:32 PM
Posts: 3985
Location: St. Catharines, Ontario Canada
Trevor wrote:
...I have been doing quite a lot of research lately on the continual struggle to properly date all of my Vantages...
Wow! I'll say! Thanks for this huge effort and for sharing it here Trev!
Quote:
I firmly believe that 1980 was a big transition period for the Vantage Brand.
Agreed. I've made the same assertion in several posts but from the point of view of those ^&*%$ barrel saddle bridges, found primarily on the Avenger line, which seemed to have been dropped part way through that production year. Some Westone models were also similarly afflicted, and show the same design change that year.

I have 6 Vantages, 5 of which are electric solid bodies. Unfortunately, I don't own any of the *ahem* "elite" models that you have focused your study on. There were several hiccups in the Avenger line in '81/'82 as Squid Head will tell you, but I will confirm that your descriptions and serial number dating, for the most part, apply to the AV (Avenger) line as well as my VE (Entertainer) model. I'll also confirm the VS reference.

Quote:
The Headstock Logo was changed from the small horizontal Vantage Logo to the Large V with Vantage written Vertically.

OK, let me now throw an acoustic into the mix since there is next to nothing known about them. My VW-150 has a small horizontal logo, but it's in the familiar Vivaldi type face. It also carries a 4 digit serial number, 6142. The lads and I agreed here that this is most likely a 1980 based mainly on anecdotal evidence and a listing in Corsair's catalogue.
Any gut hunches about this one? Maybe we need to do a similar survey for acoustics? Kees and Frenchy have acoustics, anyone else care to chime in?

_________________
"A little song, a little dance. A little seltzer down your pants." -Chuckles the Clown
Guitars: https://legend.barryeames.com
Music/Pix/Videos: https://getback.barryeames.com


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: Mon 25 Jan 2010 03:44 PM 
Offline
Virtuoso
User avatar

Joined: Mon 14 Dec 2009 11:23 AM
Posts: 1171
Location: Vienna, Austria
for your records, Trevor: the serial numbers of my magnificent 7:

VLP 500 : 057419 MIJ/Steel adj.neck-Plate, horizontal "old" logo
VA 912 : 011006 neck through V-logo
VA 900 : 007146 neck through V-logo
VA 800 : 81479 neck through V-logo
VA 800 : 81195 neck through V-logo
VS 600B : 0040031 bolt on/V-plate V-logo
AV 325 : 3110248 bolt on/V-plate Avenger logo

something thats pointing to your theory: My VA 800s, GD K9s three VA 800s and all other VA 800s I've seen here on mat.org or elsewhere, begin with 8 !!!
Either every VA 800 was produced 1978, or the 8 indicates the model.

It's the same with the 900 series (VA900, VA912, VA900B): first digit always 0
(please correct me if I'm wrong !!!)
Same: either every 900 was produced 1980, or 0 again just a model-number.

Furthermore I don't believe that all VLPs were made 1980, although I've never seen a VLP-serial number without 0 at the first place ! (correct me again, if you've seen one!)

Just playing around with theories: at the old neck plates (MIJ, steel adjustable neck, without V) the last digit
indicates the year !????? My VLP being a 1979 ???

the discussion is opened....... :D

_________________
All vantage-branded guitars were lower-priced instruments aimed at the beginner-to-intermediate market. It has no interest to collectors and very little demand among players! (www.allexperts.com)


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: Mon 25 Jan 2010 04:30 PM 
Offline
Virtuoso
User avatar

Joined: Wed 02 Apr 2008 02:55 PM
Posts: 1600
Location: A Pineapple below sea level, Holland (Europe)
Okay, mine:
VC-120 (Classical acoustic, No headstock-logo, No Snr. Type on label) 1980?
VC-150 (Classical acoustic, No headstock-logo, No Snr. Type on label) 1980?
VW-150 (Acoustic western. Small horizontal logo, Snr 5314 on label. Type on label) ≤1980?
Standard II (Bolt-on solid. Big V/vertical logo, Snr 2120673 on 'V'-neckplate. Type on TRC) 1982
Standard II (Bolt-on solid. Big V/vertical logo, Snr 2060163 on 'V'-neckplate. Type on TRC) 1982
Avenger AV-325 (Bolt-on solid. Vantage Avenger logo, Snr 3110365 on 'V'-neckplate. No type) 1983
Avenger AV-330 (Bolt-on solid. Vantage Avenger logo, Snr 2120448 on 'V'-neckplate. No type) 1982
X88B (Bolt-on solid bass. Big V/vertical logo, Snr 3020226 on 'V'-neckplate. Type on TRC) 1983
VP-700 (Set-neck solid. Big V/vertical logo, Snr 72094 on back of head. No type) >1980?
VP-700 (Set-neck solid. Big V/vertical logo, Snr 72095 on back of head. No type) >1980?
VP-710B (Set-neck solid bass. Big V/vertical logo, Snr 103000 on back of head. Type on TRC) 1981
VP-710B (Set-neck solid bass. Big V/vertical logo, Snr 007112 on back of head. No type) 1980
VP-750 'Ghost'(Set-neck solid LP. Small horizontal logo, Snr invisible. No type) ≤1980
VP-825B-FL (Set-neck solid bass. Big V/vertical logo, Snr 3094839 on back of head. Type on TRC) 1983
Entertainer VE-565 (Set-neck Semi-solid. Big V/vertical logo, Snr 3123461 on back of head. Type on TRC and label) 1983
VSH-455 (Set-neck Semi-hollow. Big V/vertical logo, Snr 3104158 on back of head. Type on TRC and label) 1983
VA-800/24-fret (Thru-neck solid. Big V/vertical logo, Snr 81614 on back of head. No type) 1981?
VA-800/24-fret (Thru-neck solid. Big V/vertical logo, Snr 81940 on back of head. No type) 1981?
VA-800/24-fret (Thru-neck solid. Big V/vertical logo, Snr 81540 on back of head. Type on original cardboard box only) 1981?
VA-900 (Thru-neck solid. Big V/vertical logo, Snr 005058 on back of head. No type) 1980?
VA-900 (Thru-neck solid. Big V/vertical logo, Snr 007039 on back of head. Type on original cardboard box only) 1980?
:roll:

