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Hey it's Mat from Gibson Product Development - AMA

matkoehler

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 12, 2014
Messages
315
Hi Matt, I'd like to know if all Custom Shop guitar are currently coming stock with Luxe Radio "bumblebee" caps or if that was only a special run for the 2019 60th Anniversary LP guitars?
Where appropriate, yes -- i.e. all those that should have historic PIO caps get the Luxe bees. We use their phonebook cap for the Korinas and we use their Black Beauty PIF caps for 60s models. Very thankful to Donovan at Luxe Radio, who went on quite a journey with us in trying to ramp up to get to our capacity needs. It wasn't easy, especially through the pandemic.
 

matkoehler

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Joined
Sep 12, 2014
Messages
315
This is in reference to an earlier comment here. Here is a new R4 from Sweetwater with the lower logo stance. I passed on this one because it was too heavy. I’m hoping for a lighter one to arrive soon. I’ve had one of these on pre order since March. The color looks nicer too with less green than what I’ve been seeing the last two years. Any other changes on these we can look forward to? Any insights on which dealers will be getting some lighter weight R4s? I even tried pursuing the M2M route but Gibson didn’t respond to the dealers with pricing and eta info.
I'd pitched that change a number of times but now I'm in a position where I can make it happen with the right paperwork. We did the engineering change in April and all core R4s and R6s shipping in Fall 2021 and later should have them. Gold paint has been a labor of love because you never really know what you're going to get -- hard to keep bronze powder fresh and prevent oxidizing, and you see a similar variation in 1950s Gibsons. Some people prefer a greener gold, some people prefer a browner gold. I like somewhere in the middle. All that said, I think we are more consistent than ever these days.

I would have no idea which dealers are getting which weights -- it was simpler when we actually had some inventory on hand but the demand has been crazy so everything build is sold several months over. But I'm sorry to hear about the M2M communication -- I would recommend trying again or trying a different dealer. That is unusual. Ultra-light back is a M2M option...we don't guarantee weight for obvious reasons but typically it puts it in the mid 8s or lower. Hope that helps!
 

matkoehler

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Sep 12, 2014
Messages
315
Hi Matt, does m2m allow for adding an axcess neck heel to any reissue? For instance could I order a gold top with dark back and an axcess neck joint, or a 68 custom (would binding be able to be on the back and end at the heel, like esp has done with some of their eclipse models?)

Also are customers able pick the tops anymore, I know some dealers used to have actual woods to pick from, is it possible to see a few choices?

Would it be possible to order a satin neck with the normal VOS finish on the rest of the guitar?

Thanks.
Great question and the answer is that any Les Paul Goldtop or Standard Historic Reissue model can get the access heel through M2M, yes. Les Paul Custom is possible but you'd have to do it without back binding...no way for us to bind an access heel and cutaway.

Some dealers are more adept than others at M2M facilitation, but yes the good ones will get you three top options to pick from if you so desire.

It is probably possible to make the neck of a particular model satin and the rest VOS, but I'd recommend requesting us to scotch-brite the neck instead. The guys in final assembly are pretty good at getting the same effect you desire on the meat of the neck only. Thanks for the questions!
 

matkoehler

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Sep 12, 2014
Messages
315
Hi Mat, could I put in a request for a return of the 'Cali Girl' case.........for LPs
I'd buy one if they're done again.
We have a few prototypes of the "wide hipped" Liftons. The originals were not the safest cases for transport so we're trying to keep the form factor while improving the fit/safety. When we have it right we will offer them through the Gibson Accessories page...but I think we're probably a year out. Thanks for the question.
 

matkoehler

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Joined
Sep 12, 2014
Messages
315
Mat,

Greetings!

Wondering if you can give me some help concerning Firebird headstocks, specifically, the carved ledge version.

I am under the assumption, based on everything I've ever read, that the carved ledge is exactly that: a carved ledge into the headstock. I am including an image that I found that supports my claim.

Recently, I have seen posts from people in Facebook Firebird groups, that the carved ledge is actually an overlay, some say it's holly, some say that it is a carbon fiber or resin overlay.

I know that 2018 was the last year for the carved ledge headstock and in 2019 they went to the flat style headstock. Is it possible that at some point in time that the construction went away from the original carved variant and an overlay of some time WAS used?

Can you please shed some light on the progression of the headstock construction?

