Questions about specifications of first SG (61 - 63)

littlerockdevil

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Hi everybody ! :smile:

So I would like to get some specifcations about first SG (1961 to 1963)
Over that period, did all SG have a truss rod cover "Les Paul" ?
Did all SG have Top Hat Style Knobs (Black W/Silver or Gold Metal Insert) or some SG models had witch hat knobs ?
During this period, did Bigsby already appear or there only were Maestro vibrola ?

Thank you guys !
 

Logan

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So, I'll tell you what I know, since you asked so kindly :D

Firstly, let's talk about the vibratos. In 61, the SG came with a sideways vibrato that wouldn't hold tune at all. That got changed to the ebony block vibrato in 62, and in 63, was when they changed to the Maestro. From what I have seen, I have never seen a SG from that year that came stock with a stop tail, but I have seen a couple with bigsbys. I am assuming that it is a custom order option.

Secondly, the witch hat knobs were changed to in 66, so if you have one from that year, it was probably modded. And for the truss rod cover, for what I know, all of those years should have the "Les Paul" truss rod covers. :thumb:
 

cerebral gasket

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1961-1963

Truss Rod Covers:
All the Juniors and Specials I have seen are blank.
Have only seen Standards with "Les Paul" engraved.
The Customs have "Custom" engraved.

Headstocks:
The Juniors have "Les Paul" in script with "Junior" in small type below.
The Specials are blank.
The Standards have the crown inlay.
The Customs have the split diamond inlay and binding.
 
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cerebral gasket

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From what I have seen, I have never seen a SG from that year that came stock with a stop tail, but I have seen a couple with bigsbys. I am assuming that it is a custom order option.

Many of the early Juniors and Specials had wraparound bridge with no mechanical vibrato system.
 

flognoth

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Secondly, the witch hat knobs were changed to in 66, so if you have one from that year, it was probably modded. And for the truss rod cover, for what I know, all of those years should have the "Les Paul" truss rod covers. :thumb:

Yup, they used Reflector Knobs until 66, changed to Speed Knobs in the 70's and the late 80's back to Reflector Knobs. The only 61-63 SG Standards and Customs I've ever seen with Stop Bar tailpieces are reissues. :D
 

cerebral gasket

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We had a lot of real good info here, but the new owner apparently deemed it all unnecessary and took it all down. :facepalm:

Wonder why the info was removed?
There was probably more info on this site in the past than what was available from other sources.
Would be great if there was a database that had every SG model with specifications from each year starting from 1961.

Well-Known Members probably grow tired of seeing the same questions asked over and over again.

I have also noticed a trend in the short time that I have been here where discussions are more about amps and other guitars rather than a focus on everything SG.
After a while I imagine it would get old discussing the same thing over and over again such as what year certain features of the SG changed.
 
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guitarweasel

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We had everything you could think of, ETSG was also noted by Gibson as an authority on the subject. We did reviews, went to NAMM, almost all the old Gibson catalogs, even a section about cases, I was the Administrator at the time, then ETSG got sold and the new guy apparently wanted it to be as boring as his other forums.
 

littlerockdevil

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Hi !
Thank you guys for all your detailed answers ! It is very interesting ! :cheers:
Is there any particular reason for the come back of Reflector Knobs in the late 80's ? ^^
 

SGblues

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We had everything you could think of, ETSG was also noted by Gibson as an authority on the subject. We did reviews, went to NAMM, almost all the old Gibson catalogs, even a section about cases, I was the Administrator at the time, then ETSG got sold and the new guy apparently wanted it to be as boring as his other forums.

I'm a new member here, as well as a new SG owner. I would love access to that type of research and information, especially on the vintage stuff. Why would any reasonable person(s) remove such a feature? Doesn't make a lot of sense.

Wish we could have another changing of the guards and reinstate that level of information and research again. Finding real, credible information is getting harder to grasp. Not because it's not out there, but because there is so much non-specific info muddying the waters. Maybe someday!
 

PermissionToLand

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We had everything you could think of, ETSG was also noted by Gibson as an authority on the subject. We did reviews, went to NAMM, almost all the old Gibson catalogs, even a section about cases, I was the Administrator at the time, then ETSG got sold and the new guy apparently wanted it to be as boring as his other forums.

Here's an idea; make a wiki. As you may notice from my signature, I made one for Samicks. Wikia.com lets you build one for free. All the members here can combine their knowledge.

And check it out, I found the old ETSG pages on the Wayback machine:

https://web.archive.org/web/20070222014738/everythingsg.com/catalogs.htm

You have to search for them in a roundabout way though. I'll explain if anyone is interested.
 

SG standard

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Here's an idea; make a wiki. As you may notice from my signature, I made one for Samicks. Wikia.com lets you build one for free. All the members here can combine their knowledge.

And check it out, I found the old ETSG pages on the Wayback machine:

https://web.archive.org/web/20070222014738/everythingsg.com/catalogs.htm

You have to search for them in a roundabout way though. I'll explain if anyone is interested.
Wow, thanks for that link! I see the links to individual jpgs are still working - so they're still on the ESG server?

