Gibson Original Series

Discussion in 'Other Guitars, other instruments' started by Gary in Boston, May 9, 2019.

  1. Wally

    Wally Telefied Ad Free Member

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    By far, the majority of Martins sold in the last twenty years have bolt on necks. All of the ‘affordable’ Martins are bolt-one. When you look inside at the heel area and see a small piece of wood glued to the heel block, you are looking at the cover for the bolt. A real Marin has a heel block with the company logo, model and serial number burned into the black...not on a piece of wood covering a bolt. There are other perhaps more serious differences.
     
  2. EsquireOK

    EsquireOK Friend of Leo's

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    First, let me say that I am glad these models are there, and I am beyond happy at the "new" Gibson's first year out. I have the limited finish SG Special already, and I want to get the LP Special and the '61 SG with the sideways Vibrola.

    But the details are way off, and that is why the price difference. They aren't really good reissues.

    For instance, on the '61 SG:

    - cream binding (should be white)

    - binding is way too thick

    - Fret nibs are completely the wrong style. Fret nibs should be back angled, and the fret ends angled to match. The ends of the frets should not be plastic. There should just be a slight plastic "ramp" up to the frets.

    - Pickups are slightly too far apart (they did this on my Special too, even more extremely, but it isn't billed as a "reissue").

    - Body cuts are not deep enough (there was variation, but most were deeper than the new ones)

    - Cast Gibson Deluxes with large bushings (should be stamped tuners with small bushings – and they have this style of tuner in the factory, so WTF?)

    - Pebbled rear cover plate (WTF? How easy is this to get right?)

    - Gigantic strap buttons (same as above)

    - No thumb cutters (SO easy to get right)

    - Truss rod cover has a big, fat, ugly, modern looking "SG" on it (WTF? How hard is this? It should have a Les Paul script cover...or just give us a blank one.)

    - No attempt to use truss rod cover with wide bevel; obvious even from a distance.

    - A stop tailpiece is about 10 years too early for SGs (but they have been putting these on '61 RIs for a long time, and at least they offer the Maestro and sideways Vibrolas this year)

    - Pickguard is the wrong size and shape. It should get closer to the poker chip, and follow the cuts on the body more closely.

    - Wrong angle on pickguard bevel. This is plain as day. Having the shallow bevel has a big visual impact...and it's not there.

    And that's just by giving it a once over online.

    Orange Drop caps have nothing to do with vintage correctness. They are just using it as a general selling point (as if it matters; it doesn't).

    And they might be priced OK...but they are still EXPENSIVE GUITARS.

    Of course they are made in the U.S.A. This information is published all over the place, and stamped on the back of the guitars themselves. You actually wrote them to ask where they were made?

    Nothing wrong with their "kinda close to the old ones" in and of themselves. I have several, and love them. But they are never going to look that close to the "real deal." I'm happy with the 2019 line too, but you're really overstating your case here.
     
    Last edited: May 16, 2019
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  3. stanger

    stanger Tele-Meister

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    Yup. I never meant to imply there were not mistakes. There were plenty of them.

    I could go on for hours, but basically, I think that it all boiled down to Henry Jusciewycz. He did an amazing job returning the Gibson company back to it's highest quality levels in everything the company made, considering that for the mandolins, that top peak was 1924, and for the acoustic guitars, 1935, while the peak for the Les Pauls was 1957. So many different instruments with such different times was almost impossible to do.

    But once he had accomplished it, I think he couldn't decide what to do next. He wanted another universe to conquer or something, but he failed at everything else he tried, and squandered vast amounts of time and money in them all.

    And like any business, there were also some big hits that came from outside as well. Over time, the mistakes just caught up with him past the point of any possible recovery.

    I've always thought his inability to create a good, stable mid-level of management throughout his factories was probably his worst mistake. He had a lethal tendency of moving a good worker out of the job he was best at into a higher level job the worker wasn't prepared to do. Then after about a year, he would fire them all and replace the entire bunch the same way.

    So there was never a solid bunch of folks who knew the guitar biz from top to bottom running the show. Making guitars isn't like making widgets. The closer Gibson got to customer perfection, the more critical maintaining that perfection became.
    Why couldn't Gibson keep it up? Entropy. The tendency for everything to run down over time.

    A widget is a widget. Sustained perfection makes no difference to widget making. Entropy has to be continually planned for and fought against to keep up perfection for an extended time period.
    Henry never really understood the difference.
    regards,
    stanger
     
    Last edited: May 16, 2019
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  4. John C

    John C Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    All that is true - which is why the Original Series '61 SGs with vibrolas are $2K and the Historics SGs with vibrolas are $4,600.

    My analogy is that the Gibson Original Series is like Fender's old AVRI series (the 1982-July 2012 versions) - close enough for most people, but if you want real accuracy you've got to go with the Custom Shop version.
     
