The Duo Jet Minefield

Discussion in 'THE Gretsch Discussion Forum' started by Ashley1983, Jul 12, 2021.

  1. Ashley1983

    Ashley1983 Electromatic

    41
    Aug 9, 2020
    England
    Hi everyone

    I’m having a bit of bother and wondered if you can help me

    I am in the market for my first “proper” Gretsch and I am specifically in the market for a duo jet.

    I am a big Beatles fan and love the Harrison 57 but I don’t want to sell any of my other guitars to purchase the signature model so I would like to get as close to this as possible.

    from my knowledge Harrison’s 57 was heavily chambered with DeAlmond pickups and I would like to get close to this model.

    the 3 models I have seen are the TSP model and the new vintage select range that is a 53 & 59. How do these models compare to the TSP? Is one model better than the other? And how chambered is the TSP? Is there another model I should look out for?

    I play a 65’ Elitist Casino and a STD Tele through a Vox hand wired ac15 with blue backs so I think this will complement my set up nicely. I play rhythm in a originals band with label interest so a electromatic just wouldn’t cut the mustard I need something tourable and also for the studio

    your help is greatly appreciated and I appreciate you taking the time to read this message

    thank you
     
    Back in Black likes this.
  2. 65club

    65club Electromatic

    59
    Jul 31, 2017
    USA
    I believe the TSP was the “Harrison” reissue prior to Gretsch having permission to use his name. I had one for a while and it was a great guitar. Can’t say how it compares to the others though. I will say it was from before they were doing vintage accurate chambering. Meaning it was heavily chambered but not like the ‘53 RI. Have fun on the hunt.
     
  3. afire

    afire Country Gent

    Yeah, I was going to say that having been made over 15 years ago, the TSP is unlikely to have vintage-spec chambering like the latest Jets. I briefly tinkered with one at a shop when they were new, and recall it being a bit on the heavy side compared to vintage.
     
  4. JC higgy

    JC higgy Gretschified

    Age:
    50
    Jun 6, 2008
    Belfast Norn Iron
    I have a TSP and it is heavier than the vintage equivalent,i haven't played anything from the recent lineup so can't compare.

    The TSP does have aged binding and inlays though,the Harrison model doesn't.
     
  5. Chet Harrison

    Chet Harrison Electromatic

    71
    Apr 27, 2020
    USA
    One thing to keep in mind, when looking at the VS models, is that vintage Dynas and T-Armonds are not that similar really.

    If I remember from earlier research, the 53 might have slightly more chambering than the 57 (59?). The Harrison model might be a different from either, who knows. No one has the balls/idiocy to saw a few of these guitars in half. Anyway, at that point, I would think bridge type and neck shape would take precedence over square millimeters of chambering.

    Pick any one you want, so long as it's black.
     
  6. Gasee

    Gasee Gretschie

    180
    Jun 4, 2009
    North Wales
    I have been keeping a eye out for a new Jet. But I have found most of all the newer Jets are more than a bit heavier than the earlier Jets (earlier 90's and 2000's Jets) This was the reason I always preferred the Chambered Jets to a Les Paul. Today not so much...
     
  7. Back in Black

    Back in Black Country Gent

    Age:
    72
    Jun 22, 2020
    Ontario Canada
    Hi Ashley,

    The current Vintage Select 53/57/59 are all going to be in the price range...give/take of the 57 GH.

    All the professional model Jets have the same body cavity route...see photo

    I'm sure if you buy on site, you can easily negotiate, same goes for on-line, call the shop first, negotiate a price, then ask them to e-mail you a purchase template with your agreed upon price...I do it often.

    Just me...but I like Dyna's on a Duo Jet, keeps the guitar ''period correct'', and I like the single coil sound.

    With most of the premium models, a deluxe case is included, if for some reason it is not, make sure you buy a model correct Gretsch branded case. Gretsch cases have a foam wedge in the bottom padding, relieving all strain on the neck, when the guitar is in the case.

    I've had my George for a long time, you'll love it! I play through an original JMI era VOX AC30/Top Boost, that has been re-cabineted.

    Best,

    BIB.

    IMG_0231.JPG DSCF1335.JPG DSCF1337.JPG DSCF1352.JPG
     
    drmilktruck likes this.
  8. bluenote23

    bluenote23 Country Gent

    Oct 17, 2009
    Montreal, Canada
    This is interesting you say this. It goes against my experience and a (I thought) general consensus about preFMIC Jets (1989-2003) as being on the heavy side. My 1997 G6129TR weighs 9.5 lbs while my 2005 G6121W (orange Jet shaped with western motif) weighs (a very light) 6.8lbs. My other two 2005 Jets come in at under 7.3 lbs.

