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First Year 1988 Pre-Factory
Paul Reed Smith CE-24
Serial Number 0037
in
Pearl White

Early Artist Relations Guitar

Scroll Down for 34 Hi-Def Pictures

AN ULTRA-RARE ARTIST RELATIONS GUITAR. Let me start by posting what this guitar is as well as what it is not…..

This guitar is not a mint condition museum piece. It is played, has vintage cosmetic ware, the tone pot and toggle switch have been replaced. The price reflects that.

This guitar is one of the first CE-24 guitars ever made.  Among the other attributes are the original un-stamped “T” & “B” pick-ups, a rare pearl white finish, it was celebrity artist owned in 1988, the headstock logo pre-dates even the original “PRS Electric” design and it has been hand signed by Paul.  The price reflects all of that too.

1988 Paul Reed Smith Pearl CE-24 01 photo 1988PaulReedSmithPearlCE-2401_zpsfb77350a.jpg 1988 Paul Reed Smith Pearl CE-24 02 photo 1988PaulReedSmithPearlCE-2402_zpsbe40006d.jpg

 

The guitar is both “played and playable” as I like to call pieces like this.  It is a highly collectable pre-factory guitar with a TWO DIGIT SERIAL NUMBER.  The finish has been played off the back of the neck giving it a vintage feel which vintage players prefer, while exposing the deeply flamed maple stock that it is made out of.  There are some cosmetic chips in the pearl finish down to the wood along the bottom front edge and some finish wear on the back.  It is all clearly visible in the photographs.  Have a look and read more about this historic vintage guitar below the pictures.

 

1988 Paul Reed Smith Pearl CE-24 03 photo 1988PaulReedSmithPearlCE-2403_zpsea6da3d5.jpg 1988 Paul Reed Smith Pearl CE-24 04 photo 1988PaulReedSmithPearlCE-2404_zps63d90829.jpg
1988 Paul Reed Smith Pearl CE-24 05 photo 1988PaulReedSmithPearlCE-2405_zps19f47195.jpg 1988 Paul Reed Smith Pearl CE-24 06 photo 1988PaulReedSmithPearlCE-2406_zpsb5721ac8.jpg
1988 Paul Reed Smith Pearl CE-24 07 photo 1988PaulReedSmithPearlCE-2407_zps87974c58.jpg 1988 Paul Reed Smith Pearl CE-24 08 photo 1988PaulReedSmithPearlCE-2408_zpsfd583943.jpg
1988 Paul Reed Smith Pearl CE-24 09 photo 1988PaulReedSmithPearlCE-2409_zps8c057ea0.jpg 1988 Paul Reed Smith Pearl CE-24 10 photo 1988PaulReedSmithPearlCE-2410_zps66d9c8ea.jpg
1988 Paul Reed Smith Pearl CE-24 11 photo 1988PaulReedSmithPearlCE-2411_zps78c6a5ae.jpg 1988 Paul Reed Smith Pearl CE-24 12 photo 1988PaulReedSmithPearlCE-2412_zps131b16a7.jpg
1988 Paul Reed Smith Pearl CE-24 13 photo 1988PaulReedSmithPearlCE-2413_zps89ba3631.jpg 1988 Paul Reed Smith Pearl CE-24 14 photo 1988PaulReedSmithPearlCE-2414_zps9988c847.jpg
1988 Paul Reed Smith Pearl CE-24 15 photo 1988PaulReedSmithPearlCE-2415_zps6141fb95.jpg 1988 Paul Reed Smith Pearl CE-24 16 photo 1988PaulReedSmithPearlCE-2416_zpsc0085d9a.jpg
1988 Paul Reed Smith Pearl CE-24 17 photo 1988PaulReedSmithPearlCE-2418_zpsa1fff8f9.jpg 1988 Paul Reed Smith Pearl CE-24 18 photo 1988PaulReedSmithPearlCE-2418a_zps392cb5a1.jpg
1988 Paul Reed Smith Pearl CE-24 19 photo 1988PaulReedSmithPearlCE-2419_zps1885776b.jpg 1988 Paul Reed Smith Pearl CE-24 20 photo 1988PaulReedSmithPearlCE-2420_zps302bacbd.jpg
1988 Paul Reed Smith Pearl CE-24 21 photo 1988PaulReedSmithPearlCE-2421_zps70774f31.jpg 1988 Paul Reed Smith Pearl CE-24 22 photo 1988PaulReedSmithPearlCE-2422_zps7c120907.jpg
 photo 1988PaulReedSmithPearlCE-2422a_zpse2eeb89d.jpg  photo 1988PaulReedSmithPearlCE-2422b_zps367c8fbe.jpg
1988 Paul Reed Smith Pearl CE-24 23 photo 1988PaulReedSmithPearlCE-2423_zps873f736a.jpg 1988 Paul Reed Smith Pearl CE-24 24 photo 1988PaulReedSmithPearlCE-2424_zpse2e8f27f.jpg
1988 Paul Reed Smith Pearl CE-24 25 photo 1988PaulReedSmithPearlCE-2425_zps2af157f2.jpg 1988 Paul Reed Smith Pearl CE-24 26 photo 1988PaulReedSmithPearlCE-2426_zpsddf87a9a.jpg
1988 Paul Reed Smith Pearl CE-24 27 photo 1988PaulReedSmithPearlCE-2427_zps6e6b1bc8.jpg 1988 Paul Reed Smith Pearl CE-24 28 photo 1988PaulReedSmithPearlCE-2428_zps6e67e696.jpg
1988 Paul Reed Smith Pearl CE-24 29 photo 1988PaulReedSmithPearlCE-2429_zps4ef49d84.jpg 1988 Paul Reed Smith Pearl CE-24 30 photo f6379d69-b28a-43a8-bbc8-5686bcd785ee_zpsaeaf2fc9.jpg
1988 Paul Reed Smith Pearl CE-24 31 photo 1988PaulReedSmithPearlCE-2431_zps8e32b4f9.jpg 1988 Paul Reed Smith Pearl CE-24 32 photo 1988PaulReedSmithPearlCE-24232_zpse5291fab.jpg

