Gibson bankruptcy

Discussion in 'Gibson SG' started by Plan Zero, Feb 17, 2018.

  1. Col Mustard

    Col Mustard Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2009
    Messages:
    8,056
    Likes Received:
    8,143
    Location:
    Tucson AZ
    wow, all this high finance stuff is beyond me. *grins ...but it affects me.
    I don't claim to understand it all but during these times of crisis, sometime
    a guy just wants to do something positive. A guy like me does, anyway.

    This thread (partly) has inspired me to pull the trigger on a new Gibson.
    Something I thought I'd never do again. I actually own two Gibson SGs that I bought
    new, and I'm very happy with both of them and have had zero problems with QC. I didn't think I needed another one...

    Both of my Gibsons were excellent right from the first day, and still remain my favorites.
    Both were marked down to an affordable price for a seasoned and crafty buyer like me.
    So it's odd behavior for me to just order a guitar.
    AG45WNN8_MAIN_HERO_01.jpg
    http://www.gibson.com/Products/Acoustic-Instruments/2018/J-45-Walnut-AG-Antique-Natural.aspx

    But I did it. I ordered a Gibson J-45 AG... (which is about the least expensive J-45 ever).
    Here's why: (besides the fact that the J-45 is one of Gibson's best guitar designs)
    Way back in like 2012 when Gibson had gotten in trouble (again) because of questionable
    buying practices in the third world Tonewood Black Market, my voice was one of those that
    asked why Gibson couldn't make guitars out of North American wood. I'm sure I even
    suggested that Gibson go about buying up old dead bowling alleys, and making guitar necks
    and fretboards out of the hard rock maple salvaged from the abandoned lanes. *laughs
    I suggested the Gibson Les Paul "Brunswick" model... with an SG to match. Buyers to pay a
    premium to get one of those triangle ball guides at the twelfth fret.

    Some of us (on this very forum) couldn't understand why Gibson felt driven to go shopping
    in dicey places to get the wood they needed for their guitar designs. Specifically Ebony and
    Rosewood from Madagascar and worse places. I'm sure I posted more than once about how
    much I'd love to buy a Gibson guitar made out of North American hardwoods.

    And here it is, several years later. I didn't hear about this model immediately, but as soon as
    I did, I recognized that they were actually doing what some of us had asked them to do.
    So I put my master card where my mouth is. *grins I'll support Gibson in this venture.
    Walnut body, walnut bridge and fretboard, maple neck, spruce top... NO Tropical "tone woods"
    and priced about a thousand dollars less than "traditional" J-45 guitar. I bought one.

    I did something like this before, in like 2013, when I bought a Gibson SG with a fretboard
    made of "baked maple..."
    This turned out to be a good move, because the baked maple is an excellent fretboard material
    in spite of all the Gibson bashing that was spewed on us because of it. Also, all the Gibson bashing
    ensured that the "baked maple" models didn't sell well, so mine was marked way way down when
    I finally pulled the trigger. I was just tryin' to help, ya know. I tried manfully to resist the G.A.S.
    but when they kept marking them down, even my girlfriend agreed that I should just get one.
    April Orange tall 4@100.jpg
    In 2015, when Gibson pissed everybody off by raising their prices and
    refusing to give us a choice about whether we wanted their "innovations"
    many Gibson fans closed their minds and their hearts and their wallets and
    the Gibson bashing jamboree was loud and obnoxious. *yawn

    My vote in the Great 2015 Gibson Bash-fest was to buy an Epiphone ES-339 P-90 pro
    which turned out to be an excellent choice, a fine and practical instrument (after lots
    of modding fun) and this guitar has worked its way into my heart and found a place in
    my music. So once again, I used my master card to register my opinion... in the only
    way a corporation might understand
    . (I also got a fine guitar out of it, for about $600
    including mods and hard case.) Gibson seemed to pay attention a year later, so my
    point was well made (along with thousands of others of course....)

    Why am I telling you all this? Because I believe that it matters where we spend our money.
    Lucky me, I don't seem to buy guitars that turn out to be so disappointing. I read Gibson
    bashing posts with perplexity, because my two Gibsons are so fine, they live up to everything
    we've been led to expect. So I'm a happy Gibson player, and I usually feel sorry for those
    who buy a fine guitar and then find fault with it, and can't enjoy it the way I enjoy mine.

    I own two Fenders as well, and they are both top notch IMHO. I don't know if Fender inspires
    as much bad rap as Gibson does, but none of that comes from me. My Fender Tele and my
    Fender Bass do everything I ask of them, and everything I'm capable of. Dependable, solid
    and excellent.
    Just like my Gibsons. Lucky me, eh? (but I think most Gibson and Fender players
    would second this).
     
    Last edited: Mar 16, 2018
  2. SG standard

    SG standard Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2014
    Messages:
    1,746
    Likes Received:
    2,308
    Well, this isn't entirely true: AFAIK, In the early 70s Ibanez were best know for good quality copies, even producing a copy of the short-lived Norlin SG with the semi-circular control plate and LP-style pick guard. Yamaha were better known for original designs (and used the 'SG' name on some from the early 60s), although I imagine they were fairly obscure outside Japan, (I'm not entirely sure - it's interesting now to see how often guitarists were playing 'obscure' models in the 60s).

