Author Options:

Any idea where one can get a Valco Airline guitar? Answered

The title says it all. Does anyone know where I could buy a Valco Airline guitar (like Jack White's) for cheap?



5 years ago

Nope :-), although if you have Craigslist where you live, you'll have a better chance of low pricing than Evilbay.

Select vintage 50's, 60's and 70's guitars seem to have appreciated five to ten times in the last decade--even guitars like Airline, Silvertone, Harmony, etc., which were worth next to nothing 10 years ago.

The good news: many of those vintage "budget" guitars are still worth a fraction of an old Fender, Gibson, Martin, etc. And even at today's "collector" prices, many budget instruments sell for way less than when they were new (adjusted for inflation).

Plus, there are still lots of oddball 60's guitars that sell in the $100-$300 range. So be like Jack White--rediscover and popularize a different old guitar. Be open-minded (and "open-eared"), like Jack--don't just play what he plays...

Thanks. I will have to look into other vintages. Do you know of any off the top of your head?

Sure--Norma, Heit, Maxitone, Kent, Kimberly, Kingston, Teisco, Domino, Zim-gar, Univox, Kay, Sekova, Guyatone, Kawai... (all off the top of my head).

And don't discount the importance of the amplifier to Jack White's (or anyone's) sound...

Yeah, the amp is huge. Thanks for the ideas. Any that youd personally recomend?

Old guitars are incredibly varied, so it's tough to say for sure. For guitar stuff (vintage or not) I'm usually willing to give gear a try if the price is reasonable.

The usual solid vs. hollow body thing applies. Hollow bodies will be more complex harmonically but tend to feedback at high volumes (can depend on the amp, too). Solid bodies tend to shine for high gain. But either type can (and have) been used to excellent effect by good musicians. Sometimes that hollow body feedback effect can be really cool, and usually you can control it simply by where you stand. And there are tricks (stuffing sponges and towels inside to tame the feedback).

I have thin-line hollow body guitars by Norma, Kimberly, Sekova and Maxitone. The Norma and Maxitone are solid guitars. The Kimberly is a violin-shaped body with only one F-hole, and it doesn't suffer from much feedback.

For amps, I like the old Danelectro ones. I also have a Kalamazoo and a Lectrolab amp.

Sometimes the magic comes from just the right combination of guitar and amp...

The Norma and Sekova pictures are already in my Ibles library, so I've posted 'em...


Ok thanks. I appreciate it.

I'd rather find an easy, super successful way to get some talent so that I could make almost any guitar sound good instead of just making a great guitar sound bad.