All numbers were impressed into the wood and a six digit number assigned, though no particular order was given and some instruments had a letter prefix. Terms & Conditions | Registered Trademarks. Anyone have any better info? 1961-1970. Tony Iommi SG Numbered in sequence as “TI xxx” Zakk Wylde Les Paul Bullseye and the rare “Rough Top” version numbered in sequence as “ZW xxx” Camo version numbered in sequence as “ZPW xxx” Gibson Banjos 1988 to present Earl Scruggs Models Standard: Sequential production number, starting at 001 ’49 Classic: YY-RR YY = Year of manufacture RR = ranking number (starts at 01) Golden Deluxe: YY-RR YY = Year of manufacture RR = ranking number (starts at 01) Flint Hill Special: FH-YY-RR YY = Year of manufacture RR = ranking number (starts at 01) Special: ES-YY-RR YY = Year of manufacture RR = ranking number (starts at 01) Style 250 250-TT-RR YY = Year of manufacture RR = ranking number (starts at 01) Granada YY-MM-RR YY = Year MM = Month RR = ranking number (starts at 01) RB RB### = sequential production number All other models S(S)-YYMM-RR S(S) = style (excluding style 250 – see above) YY = Year MM = Month RR = ranking number Epiphone Most regular production models since ca. Display as a link instead, × The 1st and 2nd indicate the year help manufacture for the 6 digit serial numbers which we've been using since. This, of course, just tells you when the POT was made; not the guitar. The chart below shows the year that relates to the serial number. The second type of serial numbers used started with an A prefix and ran from 1947 to 1961. The first 5 numbers remain the same, the last 3 numbers will remain the same. Examples: 70108276 means the instrument was produced on Jan. 10, 1978, in Kalamazoo and was the 276th instrument stamped that day. Another code used on some current Epiphone models FYYMRRRR F= Factory code YY=Year of manufacture M= This will be a letter code corresponding to the month (A=January, B=February, etc…) RRRR= ranking number Example – R03D0263 was issued in April 2003. There are always exceptions to these rules, the two listed below are worth noting: Les Paul Classic: This model features an ink stamped serial number with no “MADE IN USA” (just as we used on the original 1952-1960 Les Pauls). Gibson guitars with "MADE IN USA" impressed below the serial were made from 1969 and on. 82765501 means the instrument was produced on Oct. 3, 1985, in Nashville and was the 1st instrument stamped that day. All numbers are approximates. Examples: 70108276 means the instrument was produced on Jan.10, 1978, in Kalamazoo and was the 276th instrument stamped that day. 1952-1961. Examples are as follows: 722 A 23 465 D 58 863 E 02. This system is useful in helping to date and authenticate instruments. I’ve got a Gibson Les paul custom with a 6 digit serial number of 140533 stamped on back of headstock with “made in USA” below. which do not feature a paper label. The pattern is as follows: YDDDYPPP YY is the production year DDD is the day of the year PPP is the plant designation and/or instrument rank. Gibson’s Factory Order Numbers were an internal coding that followed the group of instruments through the factory. All numbers are approximates. There have been 6 different serial number styles used to date on Gibson instruments. CS Signature Models: The list below is not an exhaustive listing but we have included many of our most popular Signature models. Looks to be a '98 Hamer Archtop. This updated system utilizes an impressed eight digit numbering scheme that covers both serializing and dating functions. Most of the sites I’ve checked aren’t very clear. When the Nashville Gibson plant was opened in 1974, it was decided that the bulk of the production of products would be run in the South; the Kalamazoo plant would produce the higher end (fancier) models in the North. The production version (no difference in spec) numbered in sequence as “BONE xxx” Note: The discontinued Gibson USA Joe Perry Signature Les Paul made has a standard 8 digit serial number. This system is fairly reliable for guitars made from 1953 to 1961. It is estimated that Gibson’s Kalamazoo plant continued to use the 6 digit serial numbers through 1978 and 1979. MADE IN USA were also included on the transfer and some models had LIMITED EDITION also applied. Copyright 2019 Gibson Brands, Inc. All rights reserved. The 1st digit indicates the year of manufacture for the 4 & 5 digit serial numbers, these were used