Thanks in advance for any assistance you can provide.
Depends if you are talking about Gibson USA or Gibson Custom Shop. Gibson USA Firebirds have gone through a number of changes over the years and they are currently discontinued as we work on an Original Collection-worthy offering. Maybe a non-reverse too. Anyway yes they used a fiber overlay at points. Custom Shop Firebirds have always been carved, which is what the vintage models had. Hope that helps.
 

matkoehler

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Sep 12, 2014
Messages
315
Hi Mat,

I've bought a 60th R9 from Japan to Hong Kong months ago. But the dealer didn't take out the toggle switch cap before shipping it out. It was broken like 6-7 pieces when I received the guitar.. The Japan dealer didn't response for the problem. And I 've tried contacting the Gibson customer services both US, then they passed the case to Japan.. but the Japan dept said they only provide free warranty for Japan only... There is no Gibson custom service in Hong Kong.. The worst thing is that it is impossible to buy another true historic toggle switch cap from the internet or retail stores. so how can I replace my historic toggle switch cap?
Oof, sorry to hear that and sorry in advance because I don't really have a lot of influence here nor would I know who to contact. I would recommend reaching out again to service@gibson with your serial number, that photo and proof of payment. Dealers are equipped with extra parts like that for just these occasions, but if you're not getting responses from your dealer I would definitely make that known to Gibson customer service. The issue may be that Japanese dealers are not supposed to sell new Gibsons into Hong Kong, or at least I know that's frowned upon as the dealer agreement says sales are limited to the same country as the dealer...that could have negated warranty fulfillment. Best of luck and beautiful guitar!
 

matkoehler

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Joined
Sep 12, 2014
Messages
315
Hi Mat,

I see some info is starting to get released about what may be a ML KH Greeny… can you tell us more? :)
And more importantly, how do i make sure i get one? 😅
You and me both! My boss enjoys leaking projects that are still early in development...haha. He likes how it stirs the pot and creates early demand...I can't blame him. No details other than Kirk was very happy with the latest prototype.
 

Torshalla

Active member
Joined
Sep 26, 2020
Messages
123
You and me both! My boss enjoys leaking projects that are still early in development...haha. He likes how it stirs the pot and creates early demand...I can't blame him. No details other than Kirk was very happy with the latest prototype.
Thank you for taking the time to respond Mat, really appreciate it.
I cannot blame him either, it is working haha 😅🤣… i want one…
 

MAP

New member
Joined
Jan 21, 2021
Messages
1
Hi Mat

i just purchased a beautiful new 1964 ES-335 Reissue Sixties Cherry.
Absolutely great instrument, although I was surprised to find the ABR-1 isn’t wired although it does have Nylon saddles.
Is there a reason it wasn’t given a wired ABR-1 as a 64 replica?

Many Thanks!
 

sunson69

New member
Joined
Apr 13, 2021
Messages
12
Man that sucks/stinks big time and I would be pretty sore big time . Most Beautiful figured beauty I must say ! I hear what you are saying and maybe try Reverb.com or EBAY ? I see all kinds of stuff and parts and guitars on Reverb.com . Best Wishes ! (I hope there was no damage to the finish in the circled/affected area ? )
Hi, thanks! I tried finding everywhere from the internet, reverb, ebay, yahoo action...etc and never see the used one from a Gibson historic LP. I can only buy a Gibson similar amber one from guitar store but not the same color of the original catalin one.. It is lucky that the finish is not affected~
 

sunson69

New member
Joined
Apr 13, 2021
Messages
12
Oof, sorry to hear that and sorry in advance because I don't really have a lot of influence here nor would I know who to contact. I would recommend reaching out again to service@gibson with your serial number, that photo and proof of payment. Dealers are equipped with extra parts like that for just these occasions, but if you're not getting responses from your dealer I would definitely make that known to Gibson customer service. The issue may be that Japanese dealers are not supposed to sell new Gibsons into Hong Kong, or at least I know that's frowned upon as the dealer agreement says sales are limited to the same country as the dealer...that could have negated warranty fulfillment. Best of luck and beautiful guitar!
Hi, Matt, thanks for the reply~ I've kept sending 3 emails before to get 1 reply from Customer.Service@gibson.com and they forwarded me to Japan dept as I said that they won't provide warranty for overseas purchase.. it's so frustrated that I've to pay extra money to buy another one from Montreux or Historic makeover..
 

Dr. Green

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Joined
Dec 12, 2018
Messages
600
Hey Matt -

I know that James Hutchins was your " Jazz box " guru
I would really love to hear a little bit about his story and in 2021 who is your new arch top guru and maybe just a little about him too
 

Dport

New member
Joined
Nov 9, 2020
Messages
19
Mat, I hope this hasn't been covered already. But, two questions:

1.) Is the lacquer on all of the Murphy Labs the same? I have a 2021 Murphy Lab 1958 Reissue VOS.
2.) What are the bobbin colors for the Custombuckers?

