The F O N may indicate the year, batch number, and the ranking order of production within the batch of When the Nashville Gibson plant was opened in , it was decided that the bulk of the production of products would be run in the South; the Kalamazoo plant would produce the higher end fancier models in the North. If the stamped number consists 5 digits, there is a space between the first and second digit a separation between the last digit of the year and the actual serial number. Thus, the older Gibson guitars may have a serial number and a F O N. When a six-digit serial number is concerned, there is no space, because the highest number in four digits has been exceeded and so fills the space. Thence 5 digits and no space between the year 5 and the serial number. All numbers were impressed into the wood and a six digit number assigned, though no particular order was given and some instruments had a letter prefix. This updated system utilizes an impressed eight digit numbering scheme that covers both serializing and dating functions. For this reason, the array of four-digit serial number was exceeded after Gibson released solidbodies in The pattern is as follows: This system is useful in helping to date and authenticate instruments. In , Gibson forgot to put back the serial number range to
Another exception to the above rules is in the autumn from , where a some Les Paul Juniors and Specials had a four-digit serial number. Therefore, the production in may be a "1", "2" or "3" in the second digit. Gibson stopped the stamped serial numbers at the end in , although there are a few guitars made in with a "1" as a prefix. Some lap steels and Les Paul's from have such a serial number. All numbers were impressed into the wood and a six digit number assigned, though no particular order was given and some instruments had a letter prefix. In the earlier years at Gibson, guitars were normally built in batches of 40 instruments. A few bolt on neck instruments had a date ink stamped on the heel area. If the stamped number consists 5 digits, there is a space between the first and second digit a separation between the last digit of the year and the actual serial number. This updated system utilizes an impressed eight digit numbering scheme that covers both serializing and dating functions. This system is useful in helping to date and authenticate instruments. Gibson serial numbers to , solidbody model. There are three separate groupings of numbers that have been identified and are used for their accuracy. So they had just put the year from 4 to 5. Gibson released solidbodies in The first digit of the serial number is the last digit of the year. Bozeman instruments began using designations and, in , Nashville instruments began using designations. For this reason, the array of four-digit serial number was exceeded after The orange labels inside hollow bodied instruments was discontinued in and were replaced by white and orange rectangle labels on the acoustics, and small black, purple and white rectangle labels were placed on electric models. It should also be noted that the Nashville plant has not reached the s since , so these numbers have been reserved for prototypes. In , Gibson forgot to put back the serial number range to The numbers show Kalamazoo production, show Nashville production. Certain guitar models built in the late s can be used to demonstrate the old-style 6 digit serial numbers. An ink-stamped number from the back of the headstock. The Kalamazoo numbers were discontinued in This was the case in the years , , and After 5 came Evidently the production was high in because "6 " is exceeded. In , Gibson first introduced the serialization method that is in practice today.
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