Woodgrain and the myth of the Gibson Standard 2013

Discussion in 'Gibson SG' started by Vall, May 6, 2019.

  1. Vall

    Vall New Member

    Joined:
    May 1, 2019
    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    9
    Hello Everything-SG Community, this is my first post at the forum and I wanted to give some hints about the "mystical" 2013 Standard.

    Short story about how I got mine:

    I bought it via online-used market in Europe. It was the 2nd "reserve/save-up" guitar from a Wedding-Coverband musician. He sold it to me for 600,-€ which are 672,21 US-Dollars and he claimed to not even have put it out the case since he bought it brandnew in 2013 until 2017 when i got it and believe it or not: It was STILL in tune! :)

    Because i had a cherry Special faded years before, which i sold because of massive tuning-problems, i new this one is a top-quality occasion for me! It is an ebony- coated one, which was not my favourite colour, but since that day i LOVE it! The laquer although it was untouched, had many scratches above the cap-knobs. Maybe it was played in a shop by customers before...

    What i can tell you (if it´s interesting anyway):

    1. Very often we read that it has point to point wiring. Yes, it´s odd but true...

    2. It has a long neck tenon and a seamless VERY accurate Joint, just checked it... (see Pic)

    3. For me the most curious fact: It has a 2 piece Body, which seems to be a completely straight, strong and obvious patterned mahogany. It looks like the same timber used for acoustic guitars, which means it´s quarter sawn. You can see the (boring looking) grain-stripes under the laquer by moving it against daylight.

    Very often one can see beautifulbeautiful swirly kind of woodgrains on clear-coated SGs, these are then made out of riftsawn mahogany. They´ve been sawn longitudinal to the timber and they are less desireable for acoustic!!! guitar luthiers. The sonic vibrations tend to spread better from annual ring to annual ring, if the wood was sawn perfectly perpendicular out of the tree trunk. (Just think of a spruce top of an high-quality acoustic...) I´m not a professional, but the fact that this guitar, while unplugged, is nearly as loud vibrating as an acoustic guitar, indicates a relationship between the wood straight grain-pattern and factors like weight or the density of the mahogany wood. Concerning the myth of the 2013 standard, maybe it´s the sonic qualities of the straight grained logs they used back than, which makes this year so well known and often discussed. Plugged in, i doubt that this guitar sounds much different to others. Regarding to the more or less unspectacular wood pattern i´d say it´s good to own the ebony version....:rofl:

    It seems not clear to me yet, if an electric guitar unplugged has the same plugged-in-qualities. What I can say is, that a vibrating guitar is the maybe most beatiful thing on planet earth! :D

    Please share pictures and oppinions!

    About 2013 Standards, or 61`RI: I would be interested if the wood grain pattern contributes to your experiences!
     

    Attached Files:

    Lunacy the Faded likes this.
  2. Biddlin

    Biddlin Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2012
    Messages:
    10,782
    Likes Received:
    8,883
    Location:
    -
    Welcome to the forum. We need a little larger view of your SG, though.
     
    Dale and arcticsg like this.
  3. Steve D

    Steve D Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2019
    Messages:
    243
    Likes Received:
    259
    I'm not sure I fully can picture what you mean by this boring grain pattern. But is it something like the pic below? That's my own 2018 SG Special and I think it's kind of a bummer of a grain pattern from a looks perspective but it sounds good.
     

    Attached Files:

    Lunacy the Faded and arcticsg like this.
  4. Biddlin

    Biddlin Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2012
    Messages:
    10,782
    Likes Received:
    8,883
    Location:
    -
    DSCN1263.JPG
    The tonewood faeries hide in the grain, right?
     
  5. cerebral gasket

    cerebral gasket Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2017
    Messages:
    2,238
    Likes Received:
    2,827
    I like that subliminal cornucopia outline in the upper right quadrant of the back of that SG.
     
