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  1. #1

    Explorer My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    There are probably more than a couple of replica builders and secretive dealer types who might resent this list being put out in the open, but I'm all about having this type of stuff out there. Here are what I believe are original '58 through '63 korina Explorers:

    (1) 8-2142
    (2) 8-3873
    (3) 8-3876
    (4) 8-4541
    (5) 8-4542
    (6) 8-4543
    (7) 8-4545
    (8) 8-4548
    (9) 8-4549
    (10) 8-4559
    (11) 9-1715

    So, that's eleven, and to the best of my knowledge and ablilty, they're genuine. Anyone care to join in and add to the list?

    Just a couple of observations: one of the obvious group ranges seems to be 8-4541 through 8-4559. Assuming there is an Explorer for each number in that sequential range (and that's perhaps a stretch of an assumption), that would be 19 in that range. I wonder if that's where the often quoted "only 19 made" comes from? Also, to my knowledge, and from what I have observed, this particular range seems to be a group that didn't ship until the early '60s (i.e. the ones with nickel hardware, reflector knobs, maestro vibrola, 6-on-a-strip tuners, etc.).

    By contrast, the range suggested by the two known examples above in the 8-3873/3876 area seems to correspond to the ones with the typical '58 features (gold hardware, gold bonnet/tophat knobs, ABR-1 and tailpiece, individual gold Klusons, etc.). I'm just not sure where the upper and lower exampes of this particular range might be - perhaps there are several examples either sequentially above or below those two examples...

    Anyway, if anyone else wants to come out of hiding about these serial numbers, I'd appreciate not being the only one out here flapping in the wind

  2. #2
    Les Paul Forum Member keef's Avatar
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    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    Cool - I hope that others having access to serial number information of 50s / 60s Explorers will add numbers to the list.

    BTW - do you have the two Rick Nielsen guitars on your list? I have the numbers somewhere. Who else has one...I guess there is a fair share of fakes around.....add names if you know any.

    Slash (refin with Bigsby)
    Rick Derringer
    The auctioned Clapton guitar, and his sawed off explorer
    Rick Nielsen (in his book there is also a third explorer with a split headstock pictured)
    Did Allen Collins ever own an original - he DID have a '76..
    There's one in the Billy Gibbons book, owned by a friend of his IIRC
    Robb Lawrence may add some more..

  3. #3
    Les Paul Forum Member shuie's Avatar
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    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    Clapton's was a '76 wasnt it? I think Collins guitar was a '63.

    I would think that anyone doing anything unscrupulous with these guitars would love for this list to made public. I would expect to read about several of the previously uncirculated guitars being 'found' under beds if there were an official list.

  4. #4

    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    Here's some known details on some of them:

    (1) 8-2142 - Rick Derringer split-headstock
    (2) 8-3873 - owned by the late Mike Parker
    (3) 8-3876 - Clapton's sawed-off
    (4) 8-4541 - Clapton's other one, sold at auction
    (5) 8-4542
    (6) 8-4543 - previously owned by a LPF member
    (7) 8-4545
    (8) 8-4548 - recently sold for $611,000 at auction
    (9) 8-4549
    (10) 8-4559 - saw pics of it taken at a guitar show (Philly?)
    (11) 9-1715 - owned by a late friend of a LPF member

  5. #5

    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    Entwistle had one. Here's a photo from 1982 GP.





    Can you imagine people were paying up to 15-20 times the original cost of these? They must have been crazy.

  6. #6

    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    Quote Originally Posted by shuie View Post
    Clapton's was a '76 wasnt it? I think Collins guitar was a '63.

    I would think that anyone doing anything unscrupulous with these guitars would love for this list to made public. I would expect to read about several of the previously uncirculated guitars being 'found' under beds if there were an official list.
    shuie - I thought about that, but I figure it cuts both ways. If we can get a reasonably reliable list together, then maybe it might (hopefully) make the fakes built to date stick out in some way, based on this serial number info. But, you're right - going forward, it obviously potentially gives fraudsters some more reliable information that they can use to "fill in the blanks" in a more realistic way.

  7. #7

    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    A couple of other things - I read/heard that some of the early '60s Explorers might actually have impressed, rather than inked on, serial numbers. Presumably these impressed-serial-number Explorers, if they do exist, would follow the serial number format for early '60s SGs, etc...

