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Gibson SG Custom
The 1972 Gibson SG Custom was quite different from earlier and later versions. See the 1972 Gibson Solid Bodies catalogue From the 1962 Gibson electric guitar and bass catalogue From the 1963 Gibson electric guitar and bass catalogue From the 1966 Gibson full line catalogue The 1970 electric solid bodies catalogue The 1972 electric solid bodies catalogue The 1973 Gibson solid body leaflet From the 1975 Gibson solid body catalogue From the 1978 Gibson catalogue
The 1972 Gibson SG Custom was quite different from earlier and later versions. See the 1972 Gibson Solid Bodies catalogue
From the 1962 Gibson electric guitar and bass catalogue
From the 1963 Gibson electric guitar and bass catalogue
From the 1966 Gibson full line catalogue
The 1970 electric solid bodies catalogue
The 1972 electric solid bodies catalogue
The 1973 Gibson solid body leaflet
From the 1975 Gibson solid body catalogue
From the 1978 Gibson catalogue
SG Custom Controls
Just like the other SG models, the Custom had two volume and tone controls, and a three way switch. This selected front pickup only, middle and back pickups together, or the back pickup only.
Each of the three humbucking pickups were identical: neck, middle and bridge, and they were the same pickups as used in the SG Standard, ES-175D and numerous other Gibson guitars, though with gold-plated covers.
The part that changed most noticeably in this model is the tailpiece. Several different versions were used, early examples are fitted with Gibson 'side to side' vibrato, or inlaid ebony block vibrato, followed by the Gibson deluxe (lyre) vibrato, which is probably the best known. From June 1973, Gibson started advertising the SG Custom with a Bigsby vibrato, or an optional stop tailpiece. As the decade wore on, it became very much the Bigsby that was the option.
One big change occurred around 1971/72, when the controls started to be mounted on a semi-circular control plate, rather than (via a back cavity) through the body wood itself (See the 1972 Gibson Solid Bodies catalogue). This attempt to reduce production costs was being introduced in numerous Gibson solid-body models - it was a time of real crisis for the American guitar industry, with heavy competition from cheaper overseas imports. It was not popular on high end instruments, and was dropped in the SG Custom within a year. It did continue in numerous other Gibsons throughout the 1970s.
SG Custom finishes
Initially, white was the only listed finish, and it is this colour that is most associated with this guitar. The gold hardware stood out against the white body giving this guitar a very flashy appearance. But by the end of the decade, White was dropped in favour of Walnut. The September 1969 price list is the first to list Walnut as the stock finish. This continued until 1975 when both Walnut and White were offered, with Wine Red being added briefly in the June '75 price list. This was replaced by Cherry for a short time, with Tobacco Sunburst also very briefly listed. The last price-list of the 1970s saw just White and Walnut available, before the SG Custom was discontinued in the 1980s. Despite these other colour options, the majority of 60s SG Customs are finished White, and the majority of 60s Customs are finished Walnut. As always with Gibson, there are exceptions - even when not listed, Cherry seems to have been available.
|There are 2 comments on this article so far. Add your comment|
|U.W. Comment left 28th February 2013 20:08:40|
I have a Gibson SG Custom, with gold hardware. Pressed into wood of the peghead is a 5 digit serial#(99***)"NO" MADE IN U.S.A Grover tuners,block pearl inlay,22 frets,(3)P.A.F's tune-o-matic bridge w/wire ,full scratch plate (like the '65's - ? )and the numbers on the potentiometers are 13773 and if there are other numbers on the pots they may be covered by the solder and are not vissable. and the color is "T.V" Yellow (dull and aged in comparison to the reissues) I would really appriciate any input in response to my discription, as my Grandfather Charrished it, and my Grandmother despised it.
|mike Comment left 1st June 2014 15:03:26|
would anyone know how many sg customs were produced in 1973? and how would one break down the serial# to find out what month, what batch as ive read they were produced in batches of 40.was wondering if there was any more definitive info one could retrive on ones guitar.I pirchased mine at Bills music in catonsville,md in 1984 in its original hardshell case and am very passionate about being fortunate to have it and would rate its condition very good a feww dings at best