    Biddlin and arcticsg like this.
  6. arcticsg

    arcticsg Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2018
    Messages:
    528
    Likes Received:
    966
    I don't know anything about the grain cut of the wood and all that. What caught my attention to this topic was mention of tone, ring, resonance and in general the acoustic qualities of the SG while not being plugged into the amp.

    My most resonant unplugged SG is my 2005 '61 reissue, with the 2013 Original right behind it. It's always intrigued me why my 2005 was so resonate. Many times I've been practicing and gone to turn the volume down a tad when I then realized I wasn't even jacked up yet. I don't know if it's coincidence or not, but both of these are of the low neck tenon variety, with one piece backs, and cherry translucent paint. :D

    Not wanting to start the 1 piece, 2 piece (either way it's all good), just thought I'd mention what I have noticed with my own gear.

    2005 SG 61RI:

    [​IMG]

    2013 SG Original:

    [​IMG]
     
  7. cerebral gasket

    cerebral gasket Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2017
    Messages:
    2,238
    Likes Received:
    2,827
  8. koaguilds

    koaguilds Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2012
    Messages:
    911
    Likes Received:
    879
    Location:
    RVA
    One piece lightly flamed depending on the lighting and angle. SG standard 60. A GC exclusive run. A heavy but resonant SG.
    [​IMG]
     
  9. Biddlin

    Biddlin Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2012
    Messages:
    10,782
    Likes Received:
    8,883
    Location:
    -
    That's my 2003 faded cherry Special. That guitar has some stories to tell. It has seen some of the worst dive bars on the planet. I have needed to adjust the truss rod just once in the 11 years I have owned her.
    DSCN1139.JPG
     
  10. Steve D

    Steve D Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2019
    Messages:
    243
    Likes Received:
    259
    Well I posted my bummer of a back, this is the good looking one. The sunlight made the grain lines really pop more than they do in regular light. It is flamey when you move it around though:
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: May 6, 2019
    grinch, arcticsg and koaguilds like this.
  11. Steve D

    Steve D Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2019
    Messages:
    243
    Likes Received:
    259
    My first real electric guitar was some crappy Strat copy that I quickly dumped and my second electric guitar was a real Gibson SG around my sophomore year in high school. I lived at home in high school, then at college with lots of roommates, then in an apartment surrounded by neighbors and so I was rarely in a position to crank the amp. In general I got used to practicing and even just noodling on the couch totally unplugged. My SG was slim enough that it vibrated like a drum head I guess because it was plenty load to hear. Years later I got a strat and played unplugged that was like dead wood compared to my SG. No natural sustain, no volume when strummed.

    Now I own two, a 2018 SG Special and a 2006 SG historic reissue. The SG Special is by far the cheaper but I think it's more resonant. It's lighter and if I hold it away from my body and strum it I can really feel the body vibrating and it goes on forever. It sustains almost too much, if I hit a wrong string while playing it rings out forever if I don't mute it right away. The 2006 SG historic reissue is more substantial feeling, heavier, and has less of that resonance but still way more than my strat.

    I don't know why Les Paul guys insist that a solid 10 pound guitar is needed to get sustain. My super light SG standard has crazy crazy sustain.

    And to the OPs question, my 2018 SG Special is the brown one with really tight boring grain I posted above. My 2006 SG historic reissue is the beautifully figured cherry red one I posted above. The boring grain ones is more resonant and sustains more, but it's also lighter and has less of a finish on it. So who knows if it's the grain, the finish, or the mass?
     
    Last edited: May 6, 2019
  12. Col Mustard

    Col Mustard Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2009
    Messages:
    7,399
    Likes Received:
    7,165
    Location:
    Michigan
    Welcome to ETSG, Vall...

    My own take on this issue is as follows:

    Gibson guitars vary... General statements about Gibson guitars are mostly caca. There are excellent guitars made in every year since before 1900,
    but there are also guitars that are not so great.

    The model year 2013 is given respect, perhaps by default...

