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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

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US ebay listings

GIBSON RD REISSUE GUITAR OF THE WEEK DIRTY FINGERS w/ HARD SHELL CASE HSC

Current price: $1150.00
buy it now
Time left: 3d 6h 47m
Rare!! Vintage Gibson RD Artist 1977 SB Guitar Exc++

Current price: $2627.00
buy it now
Time left: 8d 17h 10m
Gibson Limited Edition RD Artist

Current price: $2299.00
buy it now
Time left: 11d 12h 29m
RARE 1978 GIBSON RD CUSTOM GUITAR WITH MOOG ELECTRONICS

Current price: $2999.99
buy it now
Time left: 9d 13h 24m
Gibson ES-335 BLOCK Export RD S/N 0110520 Vintage Old Guitar Exc++

Current price: $2800.00
buy it now
Time left: 1d 12h 50m
GIBSON FIREBIRD II CMT RD ARTIST w MOOG electronics ONLY 150 MADE!! 1981

Current price: $4995.00
buy it now
Time left: 21d 23h 11m
1977 Vintage Gibson RD Custom True Relic Orginal Case

Current price: $1695.00
buy it now
Time left: 9d 15h 15m
Gibson RD Artist Bass 1977 Silverburst

Current price: $1800.00
buy it now
Time left: 27d 5h 33m
Gibson RD Artist Bass 1978 Black

Current price: $1800.00
buy it now
Time left: 27d 5h 29m
1978 Gibson RD Artist Bass with Original Case & Tags Natural

Current price: $1999.00
buy it now
Time left: 29d 4h 7m
Vintage Circa 1977 Gibson RD Artist Custom Bass w/ Moog Electronics & Hard Case

Current price: $2195.00
buy it now
Time left: 13d 14h 48m
Gibson Vintage 1977 RD Artist Natural Bass Guitar.

Current price: $1799.99
buy it now
Time left: 24d 7h 29m
See more results on eBay here


UK ebay listings

Gibson RD Artist Bass

Current price: £1600.00
buy it now
Time left: 2d 4h 11m
1978 GIBSON RD ARTIST - FIREBURST - ANDY BAXTER BASS

Current price: £1995.00
buy it now
Time left: 12d 21h 32m
Gibson Truss Rod Cover Les Paul Guitar Parts Custom Standard Studio SG ES RD R9

Current price: £8.95
buy it now
Time left: 4d 3h 10m
Gibson RD Artist Bass Guitar - Vintage 1977

Current price: £1403.81
buy it now
Time left: 20d 8h 3m
Vintage Circa 1977 Gibson RD Artist Custom Bass w/ Moog Electronics & Hard Case

Current price: £1403.81
buy it now
Time left: 13d 14h 48m
Gibson Top Hat Knobs Set Amber Bell Guitar Parts Les Paul RD V SG ES R9 R8 R0 R7

Current price: £15.34
buy it now
Time left: 6d 3h 34m
Gibson Top Hat Knobs Set Bell Guitar Parts Les Paul RD Exp CS V SG Firebird ES

Current price: £14.70
buy it now
Time left: 1d 2h 50m
Gibson Stop Tailpiece Chrome Guitar Parts Les Paul RD Explorer SG V ES Firebird

Current price: £31.33
buy it now
Time left: 1d 3h 11m
Gibson Jack Plate Gold Cord Input / Output Guitar Parts Les Paul RD ES R9 Studio

Current price: £10.23
buy it now
Time left: 3d 3h 7m
Gibson Grover Nickel Tuners Set Guitar Parts Les Paul SG V ES RD Tuning Machines

Current price: £57.55
buy it now
Time left: 1d 3h 14m
Gibson Switch Ring Toggle Washer Black / Gold Guitar Parts CS Les Paul ES SG RD

Current price: £7.03
buy it now
Time left: 6d 3h 41m
Gibson Top Hat Knobs Set Gold Bell Guitar Parts Les Paul V SG RD R9 Studio ES R8

Current price: £14.70
buy it now
Time left: 6d 3h 30m
See more results on eBay here


German ebay listings

GIBSON RD CUSTOM BAUJAHR 1978 - TOP ZUSTAND

Current price: €2395.00
buy it now
Time left: 18d 1h 9m
1977 GIBSON RD ARTIST / CUSTOM GUITAR CASE -- made in USA

Current price: €398.00
buy it now
Time left: 10d 3h 12m
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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