1976 Gibson L-6S Custom, 1978 Guild B302F bass, 1967 Fender Coronado guitar
1976 Gibson L-6S Custom1978 Guild B-302F1967 Fender Coronado
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Gibson guitar pickups

Details of pickups used on vintage Gibson guitars

Gibson index > Gibson guitar parts > pickups

1960s

Gibson Single Coil

Gibson PU380 single coil pickup fitted to a Kalamazoo KG2a electric guitar
Underside of a Gibson PU380 single coil pickup fitted to an Epiphone Granada electric guitar The simple components that go up to make a Gibson PU380 single coil pickup Underside of a Gibson PU380 single coil pickup showing magnet and windings

Gibson part PU380. The PU380 single coil is often referred to as a Melody Maker pickup; it was indeed widely used on Gibson Melody Maker guitars, but also the ES120T (and it's equivalent, the Epiphone Granada), the Epiphone Olympic and Olympic Special, and the Kalamazoo KG1 and KG2 guitars. It is a simple single coil pickup with a plastic cover; cheap but highly effective, in fact (according to available shipping figures) it was fitted to over 96000 Gibson, Epiphone and Kalamazoo guitars between 1959 and 1970. When you consider that many of these guitars had two or even three pickups, it is clear that Gibson produced these pickups in very large numbers.

Construction is a simple single coil wound around an Alnico magnet core, and then potted, for a "bright/low" tonality. more

1970s

Gibson L-6S Custom Pickup

 

This humbucker pickup was design by Gibson engineer Bill Lawrence, and was used in the L-6S/L-6S Custom only, in the neck and bridge positions. Part numbers 13682 (neck) and 13683 (bridge). Dimensions: 70mm x 38mm x 19mm (excluding mounting tabs); Surround, 90mm x 45mm; Mounting screw holes are 78mm apart. more

Gibson L-6S Deluxe Pickup

This humbucker pickup was used in the L-6S Deluxe only, in the neck and bridge positions. Part numbers 13654 (neck) and 13655 (bridge). Dimensions 73mm x 41mm x 19.3mm. Hole to hole 79mm. Surround 93mm x 54mm (widest). Typical DC resistance 6.5kΩ. more

1980s

Gibson Sonex-180 Deluxe Pickup

Gibson Sonex-180 Deluxe humbucker Gibson Sonex-180 Deluxe humbucker Gibson Sonex-180 Deluxe humbucker
Gibson Sonex-180 Deluxe humbucker Gibson Sonex-180 Deluxe humbucker  

The Sonex-180 Deluxe was an entry level Gibson instrument, made with a innovative new 'Multiphonic' body material at the Gibson plant in Nashville, USA. It had simple construction and was fitted with basic components; these pickups are often (incorrectly) referred to as Velvet Bricks, or Dirty Fingers (see above), but although similar in appearance, were in fact a lower-cost unit produced in Japan (anyone know who by?) - Dirty Fingers were fitted to the Sonex-180 Standard and Custom models. They were later fitted to the Gibson Invader. Part numbers 13248 (neck) and 13249 (bridge). Dimensions: 70mm x 38mm x 18mm (excluding mounting tabs); Surround, 92mm x 45mm; Mounting screw holes are 78mm apart. DC resistance: The pair pictured were 7.6kΩ (front) and 7.7kΩ (back). more

Velvet Brick

Gibson Velvet Brick humbucker Gibson Velvet Brick humbucker Gibson Velvet Brick humbucker
Gibson Velvet Brick humbucker Gibson Velvet Brick humbucker

The Velvet Brick was an exposed coil humbucker with contrasting coloured cream/black formers, the black coil having adjustable pole pieces. Designed by Gibson's Tim Shaw, for use in a number of guitars: in the bridge position of Firebrand series "the SG" Standard and Deluxe from 1980, and in the neck position of the Gibson Victory MV2 from 1981.

The Victory MV owners manual described it as follows: Conventional iron-loaded "hot rodded" humbucking pickup (indox ceramic magnet substituted for Alnico) whilst highlighting the contrast to the magnet-loaded Magna II pickup (below) in the bridge position. more

Magna II

Gibson Magna II humbucker Gibson Magna II humbucker Gibson Magna II humbucker in situ
Gibson Magna II humbucker - reverse view showing baseplate and patent number Early promotional photograph of the Victory MVII - the Magna II pickup in the bridge position has two black coils

The Magna II was another exposed coil humbucker, usually with contrasting coloured cream/black formers, although early examples were black only. Unlike the Velvet Brick (above) with which it was paired in the Gibson Victory MV2 (bridge position) it had no adjustable polepieces.

The Victory MV owners manual described it as follows: "Over wound" with tall coil forms as in Magna Plus B, but with full magnet loading in both coils. more

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