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Gibson The Sg

Postby Daniel Mellor » Fri Mar 27, 2009 6:17 pm

Hi,
This isn't really a serious post but just if anyone knows anyone or has one of these themselves.
When I was 17 I bought my first Gibson and it was a 1979 The SG model. This came out aswell at the same time as the Gibson The Paul. I am now 21 and in my time of having this amazing guitar I have never seen any others in the flesh and only ever seen one on Ebay.
What I was wanting to know if anyone has ever had an experiences with these guitars or knows anyone who has. This is more of an appriciation post on an a guitar which I personally think is the best Gibson I have played and layed eyes on. I just wanted to know other peoples views on these guitars or if anyone else has seen one before or has any stories.

Thanks

Dan
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Re: Gibson The Sg

Postby Steve 77 » Fri Mar 27, 2009 9:17 pm

The User Reviews section on Harmony Central is a good source of opinion on guitars. The page for your SG can be found here.
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Re: Gibson The Sg

Postby arkieboy » Fri Mar 27, 2009 11:41 pm

I've had one for 15 years. It's not my best Gibson - truth be told it's a little neck heavy, the neck profile is a little too club-like and the stock pickups were a bit microphonic. But it has bags of character and a wonderful 'vintage' sound - quite unlike my Duncan equipped Eggle Berlin Custom which is very 'precise' and 'clean' even the dollops of distortion.

Its total 'no-frills' approach graces the SG concept rather better than 'the Paul', its Les Paul derived sibling. I was in a band where the other guitarist had a 'the Paul', and I was in no doubt my guitar both sounded and looked better.

I always thought that unlike 'the Paul', 'the SG' was in fact Mahogany rather than Walnut, which is one reason why it worked better. But I could be mistaken.

Mine has sentimental value so I would never sell it. I've been considering a fret stoning and kitting it out with new hardware and a set of Bare Knuckles. And therein lies the beauty of the guitar - it's a tool rather than an object of worship and it can remain relevant to you when some more well appointed guitars feel, well, dated...

Steve
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Re: Gibson The Sg

Postby jellyjim » Fri Mar 27, 2009 11:57 pm

Ha! I have an SG. It's a bloody great big plank of neck heavy wood with some wires strapped to it and it has one setting ... loud and raucous.

And I love it.

I'm sure a '79 model is real pretty.
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Re: Gibson The Sg

Postby SecretSam » Sat Mar 28, 2009 2:27 am

I recall that when "The Paul" came out at the budget end, Gibson produced a limited edition of 25 guitars called "The Les Paul" - one of the first super-luxury electrics. Even the knobs were made out of hand-worked rosewood.

Anyone played one of those ?
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Re: Gibson The Sg

Postby Dynamic Mike » Sat Mar 28, 2009 2:44 am

I had a Les Paul 'The Paul' in the late eighties & I seem to recall it being a pretty basic no-frills affair. Nice enough to play but a bit too mellow & lacking in character in the sound dept. But mostly I just remember the weight! I didn't know there was a 'The SG' until I read this post, was there a 'The 335'? to complete the set?
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Re: Gibson The Sg

Postby Wonks » Sat Mar 28, 2009 10:51 am

The Paul and The SG were part of the 'Firebrand' range (the Gibson logo was burnt into the headstock). There was a 335 Firebrand as well, but it came out a bit after the other two.

My Tony Bacon '50 years of the Les Paul' book strangely excludes 'The Paul' as it doesn't have the full Les Paul name.
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Re: Gibson The Sg

Postby DoItAgain » Sat Mar 28, 2009 11:30 am

That's a bit pedantic.
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Re: Gibson The Sg

Postby jellyjim » Sat Mar 28, 2009 11:54 am

Am I confused here? The post seems to be suggesting that "The SG" and "The Paul" were specific models? As opposed to "an SG" and "a Les Paul".
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Re: Gibson The Sg

Postby Wonks » Sat Mar 28, 2009 12:06 pm

Indeed. You can see them here on this page.

There were standard and deluxe versions of The Paul and SG - the standard was Walnut, the deluxe Mahogany.

I'd forgotten "The 335" was a solid body guitar! The 335 standard was maple, the Custom was mahogany.

They were all 'budget' instruments compared to the full blown Les Pauls and SGs, but still a lot more expensive than the Japanese copies available at the time.
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Re: Gibson The Sg

Postby arkieboy » Sat Mar 28, 2009 10:27 pm

They varied the range part way through, some guitars had the 'branded' (carved out and filled with red paint) Gibson logo. Mine had a plain old gold transfer and the truss rod cover only has 'The SG' on it.

As I recall, Gibson were taking a real punishing from Fender at this time who were considerably cheaper; Synths were in and humbuckers all too easily occupy the same sonic space as a Prophet 5 or and OBXa, whereas a strat can ping it's way around fat polysynth pads; and there was a dearth of Les Paul wielding heroes. Hence the budget guitars trading on the established brands.

Anyway, can anyone tell me how to tell the difference between Walnut and Mahogany? I'd like to know which one I have...

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Re: Gibson The Sg

Postby arkieboy » Sat Mar 28, 2009 10:31 pm

jellyjim wrote:It's a bloody great big plank of neck heavy wood with some wires strapped to it and it has one setting ... loud and raucous.

Couldn't have put it better! You're my kind of guitarist!

8-)
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Re: Gibson The Sg

Postby Dynamic Mike » Sun Mar 29, 2009 2:12 am

arkie-boy wrote:
Anyway, can anyone tell me how to tell the difference between Walnut and Mahogany? I'd like to know which one I have...

Steve

Walnut & mahogany can sometimes be quite difficult to distinguish between once they've been finished. Try to find an unseen/unfinished cavity area & scrape it gently with your fingernail. If what appears under your nail is a greyish colour it's probably walnut, if it's reddish it's probably mahogany. Probably...
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Re: Gibson The Sg

Postby zenguitar » Mon Mar 30, 2009 1:46 am

Unfinished mahogany is quite light in colour and reddish brown as described. Walnut is a little darker and less reddish. However, as walnut ages it begins to look like rosewood, but with wilder grain. It can have some nice greens, reds and even hints of purple and blue. Very pretty indeed and an excellent tone wood.

Andy :beamup:
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Re: Gibson The Sg

Postby Daniel Mellor » Mon Mar 30, 2009 10:13 am

Wonkey Wabbit wrote:The Paul and The SG were part of the 'Firebrand' range (the Gibson logo was burnt into the headstock). There was a 335 Firebrand as well, but it came out a bit after the other two.

My Tony Bacon '50 years of the Les Paul' book strangely excludes 'The Paul' as it doesn't have the full Les Paul name.

The firebrand came out after and your right it was burnt into the headstock and I think off the top off my head it was just called the SG Firebrand. It was the exact same body and I think it also had the Velvet Brick humbucker in the bridge but just had the burnt head stock.

I think it is a wallnut body though on the guitar, it's what I was told anyway and always took it as gospel.

Dan
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