    Also, I figure that 9-1715 has got to be, sequentially speaking, one of the last inked Explorer serial numbers, if not *the* last. As John Catto has pointed out on a number of occasions in previous posts, it looks like the last inked-serial-number Flying V (at least the last one shipped) might have been 9-1704, shipped on 7/18/62. Just judging from the very close serial numbers, I'm guessing that this particular Explorer and this particular V might have had some sort of similar history at the Gibson factory, at least up to the point when they were stamped, presumably sometime in '59... so maybe there's something to this 9-17xx range...

    As far as the earliest ink-stamped Explorers, the Derringer split-headstock 8-2142 probably represents one of the few earliest examples, since I've read/heard there were only maybe five or so of these early split-headstock examples built before the change to the hockey-stick headstock...

  8. #8
    All Access/Backstage Pass Cody's Avatar
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    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    According to "Guitars Of The Stars", Rick Nielsen's Explorers are:

    * 8-4549

    * 8-1008

    * 8-2118 split headstock

    It seems that MisterMiniMite already has 8-4549 listed... is it the same guitar? This one does have gold hardware, tulip tuners, heavy wear and at least one Bigsby removal.
    Wing tip missing from PG, and a little piece removed by the bridge, likely to accommodate a Bigsby.

    8-1008 is cleaner, but also has gold HW, tulips, some filled holes around the tailpiece.
    Wing tip missing from PG.

    8-2118... I don't want to doubt, but DAMN, it's clean. Gold HW, uncracked guard, white switch tip, 3x3 tulips, somewhat light fingerboard with swirl, Skylark type logo - might be gold.

    I don't have the ability to scan... anybody else have the book?

  9. #9

    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    Quote Originally Posted by Cody View Post
    According to "Guitars Of The Stars", Rick Nielsen's Explorers are:

    * 8-4549

    * 8-1008

    * 8-2118 split headstock

    It seems that MisterMiniMite already has 8-4549 listed... is it the same guitar? This one does have gold hardware, tulip tuners, heavy wear and at least one Bigsby removal.
    Wing tip missing from PG, and a little piece removed by the bridge, likely to accommodate a Bigsby.

    8-1008 is cleaner, but also has gold HW, tulips, some filled holes around the tailpiece.
    Wing tip missing from PG.

    8-2118... I don't want to doubt, but DAMN, it's clean. Gold HW, uncracked guard, white switch tip, 3x3 tulips, somewhat light fingerboard with swirl, Skylark type logo - might be gold.

    I don't have the ability to scan... anybody else have the book?
    Cody - yes, regarding 8-4549, I'm pretty sure we're talking about the same guitar.

    One other factor that might complicate things, particularly in the 8-4541 through 8-4559 range (if I am right about those ones originally having the early '60s features), is that, apparently, especially during the '70s and '80s, guys would switch out the original early '60s parts and replace them with the '58 spec gold parts, since, at that time, the original Explorers with the '58 spec gold parts would go for more money than the early '60s spec ones. Of course, nowadays, both versions appear to be reasonably equally valued.

    As you probably know, one reliable way to spot an early '60s spec Explorer, regardless of what hardware has since been installed, is to look for the three holes from the screws of the original maestro vibrola (yes, as used on the early '60s Melody Maker, SG Jr., SG Special, and Firebird III). Apparently, believe it or not, as absurd as it seems now, in '62-'63, the maestro vibrola feature was one way that Gibson aimed to make the Explorer more marketable than the previous ABR-1-and-tailpiece '58 spec version.

  10. #10
    All Access/Backstage Pass Cody's Avatar
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    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    On 8-4549, if indeed it started out with early '60s parts, Rick seems to have gone the extra mile, as it has the brown '50s case (as does 8-1008).

  11. #11

    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    Cool - my theory about the 8-454x through 8-455x correlation to the early '60s spec could defintely be incorrect, just something I seemed to observe.

    In fact, from my list, I must admit that I know little to nothing about 8-4559, except that I saw a few pictures of it which appeared to be taken at a guitar show, which looks like it might have been Philly. Anyone else know anything about this one?

    So... perhaps, tentatively, we now have 13 of 'em here. That's a decent chunk, even if you use the higher end of the estimate of original Explorers shipped (highest number I have seen for this is 38). I figure we're somewhere around one-third of the way there, at least

  12. #12
    Les Paul Forum Member rhubarbred's Avatar
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    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    If I was going to make a copy of the Mona Lisa and try to pass it off as genuine, the last thing I would want is an informed public.....

  13. #13

    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    ...link deleted...
    Last edited by MisterMiniMite; 03-07-07 at 07:37 PM.

