In the meantime our friend Ken came over to the booth (he is an artiste extraordinaire) to see what we were up to. I negotiated Tim down to a reasonable price and bought the guitar.
Could have sold it twice on the way out, but that's no fun, I had to take this thing home to set it up to play.
Ken did fix me up with all the ivory and ebony I can ever use for fretboard inlays. He really is a talented guy. One of Ken's fascinations is to create 'piano men' from discarded grand piano parts, for guys like me to expand our imaginations in the creations of funky art, which Ken displays at museums and art shows around the country. It's really a big deal! I've created two displays and plan to do another.
Strings and pick guard were installed, and I polished the surfaces before firing this thing up. It plays and sounds great, because the action is comfortable and the body is a mini-jumbo (according to the Fender Guitar Company website), and as near as I can determine the guitar was built in 1973. Unbelievable condition for a 40-year-old instrument.
It's going on eBay for sale, so if you want a really nice guitar take a look, or contact me soon and we'll make a deal.