Steel Guitars on Ebay; Greg Leisz with Eric Clapton

I’ve been contacted by many people who have purchased steel guitars on Ebay and called me to get the guitars serviced, fixed and made playable. Most of the guitars are total disasters with such things wrong as cracked bodies which affects tuning cabinet drop, bad pickups that sound awful or no ohm reading, tuning keys that are stripped and sometimes serious problems that can’t be fixed. Several guitars have parts missing which are no longer available and have been stripped to make other guitars useable. I feel Ebay is a wonderful place to sell steel guitars but a horrible place to buy them.

I see many Sho-Bud and ZB guitars being bought at low prices by customers that think they can quickly, easily and cheaply add two more knee levers. No way, not any more. Many Sho-Buds were built from ’70 to ’74 with only two knee levers. By now, all the original parts have been used up making these modern configuration 4 and 5 knee lever guitars. Before you buy a steel guitar, make sure it is what you want configuration wise. Homemade knee levers and homemade parts will destroy the value of what you started with. This of course, only applies to the older classics and not new guitars.

Sho-Bud is a true orphan which means the bad ones are worth less and the good ones are worth more. Any Sho-Bud that I sell will be in incredible shape and ready to go for many years, regardless of how I purchased them.

As far as Emmons push-pull goes, I have never seen an Emmons push-pull that didn’t require a good going through before I could resell it. I do feel the Emmons push-pull is the finest steel guitar in the world in most ways and if you have a good one, it’s value will continue to ascend forever like the Stradivarius violin. Don’t shy away from the push-pull, just be very careful where you buy it … or buy it at a low enough price that you can afford to have me go through it for you.

I’d like to share this email with you. Here it is.

Hi Bobbe,

Tom Blizzard, here, in Fredericton, New Brunswick, Canada. A drummer by trade, but with a lifelong love for pedal steel – and, like yourself, an appreciation for great musicianship, regardless of the genre.

Just wanted to mention that I watched Eric Clapton’s “Crossroads Guitar Festival 2013” DVD the other day. Clapton’s band included Greg Leisz on steel. I wasn’t familiar with him, but he certainly was a solid player on this high profile gig. Always great to see pedal steel on stage at Madison Square Garden!

So happy to see that you’re “back in the saddle”, Bobbe.

All the best,

Of course I think that’s absolutely great. Hats off to Eric Clapton and Greg Leisz.

Bobbe Seymour

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