  14. #14

    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    ...link deleted...
    Last edited by MisterMiniMite; 03-07-07 at 07:38 PM.

  15. #15
    Les Paul Forum Member 59gibson's Avatar
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    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    I took that pic at the 2005 Fall Philly show. It's a 63 Explorer with nickel parts, pat# pups and removed maestro tailpiece.
    Last edited by 59gibson; 03-07-07 at 07:54 PM.

  16. #16

    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    Incorporates some additions - the list now includes 21 serial numbers believed, at this point, to be genuine:

    8-1008
    8-1431
    8-2118
    8-2142
    8-2153
    8-3549
    8-3850
    8-3873
    8-3876
    8-4096
    8-4536
    8-4539
    8-4541
    8-4542
    8-4543
    8-4545
    8-4548
    8-4549
    8-4559
    8-4567
    9-1715

  17. #17

    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    I also just noticed that burstserial.com lists 8-1008 as a known goldtop, so Rick Nielsen's Explorer 8-1008 seems to have an evil twin of the mahogany-and-maple, single-cutaway variety...

    Also, is this one a hockey-stick headstock? If so, would it make sense that a hockey-stick headstock would come sequentially before the split-headstock? Maybe I'm just overanalyzing...
    Last edited by MisterMiniMite; 03-07-07 at 11:29 PM.

  18. #18
    Les Paul Forum Member jrgtr42's Avatar
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    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    John Entwistle's Explorer was 8-4451.
    Per the Bass Culture - The Collection of JE book.
    Great pic in there of his trio...58 Explorer, Flying V and Les Paul...
    even just when he wrote the notes for it (summer before he dies, I belive,)
    the going price for the 3 was $250,000.
    IMagine what that exact s-some would bring together if sold today?
    a mil? 1.5?
    ********************************
    "Do you call sleeping with a guitar in your hands practicing?"
    "It is if you don't drop it."
    - Trent Lane, Daria, Episode 1-2.

  19. #19

    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    Cool - we seem to be up to 22. Why do I get the feeling that we might reach over 38 when all is said and done?

    8-1008
    8-1431
    8-2118
    8-2142
    8-2153
    8-3549
    8-3850
    8-3873
    8-3876
    8-4096
    8-4451
    8-4536
    8-4539
    8-4541
    8-4542
    8-4543
    8-4545
    8-4548
    8-4549
    8-4559
    8-4567
    9-1715

  20. #20
    Les Paul Forum Member j45's Avatar
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    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    To anyone that may have good photos of original Explorers... PLEASE POST THEM!!


  21. #21
    Les Paul Forum Member modoc_333's Avatar
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    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    this guy: http://www.gioguitars.net/Gibson.html

    has one for sale.... but i don't see a serial number at all!!!!!!! what's up with that?

    "I've been deaf, now i want noise!"

  22. #22
    Les Paul Forum Member
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    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    Here's more detail on three of them. i owned one of these way back.

    8-4536 with nickel parts, maestro
    8-4539 with gold parts, no maestro
    8-4559 with nickel parts, maestro

    Quote Originally Posted by MisterMiniMite View Post
    Cool - we seem to be up to 22. Why do I get the feeling that we might reach over 38 when all is said and done?

    8-1008
    8-1431
    8-2118
    8-2142
    8-2153
    8-3549
    8-3850
    8-3873
    8-3876
    8-4096
    8-4451
    8-4536
    8-4539
    8-4541
    8-4542
    8-4543
    8-4545
    8-4548
    8-4549
    8-4559
    8-4567
    9-1715

  23. #23

    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    The more I think about it, the more I wonder about that 8-1008...

  24. #24
    Les Paul Forum Member keef's Avatar
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    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    Quote Originally Posted by MisterMiniMite View Post
    The more I think about it, the more I wonder about that 8-1008...
    You also may recall that obvious fake burst in his book discussed here before...so what's up, Rick?

