With vintage Gibsons selling at auction for as much as half a million dollars, Davidson will sometimes roll up his sleeves and poke around in the ledgers, but only as time allows.
The earliest volumes contain hundreds of yellowed pages covered front and back with rows of handwritten numbers. It can take Davidson several hours to locate a specific serial number, if he can find it at all. Even then, there may be four other guitars—of all different models—with the same number sequence.
Davidson also recommends the Blue Book of Electric Guitars. Serial numbers can pull up multiple guitars from multiple years.
Sep 23, Find the manufacture date by cross-referencing the serial number with For many vintage instruments, determining the date of manufacture. DATING GIBSON GUITARS BY REFERENCE OF SERIAL NUMBERS. Gibson has used various methods of numbering from , so it is not simply based on.
To illustrate his point, Davidson types in a serial number from memory and it quickly pulls up three different guitars—an SG , a Steinberger , and a Les Paul. Today, Gibson USA takes great pains not to recycle serial numbers. To combat the problem, the company upped its serial number sequence last year from eight digits to nine.
Davidson is quick to point out that consumers have good reason to be alarmed by real or perceived discrepancies on Gibson models. A few bolt-on neck instruments had a date ink stamped on the heel area.
Oval label with serial number, no model name, photo of Orville Gibson and lyre-mandolin: Fret size Gibson used a smaller. Factory Order Numbers beginning with the letter D to H pressed into the back of the peghead. That is, is not the same number as but when reading the number off the back of a Gibson peghead, these two numbers do look very similar! Davidson also recommends the Blue Book of Electric Guitars. Indian Rosewood used instead of Brazilian:
Between and late June or early July , Gibson used the same serialization system on all standard-built guitars. This updated system utilizes an impressed, 8 digit numbering scheme that covers both serializing and dating functions.
All currently manufactured Gibsons non-custom shop are stamped with a hand arbor, and start at or , and continue until production is finished that day. This hand stamp used to be reset daily at or Bozeman instruments began using designations and, in , Nashville instruments began using designations.
It should also be noted that the Nashville plant has not reached the s since , so these numbers have been. Certain models in the Standard series also do not follow this, either. At the beginning of each day, the sixth digit is reset to 0.