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1985 Explorer

#1 User is offline   thorovich 

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Posted 03 August 2010 - 05:18 PM

Hi all!

Some 10 years ago, I bought a 1985 Explorer that was all black, no pickguard, had a stud mount Kahler, and a humbucker/single/single pickup configuration. Each of the pickups had an on/off mini toggle, and the two knobs were master volume, and tone. One knob clicked up and down for coiltapping the Dirty Fingers humbucker.

I emailed Gibson at the time, and I think I remember getting an ID back from them saying it was an Explorer 400+. I gave away the guitar to a friend of mine, missed it, so I bought another one of the exact same type, but a different color (kind of an olive drab/gray sparkle).

I recently refretted my Explorer, and I've heard some stories that Wayne Charvel was responsible for the H/S/S with the mini on/offs config. I've searched for Explorer 400+, but found that the designation 400 was used for a number of Gibsons. So now I'm doubting the ID.

So my question is: Is there a specific sub-model nomenclature for my Explorer? I'm going to take better pictures with a better camera, but here's a few with my crappy cell phone.

I replaced the mini toggles with some red tipped minis that I liked better, and got rid of the humbucker coil tap and the Dirty Fingers - replaced it with a Dimarzio X2N.

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Anyone else own one of these? Any gurus out there can tell me more?

Thanks!
Thor

#2 User is offline   BentonC 

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Posted 05 August 2010 - 06:08 PM

Yup- that's called an EXP 425. It was in production from 1985-86. The body wood isn't specified, but it is listed as having a maple neck and ebony fretboard. The bridge was a Kahler 2200. The single coils aren't specified, but the humbucker is listed as a Dirty Fingers.

Hope that helps!

#3 User is offline   thorovich 

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Posted 05 August 2010 - 07:45 PM

thanks, that does help! I like it a lot, it's a riff machine.

#4 User is offline   thorovich 

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Posted 05 August 2010 - 07:47 PM

the body is definitely mahogany, fretboard is ebony. not sure about the neck, I thought it would be mahogany, too

#5 User is offline   Stryker57 

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Posted 06 August 2010 - 10:14 PM

nope neck is maple.
heavy guitar and a sound to its own,
I always liked the single coil tap for more mellower music gave a deep full ring to each string.

#6 User is offline   e/2 Explorer 

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Posted 07 August 2010 - 07:53 AM

The body should be swamp ash or poplar in this model, not mahogany. This was a lower cost Explorer

On a side note, if you still have the Dirty Fingers pup, I would be interested
'81 Les Paul Standard WR FOR SALE/TRADE
'01 Les Paul Standard TB
6505 -> Framus 4x12 25w greenbacks

Shenanigans My link

#7 User is offline   Stryker57 

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Posted 07 August 2010 - 11:08 AM

body is a heavy dark wood
which would be most likely Mahogany , both swamp ash and poplar are a light colored wood.
at least mine was.

#8 User is offline   Kettu 

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Posted 07 August 2010 - 05:09 PM

[quote name='thorovich]thanks' date=' that does help! I like it a lot, it's a riff machine. [/quote']

Are you sticking with the stock single coils, or maybe try a cool rails in the neck or something?

#9 User is offline   thorovich 

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Posted 07 August 2010 - 05:35 PM

The chips in the paint on the body tell me the body is definitely Mahogany. I looked under the truss cover for the neck wood, and it looks like Mahogany to me...

I still do have the Dirty Fingers pickup, hanging on to it until I find a permanent choice for the bridge pickup, for now the X2N is doing OK, but I think I'm going to try a couple different types of pickup. For now, I'm sticking with the stock single coils, they have some nice cleans to them. My friend who has my first one of these swapped his single coils out with Cool Rails and loves them in there.

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