from 1989-1999. Custom Shop regular production models CSYRRRR CS stands for “Custom Shop” Y indicates the production year RRRR indicates the guitar’s place in the sequence of production Example: CS10845 is the 845th reg. I’ve got a Gibson Les paul custom with a 6 digit serial number of  140533 stamped on back of headstock with “made in USA” below. SSSS= Sequential Serial Number Example – T41234 is a 2004 Elitist model. Prior to 1984 when the Kalamazoo, MI factory was closed, the numbers 001-499 indicated Kalamazoo production. production CS model produced in 2001. It should also be noted that the Nashville plant has not reached the 900s since 1977, so these numbers have been reserved for prototypes. NOTE: This number includes all models for a particular reissue year - so, for example, a 1958 Reissue serial number may include '58 Reissue LP Standard and '58 Explorer production. Ranking numbers for Bozeman start each day at 001 and the electrics may start as low as the 300s. Historic ES MODELS (since 1995): (A or B)-MYRRR M is the model year being reissued Y is the production year RRR indicates the guitar’s place in the sequence of Historic ES production for that year. So double check the serial numbers on those 1970s L-5s, Super 400s, and Super 5 BJBs! In 1949, a four digit F O N was used, but not in conjunction with any code letter indicating the year. The pattern is as follows: YDDDYRRR YY is the production year DDD is the day of the year RRR is the factory ranking/plant designation number. Most of the sites I’ve checked aren’t very clear. During this period, the system was actually relatively simple. The sixth number is now a batch number- batch 0 starts at the beginning of the day, and once we stamp 699, the batch number will change to 1. Gibson USA 2014 to present – These serial numbers cannot be dated to a specific day of the year. Some time in 1953, instruments were ink stamped on the headstock back with 5 or 6 digit numbers, the first indicating the year, the following numbers are production numbers. FYYMMRRRR F= Factory code (this can be 2 letters as well) YY= year of manufacture (this can also be just 1 digit for ’90s models) MM= month of manufacture R= ranking number (may be more or less digits, not necessarily indicative of total units produced) Example – S02021234 was issued in Feb. 2002. There should be a space after the 1st digit with the 4 and 5 digit serial numbers, and no space with the 6 digit numbers. From 1952-1961, the F O N scheme followed the pattern of a letter, the batch number and an instrument ranking number (when the guitar was built in the run of 40). Lovies Guitars offers free shipping to the 48 US States. Please contact us at service@gibson.com should you have any questions. However, it has come to light recently that the Kalamazoo plant did not directly switch over to the “new” 8 digit serialization method in 1977. 25 = the week in which the pot was made; i.e. Korean made. The first serialization started in 1902 and ran until 1947. Thus, the older Gibson guitars may have a serial number and a F O N. The F O N may indicate the year, batch number, and the ranking (order of production within the batch of 40). NOTE – Gibson USA goes to a 9 digit serial number in early July 2005.. The 1st digit indicates the year of manufacture for the 4 & 5 digit serial numbers, these were used from 1989-1999. the 25th week of the year in this example. 030084 is the 8th 1964 Firebird III reissue produced in 2003. Or serial number and model name on white paper label, number range from 0100 to 99999, hand inked or penciled 1908 to 1932, ink stamped serial number 1932 to 1947. Guitars were just given the next available number. Thanks, -=[Shifty]=-. The first serial number for acoustic guitars was 100. Joe Perry Les Paul (2 models) – Joe Perry Signature Les Paul from 1996 (trans black finish) – numbered in sequence as “JPxxx” – Boneyard LP – Pilot Run models have an inked number and hand written “Pilot Run”. For example, if the first five digits of your eight-digit serial number are 01545, then you know that the guitar was made on the 154th day of the year in 2005. The F O N is the only identification number on Gibson’s lower grade models (like the ES-125, ES-140, J-160E, etc.) Gibson introduced a new pattern when they began producing solid body guitars.   