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Dobro Double Cyclops Info Needed

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Jun 23, 2022 - 8:29:18 AM
2 posts since 6/23/2022

I have a new-to-me Dobro that I've identified as an early California made Double Cyclops. It has all the correct features including square cut slots in the headstock, no fret marker at the 17th fret, long spider and cover with screws at the 12 o-clock position. My friend, who I bought it from, purchased it 15 - 20 years ago and confirmed that the space that now has a pickup, was the correct shape for the Double Cyclops screens. I assume all these features point to a 1932 build.

I have several questions about it. There is no serial number on the top of the headstock (which does not look tampered with), or anywhere that I can find on the reso cover. I has the outline of a logo that does not look like the standard Dobro. I know these were made for Montgomery-Ward (Magno-Tone) and others, but cannot find any information about the other brands that might have been used.

At first I thought it had been refinished, but now I've seen examples with the same reddish natural finish. It does look like possible overspray on the back and sides, but the top has a fine crazing pattern that looks old.

The metal parts have been painted with a textured gray paint, but I assume they are original as the cover is the correct Fern style.

Unfortunately, the guitar has a headstock break, but it has been stable for the time my friend has had it. It plays beautifully in standard tuning, and the pickups are truly inspiring, both clean and distorted.

Does anyone have thoughts about the logo, finish, lack of serials, and what might be involved in stripping the paint from the metal parts?


Jun 24, 2022 - 11:47:28 PM

4053 posts since 7/27/2008

More tomorrow - it's late and I kept making mistakes and screwed up my post. A couple of photos from Steve Toth's book Dobro Roots. This California guitar has a serial number (#2887) circa 1932. 

This is a poinsettia coverplate, not fern. 

Jun 26, 2022 - 12:03:31 PM

2 posts since 6/23/2022

Thank you for your reply and correction on the poinsettia coverplate. I had seen the Dobro Roots entry, but the logo outline on mine does not look like the Magna-Tone or Dobro labels. I'll look forward to any more info you can supply.

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