    Things changed in the late 70s, with Ibanez gaining credibility with their Artist models, but Yamaha stole the show with their SG2000 and Santana endorsement. In the UK, these had a reputation for surpassing Gibson quality at substantially lower prices; they were known as 'Les Paul Killers'. They became a very common sight on stage & TV. I was reminded of this recently, when watching a program about 80s rock in the UK (i.e. singles chart music): I spotted 6 Yamaha SGs, played by 5 different guitarists, but no Gibson SGs. These were artists in major bands who could afford anything.

    But things changed; by the end of the 80s Japanese guitars were expensive, due to labour costs & exchange rates. For whatever reason, Yamaha chose not to move SG production outside Japan. Production came and went, sometimes for the Japanese market alone, sometimes just custom builds for artists, until the current 3 models came out c.2010. But by then, outside Japan, the Yamaha SG had become quite an obscure model - but it wasn't, back in the day.

    However, at the same time, Yamaha seem to have done well with sales of non-Japanese built models like the Pacifica, and the Revstar seems to be selling well too. Plus they have an extensive acoustic range, and have been an instrument manufacturer for longer than Gibson. Also, they've been able to successfully manage divergent products from grand pianos to motorcycles!

    I suspect they have as good an understanding of Gibsons products, heritage and potential future development as any other corporation, and would breathe life into the product range. However, I'm doubtful that they are going to acquire Gibson.
     
    rotorhead and PermissionToLand like this.
  3. PermissionToLand

    PermissionToLand Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2013
    Messages:
    2,352
    Likes Received:
    1,940
    Interesting, thanks for the perspective. As an American, I really only knew of them through Santana. And I can't remember the last time I saw any Yamaha at a shop besides the real cheap ones. Whether Guitar Center or smaller shops, nobody seems to stock those nicer models. Their lineup does look nice, but also pretty thin though. I just always got the same impression from them as Mitsubishi; the larger parent company is so diverse, it doesn't seem particularly concerned with them, and the passionate people there are held back by budget constraints. Again, maybe I'm wrong though. Their semihollow does look damn fine:

    [​IMG]
     
  4. Roca

    Roca Active Member

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2018
    Messages:
    162
    Likes Received:
    82
    Looks like a Les Paul and SG lovechild. I like it!
     
  5. Bad Penguin

    Bad Penguin Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2018
    Messages:
    569
    Likes Received:
    454
    Ok, a correction is needed here. Originally, it was the SBG2000, that had Carlos and the like as endorsees. Later on, the name became the SG. (Sometime in the 90's I think, but I could be wrong.)
     
  6. Relic61

    Relic61 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2012
    Messages:
    3,868
    Likes Received:
    2,862
    Location:
    Catskill Mountains
    I bought a Yamaha RGX model back around '88-'89 & it sounded beautiful & played like a finely crafted instrument..

    upload_2018-3-16_8-16-20.png
    (Yamaha RGX)

    That move from a hot rod'd 70's Fender allowed me to seriously up my playing a couple notches simply because it was so easy & effortless to do what ever I tried doing! I remember there being a real #oly $hit moment or two playing that thing. In fact, after buying it I finally found I liked playing like Van Halen because now I could pull it off all because of that guitar being what it was.

    But sadly that Yami was just the gateway to a Kramer American Pacer & I never went back. Fact is, After that Kramer I went to my first Gibson hot rod guitar when I bought a Gibson M-III Deluxe.
    [​IMG]
    Schmoke'n.!!

    Point is, Yamaha can make serious instruments. Not only are their Grand Piano's top notch but for a company with multiple irons in the fire their motorized vehicles are expertly made also.

    I've had 2 Yamaha XT 600 enduros over the years, 3 Yamaha 350 Banshee's, one 200 Blaster & 1 660cc Raptor, and not only were they all great running machines but they all took my use & abuse without ever breaking down or leaving me stranded. Heck, I never even had to do any repair on any of them besides maintenance & performance part upgrades.

    [​IMG]
    (XT 600)

    [​IMG]
    (Banshee)

    [​IMG]
    (Blaster)

    [​IMG]
    (Raptor)

    I would have to say that my own opinion of Yamaha is based on my personal experiences with their various products which has left me with a high opinion of their capabilities & potential.

    I would really like to see Gibson stay in American hands. Unfortunately the amount of debt coming due at two different points during this year leaves Gibson & Henry J in a very awkward financial position to find a way out of this monetary quagmire.

    Real interested to see how 'ol Henry J handles the situation he has gotten Gibson, & himself, into.

    Now I'm gonna hit Craigs list for old two-stroke Banshee 350's & see whazzup... or maybe that Kenny Roberts RZ 350 I always wanted.. in Yellow! Ha Ha !! Giddy Yup

    [​IMG]
    aaahhHell-Yeah!
     
  7. SG standard

    SG standard Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2014
    Messages:
    1,746
    Likes Received:
    2,308
    Errrr... Correction of your correction...

