Gibson SG Standard '61 Reissue Special Edition Review

Discussion in 'Gibson SG' started by Bob Womack, Jul 3, 2017.

  1. Bob Womack

    Bob Womack Well-Known Member

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    [​IMG]

    After ordering one of this short-run of guitars that Dave's Guitar Shop commissioned, I've now had the guitar for a month. I've taken it in for a setup and had plenty of time to evaluate it so this isn't one of those "I opened the box this afternoon" things. I've had time to compare it to Les Pauls, ES-335s, Teles, and Strats.

    [​IMG]

    So, if you are interested in how it turned out, wander on over to my site, HERE.



    Bob
     
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  2. DCCable

    DCCable Active Member

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    Nice!
     
  3. Paul G.

    Paul G. Well-Known Member

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    Very nice but I must pick 2 nits here, because it is my nature.

    First: in 1961 the SG/Les Paul did not come with "PAF Style pickups". It came with PAFs. 2 on the Standard and 3 on the Custom. Real-life, genuine PAFs.

    Second: The originals had the front pickup right where it is now, that pickup moved towards the neck in the 1980s. What changed was the actual neck joint to strengthen it. The SG that had its pickup move away from the neck was the SG Special, which had P90s, requiring deeper routs and those things were wobbly!!

    Finally: While I am quite good at setting up guitars, most of mine end up at a good tech at some point. They have the tools and skills to take your guitar from 95% there to nirvana. Good move getting a special guitar to get that final tweak!

    P.
     
  4. Bob Womack

    Bob Womack Well-Known Member

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    Thanks, Paul! I had thought the patent was granted in '59 and the sticker changed in '60 but now I see I was wrong. Fixed, along with the neck joint description! thanks for the correction.

    And yes, a tech makes the guitar a whole lot easier to play. He's done eight of my guitars at this point including two refrets.

    Bob
     
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  5. pancake81

    pancake81 Well-Known Member

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    Awesome write up man, impressive and an enjoyable read.
     
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  6. cigblues3

    cigblues3 Member

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    Enjoy that wonderful musical instrument.
     
  7. Bob Womack

    Bob Womack Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for your kind words!

    Bob
     
  8. PermissionToLand

    PermissionToLand Well-Known Member

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    I'll also point out that the Custom Shop Historic '61 was introduced in 2001 or so, and has been in continuous production since. It did not replace the USA '61 RI in 2016 or at any point. And the '61 RI never had Burstbuckers, it was the Historic that had '57s and switched to BBs around then.

    And IDK who told you a limited run has to have at least 24 guitars, but for a store to even stock Gibsons, they have to order hundreds. That's why small stores simply cannot carry them anymore. I would assume they would require an even larger purchase for a one-off.

    Sorry to sound critical but nerds gonna nerd.

    Anyway, she's a gorgeous SG. Enjoy!
     
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  9. SG standard

    SG standard Well-Known Member

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    I seem to recall that Gibson have operated this way for a long time, but do you happen to know how long? I live in a city of over 8 million, but when I was looking for an SG in 2014 there was only one dealer - in a street with half a dozen other stores selling Fenders, etc., and they only had one SG Standard in stock. And it was last years model! I had a choice of either ordering online, or making a round trip of over two hours to a store outside London.

    Things changed recently; a nationwide chain & online retailer has opened a small branch in London - but even so, it's really hard to actually get to try out a choice of Gibsons in stores - you might as well buy online & return it if you're not happy. Even thought that's an awful way to buy an instrument. :(
     
  10. Bob Womack

    Bob Womack Well-Known Member

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    Noted and altered in the article. It was something I was told on a forum.

    The stores (two) who commissioned the run are both Gibson full line dealers. Sweetwater goes far beyond that. I think the fellow that gave me the lower limit number had participated in a short run purchase.

    Bob
     
  11. syscokid

    syscokid Well-Known Member

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    I enjoyed reading your article immensely. You do have a very special SG, now. Congrats, B-W... :cheers:

    I'm not sure if you're familiar with the book: The SG GUITAR BOOK by Tony Bacon. If you're not, I guarantee that you would enjoy it. In the beginning of the book, a little more detail is discussed about the birth of the SG, and the Gibson employees that were involved. As much as Ted McCarty was obviously the main man at Gibson, a lot of his success was due to having a great team of builders and innovators around him. One of these team leaders, that was involved with the new design project, was a man named Larry Allers. Mr. Allers is also considered as the person who actually created the SG design and/or pattern. :cool:
     
  12. Col Mustard

    Col Mustard Well-Known Member

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    That's a fine SG... One of the best guitars Gibson makes IMHO. That's very subjective of course, but I admit to being biased.

    I enjoyed reading your article very much. You should submit that to one of the
    magazines... Guitar Player maybe. I actually know nothing about how you submit an
    article to a good magazine if you're not one of the in-crowd, but what you wrote seems
    as well written as most magazine bits, and better than some I've read. There's plenty of
    hoo-ha written about SGs by people who don't seem to actually know much.

    Also, I respect your willingness to correct any errors or omissions. All in all, I believe you
    covered the subject well and fairly.

    Personally, I totally disagree with Gibson's way of selling their instruments. I don't care a fig
    about Henry J and his buddies, but I like to live in a world where Gibson is possible. So I'm
    grateful that Henry and his investors saved the company after the Norlin fiasco.

    And I don't understand why Gibson won't allow small dealers to order whatever they want.
    I believe that Fender sells a lot of guitars and basses by doing just this. Dave's is one of my favorite places to stop when I'm traveling, and Sweetwater is one of my favorite online outlets... BUT
    the fact that a world class music store like Elderly Instruments in Lansing Mi stocks NO new
    Gibson guitars seems really stupid, from a musician's point of view. My local Music Go Round
    ought to be able to order as many Gibsons as they have a market for. I've spoken with the
    owners of two music stores, and asked them why they stock no Gibson's. Both of them told me that the Gibson sales guys came in all arrogant, acting like gangsters. Gibson wanted their
    dealers to toe the line on certain demands, such as giving Gibson products the most prominent display in the store, and they had to sign a contract to order a certain amount of product.

    No independant business person wants to be told what to do in their own store, and the owners I spoke to said that they told the Gibson guys to take a flyer. They told them they'd
    rather stock Fenders, which they could sell to their customers and who didn't try to control
    everything. I like Fender too, and feel that they may have a better business practice.

    Anyway, thanks for the excellent read. Welcome to ETSG, if you haven't been told this
    already.
    Luna 1@100.jpg
     
  13. Bob Womack

    Bob Womack Well-Known Member

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    You know, I haven't read the book and should. I was disappointed with Bacon and Day's Les Paul Book because it simply didn't acknowledge that my LP even existed! I shouldn't hold that against them though, because when the book came out, few had a clue that the early '70s Kalamazoo "small script" Standards even existed except folks who worked at the K-zoo plant! I actually ended calling them up and getting info from an old-timer in the '90s.

    Bob
     
  14. Bob Womack

    Bob Womack Well-Known Member

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    Thank you very much for your kind words!

    Bob
     
  15. PermissionToLand

    PermissionToLand Well-Known Member

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    Not sure. At least since 2007 when I bought my first new guitar.
     

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