Pasted as rich text. The serial numbers shown represent the approximate last serial number for that year. Mine reads YYMMFF15567 (trying not to give out my whole serial number for those fakers out there, but it might be too late anyway). Gibson’s F O N System In addition to the above serial number information, Gibson also used Factory Order Numbers (F O N) to track batches of instruments being produced at the time. design (i.e. When acoustic production began at the plant built in Bozeman, Montana (in 1989), the series’ numbers were reorganized. By submitting this form you are agreeing to the Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy. × 20045002 was the 2nd carved top stamped on the 4th day of 2005. That serial number sequence was used from 1970-1975. In 1970, the words “MADE IN USA” was impressed into the back of instrument headstocks (though a few instruments from the 1950s also had MADE IN USA impressed into their headstocks as well). In 1994, Gibson's Centennial year, many instruments have a serial number that begins with "94" for the year, with the remaining 6 digits indicating the ranking number. 82765501 means the instrument was produced on Oct. 3, 1985, in Nashville and was the 1st instrument stamped that day. There are still some variances that Gibson uses on some instruments produced today, but for the most part the above can be used for identifying instruments. The reason being that Gibsons 6 digit serial number system reached 999999 several times; each time they continued from 000001. Everything else seems to check out with the exception of that extra digit. In most cases, only the upper end instruments were assigned Certain guitar models built in the late 1970s can be used to demonstrate the old-style, six-digit serial numbers. Upload or insert images from URL. × Gibson used the 6 digits or less impressed serial number style from 1961 until 1975. 69 = The last two digits of the year in which the pot was made - here 1969. 1961-1969 Firebird, Les Paul, and SG reissues (since 1997): YYRRRM Y is the production year RRR(R) indicates the guitar’s place in production for that year. logo design change, headstock volutes, etc). The first number is A 100. 1974 and 1975 100000s, 200000s, 300000s, 400000s, 500000s, 600000s, 800000s and a few A-B-C-D-E-F + 6 digit numbers; During the period from 1975-1977 Gibson used a transfer that had eight digit numbers, the first two indicate the year, 99=1975, 00=1976 and 06=1977, the following six digits are in the 100000 to 200000 range. The first digit is the year and the other numbers are production numbers. NOTE: This number includes all models for a particular reissue year – so, for example, a 1958 Reissue serial number may include ’58 Reissue LP Standard and ’58 Explorer production. 2014-Current. The first 5 numbers remain the same, the last 3 numbers will remain the same. Gibson Brands, Inc. respects your right to privacy. The serial numbers started with number 100 and go to 99999. In most cases, only the upper end instruments were assigned identification numbers. For example 55395 = 1955 920874 = 1959 1977 Forward - finally a standard serial number was used. Best guess is it’s between ‘70 and ‘72. All Historics were numbered this way in the past with the exception that Gibson had more 6 digit 9XXXXX numbers than 9 XXXX numbers in any given year due to the number of guitars made. Many ’80s and early ’90s serial numbers may follow a similar scheme, but may not include a factory ID code. Andy Summers ES-335 Limited edition of 50. Since 1989, all Gibson acoustics are built in Bozeman, MT and all Gibson electrics are built in Nashville or Memphis. With some instruments preceded by a letter. Though not used on the earliest instruments produced (those done in 1952), a few of these instruments have 3 digits stamped on the headstock top. Most will be 5 to 6 digits in length, but the earliest examples feature 4 digit serial numbers. What To Do If You Are Unsure. Ranking numbers 500-999 continued to indicate Nashville production through 1989. 