    It has always been the SG in Japan & Europe, sometimes in the USA they're been called SBG (I think they currently are, but I'm not sure, they were on launch of the current models). The first models in the series were called SG2 & SG3 in the 60s. There was a gap at the end of the decade, then they launched the SG40 series, which subsequently got the double cutaway styling, became the SG175, was adopted by Santana, and developed into the SG1000 & SG2000. To be honest, I can't remember exactly when the USA imports were renamed SBG, but after a quick google, this site suggests the following:
    "In ’79 or so Gibson began to object to Yamaha’s use of the SG prefix. Gibson had already gone through the copy challenge of Ibanez in mid ’77, so their objections may have even begun before that. In any case, in 1980 Yamaha changed the name of the guitar to the SBG-2000 in the U.S. In the U.K. (probably Canada and perhaps elsewhere outside of Japan) it became the SG-2000S. The name was not changed in Japan" - So long after the SG2000 was launched, and the change only ever applied in the USA.

    There's an impressive collection of Yamaha SGs on the site here, note that they're all SG, not SBG, including the SG2000s
     
  8. jojo68

    jojo68 Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2007
    Messages:
    401
    Likes Received:
    107
    Gibson jumped the shark a few years ago . I don't understand the need to buy a new Gibson. I buy used . Better bang for the buck and I dig the older features more.
     
    Relic61 likes this.
  9. Relic61

    Relic61 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2012
    Messages:
    3,868
    Likes Received:
    2,862
    Location:
    Catskill Mountains
    Oh I feel ya bra.
    Did you happen to see what people expected to pay for the '18 SG HP lately? This is another significant uptick in pricing which totally put this guitar into the category of 'wondering what that kind of money could be better spent on'.!.

    But for those happy enough to play on an SG Standard with 'Nibs' (now cleverly described as "binding that's rolled over the 22 medium frets on the solid rosewood fingerboard, for a playing experience that's smooth as silk") [pssst.. how do you roll binding over a fret again?]
    upload_2018-3-18_0-9-20.png
    Holy Sales Propaganda Batman! wtf?

    you can grab one of those close to what an SG HP was going for & currently happens to be $1539.oo . But before you do.. Just look at that high E string & realize how little finger vibrato movement it would take to slide that string over that 'No-Go Zone' where the metal meets the plastic! That in my book definitely is far far away from Gibsons self described "playing experience thats smooth as silk" & I moraly have to call bull$#it just for the sake of anyone who may not yet be aware of the shortcomings of Gibsons plastic 'Nib'. And Yet, to get "Rid of the Nib" you are either going to have to consider going down in model or literally pay hundreds of dollars more for an HP model 'upgrade'.

    Gee, how does Henry's decisions affect sales & profit??

    Well I just rechecked the SG HP pricing & they are currently on sale at MF & going for $1,869.00 & just recently reduced from a staggering $2199.oo . Even on sale it is still hundreds extra to be Rid of the Nib.

    So yah JoJo, I'm with you on those feelings now more than ever.
    Personally, I don't believe I'm Gibson bashing as much as I'm simply saying, "$2,199.oo for an SG HP???.. F-U !"
    Frankly, everything is jacked up price-wise across the Gibson Buffet Board except for maybe the entry level guitars (Gibson M2 & Firebird Zero) at $399 & $449.

    So yah ah.. What else can I get for $2199.oo hmm...
     
    jojo68 likes this.
  10. SG standard

    SG standard Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2014
    Messages:
    1,746
    Likes Received:
    2,308
    I totally agree with your comments and sentiments about nibs, but just to be fair to Henry, he did banish nibs from most of the Gibson USA range in 2014 and 2015. They came back on the 2016 T models (which by 2018 means almost all models as the HPs have mostly gone), seemingly because guitarists want everything to be 'traditional'. Of course, we both know these nibs aren't quite traditional - they're fatter and more 'in the way' that the 'traditional' nibs...

    As for the SG Standard HP, you're lucky to have the choice to buy them at any price. Ever since they were announced last September, they've been showing as 'available to order' or 'expected on [about one month ahead]' - none have actually arrived in Europe yet. I'm wondering if any will before Gibson go bust. :(
     
    Relic61 likes this.
  11. rotorhead

    rotorhead Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2017
    Messages:
    837
    Likes Received:
    620
    Location:
    Jacksonville FL
    I love nibs. I also don't love nibs. It depends on my feeling O' the day. The same is for some other features.

    I kind of appreciate now what Gibson is doing year to year with different models. For example, the difference between the '17 SG Std and the '18 model is the type of pups. That's it. But what it does in the long run is give people an option between year models for their specific wants.

    Right now most SGs come with small pickguards. I'm betting in another year or two they will bring back batwings, etc. Maybe even poker chips and reflectors, too.

    He's trying to mix things up for the sake of choice, really, and there are only so many choices they can offer each year. You can't please everyone every year.

    That's not to say that he doesn't flop along the way, or that I approve of every feature choice. Some just aren't for me. Gibson's troubles are not Gibson. Gibson's troubles are the result of crappy acquisitions of other companies.
     
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2018
    SG standard likes this.

Share This Page