    That said, I haven't ever played a vintage Jet nor any of the newer post 2012 models so I can't comment on those. But at least for chambering, 2005 - 2011 models will be pretty hollowed out.
     
  9. Lucky Jim

    Lucky Jim Electromatic

    48
    Oct 16, 2020
    Kent, England
    I'm not sure what the TSP body thickness was but the official GH model and the 53/57/59 VS models have 2" thick bodies, supposedly to be vintage correct. I did own an original 57 model but that was some years ago and I can't recall the body thickness. Most jets of the past 20-ish years seem to have 1-3/4" thick bodies.

    As you probably know, the GH model is painted black all over (to mimic George's paint job) whereas the TSP has the original 57 mahogany back, sides and neck.

    Early last year I was looking for a Cliff Gallup model Duo Jet which are hard to find but there seemed to be lots of used GH models on the market. I eventually bought a 53 VS. By the way, the 53 and 57 VS Jets have Dynasonics (T-Armond in the 53) but the 59 VS has Filtertrons.
     
    JC higgy likes this.
  10. JC higgy

    JC higgy Gretschified

    Age:
    50
    Jun 6, 2008
    Belfast Norn Iron
    I think the TSP is nearer 1.75" in thickness.
     
  11. Chmason85

    Chmason85 Synchromatic

    785
    May 1, 2018
    Philadelphia
    The difference is so minimal. The slimmer jets are 1.85”. Not my pic, but this shows how minimal a difference really is: 8A843A8B-3AF4-4FCC-B3B0-E1926F7C5649.jpeg
     
    Craig Encinitas likes this.
  12. Ashley1983

    Ashley1983 Electromatic

    41
    Aug 9, 2020
    England
    There is actually a one on gumtree at the moment for 2k if you are from England
     
  13. Ashley1983

    Ashley1983 Electromatic

    41
    Aug 9, 2020
    England
    This is all great info thanks guys
     
  14. Ashley1983

    Ashley1983 Electromatic

    41
    Aug 9, 2020
    England
    Thank you for taking the time to reply all great info thank you

    what’s your thoughts on dropping DS pickups in a TVP I could get one pretty cheap
     
  15. speedicut

    speedicut Friend of Fred

    Jun 5, 2012
    Alabama
    Dynas woyks sound great but not sure if they will fit without making them fit...
    If they don't, you could put T armonds in a filtertron mount.
     
  16. Back in Black

    Back in Black Country Gent

    Age:
    72
    Jun 22, 2020
    Ontario Canada

    Ashley,

    DS...?

    TVP...?

    Let me know what these abbreviations are.

    Best,

    BIB.
     
  17. Lucky Jim

    Lucky Jim Electromatic

    48
    Oct 16, 2020
    Kent, England
    Thanks for the heads up Ashley. It looks a pretty immaculate guitar at a fair price. The seller is in Wales probably 300 miles from me but I've messaged him to see if we could meet somewhere mutually convenient.
     
  18. BuddyHollywood

    BuddyHollywood Gretschie

    201
    Sep 11, 2009
    Venice, CA
    upload_2021-7-21_15-22-47.png

    Here is a picture of the different chambering of Duo Jets. The one on the right is the chambering style the vintage Duo Jets used and supposedly the same chambering the modern George Harrison, Cliff Gallup and VS Duo Jets use. The "H" style chambering is how most modern Terada Duo Jets are chambered.

    As far as Dynasonics go, Gretsch Dynasonics sound great but the bridge and neck in my 2011 set were wound the same. I had my Master Jedi pickup friend Sayoko Kuwabara rewind them for me, hotter bridge and lighter neck, and they are perfectly balanced now. Gretsch may have corrected this since then but I don't know. TV Jones T'Armonds are already balanced and sound great. Seymour Duncan Dynas also sound great.

    I'm thinking you should check out the '53 VS.
     

    Attached Files:

    new6659 likes this.
  19. Ashley1983

    Ashley1983 Electromatic

    41
    Aug 9, 2020
    England
    No problem good luck
     
  20. Ashley1983

    Ashley1983 Electromatic

    41
    Aug 9, 2020
    England
    I would like the ‘53 but I don’t want to buy new and I don’t think I’m going to pick one up 2nd hand.

    the models that I’ve seen come up are the TVP with power’tons, a TSP that the guy won’t take an offer for and a DSV that isn’t in great condition.

    I would be willing to hold out to get the right one. Does anyone know much about the TVP I have contacted a company over in Plymouth who seem to specialise in TV Jones to see if they can put T-Almonds in which would be my preference. Is it vintage chambered or it is more solid. It’s a 2017 year.
    My idea was to buy the t-almonds sell the powertrons and hopefully have a guitar that is very close to 55-57 style Jet
     
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