New guy with a new old SG

Discussion in 'Gibson SG' started by Oig, Feb 26, 2016.

  1. Oig

    Oig Member

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    Hey everyone. Just wanted to share my '68 (I think) SG Melody Maker, which I'm pretty stoked about. The 70's happened to it, so it had a Badass bridge and a humbucker from an L6-S installed at some stage. It also suffered the obligatory headstock break, but that seems to have well repaired. Speaking of headstocks, it's the regular Gibson style, not the smaller one you usually see on MM's. So it's basically an SG by another name. It's got plenty of scuffs, dings and buckle rash and I love it! I don't wanna change a thing. I have some questions:

    I just wanna fact check that it is a Melody Maker (the bigger headstock with inlaid logo threw me a little)?

    Can anyone verify it's a '68? I was told it was a '69 (looking at the awesome Bevel thread here seems to confirm this), but the serial (910392) seems to point to a year earlier.

    The inlay broke (maybe at the same time as the headstock), and I'm thinking about repairing it. Where I can find a period correct inlay to splice with the original? I've seen a bunch online, I'm just not sure they're right?

    I posted this over on the Gibson forum too. Allright, thanks! Pics:

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  2. ScottMarlowe

    ScottMarlowe Well-Known Member

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  3. Oig

    Oig Member

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    Thanks!
     
  4. JohnnyGoo

    JohnnyGoo Well-Known Member

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  5. Kep

    Kep Well-Known Member

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    Awesome!! The 70s happend to it - I like that - some folks have said that about me ;-)

    I don't think its a Melody Maker though. Usually those have a smaller squared off head stock.

    Maybe a nicely modded Jr?
     
  6. bwotw

    bwotw Well-Known Member

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    I love that guitar, congratulations!!!

    Not sure if a MM or a modified Junior, though. About the year, I think I remember reading somewhere the 69's logo didn't have a dotted I?

    EDIT: Though, now that I think of it, if it were a junior, it would have the printed logo, not an inlay... Who knows!!
     
  7. shreddy bender

    shreddy bender Well-Known Member

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    Welcome! Sorry I can't help on the i. d. of the guitar, but CAN say from experience that the L6s pickup rocks! I put one in my 74 SG Standard and loved it!

    Nice score! Bill Lawrence made some killer pickups. Hope that guitar serves you well.
     
  8. Jimmy Jacks

    Jimmy Jacks Well-Known Member

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    I love it. Don't change a thing. It has a certain something to it as is.
     
  9. Col Mustard

    Col Mustard Well-Known Member

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    I believe your guitar is an SG Junior. The Melody Maker of the late sixties had a couple of Fender-like
    single coil p'ups and the small headstock. The Junior had a single P-90 and the larger headstock.
    Funny that your pickguard looks like the Melody Maker one. I don't think that's original either.
    I've seen a photo of a Junior from that time period that had one P-90. So the addition of a Humbucker
    with p'up ring on top of the pickguard came later. Verify this by removing the white P/G and looking
    under it for a set of screw holes from the former (smaller) P/G and the Dog-Ear P-90.

    I looked up your serial number in Tony Bacon's "The SG Guitar Book" and he indicates that the 910 series
    was made in 1968. It would not be unusual for the neck to be made and impressed with the serial number in 1968, and then for the actual guitar to be assembled in 1969 and completed as a Junior, and with the 1969 style smaller beveling. The men and women who worked at Gibson back then would be totally
    astounded by how much people obsess about these details.:rofl:
    I think they did the beveling by hand with a rasp. sand it down by hand, reach in the parts bin,
    grab a neck and glue it in. Next...

    Original retail price: $169.50, likely with a cardboard case. That was more than I could
    afford then.
    I was 20 that year, and worked in a paint factory as summer replacement for the union guys,
    and made $3.30 an hour. That was good money then. Paid my college expenses with it.

    >Minimum wage then was $1.25/hr. Waitresses and pizza drivers made less, because we were
    supposed to get tips. A semester of College tuition at University of Michigan was about $200. (full load).
    Gas was maybe thirty five cents a gallon. You could buy a VW Beetle for $2000, and a Chevy for $3000.
    You could buy a house for ten thousand. Burger, fries and a coke for a dollar. A beer for twenty five cents
    but not until you were twenty one. A 'dime bag' of grass really cost ten dollars. You could get a nickel bag too.
    We called those "lids." Groovy, man. *shrugs

    You might find an expert inlay maker who could restore your headstock inlay. I'm sure in the back alleys of
    Shanghai there are guys who do this work. *laughs ...but I'd be inclined to leave it alone. It would have to be
    perfect or it would be a liability. One of our members had an old warhorse like yours restored by RS Guitar works
    and it came out brilliant. It was expensive, but very worth it from his point of view. That company has a good
    reputation. Check with them if you're serious.

    But I'd still be inclined to play it the way it is. It's a very cool old guitar. Welcome to ETSG and thanks for
    posting.
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2016
    Kep likes this.
  10. syscokid

    syscokid Well-Known Member

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    ....:cheers:
     
  11. Oig

    Oig Member

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    Thanks all! Yeah, I don't want to change anything. It's got mojo for sure. I looked at the pot dates, and got 137-7 before it was covered by solder. So assuming it's original, that means it was made in the early 70's? This thing is a mystery.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2016
  12. Oig

    Oig Member

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    Hey, so I investigated a little more. It be cool if it was a Junior, but I keep seeing this: http://www.sheltonsguitars.com/2010/6-24-10/gibson-melody-maker-6-24-10.html Going with Col Mustard's thinking, it could have been a '68 body and neck finally assembled in 1970 (going by the pot codes). '70 also makes sense because apparently the wide head MM was only made in '69 and '70. What do you guys think? I guess the only way to be sure is to pull the pickguard, but I'm having too much fun playing it at the moment. Whatever you call it, it's all SG :dude:
     
  13. Lynurd Fireburd

    Lynurd Fireburd Active Member

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    Nice.

    Bill Lawrence Keystones are my favorite tele pups. I can only imagine that HB is as good.
     
  14. DrBGood

    DrBGood Well-Known Member

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    I'd say that's your twin sister right there.

    [​IMG]
     
  15. oldrockfan

    oldrockfan Well-Known Member

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    cool guitar! I have a 65 melody maker and it has the smaller headstock and narrow pups. The later mm guitars had the more traditional headstock. I didn't remember them having the odd inlaid Gibson but does look like those were the originals for that couple year run. It does look like your guitar has had some mods done to it but I would not worry about them at all. The MM guitars were not really highly valuable even in stock condition but they are cool old gibsons and you have a really nice one!
     
  16. Oig

    Oig Member

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    I'd say you're right :smile:

    And yeah Lynurd, this pickup smokes. It's really not that hot, but it barks in all the right ways. Something else I'm just beginning to notice is that the tone pot has one of the smoothest, most gradual tapers I've come across. This is super useful, especially on this guitar. I'm not really missing a neck pickup at all.

    I traded a 2008 SG Special that I wasn't really getting along with anymore for this. Seems like it turned out well!
     
    Last edited: Feb 29, 2016

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