Vintage Guitar and Bass forum

Gibson L6-S

Gibson L6-S
« on: September 14, 2010, 11:29:00 PM »
I bought this new back in 74? or 75? or maybe 76? Can't remember causin' I'm gettin' older... Serial # 129202... Can anyone help me out with date and data on it?


Gibson L6-S
« Reply #1 on: September 16, 2010, 03:14:00 AM »
Well, the 6 digit serial number indicates a guitar produced between 1970-75 so your memory is still holding strong. The dot inlay neck was produced between 1975-80 so I'm thinking you guitar was made in 1975.

The early pups were 5-sided humbuckers (1973-75) and the later pups were covered standard pups (1975-80) so the pups also suggest a date of 1975.

Your guitar is finished in Natural Maple which was the most common finish for this model. According to the Blue Book, value would be around $975 USD in Excellent Plus condition.

Gibson L6-S
« Reply #2 on: September 16, 2010, 10:42:59 PM »
Quote from: VintAxe;14536
Well, the 6 digit serial number indicates a guitar produced between 1970-75 so your memory is still holding strong. The dot inlay neck was produced between 1975-80 so I'm thinking you guitar was made in 1975.

The early pups were 5-sided humbuckers (1973-75) and the later pups were covered standard pups (1975-80) so the pups also suggest a date of 1975.

Your guitar is finished in Natural Maple which was the most common finish for this model. According to the Blue Book, value would be around $975 USD in Excellent Plus condition.

Thanks Vint... 75 sounds about right... I never did a thing to this except change strings... Still plays fine... I prefer a thicker neck but lately I've been using it for slide...I have no intention of selling it...I'm one of those 'guys' that can't let go of my instruments... Although I did sell a 75 Strat I had once... and I was also liberated of my 59 Tele some years ago... But I've hung onto everything else...
Thanks again...
Billy

jules

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Gibson L-6S Custom
« Reply #3 on: September 16, 2010, 10:46:46 PM »
I'm a big fan of the L-6S Custom too - mine plays beautifully

Gibson L6S Custom
« Reply #4 on: October 26, 2010, 04:48:16 PM »
I played one of the brand new L6S Gibsons back in 74 when I was a poor student - didn't get to own one until a few years ago when I found one at Guitar Center and had it imported to the UK. I think that the yellow,aged finish  looks better now than they did when new. The new ones looked very light and almost unfinished. Sounds from those hot humbuckers are really versatile with tele and strat sounds and when on the 'les paul' setting really wail through my boogie lonestar special. Definitely underrated.

Gibson L6-S
« Reply #5 on: October 26, 2010, 04:58:51 PM »
Quote from: Guitarman@guitarsofheroes;14762
I played one of the brand new L6S Gibsons back in 74 when I was a poor student - didn't get to own one until a few years ago when I found one at Guitar Center and had it imported to the UK. I think that the yellow,aged finish  looks better now than they did when new. The new ones looked very light and almost unfinished. Sounds from those hot humbuckers are really versatile with tele and strat sounds and when on the 'les paul' setting really wail through my boogie lonestar special. Definitely underrated.


Can I ask how much you paid for it and what kind of condition it's in?

jules

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Gibson L6S controls
« Reply #6 on: October 27, 2010, 04:12:10 PM »
Quote from: Guitarman@guitarsofheroes;14762
I think that the yellow,aged finish looks better now than they did when new. The new ones looked very light and almost unfinished.

Thats an interesting point - there are some really yellowed ones around. I think you're right about these being underated.
 
Quote from: Guitarman@guitarsofheroes;14762
and when on the 'les paul' setting really wail

lol! what's the Les Paul setting again? :?
 
The one thing I don't find that easy is remembering what position I want. The varitone isn't intuitive - and it isn't easy to remember which knob is which either. Still I wouldn't trade mine in in a hurry, purely because it plays so well, and always sounds great.

Gibson L6-S
« Reply #7 on: November 11, 2010, 07:23:43 AM »
whats a 5 sided humbucker? i have a cherry sunburst l6 s with an ebony fretboard which seems to be quite original and not used too much. as far as dating it i've only gotten as far as seeing in the vintage gibson pages where they state the sales figures for the l6 s that there were only 16 cherry sunbursts produced during the entire production run and all of them in 1975. not sure if that is true or not. either way i'm wondering if mine has the real deal bill lawrence super humbuckers or not. and were those also in the deluxe version from 1975? or are those just regular gibson LP style humbuckers?

this guitar is incredibly easy to play. i have a 1976 SG standard and i thought that it played itself basically but after playing the l6 s i was really surprised. even more like butter. and the versatility is really amazing. i don't know if it really sounds like a fender in some settings, like an SG or LP in others but it can go from twangy, bluesy to real heavy punk rock like zeke with a turn of that chicken beak. i love it. now i'm getting kinda paranoid to play it out because i don't want anything to happen to it.

anyway, any help in terms of explanation, illumination and teachings is greatly appreciated!

jules

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Gibson L6S
« Reply #8 on: November 13, 2010, 05:23:02 PM »
Quote from: deanager;14860
whats a 5 sided humbucker?