  25. #25
    Les Paul Forum Member 59gibson's Avatar
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    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    I can't remember if this link has been posted here before. Anyway, it's a very cool link to Explorer info

    http://translate.google.com/translat...lr%3D%26sa%3DG

  26. #26
    Les Paul Forum Member
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    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    MisterMiniMite,
    I also am somewhat of an original Explorer fanatic and have been compiling a list of Explorer ser #s for yrs and was going to post them as well but you beat me to it. I have put it somewhere and in cant find it but will compare it to yours when I do. meanwhile here are some I have found in my reference material. a rare 61 # 28012 as well as 27121 both impressed ser #s. I have a very hard to find Guitar World Sept 1983 that has a cool article on Explorers and the Centerfold is ser # 8 4592 once owned buy a guy named Paul Warren. Also just to be clear on 58/63 Explorer ser #s I have disscussed this with George Gruhn yrs ago as well as Tim Kummer when he worked at Guitar Trader. You cant assume Gibson shipped these in sequential order. I have believed for yrs that Gibson made at least one full batch (at least 40) and a few prototype Explorers and shipped maybe half in 58/59 and finished and shipped the others thru 63. In my opinion The Explorers like alot of Gibsons at the time were in various stages of build and most had been numbered before the finish was applied. when the time came to fill a few orders or even one guitar the worker would grab one or ever how many and complete them. this would explain for instance why my old ser # 8 4543 had nickle hardware and a later # like 8 4592 would have Gold hardware. the ones actually completed and sold in 58 would have Gold hardware and Pafs right? then the later build after 1960 would have nickle hardware.As Gruhn and others have stated for yrs these were hand made guitars and each one might have small differences from another but I dont see it exactly that way. The earliest ones probably prototypes with the split peghead only differed in peghead shape. Then came the ones we are most familiar with which had gold hardware, gold bonnet knobs and six individually cut single ring single line klusons and a 50s inked on # and brown case. For whatever reason most likely to cut cost the rest of the build after 1960 had nickle hardware Pat # pickups with cheaper 6 on a strip white plastic button klusons and a black case with yelow lining similar to a Firebird case of the same period. some like mine had the short nickle maestro vibrola as well. Ser # 9 1715 which belonged to a good friend of mine since the 70's was somewhat of an oddball 1st it has the 59 ser # but what makes it more unique is it has the nickle hardware but with original nickle Pafs not pat #s. It also has the brown case so its likely the last one made like that He always told me yrs before he passed away that he thought his Explorer was shipped in 61 or 62 the would explain the pafs. I have heard of a few 50's Vs with 59 ser #s so i'm sure there were a few Explorers with a 59 # also. I'll dig up more info and post later on.
    Last edited by burstman59; 03-11-07 at 01:27 PM.

  27. #27
    Les Paul Forum Member j45's Avatar
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    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    Quote Originally Posted by shuie View Post
    Clapton's was a '76 wasnt it? I think Collins guitar was a '63.

    I would think that anyone doing anything unscrupulous with these guitars would love for this list to made public. I would expect to read about several of the previously uncirculated guitars being 'found' under beds if there were an official list.

    Pretty sure the sawed of Clapton Explorer was a '58.

  28. #28
    Les Paul Forum Member shuie's Avatar
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    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    Great pic of 8-2153 in the Duchossoir book. Hockey stick headstock with a big 'G' inlay instead of the 'Gibson' script. Very cool.

    I might cry if I learn Clapton's sawed off guitar was a '58.

  29. #29

    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    Burstman59 - thanks for all the great info! I think we're getting somewhere with our list - maybe we can continue to add to it as we track some more info down If you have any more serial numbers, I'd be fascinated to know.

    8-3876 was Clapton's sawed-off, and from what I have seen, it appears to be the traditional '58 spec (gold hardware).

  30. #30

    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    Quote Originally Posted by burstman59 View Post
    MisterMiniMite,
    I also am somewhat of an original Explorer fanatic and have been compiling a list of Explorer ser #s for yrs and was going to post them as well but you beat me to it. I have put it somewhere and in cant find it but will compare it to yours when I do. meanwhile here are some I have found in my reference material. a rare 61 # 28012 as well as 27121 both impressed ser #s. I have a very hard to find Guitar World Sept 1983 that has a cool article on Explorers and the Centerfold is ser # 8 4592 once owned buy a guy named Paul Warren. Also just to be clear on 58/63 Explorer ser #s I have disscussed this with George Gruhn yrs ago as well as Tim Kummer when he worked at Guitar Trader. You cant assume Gibson shipped these in sequential order. I have believed for yrs that Gibson made at least one full batch (at least 40) and a few prototype Explorers and shipped maybe half in 58/59 and finished and shipped the others thru 63. In my opinion The Explorers like alot of Gibsons at the time were in various stages of build and most had been numbered before the finish was applied. when the time came to fill a few orders or even one guitar the worker would grab one or ever how many and complete them. this would explain for instance why my old ser # 8 4543 had nickle hardware and a later # like 8 4549 would have Gold hardware. the ones actually completed and sold in 58 would have Gold hardware and Pafs right? then the later build after 1960 would have nickle hardware.As Gruhn and others have stated for yrs these were hand made guitars and each one might have small differences from another but I dont see it exactly that way. The earliest ones probably prototypes with the split peghead only differed in peghead shape. Then came the ones we are most familiar with which had gold hardware, gold bonnet knobs and six individually cut single ring single line klusons and a 50s inked on # and brown case. For whatever reason most likely to cut cost the rest of the build after 1960 had nickle hardware Pat # pickups with cheaper 6 on a strip white plastic button klusons and a black case with yelow lining similar to a Firebird case of the same period. some like mine had the short nickle maestro vibrola as well. Ser # 9 1715 which belonged to a good friend of mine since the 70's was somewhat of an oddball 1st it has the 59 ser # but what makes it more unique is it has the nickle hardware but with original nickle Pafs not pat #s. It also has the brown case so its likely the last one made like that He always told me yrs before he passed away that he thought his Explorer was shipped in 61 or 62 the would explain the pafs. I have heard of a few 50's Vs with 59 ser #s so i'm sure there were a few Explorers with a 59 # also. I'll dig up more info and post later on.