_________________
http://www.GuitarDir.com has been hacked by some mindless fool, destroying years
of gathering info on guitars by non-commercial guitar lovers. Why?


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: Mon 25 Jan 2010 06:40 PM 
Offline
Virtuoso
User avatar

Joined: Tue 27 Oct 2009 02:53 AM
Posts: 480
Location: Strailya
Hey guys thanks for the replys & s/n's of your guitars, so far they all fit this dating method perfectly.
Now a few comments.
Barry wrote:
My VW-150 has a small horizontal logo

Hi Barry, I firmly beleive that catalogue is a 1979.
I have most of the guitars displayed in it & they all fit the pre 1980 model exactly.
I think your Acoustic is definately pre 1980.
What tuners are fitted to it?
I have an acoustic also which i beleive is post 1980 it has the large V Logo & V marked Tuners.
mozart wrote:
It's the same with the 900 series (VA900, VA912, VA900B): first digit always 0

Hi Mozart, yes I will confirm that also, every 9 series VA on my list starts with 0
mozart wrote:
Furthermore I don't believe that all VLPs were made 1980, although I've never seen a VLP-serial number without 0 at the first place

The VLP series fits the system also, with pre 1980 models having all of the caracteristics outlined above, old logo, old tuners old neckplate beginning with 05.
I however have seen quite quite a few post 1980 models whose neck plate has a number other than 0 though.
I have one here with me now and more on my spread sheet, its serial begins with 1, i'm sure its a 1981 model.
mozart wrote:
Just playing around with theories: at the old neck plates (MIJ, steel adjustable neck, without V) the last digit
indicates the year !????? My VLP being a 1979

I dont beleive that this is an accurate method for the old neckplades as I have examples ending in 1 & 2, I am not aware of any Vantages from that period.
GD K9 wrote:
Okay, mine. I'll fill in the missing Snr's soon

Cheers K9, I trolled your site for numbers a while ago & have most of them, very great site & a huge asset to these guitars of Matsumoku, fantastic.
Cheers everyone & many thanks :)
Trevor.

_________________
My Guitars- http://matsumokuguitars.com/


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: Mon 25 Jan 2010 07:07 PM 
Offline
Virtuoso
User avatar

Joined: Wed 02 Apr 2008 02:55 PM
Posts: 1600
Location: A Pineapple below sea level, Holland (Europe)
The bass guitar's numbers are kind of disturbing sofar ... might take us a while, but we'll get to the bottom eventually. Great job Trevor, you've pointed out a couple of things I hadn't seen before (I should have :blush: and maybe I would have :lol: but you were first! Thanks :wink: )

Kees.

_________________
http://www.GuitarDir.com has been hacked by some mindless fool, destroying years
of gathering info on guitars by non-commercial guitar lovers. Why?


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: Tue 26 Jan 2010 07:14 AM 
Offline
Virtuoso
User avatar

Joined: Wed 02 Apr 2008 02:55 PM
Posts: 1600
Location: A Pineapple below sea level, Holland (Europe)
Trevor wrote:
Post 1980 bolt on neck models, first number is the year of 1980 they were made.
Post 1980 fixed & through neck models with a 6 digit serial are the same to date as bolt neck models.

Not likely. All VA900's seem to start with '0', or '00' even. All VA800's with '8' or '81' even. VP700's with '7' or '72'.
How about this theory:
with the 5- and 6-digit Snr's on VP and VA models, the first is the model, the second is the year of production :huh:
or:
with the 5- and 6-digit Snr's on VP and VA models, the first TWO indicate the model :huh:
We need more numbers!!! :yeah:

_________________
http://www.GuitarDir.com has been hacked by some mindless fool, destroying years
of gathering info on guitars by non-commercial guitar lovers. Why?


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 214 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 ... 22  Next

All times are UTC - 5 hours


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group