Seeing it reminds me of what we lost from this site. :(

SGWiki is a great idea...
 

PermissionToLand

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Wow, thanks for that link! I see the links to individual jpgs are still working - so they're still on the ESG server?

Seeing it reminds me of what we lost from this site. :(

SGWiki is a great idea...

They would be hosted on Wayback's servers, I believe.

Actually, they work for me [Edit: thought you said they aren't working]:

https://web.archive.org/web/20060626202927/http://everythingsg.com:80/catalogs/1962 Les Paul Standard.jpg

1962%20Les%20Paul%20Standard.jpg
 

cerebral gasket

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That was a great find on the link to the old catalogs.
 
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PermissionToLand

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A good question is how would the rights to use those pictures work? Assuming they're currently hosted by Wayback (and I doubt they get permission from the owner of every one of the hundreds of thousands of websites they archive), who do you ask, if anyone? At this point, you may just be able to use them.
 

SG standard

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Copyright/IP is governed by local legislation, which makes life complicated since the arrival of the global internet! Some territories have 'orphaned works' laws (I believe), but I'm not sure an image like this would be eligible - the rights clearly belong to Gibson, as publishers of the original page. 'Orphaned works' laws are intended to protect people who publish images with no obvious attribution, and do so innocently - though their big problem is the ease with which they can be misused by simply stripping metadata. FWIW, It doesn't usually matter how much an image has been misused - it doesn't automatically pass into the public domain; the right to it remains with the copyright holder.

Wayback probably work on the basis of providing a non-commercial archive, and I've no idea if there is a provision for this under the legislation wherever they're located. If anyone wanted to make a non-commercial use of these images, e.g. in a blog, I doubt Gibson would object, or bother in any way, (unless they were used in an unflattering way), but I expect any book publisher would normally seek clearance from Gibson before publishing. [Edit: Normally, image usage is licensed, and for a specific purpose/time/location, and any alternative use, by the same or another person, would require further licensing - which is why I'd say you'd still seek permission from Gibson, not any other source of the image].
 

PermissionToLand

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Copyright/IP is governed by local legislation, which makes life complicated since the arrival of the global internet! Some territories have 'orphaned works' laws (I believe), but I'm not sure an image like this would be eligible - the rights clearly belong to Gibson, as publishers of the original page. 'Orphaned works' laws are intended to protect people who publish images with no obvious attribution, and do so innocently - though their big problem is the ease with which they can be misused by simply stripping metadata. FWIW, It doesn't usually matter how much an image has been misused - it doesn't automatically pass into the public domain; the right to it remains with the copyright holder.

Wayback probably work on the basis of providing a non-commercial archive, and I've no idea if there is a provision for this under the legislation wherever they're located. If anyone wanted to make a non-commercial use of these images, e.g. in a blog, I doubt Gibson would object, or bother in any way, (unless they were used in an unflattering way), but I expect any book publisher would normally seek clearance from Gibson before publishing. [Edit: Normally, image usage is licensed, and for a specific purpose/time/location, and any alternative use, by the same or another person, would require further licensing - which is why I'd say you'd still seek permission from Gibson, not any other source of the image].

Wouldn't the rights not belong to Gibson, but rather the collector who owns and scanned the catalogs for ETSG? The website Vintaxe directly profits off of scans they have of old catalogs from hundreds of manufacturers.
 

SG standard

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Wouldn't the rights not belong to Gibson, but rather the collector who owns and scanned the catalogs for ETSG? The website Vintaxe directly profits off of scans they have of old catalogs from hundreds of manufacturers.

Owning a copy of a catalogue/magazine/book/film/CD/record/etc. is not the same as owning the copyright of it. Although in the digital age, lots of people seem to think it is...

Most often rights are assigned rather than sold; someone buys the rights to a particular usage, in a defined region, for a defined period - but the copyright remains with the holder. For example, a photographer can assign rights to a photo library, for a one-off fee, allowing them to sell the images anywhere in the universe, for ever more. In that situation, you could certainly buy the rights to use the image from the picture library rather than the photographer - but the copyright hasn't been transferred.

But there are plenty of complexities involved, and I'm mostly familiar with UK/EU practices and law.

The photos of the SGs, for example, might have been taken by a Gibson employee (though unlikely during the period from around 1960 - 2010). If so, under UK law (which it isn't!) the copyright would belong to Gibson, but if taken by a self-employed photographer, the copyright would remain with the photographer - even though Gibson might have paid for the film, processing & services of the photographer! Gibson would then be using the image under licence.

I've no idea if Vintaxe have licensed the use of old catalogues - but it seems quite unlikely that anyone at Gibson would be concerned if they hadn't. There's always the question of whether it's worth pursuing something, or if any harm or material loss is arising.
 

Raiyn

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Hi !
Thank you guys for all your detailed answers ! It is very interesting ! :cheers:
Is there any particular reason for the come back of Reflector Knobs in the late 80's ? ^^
If I'm thinking correctly, that would be around the time the "reissue" series started.
 


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