  5. Coldacre

    Coldacre Tele-Meister

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    is the new LP Standard "50's" any different from the previous years Traditional? apart from the truss rod cover of course.....

    from what I can tell, if you want a late 50's style LP without going Custom Shop, the new Standard is just a re-badged Traditional... unless I'm missing something?
     
  6. Wally

    Wally Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Withdrawn
     
  7. John C

    John C Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    Similar - but $300 cheaper - the 2019 Series Traditional is $2,799 MAP and the Original Collection Standards are $2,499 MAP.

    Plus you can get it with P90s (goldtop only) and you can get one with a slim taper neck (60s model - but it has Grover tuners instead of keystone tuners and different pickups).
     
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  8. tfarny

    tfarny Friend of Leo's

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    There are, and have always been, plenty of examples of good mid-priced USA guitars. There just haven't been many or any from Gibson. For instance, G&L's Fullerton Standard line is all USA made, and PLEK'd, for $999 out the door. PRS makes a whole series of USA guitars for around the 12-1400 dollar mark. I have one, and it is fantastic. And anyhow it sounds like you don't own one of these yet so it's hard to say if they are of that high quality. The Gibsons under $3000 in my local shop are a mixed bag, at best, as far as quality. I would love Gibson to come back with guns blazing, I would even give one of the juniors a very hard look myself, and I hope these are what everyone wants them to be.
     
  9. MilwMark

    MilwMark Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

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    Wrong bevels on truss covers and pickguard? The horror! Must sound terrible
     
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  10. Gary in Boston

    Gary in Boston Friend of Leo's

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    Hmmmm can you post a photo of the two approaches ?

    Thanks,

    Gary
     
  11. Wally

    Wally Telefied Ad Free Member

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    No, I don’t have pictures of that. It is easily determined. I described the difference. All one has to do is to look at the heel block inside the guitar. Go to your local Martin dealer. Look at a D-18 or D-28 and then look inside some of the more numerous Martins there....you will see the difference. If there is anything except for a ‘clean’ heel block there, you are looking at a bolt on neck guitar. Ime, none of the bolt on neck Martins sound like a dove-tail, glued neck joint Martin.
     
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  12. Wally

    Wally Telefied Ad Free Member

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  13. stanger

    stanger Tele-Meister

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    I made a mistake! I accidentally added a zero! The daily number was over 200 a day for both these companies. So 2,000 is a month's output, not a week's. This was back before the 2008 crash.

    Martin had a lot of very different guitar lines back then, and their best-selling guitars weren't those made by their old methods. Martin makes a big deal out of it's old factory and all the traditional hand-made techniques they do still use in it, but behind the old factory is a new one that's highly robotic.


    All the U.S. manufacturers serve a world market. Overseas sales are what's keeping them all alive. When European sales are down, Asian sales do well, and when Asian sales decline, the U.S. market goes up. There's always one area on the globe that is doing better than another.

    The 2008 recession hit them all very hard, so I'm sure 2008 was the peak production year for them all.
    regards,
    stanger
     
  14. Wally

    Wally Telefied Ad Free Member

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    200 per day times maybe 21 workdays in a month = 4200.....not that it matters. And as can be seen in the stores and pawn shops, made in Asia guitars outnumber U.S. made guitars by a large multiple...not that it matters.
    One can buy more guitar for less money than ever before, ime. Also, one can spend more money for less guitar than ever before...again, ime. That age old saying carries all of the weight that it did when it was first used......caveat emptor. Know what it is you are buying...from the build technique to the geometry of one individual instrument....no matter the brand or cost.
     
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  15. Gary in Boston

    Gary in Boston Friend of Leo's

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    Hmmm thanks, I kinda maybe knew this about the less costly Martins.

    I went to a Taylor "road show" a year ago and ALL OF THEIR GUITARS have bolt on necks.

    They were kind of proud of that fact too.

    But back to the Gibson Original Series. has anybody yet bought the sunburst Jr. yet?

    Gary
     
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  16. bender66

    bender66 Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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    The Firebird has moved to traditional tuners and gone away from the beautifully sculpted edge on the headstock & all the while foisted the 25k FB pickups upon the consumer and raised the price. Less for more.

    The others look sweet, although that SG with the extended curves of looks like a Maestro brand. That might be an '18 tho. I dont recall.
     
  17. Wally

    Wally Telefied Ad Free Member

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  18. bryan83

    bryan83 Tele-Meister

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    I think Gibson knocked one out of the park with these Originals. I just bought the Les Paul Special today at my local GC. It’s pretty lovely! I’ll post a NGD sometime soon.
     
  19. Gary in Boston

    Gary in Boston Friend of Leo's

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    In getting names correct the "SG" bass should really be called the EB 3 .

    I know because in 1968-69 I drove the bass player in my group to EU Wurlitzer in Boston where he plunked down his hard earned cash for a cherry red Gibson EB3 (with the solid headstock not slotted or long neck version).

    He was small in stature so the EB3 was a good bass for him. He almost got an EB0 single pickup version but the EB3 wasn't that much more and the baby humbucker offered a bit more cut.

    Gary
     
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