    2012 was a year in which Gibson was forced to use "baked maple" for their
    fretboards, instead of Rosewood. This was because they had been exposed
    for buying black market tropical tone wood, and had been raided by government officials and officers, and had their stocks of ebony and rosewood confiscated. By 2013, Gibson had figured out how to buy Rosewood legally, and they did. So the 2013s are valued higher than
    the 2012s, but there is no basis for this, really.

    I own a 2012 Gibson SG special with a 'baked maple" fretboard, and
    this guitar has given fine service for six years at my home, with NO issues.
    *there it is.

    The model year 2014 was an "anniversary" year for Gibson, when their advertising geniuses advised them to create another 'collectible' model with
    the "120th year" banner inlaid into the 12th fret. Nothing is wrong with the
    2014 models except the insertion of the banner into the 12th fret.
    Gibson enthusiasts value guitars higher without the 120th year banner.
    But that does NOT mean that the 2014 guitars have any flaws. They
    are excellent guitars, like most Gibbons. So are the 2010s... the "pre-raid"
    Gibsons.

    You see where I am going with this... you have an excellent instrument.
    Cherish it. Value it. Don't sell it. Sell something else. Pamper your Gibson,
    and make great music on it.
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2019
    58pit likes this.
  13. grinch

    grinch New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2019
    Messages:
    13
    Likes Received:
    14
    I'm not touching tonewood topics with a 10' pole.

    "Radar, cancel the 10' pole. Stretch Polanski, tallest Pole you've ever seen." 'Hawkeye' - M*A*S*H
     
    Lunacy the Faded likes this.
  14. Vall

    Vall New Member

    Joined:
    May 1, 2019
    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    9
    Thank you everyone for posting so much beautiful SGs! Wow! Every woodgrain is lovely as it is!
    I think some of them just visually catches attention more obviously, others do it in a more subtle way...

    Also nice to hear your experiences about the weight!

    The comparison from Steve D between a SG to a bolt-on-neck guitar gets it on the point, why we‘re all in love with our SGs. The SG for the case of an electric has the ringing and vibrating „lively“ character of a „real/oldschool“ stringed instrument. Not many modern e-guitars have these qualities...

    Heres my ebony one. Just took a pic to let you see wave-like survace underneath the laquer and the center seam! ;)
     

    Attached Files:

  15. Biddlin

    Biddlin Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2012
    Messages:
    10,782
    Likes Received:
    8,883
    Location:
    -
    Just wood, Col. Just wood
    They chose to use some baked maple, along with other woods (pau ferro, granadillo)and richlite.
     
  16. Dale

    Dale Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2015
    Messages:
    337
    Likes Received:
    303
    Location:
    Idaho
    I always find the whole discussion about resonance and wood to be interesting. Part of the acoustics quality relates at times to things like bridge height, intonation and all the ways a guitar is set up. My 14, for example, resonates in a way that messes with Snark tuners, and is why the eTune never worked well with it. As I have tweaked the set up the resonances have changed in ways that the Snark type tuning works better. Wrap over etc. all of it is part of the process. There are so many things that can be the "thing" and no one "thing" makes the magic. It is the sum of the parts, and the "part" that works for one does not work for another.
     
    Steve D likes this.
  17. Col Mustard

    Col Mustard Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2009
    Messages:
    7,399
    Likes Received:
    7,165
    Location:
    Michigan
    Me too... I know that wood is like, not magnetic.
    But when I fell for my '07 SG special that I so often boast about,
    the first thing that gathered my soul, my spirit and my heart into
    my center
    was the tone of the instrument unamplified.
    Like WOW...

    maybe the setup contributed to this, I dunno because
    the sales guy offered to "set the guitar up" for me after the sale,
    and I allowed it, knowing I was going to take it to my favorite luthier
    at some time in the future anyway.

