1976 Gibson L6-S Deluxe

Solid-body electric guitar

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This is a fairly early example of the Gibson L6S Deluxe. Tobacco sunburst is the rarest finish for this model, with just 164 guitars shipped (less than 5% of the total) and just 23 shipped in 1976. (L-6S shipping totals)

The Deluxe, unlike the Custom, is strung through the body - ie strings enter the guitar from the reverse side of the instrument, out through the front, and over the bridge. There is no tailpiece as such.

The controls could not be simpler: a three way pickup selector switch - front / both / back - and a volume and tone control, both topped with black speed knobs.

The L6S Deluxe had different pickups to the Custom and Midnight Special; black plastic-covered L6S Deluxe super humbuckers, part numbers 13654 and 13655.

The bridge is a German-made Schaller tune-o-matic, as used on most solid body Gibson guitars of the mid seventies.

Gold silk-screened Gibson logo and Kluson machine heads. One marvellous feature of this guitar is the extent of the burst finish. Rather than appearing only on the body front, it is also on the body back, neck, and even headstock sides as shown here.

The Deluxe version of the L6S was shipped from 1975 to at least 1980. The last price list it featured in was from June 1979, however Gibson did continue shipping most models for a little while beyond the last price list appearance, and although no figures are available beyond 1979 (and supposedly only 3 that year), it is likely some were still shipped as late as 1981 and maybe beyond.

The case (see image above) is a fibreglass Gibson 'Protector' case, which came with many L6S Deluxes in the late seventies, although 1976 and early 1977 price lists only list a faultless (plush) case.

Gibson L-6S Deluxe serial number decal

The model name decal reads L-6 DELUXE. Note, no S. In between 1975 and early 1977 the serial number was a decal too. This is an eight digit number with the first two numbers representing the year. Interestingly, the decal on this guitar has faded considerably, except for the first two digits ('00' representing 1976), underlining the fact that these are separate from the rest of the serial number.

Images courtesey of justgreatguitars.com

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