Apologies if this info is out there. I did a quick search on the site but admittedly, I'm not good with computers and boolean searches and all that jazz.

Thanks!
 

matkoehler

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 12, 2014
Messages
315
Hi Mat

i just purchased a beautiful new 1964 ES-335 Reissue Sixties Cherry.
Absolutely great instrument, although I was surprised to find the ABR-1 isn’t wired although it does have Nylon saddles.
Is there a reason it wasn’t given a wired ABR-1 as a 64 replica?

Many Thanks!
We abandoned the old mock-wired ABR we had in favor of the True Historic non-wire...it's a better bridge and more historic shape. We are redeveloping a True Historic wired bridge, but with tooling costs and approval process it might be a year or more. That said, what you received is the correct spec for the model per the website and spec sheet. But yes I realize a wire in there would make it 100%. Sorry for the disappointment but hope you understand. Thanks for reaching out!
 

matkoehler

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Joined
Sep 12, 2014
Messages
315
Hi, Matt, thanks for the reply~ I've kept sending 3 emails before to get 1 reply from Customer.Service@gibson.com and they forwarded me to Japan dept as I said that they won't provide warranty for overseas purchase.. it's so frustrated that I've to pay extra money to buy another one from Montreux or Historic makeover..
There it is...yeah the reason they can't help is once sold from Japan to HK it was not covered under warranty. It really stinks that it affects you, the unwitting victim here! But at least we have an explanation.
 

matkoehler

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Joined
Sep 12, 2014
Messages
315
Hey Matt -

I know that James Hutchins was your " Jazz box " guru
I would really love to hear a little bit about his story and in 2021 who is your new arch top guru and maybe just a little about him too
Thanks for asking! I have learned so much about Hutch I feel like I knew him personally, but in fact I'd only briefly met him a couple times before he passed. There's a nice biography on him HERE with photos too. But I'll add that his legacy at Gibson was all about preserving tribal knowledge from Kalamazoo. He became known for his passion surrounding archtop guitars but really he is responsible for so much more. He was THE guy going back and forth from Kalamazoo to Nashville bringing prints, process sheets, fixtures, jigs, etc -- anything that would benefit future production.

Someone who worked closely with Hutch is now our resident archtop guru...Doug Culberson. Doug is one of those guys that can build a guitar out of a tree stump if he had to...he's a savant-level luthier and a great guy to boot. Doug is central in our plans to introduce a Historic Reissue archtop collection sometime in 2023. Stay tuned. And thanks for the question!
 

matkoehler

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 12, 2014
Messages
315
Mat, I hope this hasn't been covered already. But, two questions:

1.) Is the lacquer on all of the Murphy Labs the same? I have a 2021 Murphy Lab 1958 Reissue VOS.
2.) What are the bobbin colors for the Custombuckers?

Apologies if this info is out there. I did a quick search on the site but admittedly, I'm not good with computers and boolean searches and all that jazz.

Thanks!
No problem! 1) yes it is the same lacquer used on everything from Murphy Lab. 2) Custombuckers come stock with black bobbins. But it's possible to get zebra styles through M2M if you so wish. And occasionally we will run out of black bobbins on the stock Custombuckers and substitute where appropriate...just like 59-60. :)
 

madrivermoco

Member
Joined
Sep 26, 2021
Messages
26
Thanks for asking! I have learned so much about Hutch I feel like I knew him personally, but in fact I'd only briefly met him a couple times before he passed. There's a nice biography on him HERE with photos too. But I'll add that his legacy at Gibson was all about preserving tribal knowledge from Kalamazoo. He became known for his passion surrounding archtop guitars but really he is responsible for so much more. He was THE guy going back and forth from Kalamazoo to Nashville bringing prints, process sheets, fixtures, jigs, etc -- anything that would benefit future production.

Someone who worked closely with Hutch is now our resident archtop guru...Doug Culberson. Doug is one of those guys that can build a guitar out of a tree stump if he had to...he's a savant-level luthier and a great guy to boot. Doug is central in our plans to introduce a Historic Reissue archtop collection sometime in 2023. Stay tuned. And thanks for the question!
Was worried about the Archtops. A Gibson Archtop has always been my retirement plan.
E7F2A8D7-7F4B-44A0-954F-0EF7BFF8BF88.jpeg
 
Last edited:

Midnight Blues

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 20, 2011
Messages
1,547
Hi Mat,

I'm a member of another forum (and I'm not referring to another LP forum), where a member mentioned that they and I'm quoting here: "asked Gibson to build me a ebony L-5 and GIbson told me we are no longer building any archtops at this time including no more L5's.''

Is that true?


Thanks and Happy Holidays!
Matt
 
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