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View Full Version : Is the original vintage case important to you...



remy26
05-13-2013, 03:05 PM
...even if it has seen far better days?

I have a '60 or '61 Martin baritone that was sold to me with what is supposedly the original chipboard case. In my opinion, this case has seen better days and can't be trusted to protect my >50 year old uke. I'm not comfortable carrying the uke across the room in it as I'm afraid the lid is going to pop open and my ukulele is going to spill onto the floor. It looks like it's gotten wet or been run over by a truck and I'm considering whether its worth keeping it around or not. I just purchased a new Ko'olau hard case that fits the martin perfectly and will provide many years of adequate protection.

Now, I'm the type of person that doesn't like to keep things around if they don't have a purpose. What do you think? Do I keep it for prosperity? Possibly for the next buyer (not planning on selling anytime soon, but I know to never say never)? Does it add any value for someone looking for one of these? Am I being overly harsh and is the case in OK condition for its age?

What say you UU? Thanks for any advice in advance!

Here are a few pics in case you wanted to see what it looks like:

http://i872.photobucket.com/albums/ab284/nasoj26/Original%20Martin%20Baritone%20case/IMG_1599_zps51e7fb1e.jpg (http://s872.photobucket.com/user/nasoj26/media/Original%20Martin%20Baritone%20case/IMG_1599_zps51e7fb1e.jpg.html)
http://i872.photobucket.com/albums/ab284/nasoj26/Original%20Martin%20Baritone%20case/IMG_1600_zpsa55ee865.jpg (http://s872.photobucket.com/user/nasoj26/media/Original%20Martin%20Baritone%20case/IMG_1600_zpsa55ee865.jpg.html)
http://i872.photobucket.com/albums/ab284/nasoj26/Original%20Martin%20Baritone%20case/IMG_1601_zps8de1f57c.jpg (http://s872.photobucket.com/user/nasoj26/media/Original%20Martin%20Baritone%20case/IMG_1601_zps8de1f57c.jpg.html)
http://i872.photobucket.com/albums/ab284/nasoj26/Original%20Martin%20Baritone%20case/IMG_1602_zps07c37201.jpg (http://s872.photobucket.com/user/nasoj26/media/Original%20Martin%20Baritone%20case/IMG_1602_zps07c37201.jpg.html)

itsme
05-13-2013, 03:13 PM
If you ever decide to sell it, a collector type might be willing to pay more with the original case. So if you have room in the back of a closet or whatever, I'd just put it away.

Good job on buying a decent hard case for it. :)

remy26
05-13-2013, 05:53 PM
Thanks for your thoughts. I kind of thought this as well, but I'm more curious how inherently desirable it would be for someone to want the original case. I'm weighing the monetary benefit of storing this thing vs. how much it will bring in the end. Sure, in a number of years, it might add some value, but I hesitate to think it would mean the difference in me being a prince or a pauper, but I could be wrong! I think that I might be more inclined to keep it around if I thought it would really bring extra joy to a new owner down the line more so than because it'll sell for a little more because of it. I really do have limited space and I hate keeping stuff "just because".

Patrick Madsen
05-13-2013, 06:25 PM
I've got a '63 Martin Bari with original case. Though the case didn't mean a sale or not, it surely helped with my decision. My case is in really good condition but I use my Ubass case when taking the Martin out of the house. I'm sure it'll add value if I ever decide to sell. Plus, I just couldn't discard something that has been part of the instruments history.

I feel an original case is much like an old toy in the original box. No matter how worn the box is, it adds value bigtime to the price of the toy.

Tigeralum2001
05-13-2013, 06:45 PM
I'm a player and I couldn't care less about the case. However, if you sell to a collector, it means a lot to them...

As far as a modern case, this one fits my vintage Martin Baritone really well and the price was right, too- http://www.americanmusical.com/Item--i-LAI-UCB

Very decent case that should protect against all but the most violent hit...

RichM
05-13-2013, 06:52 PM
In most cases when I get a vintage uke with original case, I put the uke in a modern case and save the vintage case for if and when I sell.

Jake Wildwood
05-13-2013, 07:02 PM
As someone who sells vintage instruments for a living... keep the case... people like that stuff.

Personally? As someone who has to steward this stuff in storage between sales?

...I hate, hate, hate ratty old chip cases!!

UKEonomics
05-14-2013, 05:45 AM
I just look at the original case as an added bonus. Kind of cool to have, but not something that would make or break the deal for me.

OldePhart
05-14-2013, 06:25 AM
Yeah...collector's value them but, honestly, as somebody with various health issues in my family, the last thing I want to bring into my home is some ratty old case with 80 years worth of mold spores and dust mites.

I've bid on a couple of old ukes on eBay that had those funky old canvas cases that open at the heel - I've been told that they are highly prized by some collectors. I fully intended to tell the seller to do whatever he wanted with that canvas case because I don't even want to handle it - just pack the uke well and ship it. I didn't win any of them, though, so it never became an issue.

John

RichM
05-14-2013, 06:39 AM
My 1930 Martin Style 0 can in a vintage fabric-covered wooden case that is adorable, and adds to my enjoyment of the uke as a vintage piece. The rather weathered chipboard case picture by the OP just looks like a ratty old case. :)

remy26
05-14-2013, 07:42 AM
Thanks for all of the responses! One of the questions that keeps going around in my head is what RichM kind of brought up. Is it a vintage case or is it just a ratty old case? :D

Still making up my mind, but John brings up a good point...what kind of biology is this case harboring?! :D Hadn't even thought about that yet!

Skinny Money McGee
05-14-2013, 02:30 PM
If I were to have purchased that Martin, that case would end up in the burn barrel. Can't imagine a serious collector would want that bent up POS for any reason, least of all to put a collectable Martin back in it.

If I bought that Uke and it came in a nice Koolau case, that alone would tell me the owner cared and had respect for the old Martin. I have a Koolau tenor case, and they are very nice indeed.

Paul December
05-14-2013, 03:36 PM
If I were to have purchased that Martin, that case would end up in the burn barrel. Can't imagine a serious collector would want that bent up POS for any reason, least of all to put a collectable Martin back in it.

If I bought that Uke and it came in a nice Koolau case, that alone would tell me the owner cared and had respect for the old Martin. I have a Koolau tenor case, and they are very nice indeed.

+1 ... Burn it!

Eyeguy
05-14-2013, 03:51 PM
Depends on the case - just because it's old doesn't mean it's valuable or even collectable. The one you've pictured would fall into the latter category in my humble opinion. I personally would take it if it came with the uke and was offered for sale locally, but would not want a uke shipped to me in it. Now this case I got with a recently acquired vintage uke is unique enough to warrant some interest by a vintage enthusiast, even though I use something sturdier for keeping the uke safe.

http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b42/iguy/DSC_0204_zps43b91fed.jpg (http://s16.photobucket.com/user/iguy/media/DSC_0204_zps43b91fed.jpg.html)

remy26
05-14-2013, 04:33 PM
Ooh, I like THAT case Eyeguy! Is that a trap door on the bottom? For some reason, I'm thinking union suit for your uke! :D

Alright, I'm leaning towards burn it (which is what I had in my head to begin with).

pahu
05-14-2013, 06:51 PM
Remy, if it was a unique case that really identifies with the instrument-keep it. Otherwise , it's just a ratty old case.
Smart idea to keep it in a newer/closed case.

Patrick Madsen
05-14-2013, 10:19 PM
Yeah, that case for the martin is pretty ratty remy. Now the one with the trapdoor is really cool.