1908-1923 Approximate #s YEAR F O N 1908 259 1909 309 1910 545, 927 1911 1260, 1295 1912 1408, 1593 1913 1811, 1902 1914 1936, 2152 1915 2209, 3207 1916 2667, 3508 YEAR F O N 1917 3246, 11010 1918 9839, 11159 1919 11146, 11212 1920 11329, 11367 1921 11375, 11527 1922 11565, 11729 1923 11973 F O Ns for the years 1935-1941 usually consisted of the batch number, a letter for the year and the instrument number. Slash Les Paul (2 models) – 1997 limited edition model, cranberry finish: numbered in sequence as “SL xxx” – Regular production model introduced in 2004, also numbered in sequence as “SL xxx” Note: The discontinued Epiphone Slash Les Paul made has a standard Epiphone serial number. As an example 1376925 would break down as follows; 137 = the code for CTS (Chicago Telephone Supply were Gibson's usual supplier). If you do not see your country please send us a message and we will promptly get you a quote. The sixth number is now a batch number- batch 0 starts at the beginning of the day, and once we stamp 699, the batch number will change to 1. logo design change, headstock volutes, etc). An ink stamp on the back of the headstock which included either 5 or 6 digits. YEAR LAST # 1903 1150 1904 1850 1905 2550 1906 3350 1907 4250 1908 5450 1909 6950 1910 8750 1911 10850 1912 13350 1913 16100 1914 20150 1915 25150 1916 32000 1917 39500 1918 47900 1919 53800 1920 62200 1921 69300 1922 71400 1923 74900 1924 80300 1925 82700 YEAR LAST # 1926 83600 1927 85400 1928 87300 1929 89750 1930 90200 1931 90450 1932 90700 1933 91400 1934 92300 1935 92800 1936 94100 1937 95200 1938 95750 1939 96050 1940 96600 1941 97400 1942 97700 1943 97850 1944 98250 1945 98650 1946 99300 1947 99999 White oval labels were used on instruments from 1902 to 1954, at which time the oval label was changed to an orange color. The serial number will be an 8 digit number impressed into the back of the headstock with “MADE IN USA” below. The most important dating feature on guitars with six-digit serial numbers is that, starting in 1970, Gibson began stamping “Made In USA” near the serial number on the back of the headstock. M is the model being reissued Reissue model codes: 1= SG Custom and Special 2= SG Standard 3= 1963 Firebird 1 4= 1964 Firebird III 5= 1965 Firebird V & VII 8= 1968 Les Paul Custom Examples: 050102 is the 10th SG Standard reissue produced in 2005. Numbered in sequence as “GR xxx” Gary Rossington SG Limited edition of 250. It consisted of numbers that are impressed into the wood. If you read through the charts for a hypothetical number, say 123456 - we see that it was shipped in 1963, 1970-72, and again in 74-75. Gibson serial numbers, early to mid seventies From 1970 to 1975 the 6 digit serial numbers were randomly created. F O N examples run thus: Y 2230 21 V 4867 8 R 6785 15 Code Letter and Year Z 1952 Y 1953 X 1954 W 1955 V 1956 U 1957 T 1958 S 1959 R 1960 Q 1961 After 1961 the use of FONs was discontinued at Gibson. In the earlier years at Gibson, guitars were normally built in batches of 40 instruments. On f-hole instruments, it is visible through the upper f-hole. It is estimated that Gibson's Kalamazoo plant continued to use the 6 digit serial numbers through 1978 and 1979. By The best methods of identifying them is by using a combination of the serial number, the factory order number and any features that are particular to a specific time that changes may have occurred in instrument design (i.e. to demonstrate the old-style 6 digit serial numbers. 1935-1942 1942-1951. In general though, the numbers are approximately as follows: APPROXIMATE YEAR SERIAL RANGE 1961 100-42440 1962 42441-61180 1963 61450-64220 1964 64240-70500 1962 71180-96600 1963 96601-99999 1967 000001-008010 1967 010000-042900 1967 044000-044100 1967 050000-054400 1967 055000-063999 1967 064000-066010 1967 067000-070910 1967 090000-099999 1963, 1967 100000-106099 1963 106100-108900 1963, 1967 109000-109999 1963 110000-111549 1963, 1967 111550-115799 1963 115800-118299 1963, 1967 118300-120999 1963 121000-139999 1963, 1967 140000-140100 1963 140101-144304 1964 144305-144380 1963 144381-145000 1963 147009-149864 1964 149865-149891 1963 149892-152989 1964 152990-174222 1964, 1965 174223-176643 1964 176644-199999 1964 200000-250335 1965 250336-291000 1965 301755-302100 1965 302754-305983 1965, 1967 306000-306100 1965, 1967 307000-307985 1965, 1967 309848-310999 1965 311000-320149 1967 320150-320699 APPROXIMATE YEAR SERIAL RANGE 1965 320700-321100 1965 322000-326600 1965 328000-328500 1965 328700-329179 1965, 1967 329180-330199 1965, 1967, 1968330200-332240 1965 332241-347090 1965 348000-348092 1966 348093-349100 1965 349121-368638 1966 368640-369890 1967 370000-370999 1966 380000-385309 1967 390000-390998 1965, 1966, 1967, 1968 400001-400999 1966 401000-407985 1966 408000-408690 1966 408800-409250 1966 420000-426090 1966 427000-429180 1966 430005-438530 1966 438800-438925 1965, 1966, 1968, 1969 500000-500999 1965 501010-501600 1968 501601-501702 1965, 1968 501703-502706 1968 503010-503110 1965, 1968 503405-520955 