    Not to keep repeating myself with this big list, but I figured I'd make it easy and post the entire updated list of presumed original serial numbers, in sequential order, for ease of reference going forward. This now makes a total of 25. Of course, this assumes all of these are genuine and accurate (a big assumption - I know...perhaps more with some of these numbers than others), but at this point, this could possibly be the most comprehensive attempt at ever doing something like this. And perhaps this list might grow even more if Burstman59 identifies more to add from his list - very cool!

    8-1008
    8-1431
    8-2118
    8-2142
    8-2153
    8-3549
    8-3850
    8-3873
    8-3876
    8-4096
    8-4451
    8-4536
    8-4539
    8-4541
    8-4542
    8-4543
    8-4545
    8-4548
    8-4549
    8-4559
    8-4567
    8 4592
    9-1715
    27121 (pressed-in)
    28012 (pressed-in)

    Regarding your late friend's 9-1715, I think it's very possible that that particular Explorer could have shipped in '62, since apparently the last inked-serial-number Flying V (at least the last one shipped) might have been 9-1704, shipped on 7/18/62.

  31. #31

    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    8 1431 has a split peghead and "G" logo instead of saying "Gibson" right.

    I saw a 50's V that had a "ghost" outline of a G logo on the peghead but also had a traditional Gibson logo on it. It was the only one I ever saw like that and I'm pretty sure it was original.

    BTW, I've seen, handled, played 4 original V's but never even saw an original Explorer in person. For those that have, did they all have one piece bodies? That is a mightly big chunk of Korina and I was wondering if any known 2 piece bodies exists.

  32. #32

    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    Interesting! - so, in terms of headstock and logo, is this correct for the first five listed above?

    8-1008 - hockey stock headstock; Gibson logo (raised plastic)
    8-1431 - split headstock; G logo
    8-2118 - split headstock; Gibson logo (raised plastic)
    8-2142 - split headstock; Gibson logo (?) (raised plastic?)
    8-2153 - hockey stick headstock; G logo

    If these are correct (please correct me if I'm wrong!), isn't it curious that 8-1008 would have a hockey stick headstock?

    Maybe what happened was (?):
    I figure anything with a "G" logo was definitely a prototype of some sort (I know, pretty obvious...). Weren't those the ones Gibson intended on showing at the NAMM show, since Gibson ownership was at first cautious/apprehensive about attaching the full Gibson name to the headstocks of these futuristic looking guitars?
    Well, maybe Gibson put together a handful of prototypes with various combinations of characteristics (split headstock, hockey stick headstock, G logo, raised plastic Gibson logo, inlaid Gibson logo...), before finally deciding on the hockeystick headstock and inlayed Gibson logo combination as the final, "official" version for production. In this way, Gibson would have worked out these kinks *before* ever officially shipping the *first* Explorer. Then, instead of wasting anything, they sold and shipped all these varying prototypes, perhaps even spread out over the years, even though some were different from the final version.
    I know all of this probably sounds obvious to some, but just to explain, I guess I always figured that Gibson (1) designed and settled on the split headstock version as the "official" version; then (2) shipped some of them like that; then (3) got some complaints from dealers about tuning issues, etc. with this design; and then (4) only out of necessity, due to feedback/complaints, went back to the drawing board and came up with the hockey stick headstock version. I guess I just figured that Gibson had settled on the split headstock design, but maybe not: perhaps Gibson already knew that they felt that design was "flawed" before even the *first* Explorer ever shipped, but shipped those handful of split headstock prototypes anyway...
    Last edited by MisterMiniMite; 03-11-07 at 01:10 PM.