 
Well, they are not actually 5 sided... it's the pickup surround on the L6-S deluxe that is five sided - have a look at this 1976 L6S deluxe
 
Quote from: deanager;14860
i have a cherry sunburst l6 s with an ebony fretboard which seems to be quite original and not used too much. as far as dating it i've only gotten as far as seeing in the vintage gibson pages where they state the sales figures for the l6 s that there were only 16 cherry sunbursts produced during the entire production run and all of them in 1975. not sure if that is true or not.

 
Sound really nice. You can't trust those shipping figures 100% (especially with respect to finishes) - there are quite a few known errors, or years when they didn't bother separating the colours in the totals. But they do give approximate numbers. Certainly the Cherry Sunburst finishes are on the earlier instruments. I think they look great in that colour.
 
Is there a serial number? pot codes? they can help a little, but often with early-mid seventies Gibsons, you can only narrow it down to within a year or two.
 
Would you show us some pictures? Sounds like a very nice guitar.

Gibson L6-S
« Reply #9 on: November 14, 2010, 05:14:45 AM »
i'll put up some pics sometime this week. i also just aquired another l6-s but its a franken l6. it got totally modified, it has EMG's in it and the wiring is definitely NOT original. it does sound kinda cool though. and, off course, it plays like butter. somebody put a really cheap aftermarket binding on the neck and also painted it matt black. they must've been kids or high or both because it's really amateurish. i am thinking about changing the 3 way switch back to the chickenhead 6 way and get SF guitarworks to reconstruct the wiring.
here is the big question. i see that there is some guy on ebay who's selling original pick ups ofrom a 75 deluxe. those would be the ominous "5 sided humbuckers" with the plastic cover. are those the same as superhumbuckers or are they regular gibson humbuckers? and furthermore about potentiometers, the schematic says there are 2 250's and one 300 in there, what if i put 3 300's or how about 3 500's? i don't know the difference at all if there is one.

thanks for the follow-up anyway, i really appreciate it. i just want to say i love being able to talk about gear without feeling like a nerd or like i'm asking stupid questions. thanks again

Gibson L6-S
« Reply #10 on: November 15, 2010, 07:01:06 PM »
ok, haven't gotten around to taking pictures and uploading and all that jazz. too busy playing. i got the nuumbers tho.
serial # is 110451
there are two pots on which i could read the source code and that was 1377335  and
1377401
looks like it might be a 74

Gibson L6-S
« Reply #11 on: November 16, 2010, 08:02:13 PM »
Yeah, you might be right.
I haven't found an online source for 70's Gibson serial numbers that specifies year of production by serial number. Best I have is that 100000's were made between 1970-75 and we already knew that. I have several Gibson books, I'll check later to see if any of them have more specific serial number info.

According to the pot codes, the pots were made by Chicago Telephone Supply in the 35th week of 1973 and the first week of 1974. I know Gibson would buy pots in bulk but it is more likely that a 73 pot would show up in an instrument made in 74 than 75.

Gibson L6-S
« Reply #12 on: May 26, 2012, 09:54:32 PM »
Firstly i am ecstatic to find this  forum on the l 6  
being an accoustic player  for many years i aquired an l 6 s a few years ago after a friend passed away
i checked out the serial numbers  when i got it it seem to be a 1977 model as close as i could tell
there were som electronic  problems  since the original varietone was replaced (probably incorrectly) with a standard 3 position toggle  and the bridge pickup  with a dimarzio
originally a tobacco sunburst  with alot of cracks in the finish i decided to  restore it to the natural maple  finish which came out beautiful
but i am still vexed with the pick up selections which i think were wired incorrectly
i am looking for a 6 position varietone which was originally there
i am not able to locate the switch on  gibsons or allparts site
can anyone offer any help  there
this guitar  plays like butter and sounds great with  about 1 and a half pickups but i would love to  finish  the job and bring it back to original specs
any info would help[attach=config]1998[/attach][attach=config]1999[/attach]

Gibson L6-S
« Reply #13 on: March 02, 2014, 11:15:24 PM »
Quote from: jules;14769
Thats an interesting point - there are some really yellowed ones around. I think you're right about these being underated.
 

 
lol! what's the Les Paul setting again? :?


The one thing I don't find that easy is remembering what position I want. The varitone isn't intuitive - and it isn't easy to remember which knob is which either. Still I wouldn't trade mine in in a hurry, purely because it plays so well, and always sounds great.


I remember reading that Bill Lawrence wanted to label the varitone Les Paul, Strat, Tele but was prevented by Gibson legal dept. It may be a bit of a stretch but starting fully anti clockwise you start with the 2 Les Paul-ish settings, 2 Strat (in/out of phase), 2 twangy/treble Tele settings.  NB sorry about the delayed response !!  Life takes it's toll sometimes.

 

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