The new tuners have bigger distance between the posts than the original, it has been some drilling done. The bridge is thinned down, it had a long fret as a saddle. The string pins and end plug is not original. The worst part is that is seems to be over sprayed with thick modern lacquer, probably the worst thing you can do to a fine old guitar like this
Those pages I had already found. I sent an email for vintage guitar, but they could not tell the answer. Identifying old guitar models is difficult due to the lack of images. My own estimate of the year of manufacture is after 1925 and before 1940.
When was the medal first used? Which models got that medal? Why was it installed on the back of the headstock?
Need to continue research, thanks for the help
Edit:Oh, there had been a new reply to the thread. Great that someone has the right information, that’s exactly what I’m looking for. Thank you especially, rogerh
There are no serial numbers on the headstock. I examined the inside with an endoscope, only glue and wood were visible there. The serial number may have been on a glued tag or sticker and it is missing. May this be a hint, there is no serial number on the body?
Looking at the picture of the head, can the top of the head be replaced with a piece of wood? The serial number is always stamped on top of the head, nothing inside the guitar beside the burn stamp "Herman Carlson Levin Musikinstrumentfabrik Göteborg" and an occasional paper label from the retailer.
Before and including the year 1913 (from about 1901) the medal was made of white celluloid with the same contents printed on - often just a round white patch with the printing gone. Later that year they changed it to metal, brass or zinc/iron under and/or just after WW1. I have a 1920 with white metal. In 1923 they moved the medal to the front. I have seen a printed on metal medal without relief from 1924. After that they went for a flat head and no medal, don't know the exact year, but sometime in the early 1930ies.
There are also some guitars lacking the medal, I have one from 1912 with a stamped serial number and I have seen a couple more like that.
Still some dates to investigate, the dates for brass and white metal, the printed on medal around 1924 and the date for the disappearing of the medal
The surface of the varnish also looks normal. Cracked surface as it belongs to such old instruments. Someone has overpainted the fingerboard with varnish and that it's a nasty thing. Maybe the fingerboard surface all over sanding will help remove the varnish. Or it needs to be replaced completely.
The thin line is visible so that the headstock is not one piece. I think the location of the medal needed the support of a piece of wood. The lower edge of the glued piece of wood, holds the medal in place. if I remove the top part, the medal will not stay in place. And I can’t believe there would be a serial number under that glued piece of wood. I don't know any reason why anyone would cover up the serial number.
Maybe the guitar is a Model 103 / Model 21? The dimensions and the description of the appearance fit well.
The top of the head has an added piece of wood and gone is the serial number. The cracks in the finish comes with cellulose lacquer, Levin started using cellulose lacquer in the end of the 1920's, the oldest one I have seen was from 1929. Before they always used spirit and shellac based varnish that don't crack. The guitar is refinished or resprayed.
Usually in this age of guitar the edge of the headstock looks much more used, because the guitar is leaning against the wall. Especially the edge, the back of the headstock. The top tip of the headstock is not as scratched and rough worn as "normally" it should be. I start to agree and I think the piece has been replaced, or... Perhaps the guitar may have been a second-class product, that never earned a serial number