March 2021 Sale Report – Prices still increasing into 2021


15th March 2021

Firstly, a big thankyou to all our buyers and sellers for another very successful guitar auction, the first of 2021.

Continuing from last year’s theme, Covid has wreaked havoc across salerooms trying to co-ordinate sales to schedule and negotiating the latest government guidance. Last year we were lucky with all of our sales and entry deadlines allowing us to continue with some normality, albeit the sales being conducted “Online Only” for staff and customer safety.

Last week’s auction would be a different story, being the first conducted in a full-blown lockdown. A lot of consideration was taken as to whether we proceed as planned, with the main concern being that we would not be allowed to offer any form of public viewing and how this could affect prices?....

Well, we are delighted to report that the prices were up once again, continuing the upward trend from the end of last year.  With just shy of 94% of lots sold over the two days and nearly everything selling for mid – upper estimate, the market appears very buoyant indeed. Brexit was of course another potential worry, with EU buyers now subject to pay extra duty to import goods over. All fears were quashed, with many of our strong European buyers still very active.

There were many highlights throughout the sale, with the rarity factor resulting in frantic bidding to acquire lesser seen pieces. A prime example and possibly the highlight of the sale being lot number 1. A 1962 Epiphone EB6 Newport bass, selling for £6,200 hammer against a £1000 – 2000 pre-sale estimate, truly kicked the sale off with a bang. With only 21 thought to have been made resulting in them almost never coming to market, it was a very difficult guitar to value and was anyone’s guess. Bidding was international, with buyers in the USA, Switzerland and UK competing. The guitar ended up with a UK collector, who needed this model to complete his vintage Epiphone set.

Another highlight, which was again driven by rarity, was lot 55, a 1975 Travis Bean TB1000S, selling for £4,200 hammer against a £1500 – 2500 pre-sale estimate. This was quite a surprise, with the last one sold by Gardiner Houlgate realising £2000 only a few years ago. Unlike the Epiphone, far more were produced, with over 1400 of this Travis Bean model made. However, they are rarely seen on the market, particularly in the UK with most residing across the pond in the US. Bidding was particularly strong across Europe, with a UK collector now the delighted new owner.

The highest price in the auction was lot no. 3, a 1964 Fender Telecaster in Sunburst, selling for £7,500 hammer. Against a £4,000 – 6,000 estimate this once again came as a surprise, especially being that the guitar had been heavily modified deeming it purely a player grade vintage example. This result shows that players grade pieces are still gaining popularity with the very top end original examples now exceeding the pockets of most.

Day two saw a fantastic selection of everything guitar related, including over 100 amps, 100 effects units, guitar spare and audio equipment. Strong bidding continued with some fantastic prices once again achieved. Lot 511 was the highlight, a striking 1970s Orange OR120 head with matching speaker cabinets. The amp was original including the original covers and was consigned from a deceased estate. The fresh to the market appeal peaked many amp collectors’ interest and drove the price up to £3,200 hammer against a £1500 – 2500 pre-sale estimate.

Please click here to see the full sale results. There were only a handful of unsold lots, but if anything remaining peaks the interest, feel free to make an offer.

Now, we look towards our next auction, taking place on 16th & 17th June 2021. Entries are already arriving thick and fast, and we are expecting a bumper sale due to the lower level of stock being able to come in for the March auction. If you have anything to sale, we are taking consignments until 21st May. Please contact Luke Hobbs to discuss your selling requirements. If you are looking forward to taking part in the bidding next time around, our catalogue preview will start appearing in a few weeks’ time.

We look forward to seeing you again in June. Online auctions will continue for the time being, but with public viewing re-instated, allowed by the governments recovery road map……

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