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Les Paul Serial Help


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Hi Guys,

                  I have been assigned as the executor of our late client's estate, and as a part of this I have been tasked with auctioning off his collection, with all of the proceeds going to charity. I am currently trying to identify the year on this Les Paul, but I am struggling. I know obviously the year is important. Does anyone have any ideas? if you can't see the picture very well, it is 956002 with a 2 beneath


Thanks for your help, Olly

IMG_0192 (002).jpg

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Best to contact Gibson direct really. Phone rather than email though. The '2' under the serial may signify a 2nd, which is stamped if flawed.

this link is also at the bottom of this page. https://www.gibson.com/en-US/Support/Serial-Number-Search good general info. 



There are sites that can assist. I used this one https://authorityguitar.com/gibson-serial-number-lookup-decoder/  which generated this:

Year: 1968

Location: Kalamazoo, MI

Info: serial number is stamped on the back of the headstock

also tried this. It gave a different result which doesn't format well here: https://www.guitardataproject.org/serial/decode

and this: https://zinginstruments.com/gibson-serial-number-lookup/  which gives very different results. 


So yeah, call Gibson

Good luck





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Folks here could perhaps be more helpful with more photos of the guitar - front, back, detail of the electronics, etc.  Gibson will want that too in many cases to give you a firm answer. Construction and model details have wiggled around substantially since 1952 - there are likely more clues than just the serial number. And if you're looking to come up with fair current value, more than just the year matters.

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My go to source for serial#'s also comes up 1968. A photo of the front of headstock and body would help pin it down for sure. The Gibson decal on the front of the headstock has changed over the years. I have a 1969 ES-335 and I used to have a 1966. Both had the same decal font so 1968 should also have the same. The 2 below the serial# indicates a factory second. I remember quite a few of those in the 70's but I don't know if they did that in '68. They were usually minor flaws and did not affect playability. Pricing was about 20% off  from the regular price. 

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