    As soon as I played my future guitar in the store, right by the rack,
    my heart maintained that if it sounded so good without an amp,
    it would sound as good (or better) plugged in. My brain was skeptical,
    but my soul spoke up and said this was a non-issue, that the music to
    be created on this instrument
    was already inside it, and that's what
    I was responding to. My spirit agreed, and my brain (which I have
    taught to listen to heart, soul and spirit
    ) recognized a majority consensus
    and issued orders to the hands to pull out the master card.
    "All hands on deck!"

    The brain was still trying to keep some shreds of objectivity, and insisted
    that the whole tone wood thing must be verified in the "amp room" of the music store. So we plugged my new guitar into several amps I could not afford, and the heart turned out to be right. As usual.
    IMG_1108@100.jpg
    The instrument sounded awesome plugged in, and further resistance turned out to be futile. I was assimilated into the SG brotherhood, without knowing it
    was happening to me.

    It's only a modest SG special, made of at least two pieces
    of mahogany, with an ordinary rosewood fretboard, mahogany neck...
    But 11 years later, it still rings like a bell unamplified, and its tone through
    my Vox VT-30 or my Orange Micro Terror is awesome.
    Luna & Orange short rig 12-24-17@100.jpg
    I see posts where guys get all excited about some replica, like a VOS SG
    62 special, or a butchered '70s Norlin Gibson, or where they say worshipful
    things about some old one, and I just shrug and mind my own business.
    Mine gives up nothing to any of those. IMHO of course.
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2019
    58pit, Kraftybob and Dale like this.
  18. Kraftybob

    Kraftybob Member

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2018
    Messages:
    37
    Likes Received:
    27
    I have a 2013 50's Tribute with P90's and love this guitar. This SG and my 2009 PRS Custom 22 are some of the most resonate guitars I've heard. Like you said, they could almost pass for an acoustic if they were a little louder. None of my other guitars sound like this. The two things these guitars have in common that my other don't is a Mahogany body and set necks. The other four I have are bolt on necks and various woods (Alder, Basswood, etc.,).

    Not the best pic but here's my SG. It's a two piece body...

    IMG_2212.jpg
     
  19. Steve D

    Steve D Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2019
    Messages:
    243
    Likes Received:
    259
    It's interesting how the SG design is essentially the same since the 60's, minor tweaks to cutouts and picguards and heel joints aside, and yet different ones can sound so different. I am not a big tonewood guy but surely the density of the material will make a difference to it's unamplified accoustic performance. Since I did that side by side "acoustic resonance and sustain" comparison between my el cheapo 2018 SG Standard and my "sorta expensive 2006 VOS SG Standard" I wondered why. I measured the body because my 2018 feels so much lighter and thinner but it turns out they were within a few 64ths on an inch from each other. The difference in weight comes from the density of the wood then. The lighter SG Special feels insubstantial but when you pluck it the whole body vibrates while the heavier SG Standard does too but not as deeply or as long. They are both mahongany though maybe different species? one is a single piece and the other is probably 2 or 3 pieces though with that super tight grain pattern it's kinda tough to see a seam. And speaking of grain they also obviously have very different grain (getting back to the original posters observation).

    So is it the grain? The density? The age? I dunno. Maybe it's just a case of some hunks of wood being more "lively" and some being .... well, not dead exactly. The SG Standard sounds awesome and resonant compared to non-SG guitars. So certainly not dead. But something less energetic I guess. If that's the case, then it's just luck of the draw and you can only know by playing it. Which in the end, I suppose is true.
     
  20. Dale

    Dale Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2015
    Messages:
    337
    Likes Received:
    303
    Location:
    Idaho
    There is error in the location of all pieces attached to, or assembled into, a guitar as well as the components in the electronics of the guitar. Tolerance margins. Sometimes those are cumulatively more beneficial than other times. Combine that with your personal setup and how that interacts with these cumulative tolerances and I think, personally, that is the biggest thing.
     
    Last edited: May 10, 2019

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice