1976
1976 Gibson L-6S Custom1978 Guild B-302F1967 Fender Coronado
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1972 Gibson showcase brochures
1972 Gibson showcase brochuresIn 1972 Gibson produced a series of 'Guitar of the Month' brochures, each dedicated to one of their high end models, the Les Paul Recording guitar, L5-CES, ES-175D, Super 400-CES, ES-355TD-SV and Byrdland. Each brochure was a single sheet folded into four panels, with details of the instruments themselves, their features, musical purpose, and a little history behind the development of each guitar. Only the Les Paul Recording was a new model; the others were all well established in the Gibson line. Follow the link to see scans and further information on these leaflets and other Gibson guitar catalogues from the CMI and Norlin periods.
1966 Kalamazoo KB-1 bass
Kalamazoo KB-1 bass Gibson assembled these 30 1/2" scale Kalamazoo KB-1 basses in their electronics plant in Kalamazoo, MI - separate from the main Gibson plant. They used the same components and hardware as on the Gibson EB bass series; but with a pre-painted masonite body and a bolt-on maple neck; a very different construction to Gibson's usual output. Initially the KB bass had a Mustang-shaped body (see the 1966 Kalamazoo KB-1, left), which was soon redesigned with the classic SG shape (see the 1967 Kalamazoo KB-1, right). Have a listen to sound clips of this bass here.
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Gibson Victory guitars
MV-II and MV-X

Gibson Victory MV2 electric guitar
The Gibson Victory MV2 in Candy Apple Red finish
Gibson Victory MVX electric guitar
The Gibson Victory MVX
The Gibson Victory MV range of guitars comprised just two models: the Gibson Victory MV2 (or MVII), "designed primarily for the discerning country player", and the Gibson Victory MV10 (or MVX) that "produces a myriad of separate and distinct electric guitar tonalities; those voices that fill all the needs and requirements of the dedicated guitarist"

MV stood for multi-voice. They were created by the Gibson research and development team in Kalamazoo, MI, with the body work by Chuck Burge, and the multi-voice electronics by Tim Shaw. The period of production was short: mid 1981 - 1983/4. Early models were Kalamaoo-built, but by the end of 1981 they were being produced at the Gibson Nashville plant. There were also three Gibson Victory bass models (See Chuck Burge's interview with FlyGuitars on the development of the Gibson Victory bass), and these went on to outlast the guitar versions by several years. The Gibson Victory MV2 and MVX were last listed in Gibson prices list of January 1984, whilst the Gibson Victory Standard and Artist basses remained until 1986.

According to the 1981 pre-owners manuals, they were attempts to add "in-demand" tones, to Gibson's classic sounds. Direct competition for the Fender Telecaster (MV2) and Fender Stratocaster (MV10). As well as the Fender-esque shape, these guitars were fitted with pickups and circuitry that could give single coil tones. This was not the first time Gibson had created guitars to directly take on Fenders sound; the Gibson Marauder and Gibson S-1 had done much the same thing 6 years earlier, but with more traditional Gibson body styling.

But to say the Victory series were just Fender copies would be very wrong indeed. Although they could produce single-coil sounds, these guitars were actually fitted with humbuckers for the fatter tones associated with Gibson, and along with a hard rock maple body and a set (glued-in) maple neck, they owed a lot more to Gibson tradition than might seem obvious at a first look. In many ways they are descendents of the all-maple Gibson RD series guitars; the design teams previous effort.

Gibson 1983 catalogue
The Gibson Victory Standard bass and Gibson Victory MX guitar were the only Victory models to appear in the 1983 Gibson catalogue
The Victory guitar series were available at dealers from late summer 1981, however bass models may have been available slightly earlier in 1981; only Victory basses were listed in the April 1981 price lists, with the guitars added in the next list.

By this time Gibson were having serious financial problems, and unprofitable models were being discontinued. The Victory MV guitars were good quality instruments, with wide tonal palettes. So why were they a commercial failure? It was a time of falling guitar sales in general, and perhaps Gibson buyers wanted Gibson classic styling? Price may also have been a factor: in 1982 the MV2 cost the same as the SG Standard, with the MVX a shade below the Les Paul Standard. Another factor may have been insufficient advertising. The MV2 never appeared in a Gibson catalogue, whilst the MVX just made it into the 1983 catalogue. Marketing the MV2 as a country guitar was perhaps a bad idea - although useful in alikening the instrument to the Telecaster, the Victory body shape was probably too 'rock' for country players, whilst the country tag must have put off may rock players.



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US ebay listings

VINTAGE 1981 USA GIBSON VICTORY BASS GUITAR TUNER LOGO CHROME

Current price: $59.00
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Time left: 1d 5h 6m
1981 GIBSON VICTORY STANDARD BASS GUITAR

Current price: $750.00
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Time left: 4d 2h 6m
Vintage 1983 Gibson Guitar Catalog Brochure Victory Bass Corvus Futura EDS-1275

Current price: $24.00
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Time left: 7d 6h 59m
1982 Gibson Victory Bass Standard

Current price: $141.50
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Time left: 8d 1h 15m
TRUSS ROD COVER for GIbson Victory MV II guitar

Current price: $26.00
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Time left: 10d 31m
1981 Gibson Victory Bass Guitar Original Magazine Ad

Current price: $7.50
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Time left: 11d 22h 31m
1982 SOUNDS LIKE ALL OF THEM THE GIBSON VICTORY MV X AD

Current price: $9.99
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Time left: 12d 2h 5m
1981 Gibson Victory Bass-can't keep it to yourself Ad

Current price: $9.99
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Time left: 12d 4h 6m
GIBSON VICTORY BASS AD vintage 80's guitar pinup photo

Current price: $9.99
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Time left: 14d 21h 25m
GIBSON VICTORY BASS PICKGUARD 1981 ORIGINAL!

Current price: $79.95
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Time left: 16d 23h 6m
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UK ebay listings

VINTAGE 1981 USA GIBSON VICTORY BASS GUITAR TUNER LOGO CHROME

Current price: £35.14
buy it now
Time left: 1d 5h 6m
Vintage 1983 Gibson Guitar Catalog Brochure Victory Bass Corvus Futura EDS-1275

Current price: £14.29
buy it now
Time left: 7d 6h 59m
TRUSS ROD COVER for GIbson Victory MV II guitar

Current price: £15.48
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Time left: 10d 31m
1981 Gibson Victory Bass Guitar Original Magazine Ad

Current price: £4.47
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Time left: 11d 22h 31m
1982 SOUNDS LIKE ALL OF THEM THE GIBSON VICTORY MV X AD

Current price: £5.95
buy it now
Time left: 12d 2h 5m
GIBSON VICTORY BASS AD vintage 80's guitar pinup photo

Current price: £5.95
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Time left: 14d 21h 25m
GIBSON VICTORY BASS PICKGUARD 1981 ORIGINAL!

Current price: £47.61
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Time left: 16d 23h 6m
GIBSON VICTORY STANDARD BASS LOGO NAME PLATE ORIGINAL!!

Current price: £29.75
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Time left: 16d 23h 48m
1983 GIBSON ELECTRIC REBOUND FLYING V VICTORY MV-10 CHET ATKINS GUITAR ARTICLE

Current price: £8.93
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Time left: 18d 1h 6m
1978 Gibson Bass Neckplate & Screws For Grabber G3 & Victory wLogo 1979 1980 USA

Current price: £47.64
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Time left: 19d 9h 35m
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