  33. #33
    Les Paul Forum Member
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    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    As far as I know all Explorers were 1 pc bodies. thats one thing that makes them unique. I mean think about it. That is one big chunk of white limba. All the Historic series Explorers that I know of are 1 pc as well. I'm sure there are a few forgeries with 1 pc bodies also. Another thing I forgot to metion is the neck heel and finish on these. Original early 58 versions with gold hardware tend to have a more rounded neck heel, Allen Collins version has the largest very rounded neck heel I've ever seen and Gibson duplicated this on the Allen Collins tribute mode. Also some explorers like the one previously mentioned in Gibson elecrtrics with the big G on the headstock and rear peghead stinger had the small round plastic cover plate on the back of the treble Horn to access the toggle switch from the rear if need be. Allen Collins Explorer and the Derringer/Chinnery split head Explorer and the impressed # 28012 has the plate as well. It was printed in the Sept.83 Explorer madness article that the the round cover shows up in alot of the ones shipped in the early 60's but I dont believe this to be the case. I think there were more Explorers shipped without the round cover plate than with. Robb lawrence and I discussed Explorers via email a few times and he sold a very nice one to John Entwistle back in the 70's. I dont know if this is the same one that sold at auction of not. also he told me he interviewed a guy at Kalamazoo yrs ago that sat or worked right next to the unfinished explorers for yrs. I couldnt imagine that. I could hear the guy saying to himself " I wish they would get rid of some of this junk and get it out of my way" . As for the finish a few of the early 60 models seem to have less of a shine to them like they omited some final stage of buffing sorta like what an authentic model looks like today. I could talk Explorers all day long but I'll sign off untill I remember something else.

  34. #34

    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    MisterMiniMite,

    I believe 8-1008 has an inlaid logo instead of a raised logo.

    Could be wrong but the photo I have seen of it doesn't look like raised plastic.

    Bob

  35. #35
    Les Paul Forum Member shuie's Avatar
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    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    cant see the guitar to well, but here's a shot of Clapton with his


  36. #36

    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    Quote Originally Posted by mirrorimij View Post
    MisterMiniMite,

    I believe 8-1008 has an inlaid logo instead of a raised logo.

    Could be wrong but the photo I have seen of it doesn't look like raised plastic.

    Bob
    Good call - I've never seen any pictures of any with a raised plastic logo and the hockey stick headstock - not sure what I was thinking when I typed that...the raised plastic logo probably wouldn't even fit on there! Seems like even with the very earliest ones, the hockey stick headstock went hand-in-hand with the inlaid Gibson logo

    Burstman59 - please continue - I love your Explorer posts!!

  37. #37

    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    From a review of that Japanese page about Explorers linked above, I spotted what appear to be 2 additions:

    8-3849
    8-4552 (Slash - with Bigsby)

    So now, we *might* have 27 (again, some of these are possibly more reliable than others...who knows... some could be replicas, some could be wrong due to incorrect transposing of digits when writing down or misreading a faint serial number, etc...)

    8-1008
    8-1431
    8-2118
    8-2142
    8-2153
    8-3549
    8-3849
    8-3850
    8-3873
    8-3876
    8-4096
    8-4451
    8-4536
    8-4539
    8-4541
    8-4542
    8-4543
    8-4545
    8-4548
    8-4549
    8-4552
    8-4559
    8-4567
    8 4592
    9-1715
    27121 (pressed-in)
    28012 (pressed-in)

  38. #38
    Les Paul Forum Member 59gibson's Avatar
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    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    I scanned this pic out of a Japanese book I have. If this piece is righteous it pre-dates all the korinas I've known about with a serial # of 7-3056 or 58.


  39. #39
    Les Paul Forum Member shuie's Avatar
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    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    Wow. So it does exist.

  40. #40

    Re: My list of known original '58 through '63 korina Explorer serial numbers

    Very interesting picture!
    Check out the neck tenon in that shot on the bottom right. If I'm not mistaken, the original Explorers had a neck tenon that actually extended so long that it went beyond the neck pickup cavity. The neck tenon on this Futura looks similar to a standard Les Paul tenon of that era, which I think is interesting. I wish I knew more about Futura specs

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