1968 520956-530056 1966, 1968, 1969530061-530850 1968, 1969 530851-530993 1969 530994-539999 1966, 1969 540000-540795 1969 540796-545009 1966 550000-556910 1969 558012-567400 1966 570099-570755 1969 580000-580999 1966, 1967, 1968, 1969 600000-600999 1969 601000-601090 1969 605901-606090 APPROXIMATE YEAR SERIAL RANGE 1966, 1967 700000-700799 1968, 1969 750000-750999 1966, 1967, 1968, 1969 800000-800999 1966, 1969 801000-812838 1969 812900-814999 1969 817000-819999 1966, 1969 820000-820087 1966 820088-823830 1969 824000-824999 1966, 1969 828002-847488 1966 847499-858999 1967 859001-880089 APPROXIMATE YEAR SERIAL RANGE 1967 893401-895038 1968 895039-896999 1967 897000-898999 1968 899000-899999 1968 900000-902250 1968 903000-920899 1968 940000-941009 1968 942001-943000 1968 945000-945450 1968 947415-956000 1968 959000-960909 1968 970000-972864 From 1970-1975 the method of serializing instruments at Gibson became even more random. In a random order, numbers were stamped on the back of the headstock. Beginning in 1953, a three-digit serial number was stamped on the top. This amp was made in the second quarter of 1999. There should be a space after the 1st digit with the 4 and 5 digit serial numbers, and classic space with the 6 digit numbers. -Limited run of 150 aged models are numbered in sequence as “PAGE xxx” -Unlimited run of Custom Authentic models are numbered in sequence as “JPP xxx” Note: The discontinued Gibson USA Jimmy Page Signature Les Paul has a standard 8 digit serial number. Ace Frehley Les Paul – 1997 Limited run, numbered in sequence as “ACE xxx” Note: The discontinued Gibson USA Ace Frehley Signature Les Paul has a standard 8 digit serial number. It is also generally known to be the most frustrating and hard to understand system that Gibson has employed. The 1st and 2nd indicate the year of manufacture for the 6 digit serial numbers which we’ve been using since 2000. Check the back of the guitar headstock for an eight-digit serial number. NOTE – Gibson USA goes to a 9 digit serial number in early July 2005.. The serial numbers started with number 100 and go to 99999. Epiphone Elite/Elitist models FYSSSS F= Factory Code (this code will be an “F” or “T”) Y= Year of manufacture (2 = 2002, 3 = 2003, etc.) If your guitar has 6 digits impressed on the headstock and a "MADE IN USA" underneath then it … My '15 Custom BB is 7 00XX for example. Example: 7 5123 is the 123rd 1957 reissue model produced in 2005. Code Letter and Year A 1935 B 1936 C 1937 D 1938 E 1939 F 1940 G 1941 Code Letter F O Ns were discontinued after 1941, and any instruments made during or right after World War II do not bear an F O N codes. Best idea would be to check the codes on the volume- and tone potentiometers assuming they are the original units. Reissue model codes: 2= ES-295 3= 1963 ES-335 (block inlays) 4= ES-330 5= ES-345 9 with an “A” prefix = 1959 ES-335 (dot inlays) 9 with a “B” prefix= ES-355 Example: A-38005 is the 5th ’63 ES-335 Reissue produced in 1998. Of course, many of the older guitar builders and craftsmen were still in Kalamazoo; and if they weren’t ready to change how they built guitars, then they may not have been ready to change how they numbered them! Most will gibson 5 to 6 digits in length, but the earliest examples feature 4 digit serial numbers. 1902-1908: Often no serial number or model name on label, picture of Orville Gibson and lyre mandolin, date sometimes penciled under the top (must be seen with a mirror). GIBSON SERIALIZATION Identifying Gibson instruments by serial number is tricky at best and downright impossible in some cases. Gibson Serial Number Identification and Dating. Numbered in sequence as “AS xxxx” Dickey Betts ’57 goldtop Les Paul Limited edition of 114. As Gibson would normally be expected to have a supply of pots ready for installation it is fair to assume the guitar would have been assembled some months (at least) after the date on the pot. Examples – 9 xxx = 1989 (4 digit number beginning with “9” used only in 1989) 0 xxxx = 1990 9 xxxx = 1999 00xxxx = 2000 05xxxx = 2005 Those beginning with “94”: In 1994, Gibson’s Centennial year, many instruments have a serial number that begins with “94” for the year, with the remaining 6 digits indicating the ranking number. "1969-1975: 6 digit peghead stamped serial number, MADE IN USA stamped below" "Volute on back of peghead (most models): 1969 to 1981" "1970: Volute added to …

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