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Gibson RD
Solid bodied guitar

RD Artist
 controls
 pricing & publicity
 schematics & parts lists
  RD-77 general schematic
  RD-77 moog board schematic
  RD-77 parts list (1981)
  RD-79 parts list (1981)

RD Custom
 controls
 pricing & publicity
 schematics & parts lists
  RD Custom parts list (1981)

RD Standard
 pricing & publicity
 schematics & parts lists
  RD Standard parts list (1981)

RD Basses

The Gibson 1978 RD guitar and bass catalogue
Gibson 1978 RD guitar and bass catalogue
The 1978 electrics catalogue entitled Quality / Prestige / Innovation
Gibson 1978 Quality /Prestige /Innovation catalogue

The RD line of Guitars was unveiled in 1977. It consisted of three six-string guitar models (RD artist, RD custom and RD standard) and two basses (RD artist and RD standard). RD stands for research and development.... and this range of instruments certainly was a technological leap forward for the Gibson company. At the centre of this innovation was the RD Artist guitar and bass. Not only were they Gibsons first active instruments, but they were also equipped with Moog (another Norlin company) expansion/compression circuitry.

Throughout the 70s Gibson experimented with guitars that were completely different from its older mahogany solid-bodies. Taking ques from other manufacturers, and coming up with ideas of their own. Newer models had been made from maple (L5-S, L-6S) with a bolt-on neck (Marauder and S-1) and now were being taken one step further still with the RD series; aswell as active electronics, the guitars were Gibson's first extra long scale instrument (25 1/2" as opposed to the usual 24 3/4"). According to early literature, were designed "with size, shape, and density of materials, chosen for their brightness, brilliance, sustain and comfort"

Bruce Bolen The Gibson Product development director at the time was Bruce Bolen. in this 1978 he explains the vision behind the RD artist.

One of the particular musical qualities that I personally was looking for in one of the models, was a similar effect to that of a steel player - this being the reduction of the intitial attack and the swell of the note after the initial attack had been made. A steel player of course uses a volume pedal to accomplish this but it was still something missing. Bob designed a special circuit that would achieve this as well as an expansion circuit unlike any other that had been designed to date.




From top to bottom, the Gibson RD Artist, RD Custom, and RD Standard guitars

From top to bottom, the Gibson RD artist, RD custom and RD standard guitars

RD guitar users

RD Artist
Dave Grohl (Foo Fighters)
Jimmy Page (Led Zeppelin)
Alan Kendall (Bee Gees)
Rob Dean (Japan)

RD Custom
Dave Grohl

RD Standard

If you can add to this list please email

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US ebay listings

2007 Gibson RD Standard Re Issue Silverburst GOTW #48 Guitar w Ebony Board

Current price: $1249.99
buy it now
Time left: 8d 18h 56m
Mint 2011 Gibson RD Standard Les Paul Pleked - International Buyers Welcome

Current price: $940.76

Time left: 5d 20h 34m
1977 Gibson RD Artist Guitar Ebony

Current price: $2395.00
buy it now
Time left: 23d 4h 40m
Gibson / RD Artist Alphine White 2014 Limited Run “RD Artist” guitar δ

Current price: $2780.00
buy it now
Time left: 17d 8h 54m
Free Shipping!! Very Rare!! Gibson RD Custom 1977 Guitar 04

Current price: $2492.00
buy it now
Time left: 3d 5h 9m
GIBSON FIREBIRD II CMT RD ARTIST w MOOG electronics ONLY 150 MADE!! 1981

Current price: $4995.00
buy it now
Time left: 18d 11h 45m
VINTAGE 1979 Gibson RD Artist w/Original Case! Early Model! 25 1/2" Scale!

Current price: $1299.00
buy it now
Time left: 8d 14h
Vintage 1979 Gibson RD Artist Electric Guitar w/ Moog Electronics Original Case

Current price: $2995.00
buy it now
Time left: 27d 2h 46m
1981 Gibson CMT RD Artist Bass Guitar

Current price: $3250.00
buy it now
Time left: 8d 23h 47m
1979 Gibson RD Artist Bass

Current price: $1695.00
buy it now
Time left: 24d 3h 50m
Gibson RD Artist Bass Guitar - Vintage 1977

Current price: $2295.00
buy it now
Time left: 16d 20h 36m
1978 Gibson RD Artist Bass with Original Case & Tags Natural

Current price: $1999.00
buy it now
Time left: 19d 20h 54m
See more results on eBay here


UK ebay listings

1979 Gibson RD Artist Bass

Current price: £1053.97
buy it now
Time left: 24d 3h 50m
1977 Gibson RD Artist Guitar Ebony

Current price: £1489.24
buy it now
Time left: 23d 4h 40m
NEW - Earvana Compensated 1-11/16" Nut For Gibson Acoustic, Wound 3rd, BLACK

Current price: £18.03
buy it now
Time left: 29d 12h
2013 Gibson Kluson Deluxe Tuner Treble Side W/Black Key Knob 3rd 2nd 1st String

Current price: £9.30
buy it now
Time left: 3d 19h 26m
Gibson RD Artist Bass Guitar - Vintage 1977

Current price: £1427.06
buy it now
Time left: 16d 20h 36m
NEW - Earvana Compensated 1-11/16" Nut For Gibson Acoustic, Wound 3rd, CREAM

Current price: £18.03
buy it now
Time left: 29d 12h 3m
1979 GIBSON RD ARTIST BASS & GUITAR PRINT AD

Current price: £6.21
buy it now
Time left: 6d 13h 16m
NEW - Earvana Compensated 1-5/8" Nut For Gibson Acoustic, Wound 3rd, CREAM

Current price: £18.03
buy it now
Time left: 3d 19h 38m
Gibson / RD Artist Alphine White 2014 Limited Run “RD Artist” guitar δ

Current price: £1728.64
buy it now
Time left: 17d 8h 54m
2007 Gibson RD Standard Re Issue Silverburst GOTW #48 Guitar w Ebony Board

Current price: £777.26
buy it now
Time left: 8d 18h 56m
NEW - Earvana Compensated 1-5/8" Nut For Gibson Acoustic, Wound 3rd, BLACK

Current price: £18.03
buy it now
Time left: 9d 18h 13m
1973 Vintage Original Gibson SG Standard Harness Pots Caps 3rd week of 73 711PT1

Current price: £95.76
buy it now
Time left: 14d 15h 1m
See more results on eBay here


German ebay listings

Gibson RD Artist Bass von 1978 mit Koffer fast neuwertig, near mint condition!!

Current price: €1750.00
buy it now
Time left: 3d 18h 53m
GIBSON RD CUSTOM BAUJAHR 1978 - TOP ZUSTAND

Current price: €2395.00
buy it now
Time left: 14d 13h 43m
Gibson RD Artist Alpine White

Current price: €1799.00
buy it now
Time left: 28d 15h 20m
1977 GIBSON RD ARTIST / CUSTOM GUITAR CASE -- made in USA

Current price: €398.00
buy it now
Time left: 6d 15h 46m
See more results on eBay here

There are 1 comments on this article so far. Add your comment
RD gassss Comment left 8th July 2012 15:03:49
RDs are some of the best guitars Gibson ever made. When will they put out a true reissue with moog board. I want one. Mega GAS!

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