1936 Gibson Roy Smeck Stage Deluxe

$10995 USD ($15393 CAD)
For more details contact us at info@folkwaymusic.com or 855-772-0424.
Introduced in 1934 as a replacement for the HG-24 Hawaiian, the original Roy Smeck Stage Deluxe featured the same body dimension as the Jumbo, which was also introduced in 1934. Both of these new large guitars featured 16” wide bodies with deep sides that didn’t taper much in thickness between the endblock and neck heel. As Gibson transitioned from the Jumbo to the more tapered-sided J-35 in 1936, the Smeck followed suit. As such, the early Smeck models are the only ones built with a deeper body. This example is from the 4th and final documented batch of Smeck Stage Deluxes built in 1936, likely from around the middle of the year and among the last of the deep-bodied Smecks. The depth of the sides taper from 4-1/2” at the endpin to 4-3/16” at the neck heel.

Originally built as a Hawaiian, or lap-style guitar, this Smeck has been converted for Spanish (AKA Normal) style playing. The conversion is nicely done and is blended in well with the rest of the guitar’s originality. The neck has been carved into a very comfortable soft V, with a nut width of 1-7/8”. The neck depth at the 1st fret is .890”, which feels appropriately sized and neither too large or too small. The headstock front and back and the neck heel retain their original finish; side dots and real frets were added during the conversion. The original fingerboard was reused and has not ever been separated from the neck; no truss rod was added in the process (and none was needed). The guitar’s current fretwork is brand-new (done here) and neck relief and playability are quite perfect. The tuners are modern Waverly's with ivoroid buttons.

The guitar’s body features original finish throughout, with touch-up adjacent to the fretboard extension, where the board was narrowed. There are four repaired top cracks including one at the pickguard’s inside margin, two repaired back cracks, and one small side crack that’s been repaired and locally touched up. The original bridge remains in excellent condition and has been reslotted for proper intonation. The aged bone saddle was installed here, the bridge pins are original. A few brace ends have been reglued over the years, and the bridge plate is a well-made replacement. The bridge pin spacing is 2-3/8”.

A wonderful sounding Gibson Jumbo, this Smeck is loud and powerful and has limitless headroom at the ready. Its voice is very focused, fundamental, and clean, with overtones kept at bay; which makes it a perfect flat-picker. The bass is not overpowering but is quite present and underlies the mids and low mids well. Trebles and upper mids are strong, thick, and perfectly defined.

With non-original hardshell case