To promote his instruments and his growing guitar company through the early years, Paul would make some guitars just for the purpose of giving them to artists as promotional pieces.  These early artist relations pieces were identified by a “B” stamp on the headstock.  Anyone that knows about the history of PRS guitars knows that the use of a “B” to designate these instruments does not in any way mean that the instrument is a “second”.  Why would anyone send out a piece that was not at least BETTER than the standard production pieces when the goal is to get a celebrity endorsement from the artist it was given to?  This is a fine instrument and a screaming performer that went from the production line into the hands of a celebrity performer.  I’ve checked with the factory.  They kept no meaningful records through the early years, up until the mid-late 1990’s.  There is no way to know who this guitar was given to or how it may have been passed around in celebrity circles back then.  What is known is that Paul’s earliest endorsers in the 80’s an 90’s did not include any “drop D”, ball cap, crunch rockers.  Among the heavy-weights that helped launch Paul’s company into what it is today were: Santana, Ted Nugent, Howard Leese, Alex Lifeson (known to favor PRS CE guitars), Joe Walsh, Brad Whitford, and Al DiMeola to name a few.  There is no telling who may have owned this guitar in 1988.  There are some Google search references to Todd Rundgren as a PRS endorsee, though based on my research I believe the source of the “Todd” reference is more likely a signature from Paul at a guitar show to a subsequent (non-celebrity) owner.  Recently PRS changed the artist endorsement designation from a “B” stamp to an “AS” stamp.
This guitar is a stunning beauty on stage.  The pearl white finish throws an angelic glow under the stage lights.  I gravitated to white guitars several years ago as my primary instruments.  Pearl white are so much the better.  My two primary reasons are first that it is simply impossible not to notice every move that a white guitar makes on stage even from 100 yards away.  Not only do they stand out but they always look great up close too.  Fingerprints or smears are virtually invisible on a white finish even under intense stage lighting.  The pearl glow in the finish on this one is evident in many of the photo’s above.  I gig every weekend and have many vintage PRS guitars to choose from.  My primary player week-in and week-out is a pearl white 1988 CE-24 much like this one.  It can be seen in several of the video’s on the associated “The Extremists” web site from the menu bar above.  You just can’t beat this guitar for sound, looks, playability and the feel of the vintage neck.

The face of the headstock displays the earliest version of the CE-24 design.  How cool is that!?!  When the line was launched, they had not yet designed the PRS Electric” logo.  They initially used the gold colored signature decal.  The first pieces are known to have had a decal headstock up to about serial number 0080.  After that the “PRS Electric” logo was used until they went largely to the black face with a small signature decal through the rest of the pre-factory years.

The frets show barely any ware at all which doesn’t seem to reconcile with the wear on the neck finish but the frets are high, clean and certainly appear to be all original.  There is no evidence of a re-fret at all.  The neck carve appears to be the PRS regular, which most CE-s had back then.  The fingerboard appears to be Brazilian as well, which is rare for a CE but in the early days I believe they used whatever they had on hand to get guitars completed.  There may have been some motivation in wanting to up-grade this instrument with a Brazilian board for the artist relations aspect as well. Have a look at the pictures and judge for yourself

The electronics on-board include both of its original pick-ups (unstamped “T” & “B”) which are VERY hard to find.  They only made them for about 18 months through 1988-89.  The pick-up wires have been extended and neatly wrapped at some point in the guitar’s life.  The tone pot and switch have been changed out as well, but to me, from a performance perspective, a 500K pot is a 500K pot and a toggle switch is a toggle switch.  The original pick-ups are the most important and the most irreplaceable components in up-holding the instruments original vintage tone.

If this guitar was a mint condition museum piece we would be looking at triple the amount of my very reasonable asking price for this first year, two digit serial number instrument.  Buy it for what it is:  an outstanding vintage pre-factory player.  PRS has clearly carved its way into the mainstream of premier electric guitar manufacturers and they are here to stay.  This guitar will always be worth more than you paid for it.  Imagine what a 60 year old Strat or Les Paul with a two digit serial number would sell for in any condition these days.

Please be sure to take a moment and click here to look at my ABOUT page or access it from the top menu bar.  You can click HERE to access my e-Bay feedback profile ( e-Bay seller dm-2 ) directly as well.  I encourage even the smallest of questions so always feel free to e-mail me any time. Over 140 of my e-Bay feedback ratings are from PRS guitar sales.  Pre-Factory PRS guitars are getting more scarce and more valuable every day.  They are an investment and this one is in near perfect condition. You’ll ALWAYS have the option to re-sell it for as much or more than you paid.

This guitar is also listed on e-Bay with a starting price of $200 more than I’m asking here at my home page, just to put a dent in the outrageous e-Bay seller fees they would charge me to sell it to you there.  It is also on a rotating consignment schedule in two local music stores but I’m asking more there too, as they take a pretty healthy cut if they sell it.  Why pay more than you have to?  Check my feedback and buy it here.  It may be gone soon.  Send me an e-mail and we’ll talk.  If you’ve come to this page directly through an organic Google search, click this link to see a list of all the guitars I currently have for sale before leaving this page.

$1695.00 Includes Ground shipping to the lower 48

You want it…. You can afford it…. Pull the trigger.

 

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